A Chinese mobile-phone user dials the taxi-hailing car-service app DiDi Chuxing. Photo: Xinhua
A Chinese mobile-phone user dials the taxi-hailing car-service app DiDi Chuxing. Photo: Xinhua

A woman who hailed a taxi for a 15-minute trip in China’s southwestern Yunnan province via a DiDi Chuxing ride-hailing app was stunned to get a whopping 8,300 yuan (US$1,300) bill.

Mrs Li, a resident in the picturesque tourism city of Lijiang, hailed a taxi on DiDi on May 25 and got off near the China Unicom building after traveling just 4.8 kilometers.

Yet she found the small-value autopay for the trip was not successful on her DiDi app and a subsequent pop-up window sent a bill that shocked her (see below).

Mrs Li was stunned by the huge bill for her 4.8km DiDi trip. Photo: Handout

What bewildered her more was the app showed that she had supposed traveled some 3,097km, to the China Unicom Building in Beijing, according to Kunming Evening News.

Li suspected that the app’s map and track function had gone topsy-turvy, and calculated the fare for a 3,000km journey that never occurred.

It said the driver’s DiDi app showed the fare to be charged was just nine yuan.

The Chinese carpooling app’s latest blunder follows a horrific rape and murder of a female passenger by a man who took advantage of DiDi’s allegedly slack system to verify the identity of drivers.

This has triggered a fresh hail of derision and anger, with some netizens joking that the hefty price tag was justifiable given DiDi’s novel “time warp” service that can whirl passengers across staggering distances within a short period of time, albeit on its own map only.

DiDi said it would investigate after Mrs Li called the company, but there appeared to have been no follow-up despite a week of attempts by Li to contact the firm to solve the issue.

DiDi said on June 3 it had reset Li’s account and she did not need to pay anything for a non-existent ride.