Want free Uber rides? Build a Twitter bot like this guy did

This ONE WEIRD TRICK... actually makes a lot of sense

Uber

In the earn-a-quick-buck culture of Taboola Web, one guy has a neat trick that, for once, doesn't require your credit card details. He's found a way to get infinite Uber referrals, and he wants to teach you how he did it.

Mark - who also goes by the name Rofe, for some reason, and wants us to know he lives in Dubai and definitely not London - explained how he gamed Uber's referral program to get £1,500 worth of free rides (thanks, Giz).

Mark realised that a lot of people were using Twitter to search for Uber codes, and so he paid a student in Prague to build a bot that would search for relevant tweets and reply with his invite code.

After a bit of tweaking, Mark started racking up the referrals.

Build-a-bot

In just over a year, Mark - sorry, Rofe - claims to have bagged himself between 100 and 150 referrals, amounting to a value of somewhere between £1,000 and £1,500 in rides.

His referral code would only give him £10 off his next trip, but Mark - sorry, Rofe - says if his journeys went much over that, he'd get out and book a second Uber. If you've gone to this much effort already, why not game the system entirely, eh?

When you break it down, all Mark has done is take advantage of a hole in Uber's referral system. Uber explicitly says, "Promoting your referral code via Search Engine Marketing (e.g., AdWords/Yahoo/Bing) is also not allowed."

Also, "Uber reserves the right to suspend your account and revoke any referral credits if they were earned against our terms."

So, we're not condoning what Mark has done here, but it's interesting way of using a Twitter bot for personal gain.

Article continues below