A World Series of Poker (WSOP) player has had a lucky escape recently after he mislaid a bag filled with $7,000 cash in an Uber taxi. On June 1st, Jacob Brundage from Lakeland, Florida was leaving the Venetian Hotel in Las Vegas and taking the Uber to his next destination, the Rio Hotel, when he accidentally left a black tote bag filled with cash and poker chips behind in the car. When he’d gotten into the backseat of the taxi, Brundage had set the bag of money to his left. Rather than engaging the driver in small talk, Brundage said he spent most of the ride on the phone with a friend he met at a Las Vegas church. “Honestly, I was distracted,” Brundage said.
The 39-year old professional poker player, who was in Vegas for the annual WSOP tournament, was distraught at his blunder and frantically made efforts to call the Uber driver in an attempt to retrieve the cash. Thankfully, the Uber company managed to locate the money in the end, Brundage says he hit the “emotional jackpot” thanks to the driver who returned his $7,000.
“People lose things in their Uber all the time,” says an Uber representative. “But this has to be the most valuable thing that someone has ever lost in one of our cars in Las Vegas.” Brundage realised he’d left the car without his bag of cash, and used his cellphone to contact the Uber driver via an in-app option which allows customers to directly call their Uber drivers through a masked number. However, the driver couldn’t hear Brundage and the call failed. Further attempts by Brundage to contact the driver proved unsuccessful, as unbeknownst to him, the driver’s phone battery had died.
Brundage then enlisted a group of nearby waiting Uber drivers to help him out. He explained his lost bag dilemma, and the Uber team immediately began tracking down the driver and the mislaid bag of cash. Over an hour passed before Brundage finally heard back from his Uber driver, who explained that his cellphone battery died, and agreed to return with the bag of cash within twenty minutes. The driver pulled up to the front of the Rio Hotel and opened the minivan’s doors. The bag was exactly where Brundage left it. The WSOP poker star gave him $200 as a reward, and added another $100 to the Uber team members for helping him out. “It felt like a miracle, and I was very relieved,” Brundage said. “This man’s honesty and integrity made me feel very blessed.”
Brundage isn’t alone in misplacing belongings or valuables in an Uber car. Uber had 168 reported incidents of keys, wallets and bags that were left behind in vehicles across Las Vegas since September, said Uber spokeswoman Maui Cheska Orozco.