In celebration of the spookiest time of the year, we’ve collected hometown ghost stories from riders and driver-partners across the US. From a ghostly visitor in the back of an Uber to a run-in with New Orleans notorious Madame LaLaurie, driver-partners from around the country are full of spooky tales that’ll make your hair stand on end. Here are some of our favorites.
Jessi, San Antonio
I recently got out of the Navy and started driving with Uber. For the first couple of weeks, I stuck to hanging out around the base, trying to catch other service members who needed a ride. One Friday, a rider gets into my car and asks if I can get him to Fort Hood in a couple of hours. I told him that it would be no problem, and we started our trip. A couple of minutes into the ride he asked if I could pull over so he could use the restroom. I pulled into a gas station right off the freeway. I was sitting in the car waiting for him to come back for about 10 minutes when the gas station attendant started locking up. I told him that my passenger was still inside and that he was using the restroom. The gas station clerk then told me that he had been getting ready to close the shop when he saw me pull in. When no one got out of the car and I was still just sitting there, he decided that he wasn’t going to wait any longer. I insisted that this guy was inside so he went in and checked, and didn’t find anyone. He even called his manager to get permission to go over the security tape. What he showed me gives me goosebumps to this day. I pulled in, no one ever got out of my car and no one went inside. All I know about the guy was that his name was Mikey, he was 19 years old, and had been in the Navy for 2 years. His wife Marisa was waiting for him in New York where he bought a house. It still freaks me out to this day.
There is a stretch of road in suburban Chicago that is bordered by a cemetery on both sides. I was taking a rider home just after 2am when we came to an extremely foggy patch of the road adjacent to the cemetery. We slowed down and cracked the windows when we heard what sounded like elephants trumpeting and a girl screaming for help. As I backed up slowly we both smelled smoke and heard animals panicking. We were trying to call 911 but the calls kept failing. We left and pulled over at a coffee shop that was still open. A staff member explained that there was a train wreck in 1918 right next to the cemetery. We did some research and found that this is a common occurrence and many people have reported hearing and seeing the same sounds and smells.
Whitnee, New Orleans
Being a recent tour guide in the city of New Orleans, there’s always a story to tell. I will never forget the time I saw Madame LaLaurie. While giving a haunted history tour one night in the month of December I came upon 810 Royal Street, the home where Madame LaLaurie once lived. The story of Madame LaLaurie would make anyone’s flesh crawl. Madame LaLaurie is notorious for the horrendous things she did in the past. While telling the tourists the spooky (and true) story about her, something began to happen. The lantern at the front door began to click off and on. We all heard screams coming from inside the house and a shadow of a woman dressed in 1800s clothing was seen upstairs. This isn’t the first time people have experienced these types of things at 810 Royal Street. People believe the cries are tortured spirits and the shadow was Madame LaLaurie overlooking the French quarter.
A few years ago my family and I visited Eastern State Penitentiary in Philadelphia. One of the last places we toured was death row. We were in the yard listening to the guide when out of the corner of my eye I saw movement in the guard tower. I asked the tour guide if anyone worked in any of the towers. She said no and explained that the floors and stairs were not safe. She then asked if I had seen something. I told her that I had and still do. Everyone in the group looked and couldn’t see anything while I still could. I couldn’t see features, but I could make out a uniform and hat. Still, no one could see what I could see. I finally pointed to where the “guard” was and he disappeared. I’ve been back and haven’t seen it since. It was very exciting!
I live in an old colonial home in Dorchester Center that was built in the late 1880s. It was the first home built on my street and was previously owned by an Irish steamboat captain and his family. Every day when my family eats dinner we can hear his family shuffling around with silverware and laughing in the dining room. We usually hear someone drop a plate and the entire family will go silent. I also see a person walking in and out of my room late at night. When absolutely nobody is home, I sometimes hear a little kid running up the stairs to the third floor and then back down.
Did you have a howling good time in your Uber? You can give your driver a spooky, Halloween-themed compliment when rating your trip. Enjoy the ride and this delightfully haunted time of year!