Uber driver's 'disrespectful' request to woman visiting Australia: 'I don't understand'

The female passenger defended her right to speak however she wants after the driver took issue with her phone call to a friend.

Left: Uber logo on side of white car. Right: Photo of Uber passenger and Columbian woman Alejandra
Alejandra claims her male Uber driver told her she must only speak English when in Australia, rather than her native tongue Spanish. Source: Getty/TikTok

A Colombian woman visiting Australia has detailed her upsetting experience with an Uber driver who she claims made an unfair request while she was travelling in his car in Perth last month.

The woman named Alejandra claims the male driver told her she must only speak English when in Australia, and not her native tongue Spanish, after a phone call with her friend while in the back seat of the vehicle.

The traveller filmed part of the interaction before sharing it on TikTok. In the video, the woman is heard defending herself and her right to speak in whatever language she wants.

"This is our language. Spanish is my language, and I will always speak Spanish if I want. Even if I'm here in Australia," she said to the male driver whose response is unclear in the video.

"What I'm saying is, show respect. I'm talking with my friend, personal things and I shouldn't be thinking 'oh maybe I can talk in English so he can hear all the gossip."

Again, the male driver appears to defend his reasoning, although what he says is unclear in the recording. The woman went on to say "[speaking Spanish] is my thing," and reassured the driver "we're not making fun of you," referring to the phone conversation between her and her friend.

"We don't care. We are just talking about our personal things, our personal life, so I don't understand what is the problem," she went on to explain, to which the Uber driver was heard saying, "Okay, I'm sorry. I apologise".

Alejandra's interaction with the Uber driver attracted a large response on social media with many applauding the woman for her response and for "advocating" for herself.

"Driver needs to chill, many tourists and residents speak multiple languages here," said one Aussie. "He needs to respect you, limit to his job drive and thats it," another said.

"So proud of how well you stood up for yourself, but am also so sorry you had to experience that here," said another. While someone else wrote: "You taught him a good lesson and he apologized so it's good"

One however said they "understand the [Uber] driver though" explaining: "It happened to me in another country, but once I learned the language there, I got to know people aren't speaking about me."

Another simply said, 'he is right" but didn't offer a reason why.

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