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Thread: What is Costco's warranty or guarantee on glasses?

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    What is Costco's warranty or guarantee on glasses?

    After reading some posts on this board about Costco, I called a local Costco optical department today and asked their policy on returns. She was kind of vague and said they try very hard not to refund. For 30 days they will work with you and try to make things right.

    So will they refund or not? If you are just unhappy within the 30 days?

    I was reading some good things on this board about Essilor Ovation lenses for progressive glasses. I wondered if it was worth trying them from Costco. Do they make them fairly quickly, or do you have to wait weeks? A 30 day guarantee isn't much good if it takes 2 weeks to get the glasses. I asked this because I think somebody mentioned waiting 3 weeks.

    Are the Ovations from Costco the very same ones you get at Lenscrafters?

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    This is a sticky issue at Costco clubs. Costco's policy is to retain the customer - they offer a very liberal return policy on everything in the store - even produce. I've heard of people returning big screen TV's 5 years after purchase and walking out with a new (and much better) unit.

    But their optical dept runs a bit differently if make your return there. 30 days from the date of pick up for a remake if you're not happy, but no returns.

    In my opinion, eyeglasses are unique medical devices are should not be applicable to a 'refund' - remake into something else is another thing, but an all out return is a lose-lose. When I was in school I worked for LensCrafters and couldn't believe the return mentality some people had - I recall one lady that was going out on the town and she told us she'd be returning her glasses the next day. She only needed them that night to look good for her friends.

    And yes, the Ovation they use is the same Ovation any of us (including LensCrafter) can get.

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    Thank you. I very much appreciate the information.

    I called the local Costco and she said it takes about a week and a half for glasses. Someone on this board mentioned he waited 3 weeks. If you get a pair and it isn't correct, and they re-make them, does your 30 day guarantee start on the day you pick up the re-makes?

    I was also curious about where the lenses are actually made. Since they take a week and a half, I'm assuming they don't make them on the premises? Are they ordered from a central location and then the local opticians cut the lenses and put them in your frames?

    If the Ovation lenses are the same from Lenscrafters and Costco, is there any reason why I shouldn't just get them at Costco? Assuming I liked the frames there? And as long as the person fitting you is a board certified optician? It seems like the price is about $150 less (or more).

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    Master OptiBoarder OptiBoard Bronze Supporter LENNY's Avatar
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    Ever heard of private optical stores?
    99.9% of my patients are happy from the first try!

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    THANK YOU LENNY!

    Listening to a customer shop based on the stores redo policy is absurd.

    :drop:

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    reason

    There is an optician next to my eye doctor. I think he rents space from the eye doctor. When I was waiting for my husband to get his eye exam, I wandered into the optician's room. I told him that both my husband and I were going to be buying glasses. He was not very pleasant nor helpful. He got a personal phone call (that didn't sound very important) and he proceeded to spend most of my visit chatting with his friend. I asked about transition lenses and he said he'd put a pair outside so I could see how dark they get. I waited and then a little later asked about them. He forgot. He went out and got them and showed me. Here was a customer for two pair of progressive lenses and he barely gave me the time of day.

    He is the only private optician I have had contact with and I was extremely unimpressed. I would never go there. If I purchased glasses there and there was a problem, I don't think he'd be very helpful. That's why I thought if I went to a large store or chain, at least if there was a problem, they'd do something about it.

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    Master OptiBoarder OptiBoard Bronze Supporter LENNY's Avatar
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    People are so brainwashed by large corporations!

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    Quote Originally Posted by plum View Post
    There is an optician next to my eye doctor. I think he rents space from the eye doctor. When I was waiting for my husband to get his eye exam, I wandered into the optician's room. I told him that both my husband and I were going to be buying glasses. He was not very pleasant nor helpful. He got a personal phone call (that didn't sound very important) and he proceeded to spend most of my visit chatting with his friend. I asked about transition lenses and he said he'd put a pair outside so I could see how dark they get. I waited and then a little later asked about them. He forgot. He went out and got them and showed me. Here was a customer for two pair of progressive lenses and he barely gave me the time of day.

    He is the only private optician I have had contact with and I was extremely unimpressed. I would never go there. If I purchased glasses there and there was a problem, I don't think he'd be very helpful. That's why I thought if I went to a large store or chain, at least if there was a problem, they'd do something about it.

    No offence, but you had one bad experience with a private optician and now it seems like you have given up on private opticians. But then when you have had a bad experience with a corporation you look at other corporations?

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    Ophthalmic Optician OptiBoard Gold Supporter
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    Quote Originally Posted by For-Life View Post
    No offence, but you had one bad experience with a private optician and now it seems like you have given up on private opticians. But then when you have had a bad experience with a corporation you look at other corporations?


    Let them go...

    Why bother with someone when there are so many others out there ?

    It's not worth the breath it takes to argue with them.

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    EYES-ON-JESUS
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    Money........

    I worked for costco for ten years in the lab in 1989 when I started we were
    doing 300-400 jobs daily, when I left there in 1999 we were at 3000-3500
    daily.YES I did not put a extra 0 on the end.A good friend of mine is still there and thats the numbers they do daily.I was runing 4 HORIZON edgers
    all day long,non stop,now all surface/finish is robotic,all they need is mounter's. world wide they have 400-500 store's just think 10 jobs per store and you can imagine what kind of MONEY there makeing.
    KIRKLAND frames.own lenes,ect.Take the average cost RETAIL of each pair
    of glasses and see what # you come up with..











    Quote Originally Posted by plum View Post
    Thank you. I very much appreciate the information.

    I called the local Costco and she said it takes about a week and a half for glasses. Someone on this board mentioned he waited 3 weeks. If you get a pair and it isn't correct, and they re-make them, does your 30 day guarantee start on the day you pick up the re-makes?

    I was also curious about where the lenses are actually made. Since they take a week and a half, I'm assuming they don't make them on the premises? Are they ordered from a central location and then the local opticians cut the lenses and put them in your frames?

    If the Ovation lenses are the same from Lenscrafters and Costco, is there any reason why I shouldn't just get them at Costco? Assuming I liked the frames there? And as long as the person fitting you is a board certified optician? It seems like the price is about $150 less (or more).

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    ??

    markssunwear, That is interesting. But I'm not sure how to interpret the information. Yes, it looks like they are making bundles of money. Is that bad? Are you saying that they do so much business the quality suffers? Or that they do such a volume business that they can afford to price much lower?

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    Master OptiBoarder snowmonster's Avatar
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    Plum - here's the problem. The perception that the general public has is that large companies (like Lens Crafters, Costco, etc) has the latest and greatest stuff and that they are more advanced than your independent opticians, as well as OD and MD offices.

    The reality is that because they are a large corporation:
    • There is absolutely zero variety amongst the stores
    • They are all limited to 1 or 2 brands of progressive lenses because of contractual obligations and pricing. I think Lens Crafters only offers the Ovation and no other progressive. Also, I don't believe you can get anything over a 1.67 index, meaning you can't benefit from the 1.70 or 1.74 (very thin) lenses there.
    • They don't offer the latest progressives that allow you to have a shorter frame (from top to bottom)
    • They will likely take longer to do your job, depending on how slow their central lab is
    These stores work for the masses, but if you need something a little out of the norm, you can't get it there.

    Did you even actually buy glasses from Costco or are you just thinking that you're going to have a problem?

    -Steve

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    Steve,

    Thanks for the reply. No, I didn't buy glasses there. I have a friend who did, and he loves his. His wife didn't buy there because she didn't like the choice of frames. She bought at Lenscrafters.

    She went eyeglass shopping with me and we went to four different eyeglass places in the mall and ended up finding nice frames at LC. I purchased some Varilux panamics there. I told them I'd heard Varilux was better than their "store brand" (which I have now found out is Ovation), so she sold me Panamics. At the time I didn't know that Varilux had different lenses. In fact, I knew nothing. Turns out that Panamic is the only Varilux they sell.

    In these glasses, I have a reading width of 2.5". Very, very narrow. Nobody else I've talked to has this narrow of a reading width in their progressives (any brand). I found out that Panamics do tend to have one of the narrowest reading areas, and the person suggested the old Varilux Comfort. I'm sort of "stuck" with LC for the moment. They don't have Varilux comfort. They said the PD is off on these glasses they made and they are remaking them. If they turn out exactly the same, my other choice would be the Ovations from LC. I figured if I was getting Ovations, I might as well get them from Costco.

    I spend a lot of time on the computer and reading, and I can do neither with these current glasses. On the computer screen, I have a tiny round area I can see. When I read a book, I have to turn my head to three places just to read across a 5" page.

    I've learned a lot about different lenses this past week, so I'm just trying to figure out my options if these don't work out. And Costco is an option.

    I don't mind paying extra to go to an independent optician. But the experience I had with that one I talked with was not good. I'm sure there are great opticians and crummy ones. I wouldn't know how to tell the difference. And it seemed like he had a very small assortment of frames to choose from.

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    Master OptiBoarder snowmonster's Avatar
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    So you're not aware that the Ovation is made by Essilor, which is the parent company of Varilux, huh?

    If you have a short frame (top to bottom), you would likely get more reading area from a totally different brand of lens.

    -Steve

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    Steve,

    Yes, I think I had figured out the same company made them. I figured maybe Ovation was the "bargain Lens" of the Essilor family. But it sounds like many people love them.

    Is there a brand that gives you a good reading area without sacrificing much in the mid and distance range?

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    OptiBoard Professional Ory's Avatar
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    Plum:

    A PD that is off will make a progressive lens useless. The fact that you were dispensed a pair of glasses without the PD being double checked is embarassing to the whole industry.

    It sounds like this is your first progressive. Even after you get the corrected PD, it will take some time to get used to them. There is no magic lens that will make your eyes 20 years old again. Don't be surprised if you pick up the new specs and immediately think it is no better...you essentially have to re-learn how to use your eyes with this type of lens.

    All of this is information your prescriber or dispenser should have told you.

    So just relax, get the new glasses. Talk to the manager and state that since it was their error from the beginning you would like your 30 day satisfaction guarantee or whatever to start from the time you pick up the new glasses. Get it in writing on your receipt. If you're still not happy after 2 weeks of really wearing the glasses (not just putting them on for 5 minutes but really wearing them), go in to the store again. If they refuse to fix the problem to your satisfaction, make a scene. A BIG scene. Preferrably when the store is busy. They will do anything to get you out of the store.

    Good Luck

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ory View Post
    Plum:

    A PD that is off will make a progressive lens useless. The fact that you were dispensed a pair of glasses without the PD being double checked is embarassing to the whole industry.

    It sounds like this is your first progressive. Even after you get the corrected PD, it will take some time to get used to them. There is no magic lens that will make your eyes 20 years old again. Don't be surprised if you pick up the new specs and immediately think it is no better...you essentially have to re-learn how to use your eyes with this type of lens.

    All of this is information your prescriber or dispenser should have told you.

    So just relax, get the new glasses. Talk to the manager and state that since it was their error from the beginning you would like your 30 day satisfaction guarantee or whatever to start from the time you pick up the new glasses. Get it in writing on your receipt. If you're still not happy after 2 weeks of really wearing the glasses (not just putting them on for 5 minutes but really wearing them), go in to the store again. If they refuse to fix the problem to your satisfaction, make a scene. A BIG scene. Preferrably when the store is busy. They will do anything to get you out of the store.

    Good Luck
    Not much more to say. Unfortunately, some others posters in the other thread decided to push the issue and try to use it to prove their own points.

    Like I said in the first thread, lets wait until the PD is corrected.

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    EYES-ON-JESUS
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    bundles of money is not bad its the fact that they lower the prices becouse of the quanity they do,Quality did suffer when I was there and breakage was very high 350-450 jobs daily, power off,seg's off,PD off,scratches,chips,alot of small lenes,and the list goes on.alot of people were getting hurt (Carbule Tunel) and alot of complaining.so what did they do about it,(THEY HIRED A TEMP AGENTCY AND HIRED PEOPLE WITH NO EXPEREANCE TO MAKE GLASSES)So they do not have to worry about people getting hurt or paying insurance its all on the temp agentcy.

    quote=costco; here is a small screw driver bending pliers put this lenes in this frame.(YES YOU WILL STAB YOUR FINGERS,BUT YOU WILL GET USED TO IT)we want 30-40 jobs mounted per hour, The superviser will come buy every hour and take your number you did in that hour,if you did not meet your 30-40 jobs you get called in the office to (SEE IF YOUR FINGERS ARE HURTING) LOL, no really to see why your numbers are low.

    So take it from here does Quality suffer?





    Quote Originally Posted by plum View Post
    markssunwear, That is interesting. But I'm not sure how to interpret the information. Yes, it looks like they are making bundles of money. Is that bad? Are you saying that they do so much business the quality suffers? Or that they do such a volume business that they can afford to price much lower?

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    Plum: I suspect that the "private optician" is an employee of the eye doctor, especially if you can walk into his "room" without a separating door.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ory View Post
    Plum:

    A PD that is off will make a progressive lens useless. The fact that you were dispensed a pair of glasses without the PD being double checked is embarassing to the whole industry.

    It sounds like this is your first progressive. Even after you get the corrected PD, it will take some time to get used to them. There is no magic lens that will make your eyes 20 years old again. Don't be surprised if you pick up the new specs and immediately think it is no better...you essentially have to re-learn how to use your eyes with this type of lens.

    All of this is information your prescriber or dispenser should have told you.

    So just relax, get the new glasses. Talk to the manager and state that since it was their error from the beginning you would like your 30 day satisfaction guarantee or whatever to start from the time you pick up the new glasses. Get it in writing on your receipt. If you're still not happy after 2 weeks of really wearing the glasses (not just putting them on for 5 minutes but really wearing them), go in to the store again. If they refuse to fix the problem to your satisfaction, make a scene. A BIG scene. Preferrably when the store is busy. They will do anything to get you out of the store.

    Good Luck
    The people who are rude and make a big scene are the ones I do not want to help. But my patients do not need to make a really big scene in order for me to listen to their concerns and do my best to help them.

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    OptiBoard Professional Ory's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nettie View Post
    The people who are rude and make a big scene are the ones I do not want to help. But my patients do not need to make a really big scene in order for me to listen to their concerns and do my best to help them.
    I agree completely. I've also worked in a number of non-optical retail stores and seen that making a scene is the best way to get what you want. Large chains are very concerned with their image and a yelling, screaming, irate customer is bad for their image. Most managers will give in to get rid of the person.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ory View Post
    I agree completely. I've also worked in a number of non-optical retail stores and seen that making a scene is the best way to get what you want. Large chains are very concerned with their image and a yelling, screaming, irate customer is bad for their image. Most managers will give in to get rid of the person.
    I cannot believe that you are telling a customer to make a scene at their eyeglass store. You should be ashamed of yourself. Have you ever made a mistake? Measured wrong? We all have, we're human. So, how do you like it when you've made an honest mistake but the cutomer continues to yell and berate you? It sucks. So please Ory, give them the befit of the doubt, let them correct the problem and go from there. It never helps the situation to go in yelling an screaming to get your way.

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    Quote Originally Posted by shellrob View Post
    I cannot believe that you are telling a customer to make a scene at their eyeglass store.
    Who cares? They can scream all they want at the chains to get whatever they want...

    ...Do it in my store and it just gets you kicked out. (Indpendents are ALLOWED to do that!)

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    I feel the need to respond...I work for lenscrafters and proud of it

    -variety...why need variety between stores when each store caries 2000 styles?
    -progressives...we carry ovation, sola, and the entire line of varilux lenses...between those we have never had a problem meeting a customers need.(as well as a selction of other styles for various specific needs)
    -we can get 1.74....and do regularly
    -we sell the varilux elipse with a fitting height of 14 mm
    our central lab jobs return in 4 to 5 business days


    the misconceptions about lenscrafters products and quality have been around for years. We have great selection ,exceptional service and we have to follow the same federal quality standards as anyone else...in some cases ours are stricter.

    know your facts before you make sweeping statements.





    Quote Originally Posted by snowmonster View Post
    Plum - here's the problem. The perception that the general public has is that large companies (like Lens Crafters, Costco, etc) has the latest and greatest stuff and that they are more advanced than your independent opticians, as well as OD and MD offices.

    The reality is that because they are a large corporation:
    • There is absolutely zero variety amongst the stores
    • They are all limited to 1 or 2 brands of progressive lenses because of contractual obligations and pricing. I think Lens Crafters only offers the Ovation and no other progressive. Also, I don't believe you can get anything over a 1.67 index, meaning you can't benefit from the 1.70 or 1.74 (very thin) lenses there.
    • They don't offer the latest progressives that allow you to have a shorter frame (from top to bottom)
    • They will likely take longer to do your job, depending on how slow their central lab is
    These stores work for the masses, but if you need something a little out of the norm, you can't get it there.

    Did you even actually buy glasses from Costco or are you just thinking that you're going to have a problem?

    -Steve

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    Master OptiBoarder snowmonster's Avatar
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    The availability of any index above 1.67 and the Varilux Ellipse (and "all" Varilux lenses, as you describe) and turnaround time of less than 2 weeks must be new changes since May 2005 when I stopped working there.

    Perhaps things are simply different in Canadia?

    If things have changed that drastically in the states in the past 3 months, then I'm clearly mistaken. But I worked at a Lens Crafters for 3 years until May of this year and my observations are 100% accurate for the store in Indiana where I worked.

    So in essence, they are facts as that was how things worked in the store I was at, and I hung out with the lab people very often.

    -Steve

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