• Report: #186698
Complaint Review:

Sears Optical

  • Submitted: Fri, April 14, 2006
  • Updated: Thu, July 26, 2012

  • Reported By:Kittanning Pennsylvania
Sears Optical
Kittanning, Pennsylvania U.S.A.

Sears Optical Buy one get one free is a rip off Kittanning Pennsylvania

*Consumer Comment: Glasses prices - local vs online

*Consumer Comment: Sometimes I feel like...

*Consumer Comment: What you Pay For

*Consumer Comment: Here is the issue I think.

*Consumer Comment: Profit is very little, unfortunately.

*Consumer Comment: mark up

*UPDATE Employee: DO YOUR HOMEWORK !!!!!!!

*Consumer Comment: Thanks for the response Harry

*Consumer Suggestion: Would be happy to elaborate on lens cost.

*Consumer Comment: Aafes I think I know the lenses H is talking about.

*Consumer Comment: I am interested in $400.00 lenses

*Consumer Suggestion: This is half a story.

*Consumer Comment: Typical Sears(S-mart)

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I stopped into my local Sears optical to make an appointment and choose my frames in advance so I could get a rough estimate on how much it would cost with the glasses, contacts, exam, ect. The two frames I choose both had the price marked on the sticker 119.00. In order to qualify for the bogo, I have to pay ful retail price on the first pair, which I assumed was 119.00 as marked.

As he was figuring everything for me, my total for the 2 pairs of glasses came to $450.00. That is just for the glasses. I asked why it was so high, and he explained that I have to pay the full retail price, and I said about the price on the glasses and he said that wasn't the full retail. That was the end of that. I didn't stick around to find out anymore. I am sure glad I got my estimate before my exam. I have no insurance. I'll go to ---- again this year for my contacts and glasses. Believe it or not, I have had good experiences with my local ------- optical department. Sears can bite me.

Kittanning, Pennsylvania

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This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 04/14/2006 06:17 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/sears-optical/kittanning-pennsylvania-16201/sears-optical-buy-one-get-one-free-is-a-rip-off-kittanning-pennsylvania-186698. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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Updates & Rebuttals

#1 Consumer Comment

Glasses prices - local vs online

AUTHOR: ecosense - (United States of America)

I do think the Sears ads are a bit deceptive.  I have been buying prescription glasses online for years at a really good value.  I heard a recent Sears ad for glasses that was fairly competitive with the online prices.  By the time I did all the math and add on charges, they were mostly on par with any average lens retailer.

I have purchased great glasses online for roughly 25% of the local price and been quite happy.  I am referring to a fairly nice frame, light lenses, AR / UV anti-scratch coating, progressive bifocals for around $130.  That same pair would be over $500 locally plus tax.

What you lose by going on line is some choice of frames.  You also lose any professional feedback you might get from local staff at a retail store.  The guarantee is not so great online.  One pair I got online was 'crazed' but I did not notice it until quite some time.  I could not get a refund.

However, with 'cheap' glasses online, you may 'experiment' with your prescription.  This is probably only applicable to us with presbyopia who may play around with variations and combinations of the near and far optical properties of the lens.  Opticians have asked why you would do that, but by doing so, I have arrived at optimal lens combinations for work, sports, computer work, etc.  This would have been impractical at the cost of $500+ per pair.

In conclusion, I would consider a price of $200 worth paying locally for the additional frame choice and professional advice.  But in the world of online pricing, retailers may price themselves out of business except for the fact that most people do not realize they can order online.  I have recommended the online sources to many who have used it and have been very appreciative.
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#2 Consumer Comment

Sometimes I feel like...

AUTHOR: Nicole - (United States of America)

People want something for nothing.  I work at an optical retailer and even with my employee discount (not insurance, my DISCOUNT) I still paid roughly $450 for two pairs of glasses.  

The $119 you speak of is full retail for your FRAMES.  Not your lenses.  In my shop, an average frame is between $99.00 to $139.00.  So assume you get a frame for $139.  Assume you want a standard, middle of the road lens like Polycarbonate.  $139.95.  You want transitions.  $75.  You also want anti reflective coating, and you want premium so it won't chip off like the other sub-par brands.  $99.

$452.95.  And you get a second pair free.  Another clear pair, polarized suns, anything you want.  Our shop you can split rx's too, so if a friend or family member wants glasses, bam.  Split the cost.  Now you just paid  $226 per pair.  Not so bad now, is it?  

You have to understand the value.  You truly get what you pay for.  You want to do 2 for $99?  You're probably getting bottom of the barrel frames, and standard plastic coke bottles.  

You get.  What.  You pay for.
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#3 Consumer Comment

What you Pay For

AUTHOR: Tazzy - (United States of America)

I'm pretty sure you could get two pairs of glasses for $99.99, however, they would be the thickest plastic lenses and the 12 or so frames on the bottom shelf to choose from. 

My Sears experience. The saleswoman tried to sell me reasonably priced frames. She actually started with the $99 for two pair offer, and since these were a birthday present from my best friend, I was told to pick out frames that I liked. I was able to get reasonable frames (the ones I liked were $140 or so) and my prescription required that I get the thin lenses. (1.6 something). When I had my eye exam, it was suggested that I get Progressive lenses, but the cost was more than I was willing to pay on something that I could get when I really needed them. The woman who did my eye exam and the saleswoman were both great, even when I changed my mind because I didn't want to spend too much of my best friend's money.  Altogether, the total cost with eye exam was about $365 for glasses that I liked and wanted.

I also opted for the two year insurance, because if anything happens to these more expensive lenses, I will be able to replace my glasses for free.
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#4 Consumer Comment

Here is the issue I think.

AUTHOR: Samuel - (U.S.A.)

This is a current promotion I believe.  2 complete pairs for $99.99 prescription eyeglasses (frame and lenses) with single vision, scratch-resistant plastic lenses and select frames - same prescription. Valid prescription required. Valid at participating locations.

I am willing to bet my last dollar I don't get two complete pairs of prescription eyeglasses (frame and lenses) without paying over 300 bucks. The problem is companies lure you in with the ridiculously low price only to add something later.


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#5 Consumer Comment

Profit is very little, unfortunately.

AUTHOR: Harry - (U.S.A.)

I just viewed my P&L report for last month, and I'm sad to say that after grossing in over $50k that $3000.00 can be allocated to profit. You wouldn't believe the cost of overhead.

When pricing glasses you really can't look at the wholesale cost of materials only. Sure, single vision lenses cost about 3 bucks a pair, but the machine that cuts them into a viable product can cost as much as a Mercedes SLK320. Plus the cost of the technician who produces the finishing work, and the Optician who takes responsibility for the completed product.

Then you have insurance, utilities, the list goes on and on.
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#6 Consumer Comment

mark up

AUTHOR: Chris - (U.S.A.)

the comments on mark up are true, many companys
mark up inredible amounts. I am a general manager
of a 1 hour optical (not lens crappers) and i can
tell you that I check out our competition regularly.

I see them selling the same frames we sell for $39.95, they are selling them for $129 !! the exact same frames. I know the cost of these particular frames runs around $3 to $4. Standard uncoated, plastic single vision lenses cost us around $3 per pair and we sell them for $39.95. other larger chains (already previously mentioned)sell the same lenses for $160 !! now i am sure they have higher overhead as they tend to pay thier employees highly even though the majority of the ones i have met don't know thier sphicter from their ulna.

The whole major problem in the EYEGLASS industry is lack of public education with nowhere to improve that knowledge independantly of optical shops,.
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#7 UPDATE Employee


AUTHOR: Laurel - (U.S.A.)

I work for Sears optical and no WE DO NOT RIP PEOPLE OFF! We strive to give our customers the best possible customer service, and prices available. The price on the frame is just that, THE FRAME PRICE, lenses have their own additional cost, as well as lens additions such as antireflective coating and transitions. I understand that a final price of $ 450.00 can be a shock at first, but remember you are getting TWO PAIRS OF GLASSES! If you dont like the price given, DO YOUR HOMEWORK, ask the optician to break down the prices for you, and find out what the local doctors are charging for similar products and you will see that we have fair and competitive prices.
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#8 Consumer Comment

Thanks for the response Harry

AUTHOR: Aafes - (U.S.A.)

Thanks for the response. I was looking for honesty, and you provided that.

I am a retired U.S. Military Optician/Optical lab technician. My training included both manufacture and dispensing of lenses. I worked for several years following my retirement both as an optical laboratory manager and a dispensing optician.

I wanted the OP to understand the profit that many optical shops make. The average markup for premium lenses is 2 to 3.5 times the wholesale cost. Large companies such as Lenscrafters etc. have even higher markups, and lower quality in my opinion.

This does not address the average frame markup, which can be much more for designer frames.

It is refreshing to see a dispensing optician that actually offers reasonable pricing to patients.
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#9 Consumer Suggestion

Would be happy to elaborate on lens cost.

AUTHOR: Harry - (U.S.A.)

I have a few lenses in my arsenal that I would consider high end costing lenses.
Varilux high index transitions with AR. price? $500.00+ Seiko 1.67 progressives with Transitions. Price? $390.00

Vizio 1.66 atoric single vision high index lenses AR included. Price? $289.00

These lenses listed are considered the high end of the spectrum. Remember, theres always a low end of the spectrum too. I have lenses for as little as $50.00 that would work wonderfully given the situation.

Everything is based on what the comsumer is willing to pay. Some shoppers would be very upset if I quoted them a $400.00 lens, some would demand nothing less than the best of the best. And as for frames, I sell frames for as little as $49.00. Some of my colleages that own their own optical stores sell high end frames for as high as $2500.00, and are made of solid wood, gold, and jewels.
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#10 Consumer Comment

Aafes I think I know the lenses H is talking about.

AUTHOR: Leticia - (U.S.A.)

I believe that they are called Varilux (sp?) lenses.

What they are are lenses that allow people that normally have to use bifocals a lense that somehow (how I don't know) to be able to see something far away as well as something close up without having to look through a special area on their glasses.

My mother has them and yes they do cost about $400 bucks for the lenses. (And as mentioned before I do not know how, but they do work.)

So those may be the lenses that they were talking about. Also glasses can get very expensive if you add automatic tinting, scratch resistant, etc to them.

When it comes to my glasses, as long as I can see, I will buy the least expensive frames and lenses that I can find. (I normally look for package deals, frames and lenses included for a low price.)
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#11 Consumer Comment

I am interested in $400.00 lenses

AUTHOR: Aafes - (U.S.A.)

I am interested in $400.00 lenses. I wonder if the poster of this statement (Harry?) is willing to state the COST of the lenses for his store.
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#12 Consumer Suggestion

This is half a story.

AUTHOR: Harry - (U.S.A.)

Your frame was listed at $119.00 regular retail. What you are failing to mention is the cost of your lenses. You must require somthing specific if the price jumped that high. IE: High index, anti-glare, Progressives...
Most contact lens wearers have hefty prescriptions, hence the fact that they wear contacts in the first place. Often they get sticker shock when their doctor tells them they need to wear glasses from time to time. I can't say for sure if you were given an unfair price because I don't know your situation, but $450.00 for a pair of glasses is not all that unusual depending on the given product. I have lenses in my store that sell for over $400.00 themselves! Higher priced lenses contain features and quality you can't get from a $50.00 lens. Of course your budget has to permit as well.
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#13 Consumer Comment

Typical Sears(S-mart)

AUTHOR: Cory - (U.S.A.)

I know, you pay for ONE lens, you get the second lens for free.
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