Visionworks / Can not deliver on standard promises
Visionworks used to be a reasonable alternative to high priced glasses for those of us who are not fortunate enough to have employers that provide vision health care. However, the price at Visionworks has increased dramatically in the past few years, and their buy one, get one, offers are no longer worth the incredible amount of hassle one must endure just to place your order with them.
My last purchase from them was about 18 months ago, and I got one pair of regular lenses, and another pair of sunglasses. Forget the one hour promise, because that has been laughable for years now. It will not happen, regardless of your order, or the location you choose. My regular lenses had to be sent out, because I asked for the non-glare coating. I was told to take a regular pair with me, (ready the next day) while I waited for the coating to be applied.They were trying to accomadate me, and I appreciated the effort. When I returned to pick them up, they had been ready for 5 days, and no one called to let me know this. I dropped off my "borrowed" lenses to have them converted into sunglasses. (Another week) When I returned to pick them up in a week, they had given the glasses to someone else in error, and it took them another week to track down who they gave them to, and another week to get them to me...
Thinking that the problem was with the store and it's management, this time I decided to go to another location, especially considering the first store had at least tried to please me, even if they lacked the ability to actually help me. The next location was even more of a nightmare than the first...
I had to work at 4:45 on the day I went, so I got to the store at 3:30, so I would have over an hour for the clerks to help me. When I walked into the store, I knew what I wanted, and had my prescription from my doctor in my hand. I walked right to the frames I wanted, and knew the lenses I wanted. It was simply a matter of taking my order down and taking my money. One hour should be enough, right???
There were 6 employees in the store, and 3 customers. To be fair, the employees may have been working for the optometrist, or changing shifts, or maybe the familes of the employees decided to visit. To be honest, I no longer care. Certainly no one was working in the "lab", nor had anyone gone into that room for the hour I was there. I stood there for about 20 minutes before someone finally told me that I had to sign in to wait for someone to take my order and money. Now, I expected a wait, because the locations are frequently busy, but an hour when there are more employees than customers? When someone did wait on me, I constantly reminded them that I had to be at work. It took every minute of an hour and twenty minutes, and I was late to work, which caused extreme problems for me with unfair consequences... I have been in retail long enough to be compassionate about the difficulties with working with the public, but also long enough to know that if you leave a customer with money in hand waiting for an hour or more to place their order, you will lose that customer.
Now, I knew better then to expect the one hour service, as it has never happened in the 10 years I have patronized the franchise. But I was at least hoping for a 4 hour window or the next day... However, I was informed that they do not make glasses on Sunday, so I would have to wait until 5:00 PM on Monday to pick them up. Two days is not "about an hour"... At this point, two days would have been a blessing. I got a message on my phone on Monday (did I mention that I work?) that the machine was broken, they could not make my glasses, and they would give me a call when they got around to it. I got this message at 5:00 PM on Monday because like many people, we are not to take personal calls when we are working, even if we had the time to do so...
The last thing I wanted was another call from the store manager, who also happened to be the one that took my order in the first place. So I called the National Customer Service line, stated my case, and requested that they call me back, as I did not want to talk to the manager. The CSR called me back to tell me that they had ordered the part for the machine, but they had no idea when my glasses would be made. They were considering sending my glasses out to another store, so I could get them at some point, although no promises about when or how long it would take. Then I found what my limit was...
I had enough, and told the CSR that I wanted to cancel the order and get my money back. Of course they would be more than happy to do that! I only had to process the request through the store manager, who is only there from 9 to 5. (Did I mention that I work, like many Americans do?) So my first opportunity to cancel the order is 5 days from now. I thoroughly expect the store manager to be on vacation when I go there this Saturday, and my money is gone... Thankfully, I know there is no way my glasses will be done by then. In the meantime, I need to get a pair of glasses from a reputable dealer, thereby costing me hundreds of dollars more than I already spent at Visionworks.
To top all of this off, my receipt directed me to go online and enter a chance to win $1, 000.00 by completing a brief survey. Of course, they do NOT tell you that the contest was from April 1, 2011 to March 31, 2012, and the contest has long closed. All you will do is give them information for free...
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