Update by user Feb 22, 2013
Shortly after my original posting, I received a call from Pearle Vision Center's corporate office, apologizing for my experience and telling me that someone from the local office would be calling me within three business days. Moments later I received a call from the manager of the Government Center (Boston) Pearle Vision Center, apologizing and asking what she could do to "make it right." By then I had already had the glasses repaired for 1/3 the price Pearle was going to charge me, so there was nothing more to be done.
The manager thanked me for filing a complaint via Pearle's web site, and stated that they had been having problems with that particular employee for years, but no one had ever actually filed a complaint about her.
She added, however, that the price I had been quoted, $99, was correct for the work I needed done. I thanked her for the call, but told her there was nothing more she could do for me, and that I still would not be shopping at Pearle again.
Update by user Jan 23, 2013
For some reason I am not able to post a reply to the comment regarding eyeglass "handles." The correct term is temples, but I've always called them handles.
Original review posted by user Jan 22, 2013
I purchased a pair of rimless glasses with progressive lenses for $700+ in 2010. Some months after I purchased them, one of the handles broke.
I brought the glasses back to the Government Center (Boston) Pearle Vision Center and explained that the handle had broken as I was putting the glasses on that morning. The person who waited on me said I must have fallen asleep in them. I assured him that I had not. He then told me that the glasses were no longer under warranty, and that I would have to pay ($50 I think) to replace the handle.
I protested, as the handle was clearly defective, and the customer service rep agreed to replace the handle at no charge to me, but made it clear that he was giving me a break. In October 2012, the bridge of the glasses broke. I brought them back to the same store and asked to have the bridge replaced, understanding that I would have to pay for the repair. The customer service rep told me that he could replace the bridge for $50, but it would not match the handles of my glasses because my frame had been discontinued.
He told me that he could replace the bridge and handles for $99, and all would match. I paid the $99, and the glasses were repaired that same day. This morning both handles snapped off when the glasses ended up on the floor while I was working out. I went back to the Government Center store to see if the handles could be replaced, again with the understanding that I would have to pay for the repair, presumably $50, since the last repair had been $99 for the full frame, and since the customer service rep had told me in October that replacing just the bridge would be $50, while replacing the bridge and handles would be $99.
When I arrived at the store, there were three customer service reps on duty, all of them occupied. One was on the phone; the other two were waiting on customers. The rep on the phone interrupted her phone call and asked me if I had come in for an eye appointment. I told her why I was there and she said someone would be with me shortly.
The customer service rep at the front of the store finished helping the customer was helping, then proceeded to have a lengthy personal conversation with that same customer. The conversation lasted at least ten (10) minutes, during which the customer service rep pulled out her cell phone to show the customer photos of her step grandchild, and discussed at length the child's medical history and prognosis. When the conversation was finally over, the rep asked if she could help me. I showed her my glasses and told her I wanted to replace the handles.
She asked if I had purchased the glasses there and asked for my name so she could pull my record. She came back and commented that I had just had the glasses repaired in October and they were broken again already. I explained how they had broken, and she said she would have to see if they had any suitable handles because the frame had been discontinued. She went into the back of the store when she came back, the other customer who had been seated at the back table with another customer service rep came over and started whispering to her that the customer service rep he had just been with had scheduled him with a doctor that he would prefer not to see.
He went on to say that this particular doctor was "too fast" and made mistakes, and he preferred to see the other doctor, who was slow, but thorough. The customer service rep engaged in conversation with this other customer while I sat and waited for her to tell me whether or not my glasses could be fixed. She stood in front of the table at which I was seated with her back turned to me, and spoke with the other customer for about five minutes, telling him that she understood why he wanted to see the other doctor, but that she had to act like she liked both of the doctors even though she knew one was better than the other. I finally started to tap my credit card loudly on the table, and she finally turned around to attend to me.
She told me she could give me that same "deal" -- $99 to replace the two handles, but I'd have to leave the glasses with her and come back for them later because she couldn't do the repair in five minutes (I had not asked for it to be done in five minutes, but I had already been there 20 minutes and was hoping they could be repaired while I waited as had been done previously). I told her I thought it would be $50 since I had had the entire frame replaced for $99 in October, and the rep I saw then had indicated that the components were roughly $50 each (i.e., $50 for the bridge only; $50 for the handles only). She told me that I had been given the warranty replacement price for a frame that was actually $199, and that she should be charging me $199, but was willing to give me the warranty replacement price even though the frames were well out of warranty. I told her never mind, I would just wear my spare glasses, as there was no way I was going to spend $100 to replace just the handles, based on what I had been told at my previous visit.
She said the rep who waited on me then might not have told me he was giving me a "deal," but that indeed he had given me a deal. She then proceeded to write "regular price $199" (or something to that effect) on the slip that had been written up back in October 2012. I asked her to please not alter the receipt to say something that was not said back when it was written up. She told me that it was not a receipt but the store's record, and she was only making a note on it.
She then went to the rep who was seated at the middle table (who had been on the phone when I entered the store), and said loudly that she had been trying to explain to me that I had been given the warranty repair price in October but that I kept telling her she was wrong. I interrupted her at that point and said, " I did not tell her she was wrong. I told her that I was told something different." The other rep looked at the slip from October and said, "Well he may not have told you he was giving you a special price, but he did, and the regular price of the frame is $199. I repeated that I would just wear my spare glasses, and the rep gave me back my glasses and handles and I left the store.
My complaint is 1) that this rep was incredibly unprofessional and rude -- carrying on two lengthy conversations while I was waiting to be served, one of them initiated after she had started to wait on me, and 2) that it was outrageous for her to try charge me nearly $100 for the repair and to present it as though she were doing me a favor, and on top of that to alter the previous repair slip (she did not date the "note" she wrote on the slip, so for all intents and purposes, it appears as if it were written in October 2012, not January 2013). I will NEVER make another purchase from Pearle Vision Center. I left there and went to another eyecare/glasses establishment, where I was treated much more courteously, AND they were able to replace the handles with much sturdier (and matching) handles for $30.
The Government Center Pearle Vision Center is not a credit to the Pearle Vision Center establishment.
Review about: Pearle Vision Repair.