FramesDirect.com

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Jul 13, 2019
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#1
I placed an order mid-August with FramesDirect.com for prescription Ray-Ban sunglasses. FramesDirect promotes themselves as an authorized Ray-Ban dealer (https://www.framesdirect.com/prescription-sunglasses/ray-ban). They market that they sell authentic Ray-Ban lenses (https://www.framesdirect.com/knowledge-center/ray-ban-lenses and https://www.framesdirect.com/knowledge-center/authentic-ray-ban-lenses). On their site they even have a page that tells how to tell authentic Ray-Ban lenses from other products.

I received the order today, and immediately after unboxing the item I noted that the lenses were not authentic Ray-Ban lenses. I called the company and they told me that Ray-Ban lenses are a lot more expensive than what I paid ($300) and that I did not order Ray-Ban lenses. Nowhere on any of the ordering pages were alternate lens options presented where I could choose among variations. My choices were lens color, polarized or non-polarized, and items of that sort. My order confirmation clearly states "Ray-Ban RB2132 New Wayfarer" and "Green G-15 Polarized with Anti-Reflective" lenses. (G-15 is a popular Ray-Ban lens.) Customer Service said that all of this was somehow my fault for not ordering the right item and that the only way to order genuine Ray-Ban lenses was to call in via phone. While I do see one web page on their site that says this in one place, there are numerous other pages that do not state that this is required, and I contend that my order confirmation and other materials indicate Ray-Ban. I think this is bait and switch.

When I told them I would like to return these for the proper item or a refund, I was told that they would only refund 50% of the price of my order or credit me 50% of the price of the order towards a replacement pair. After extensive discussion, they were unwilling to offer anything else. They provided me with RMA information via email which states the 50% refund.

My big question at this point is do I send the glasses back or is there some other action I should take? The email I received said they had to have the item back by 9/13.
 

weihlac

Verified Member
Jun 30, 2017
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Maui Hawaii
#2
I placed an order mid-August with FramesDirect.com for prescription Ray-Ban sunglasses. FramesDirect promotes themselves as an authorized Ray-Ban dealer (https://www.framesdirect.com/prescription-sunglasses/ray-ban). They market that they sell authentic Ray-Ban lenses (https://www.framesdirect.com/knowledge-center/ray-ban-lenses and https://www.framesdirect.com/knowledge-center/authentic-ray-ban-lenses). On their site they even have a page that tells how to tell authentic Ray-Ban lenses from other products.

I received the order today, and immediately after unboxing the item I noted that the lenses were not authentic Ray-Ban lenses. I called the company and they told me that Ray-Ban lenses are a lot more expensive than what I paid ($300) and that I did not order Ray-Ban lenses. Nowhere on any of the ordering pages were alternate lens options presented where I could choose among variations. My choices were lens color, polarized or non-polarized, and items of that sort. My order confirmation clearly states "Ray-Ban RB2132 New Wayfarer" and "Green G-15 Polarized with Anti-Reflective" lenses. (G-15 is a popular Ray-Ban lens.) Customer Service said that all of this was somehow my fault for not ordering the right item and that the only way to order genuine Ray-Ban lenses was to call in via phone. While I do see one web page on their site that says this in one place, there are numerous other pages that do not state that this is required, and I contend that my order confirmation and other materials indicate Ray-Ban. I think this is bait and switch.

When I told them I would like to return these for the proper item or a refund, I was told that they would only refund 50% of the price of my order or credit me 50% of the price of the order towards a replacement pair. After extensive discussion, they were unwilling to offer anything else. They provided me with RMA information via email which states the 50% refund.

My big question at this point is do I send the glasses back or is there some other action I should take? The email I received said they had to have the item back by 9/13.
Check with your credit card (hopefully you used one). You did not receive what you ordered and they advertised.
 
Last edited:
Jul 13, 2019
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Check with your credit card (hopefully you used one). You did not receive what you ordered and they adverised.
This is one where Murphy's Law strikes. I paid for this transaction with my healthcare FSA card since it was for prescription glasses. I did contact that company (PayFlex) as there is nothing I can find on their site regarding how to file a dispute. The customer service rep, who was very nice, put me on hold for a long time only to come back and say that he couldn't find any information on the dispute process. He wound up transferring me to the fraud department--which I think focuses on other kinds of fraud--and they took down the information I provided. They said they would send me a record of this.

If I had paid for this with my normal credit card, I think this situation would already be resolved.
 

weihlac

Verified Member
Jun 30, 2017
2,128
2,379
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Maui Hawaii
#4
This is one where Murphy's Law strikes. I paid for this transaction with my healthcare FSA card since it was for prescription glasses. I did contact that company (PayFlex) as there is nothing I can find on their site regarding how to file a dispute. The customer service rep, who was very nice, put me on hold for a long time only to come back and say that he couldn't find any information on the dispute process. He wound up transferring me to the fraud department--which I think focuses on other kinds of fraud--and they took down the information I provided. They said they would send me a record of this.

If I had paid for this with my normal credit card, I think this situation would already be resolved.
You might have a stronger case than you think using your FSA. since being found guilty of healthcare fraud may have greater penalties than regular consumer fraud. You might raise this issue with FramesDirect and see if they don't fold their case.
 
Jan 6, 2015
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#5
When I attempt to verify what the lenses are I could not find anything. So I selected the following style at random:


Once there, I clicked on the "Premium Lenses" link in the bottom right of the screen and the popup says: "At FramesDirect.com, we carry the most advanced lenses from Essilor, a world leader for corrective eyewear."

I take that to mean the lenses are NOT Ray-Ban. Is Essilor what you received? If so, this may be their "out" . . .
 
Sep 19, 2015
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#6
The website is confusing but it does state:

Owned by Essilor, the world's largest lens company,
FramesDirect.com offers the best lenses available.

and the about our lenses

At FramesDirect.com, we carry the most advanced lenses from Essilor, a world leader for corrective eyewear. Essilor is at the forefront of providing lenses made with innovative technology and superb craftsmanship.

https://www.framesdirect.com/knowledge-center/high-quality-lenses
 
Likes: VoR61
Jul 13, 2019
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#9
On one of the links you've posted it appears that you need to call and speak to an optician about ordering the Ray-Ban lenses:

View attachment 2853

Did you call and order, or only use the website?
Yes, I agree that one page says that. But other pages that display the Ray-Ban logo on it do not. It was not until today that I saw the web page above. There is nothing on the order page or other pages that note that one has to call in to get the authentic lenses. A portion of the page I started shopping at is shown below. I think a consumer would think they were buying authentic lenses with this presentation:

1567124057046.png
 
Sep 19, 2015
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#10
FramesDirect makes a big deal out of selling genuine Ray-Ban lenses.

https://www.framesdirect.com/knowledge-center/ray-ban-lenses
https://www.framesdirect.com/knowledge-center/authentic-ray-ban-lenses

It is based on this that I believed that is what I was receiving.
Yes but on the second link you have has the warning that these need to be specially ordered -- what msmayor posted in #7.

It is a confusing website -- but I am not sure what options there are other than a polite letter.
 
Feb 21, 2018
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#11
FramesDirect makes a big deal out of selling genuine Ray-Ban lenses.

https://www.framesdirect.com/knowledge-center/ray-ban-lenses
https://www.framesdirect.com/knowledge-center/authentic-ray-ban-lenses

It is based on this that I believed that is what I was receiving.

Yes, they do promote that they sell Ray-Ban lenses - but they also put in bold letters that they must be specially ordered, and you need to call them. This doesn't appear to be something buried in fine print.

If you didn't call them to specifically order the Ray-Ban lenses, then based on their site you would not have received them...just the Ray-Ban frames.
 
Jun 24, 2019
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#12
While not directly responsive, search David Lazarus Essilor on the web. David is A COLUMNIST FOR the L A Times who has written multiple columns about Essilor and its growth,
 

jsn55

Verified Member
Dec 26, 2014
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#13
Ordering merchandise like this on the internet is not for the faint of heart. You have to read every word of every website page, probably twice ... and make notes. It's very clear from msmayor's response and verbiage that you had to call for the special lenses. If you placed the order online, you don't get the RB lenses. Can you do some research to see if there's any difference between the two products? If they're willing to refund you half and give you half towards another order, I'd go for it.
 
Likes: VoR61
Jul 13, 2019
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#14
I must shop online very differently than some here. I don’t scour every page on a company’s web site looking for the one page that lists an exclusion. Reading every word on every web page—there are people that do that? This has been very illuminating.
 
Jan 6, 2015
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#15
As the case is for many things, Tony, for me it will depend on the context. Am I booking a hotel, or flight? Buying "off-the-shelf", or customizing. And so on. Here's my list of the things I might look for. . .
  • Am I buying from a trusted site? I look carefully at the domain name (e.g., "bestbuy.com") to verify the seller.
  • If I'm customizing, I have learned the value of asking my wife to review the "Confirm Order" page before finalizing the purchase. She does catch mistakes.
  • And I too, remove my hands from the mouse and keyboard so I can review it myself. A second look never hurts.
  • I do find wisdom in looking for what I call "qualifiers". Mostly I scroll and scan for return/cancellation policies, but also delivery windows, shipping and handling charges, etc. One time the item was $20 vs. $30-$40 elsewhere, but the S&H was another $20!
  • A more subtle thing is what you experienced. It's their equivalent of some hotels' "free cancellation" policies. One needs to look closer, because many of them really mean "we don't charge you for the cancellation process". But on further examination, they DO charge for the actual cancellation itself under their own terms-and-conditions. Sometimes those are quite restrictive.
 
Feb 21, 2018
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#16
I must shop online very differently than some here. I don’t scour every page on a company’s web site looking for the one page that lists an exclusion. Reading every word on every web page—there are people that do that? This has been very illuminating.
Maybe not every word on every page, but I look where there may be information pertinent to my purchase. If there are informational pages relating to an item - especially an expensive custom item - I'm going to make sure I know everything about the purchase before I click 'buy'. I'll look for a chat window to be able to ask questions about the product, then have the chat transcript emailed to me so I have evidence of the conversation (this helped me in my efforts to get 20k Hilton points promised to me in a chat window).

Perhaps the most important piece to me is the return and exchange policy. For any type of expensive item, I'm not likely to purchase at a site that will only offer me credit instead of a full refund.

Regarding this type of purchase in particular, I have worn prescription glasses for over 50 years. Maybe it's due to my age, but something as personal as prescription glasses I would not buy online because of the delicate measurements that are required to ensure that my lenses are ground to the correct depth. I want to be able to try on and immediately say to the merchant "These aren't right - please fix them".
 
Likes: Neil Maley

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
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New York
www.promalvacations.com
#18
I checked the BBB listing for the company and there is a similar complaint from May about RayBan lenses. And the company said they were going to change the wording on the website. Obviously not.

This is a consumer affairs issue and the website is misleading.

Glad you are getting a refund.
 
Feb 3, 2017
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#19
I definitely read all that has to do with purchase, guarantees, return policies when spending my hard-earned money. I read their FAQs for anything that is matter to me when purchasing item(s).

The internet has been around long enough for all of us to be aware of how there can be landmines with purchases if not careful checking details.

I'm glad you are getting the refund - especially given the language on your confirmation order which says "Ray-Ban RB2132 New Wayfarer" -
 
Likes: VoR61

jsn55

Verified Member
Dec 26, 2014
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San Francisco
#20
I must shop online very differently than some here. I don’t scour every page on a company’s web site looking for the one page that lists an exclusion. Reading every word on every web page—there are people that do that? This has been very illuminating.
No, Tony, you shop online like most people. Therein lies the problem. People are trusting, people get cheated, people become more attentive. I am delighted that they're giving you a refund. You shouldn't HAVE to read all the fine print. But today, you do have to do just that. Polite, patient and persistent ... great work getting this refund.