A Final Update On Our Horrific Customer Service Experience With Oakley, Lens Crafters, and Luxottica

I’ve received a number of emails from people who were asking about our rather shambolic experience with Oakley, Lens Crafters, and Luxottica. Which apparently isn’t unique to us. Specifically if we really made the switch away from those brands and did any of those companies finally do the right thing and help my wife get the problems with her eyeglasses sorted.

Let’s start with if we made the switch away from those brands. Thanks to the intervention of Rudy Project we ended up at Spectacles in North Toronto which is an eyeglass shop that has an excellent reputation. Between the two of them, my wife and I have two new pairs of sunglasses on order:

  • For me, I chose the Rudy Project Traylx XL sunglasses which are big enough to ensure that wind and dust stay out of my eyes and my contact lenses don’t dry out. On top of a photochromic lens that goes from light to dark depending on the lighting conditions, I also chose a lens that enhances contrast in trail environments. The former will be used for cycling and the latter will be used for cross country skiing.
  • In the case of my wife, she chose the Rudy Project Zyon sunglasses. These have a prescription insert which allows her to have her eyeglass prescription dropped into the sunglasses. Like me she chose a photochromic lens that goes from light to dark depending on the lighting conditions, and a lens that enhances contrast in trail environments. Again, the former will be used for cycling and the latter will be used for cross country skiing.

Both sunglasses should be in our hands late next week. When they arrive, I’ll put up a post about it complete with pictures.

My wife also needed new eyewear as well as her inability to wear her Oakley eyeglasses comfortably is what started this nightmare. In the end she settled on eyeglasses from a company called ic! Berlin. They are known for making eyewear that is well engineered and is completely screwless which means that not only can the glasses be completely rebuilt if required, but they are highly durable. The folks at Spectacle demonstrated both and I have to admit that we were floored by what we saw. My wife ultimately settled on a model made of titanium which means that it would be insanely durable. It also meant that they were also insanely expensive. With the lenses which are photochromic as well as being thin and light, she dropped $1700 on these glasses. Now that’s not an insignificant amount of money. But my wife and I are firm believers that if you want quality, you have to pay for it. And it also highlights how much money Oakley, Lens Crafters, and Luxottica are losing by not providing quality customer service. She’ll be getting her new glasses in about 10 business days.

In the process of getting my wife’s eyewear sorted, Spectacles informed us of something that surprised us. When my wife got her Oakley eyeglasses from Lens Crafters, they supposedly gave her lenses with an anti reflective and scratch resistant coating. But when the rep from Spectacles examined them, she could find no evidence that there were any special coatings on them. At best, my wife had polycarbonate lenses that had some anti-glare properties. You can imagine how that made my wife and I feel, and it reinforced our feelings about Oakley, Lens Crafters, and Luxottica. Which is even more negative than we already did. At this point I’d really like to thank Rudy Project and Spectacles for helping us with this as they really stepped up to the plate here in fantasitc fashion.

Now onto the utter mess that Oakley, Lens Crafters, and Luxottica customer service is. My wife actually got an email from Luxottica Canada yesterday which said this:

Unfortunately we currently are unable to provide any parts for this model. We are sorry for any inconvenience this may be causing you. 

If you haven’t already done so, feel free to reach out to one of our local retailers as they might be able to assist you in placing an order or offering other options for you.

For any Oakley model, please visit the following link to see availability and place an order to be shipped directly to your door: https://ca.oakley.com

Thank you for your understanding. 

Best Regards,

Luxottica Canada after Sales Service Center

My wife was less than impressed with this response. So she replied with this:

Dear Luxottica, Thank you for your unhelpful advice.

One of the first things I did when I started looking for a replacement part for my Oakley prescription glasses is to walk into the Oakley store at the Eaton Centre thinking of they would stand behind their brand and assist me.  Only to have their staff immediately say that they do not handle prescription glasses.  My second and third stop was to head into two Lenscrafter locations, both of who had called Luxottica and were informed that they will only ship to the customer and not to retailer.  I then called 7 different Luxottica toll free customer numbers with no resolution.  I now accept that Luxottica, Lenscrafter and Oakley have no intention of providing any after Sales service especially in Canada.

Apparently, I was told in one of the calls that they would ship to the US if the part was available the day you were lucky enough to call and get through. I would have been a happier customer if you just said from the beginning “We do not provide any replacement parts.  We don’t care about you after you have purchased our product.”  It would have saved me wasting my time over the past 3 weeks and getting absolutely nowhere.  I am happy to report that I have removed my name from all Lenscrafter email mailing lists, have told at least one person per week about my bad experience and in a week or so I will be dumping my Oakley glasses and will be proud owner of ic Berlin eyewear purchased via an optician that is not owned by Luxottica as they are a company that proudly stands behind their product.

For the record, that is my wife being moderately kind. I’ve seen her light people up like a Christmas tree in a bonfire when she’s really mad. Which she has been during this whole nightmare. So the person on the other end of that email should consider themselves fortunate that they got off easy. One thing that I will point out is the cost of bad customer service. On top of the posts that I’ve written about this incident, my wife is telling her friends and co-workers about this incident. I’m pretty sure that this will alter the buying decisions of some people to push them away from Luxottica brands. Of which there are many.

Back to this email exchange. She got this almost immediately in response to her message:

I am so sorry. Your letter made me sad. You can be assured that I did my best for your yesterday. I even sent an email with the picture of your pair of glasses to the supervisor of the stocks bank and eventually went personally to see him. He went through all the ear socks bags and none of them with your model. We were both sorry. We actually have none is stock. 

I feel less sad as I write these words to you.

I know these are not great moments for you but I want to wish you a lovely and smooth weekend.

With my sweetest cheers and my very best regards,

I am not sure we totally buy this response. We both also feel this response is a bit over the top. After all, I seriously doubt that this person is “sad” about my wife’s response to her. If she were truly sad, this person and whomever they report to would work to find a solution to my wife’s issue. But they didn’t so we take this for what it’s worth, which is not a whole lot. In any case, that was the last avenue that we explored to get this issue addressed. Thus we’re done.

One thing that several people asked me is if any of these companies responded to the posts that I have put up. Well, other than a Tweet from the Lens Crafters Twitter feed, no they have not. But I have reason to believe based on the analytics that I get from WordPress that they are aware of these posts and they have chosen not to respond. That pretty much tells you all you need to know about Oakley, Lens Crafters, and Luxottica. They don’t take care of their customers after you hand over your hard earned money. Thus they are companies that don’t deserve to get your hard earned money in the first place. There are other companies out there that are much better on that front. Thus I would recommend investing some time to find them and do business with them. Maybe if enough people did that, then Oakley, Lens Crafters, and Luxottica would come to the conclusion that customer service is important.

UPDATE: Dan Levy made a very important observation about the response from Luxottica:




One Response to “A Final Update On Our Horrific Customer Service Experience With Oakley, Lens Crafters, and Luxottica”

  1. I’m in the market for new glasses and have been following your story – it has definitely helped me decide who I won’t be buying from!

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