Sterling Optical
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Sterling Optical

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Last updated: May 9, 2017

66 Sterling Optical Consumer Reviews and Complaints

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Original review: May 9, 2017

I would not recommend Sterling Optical in Ithaca. Rebecca, the store manager(?)'s customer service is awful and she does not uphold policies clearly written on her store's receipt and on the store's website. Read for more information. I went into Sterling Optical last Thursday (May 4, 2017). My glasses had broken and I needed a new pair. The lady at the front desk was very nice and doing her best to help, but the manager(?) of the store, Rebecca, was very unprofessional. I was trying to talk to her and instead of coming to the front to talk to me, she was yelling to me from her office in the back.

Eventually, I did get a new pair of glasses from Sterling Optical, but was unhappy with how they looked. Both the receipt and the website said that while glasses cannot be returned, that store credit would gladly be issued regardless of the situation. I called the store on Monday (May 8, 2017) and they told me that store credit was only given if there was a defect with the glasses. I told the lady who answered the phone that the receipt said no such thing, nor did the website. That did not get me anywhere - she continued to tell me that the policy about store credit was only applicable if there was a defect with the glasses, but again the receipt nor the website did not support that. Again - Rebecca's customer service is awful (but at least her staff are friendly and try their best to help) and they do not uphold policies clearly written on their receipt and on their website.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: May 8, 2017

The moment I walked in I had the feeling I made a mistake. Women behind the counter were very aggressive in a way that you don't see at optometrists. The doctor examined me without the least bit of friendliness--when she left she didn't say one word. She turned and walked back to her office. I was given a pair of contact lens to try before I ordered. It took me a while to try them and once I did I realized I couldn't see close up at all, couldn't see my iphone or read at all. I went back to Sterling Optical Kings Plaza to tell them. As I walked in the women behind the counter looked unhappy to see me. I told her my issue. She looked at my receipt and said, "You had the appointment in Feb and now it is May." I apologized. I told her no one said there was a limit on when to return. It felt that they make up rules as they go. She had no explanation as to why. She was upset that it took me so long to come back. She said something that made no sense at all.

The doctor then took me in the room to re-measure me. Although I had these exact lens before she asked if it was the first time. I tried to explain my situation and soon realized that she was very hostile towards me. I tried to explain what the issue was with the test lens but she wouldn't give me a chance to talk--it was obvious she was angry. She said, "I guess your former doctor would assist you in a better manner" or words to that effect. I never mentioned my former doctor at this visit. I walked out. DON'T GO TO THIS PLACE. Their customer service is abhorrent and manners are terrible. I felt like I was being ripped off from the moment I walked in. Policies are not explained but they seem to just make it up as they go. The receipt they give you has nothing written on it with Sterling policies. They never gave me the prescription. I completely wasted my money and will have to find a new place to obtain my lens. Don't go to this place.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Nov. 12, 2016

This is the worst optical business I have ever seen. No customer service skills, did not help me with my insurance, eye exam was horrible. Now I'm practically blind till I can afford a new pair. They have no compassion for anyone!

Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Oct. 2, 2016

I have used Sterling Optical for several years. They are very professional and friendly when you enter their store. They know me each time I walk in and treat me with respect which is a great customer relations. I have always had a good experience when going there. My appointments are always on time and done in a quick and timely fashion. My vision is the best since going there. I have been to another chain (won't mention any names) but they really messed up my eyes to the point I had to go to an eye specialist to correct the problem. Here at Sterling I have NEVER had any problems with getting fitted for my correct vision. I recommend them to all my friend. Well done Sterling!! See you my next eye appointment.

Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 2, 2016

Went to this site for contact lens fitting for my sons. After the "Doctor of optometry" (not an MD) examined them, she said she only prescribes daily lenses for any kids under 16. I asked her why, which she said kids are not responsible and get more infections. She was worried about her license if they got an infection. I asked her for any research which would back that up but she had no response. I expressed my concerns for cost as well which she was not sensitive about. I left stating I would see how my sons handled the responsibility and would discuss at follow-up.

At the follow-up, I told her the kids did great and that they showed great hygiene with handling lenses. I asked her to reconsider since they did well. She then stated that they BOTH had allergies in their eyes. This after they had just been seen by their well respected pediatric ophthalmologist, an actual MD, who over 12 years had not ever mentioned allergies in their eyes. Mind you, they have never complained of itchy or watery eyes. She would not offer even one more cost effective alternative. She told us she was done talking to us and left. I spoke to the manager the next day to no avail. FYI, after researching this "doctor," she attended the one of the worst rated optometry schools which is in Puerto Rico. Buyer beware.

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Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Aug. 13, 2016

I bought a pair of non-prescription (off the shelf, NON-custom order) sunglasses at the Sterling store in the mall in Ithaca NY. Due to the lighting conditions in the store, it was difficult to see myself in the mirror. When I got out to the parking lot car and looked in my car mirror, I decided to return the glasses. The store, however, declined to reimburse the money paid, stating that it was store policy to only give a store credit. I live in a different state and was only in Ithaca for a few more days. None of the other items in the store were of interest to me. The store indeed had a sign advising of its no returns policy, but it was placed on the back wall and not at the counter where customers pay and might more readily see it. The receipt also stated the no returns policy, but it was handed to me in an envelope and I did not immediately open the envelope to look at the receipt when I paid.

I consider this way of doing business intentionally deceitful. I later also compared the price of the sunglasses I had purchased with the price online. I had paid about double the online price. I understand that retail stores are struggling to compete with the internet these days. However, their store policy is not doing Sterling's any favors in the long run. Stay away.

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Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Jan. 2, 2016

Had prescription filled on a pair of my own frames twice spent close to 500.00 and now are broken after 7 months, I was offered no solutions only a bad attitude! Warning to all buyers - I was told I was going to Hell when I told them I was reporting them to Better Business!

Original review: Nov. 1, 2015

STAY AWAY! from the Menlo Park Mall (NJ) location - I wish someone would have warned ME. This place needs to be shut down. They take advantage of clients and expect you to be an idiot! Despite the fact I have a vision plan, I was told I had to pay for my exam since the Dr performed an additional test on.. funny though, since I did not authorize any additional tests and was under the influence I was taking the standard test. During my test, I kept stating that neither choice (option 1 or option 2, etc) was clear but was told to "just pick one". So assuming a Dr knows their stuff I continued. Lenses were ordered, which took a pretty long time honestly - over a week. Finally when I was called to come in, I tried the glasses on and you know that nauseous feeling you get when wearing someone else's prescription glasses? I experienced this because they were WAY OFF! I could not see a thing and felt as if I was going to vomit.

I exclaimed my issue only to be told to "take them home for a week and try them out." I am not an idiot and one knows when they can see or not.. I said no I want to redo my exam. Not only did they send me to the SAME clueless Dr, even though they were technically REQUIRED to send me to a DIFFERENT Doctor for a second opinion, but again dealing with same person I was given a runaround while sitting in the exam seat. The Dr made me feel so awkward, failing to apologize but instead making it seem like I was wrong for not being able to see from her failed attempt at prescribing me. Even though I felt so uncomfortable, I left with them yet again ordering a completely DIFFERENT prescription than before and was told I had to wait yet another week.

I could not sleep and so the next day I called to simply cancel stating I did not feel comfortable doing business with this place. I was first lied to by a representative telling me "you can't cancel, the prescription is already cut for the glasses." I declared how this was impossible considering they were JUST ordered and called her out on lying. I was then thrown around from rep to rep, with the greedy manager talking about me loudly and clearly in the background "does she not realize we pay rent here in this mall, tell her there nothing can be done, she already gave us cash" - I assume he thought I was on hold?? I was outraged!!!

I asked to speak with him so I could let him know he cannot talk about customers in that manner but he refused to talk to me and I was told that I could NOT get my money back because there was nothing they could do so I 'may as well just take them" - even if they are not my prescription??? I was appalled by the service and lack of professionalism at this terrible location. They need to be SHUT DOWN since they are basically ROBBING the public. I was told I could NOT be given my money back from my deposit and that "I should not have provided so much cash" - FUNNY THOUGH since I was REQUIRED to make a certain deposit. Now those morons have money - money that was traded for a service that was NOT provided... That's robbery. I may as well have been mugged in an alley or lost the money from my pocket.

My goal is to spread the word so this does not happen to anyone else. Please pass this information on so they do not take advantage of another customer like they did with me and HOPEFULLY that "rent" he pays there in that mall becomes too expensive from the lack of customers he has. It's a franchise he OWNS so I could not even fight this with corporate. TERRIBLE and UNETHICAL! They should be ASHAMED of themselves.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 25, 2015

They gave me broken glasses. The sales people said it wasn't their responsibility. The part that winds around my ear is painful and unhinged but they would not order me a free replacement. They said it was just how it is. I will likely try to order another pair because I like the frames (and the price--I'm unemployed right now) but they keep saying after only a year I have to get examined. I shouldn't have to. If I want a duplicate pair, I should be able to order it without them giving me crap. They definitely are more interested in talking to each other than actually giving my concerns attention but I don't go there to make friends. I need CHEAPIE glasses because of my situation.

Be careful of condescension and overall lack of customer service. It's as if they hate their jobs and resent me being there. The funny part was the one guy saying "you need to watch out for macular degeneration" and I'm young! Just give me my glasses! He talked to me like I was some old lady. I will put up with imperfect glasses and people because like I said, I'm in a money slump. But when I get out, I'll go somewhere of quality. I hate when sales people look at you like you're a nuisance. You have a job, maybe not your dream job, but smiling once in a whole might be nice. AND IF A FRAME IS BUSTED IT SHOULD NOT BE MY PROBLEM.

I'm going back one more time to convince them to order my duplicate but I'd prefer to handle it over the phone since they're kind of annoying. For reference, the other Sterling I went to for a quick adjustment was better. The problematic one is in a mall.

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Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Aug. 27, 2015

I purchased glasses and although the RX was correct, they made me feel like I was walking downhill. They also needed to be re-tinted. When I tried them on in the store, and told the optician how I felt, he said it was all in my head! I have had distance glasses for years, and when they were made correctly, I never felt like that. I am NOT a crazy lady. Nastier store owners, I have never dealt with. They have the glasses, I didn't get the refund, and my credit card company is even having trouble with them. Corporate CANNOT help as the individual stores are franchised. BEWARE! If you need glasses, stay far, far away from them.

Original review: July 14, 2015

STAY AWAY FROM THIS BUSINESS. Groupon rate of $55.00 for eye exam and 3 month supply of contacts was advertised. I called the store to make an appt prior to purchasing and store rep said they will honor the Groupon rate. I told them I wear Acuvue brand and the owner said the contacts showing on Groupon rate is for "Sterling Brand contacts." I told him I wear Acuvue but I will try it since it's included with the promotion. After the eye exam, the doc told me Sterling contacts are only one diameter size and it doesn't fit with my eyes. So at this point, I need to pay $95 for ANOTHER eye exam specifically for Acuvue that I have been wearing forever.

At this point, I just told her to give me my prescription for the exam she fitted me for and she refused. The owner then told me she will just write the script to take with me when I make the payment for $55 (without the Sterling brand contacts). As soon as he charged my card for $55, the doc said "I cannot write you any script and I cannot authorize the Sterling brand either. But if you pay $95, I will fit you for Acuvue." At the end of the day, the only thing the owner gave me was a piece of paper showing my eyesight and told me that's a legitimate prescription. $55 later, I have no contacts and no prescription to go elsewhere. I just realized this is the reason the store didn't want me to purchase through Groupon and I can't even get the money back from them.

**WHEN THE OWNER, DOC refuses to provide their names, they CANNOT BE TRUSTED**

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Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: May 28, 2015

Sterling Optical, Bay Shore, NY sold me used glasses with the wrong lenses. I ordered Crizal lenses. All of my glasses have Crizal lenses. When I picked them up, they failed to give me the authenticity card and cloth. I overlooked this, giving them the benefit of the doubt; after wearing them just a short time, I could tell these absolutely were not Crizal lenses. I called Sterling Optical and told them, and their response was, "oh, okay, we will order the Crizal and call you when they are in." They totally KNEW that gave me cheap lenses and were caught in their shady maneuver.

The frames also seemed out of whack, the arms of the glasses were all stretched out. At first I tried to overlook it, telling myself it was not that bad. But as I wore the glasses, they were so loose and out of whack, especially on the left side, they would fall off my face. There is NO way these were new glasses. I 100% believe Sterling Optical sold me used glasses. They are a shady business! I called them about this and of course they won't admit it, but they lied about the lenses -- and I absolutely believe they are lying about the glasses being new too.

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Verified Buyer
Original review: May 18, 2015

Glasses were purchased in West Seneca, NY in June 2014. In Oct one lens was scratched. A week later I went to pick them up. The replaced lens had a bubble in it. Another week and I picked them up. In April 2015 I mailed them to NY from TN where we now live. Both lenses were chipped in the corners where they sat into the frames. 10 days later while in NY I went to check on them, they never called me. I was told I had already had them replaced and their guarantee does not start at the replacement date. I didn't even get a year from the glasses. I loved the frames, I had to purchase another pair (in TN). Even Walmart and LensCrafters have better replacement policy. NEVER AGAIN!!

Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: March 12, 2015

My experience with the Ithaca, NY Sterling Optical has been bad from the beginning. I went to select a pair of frames, and found that the selection was very poor with a lot of cheap brands. The display frames were filthy as if a hundred dirty hands had handled each one, and the store generally very unclean.

I was followed closely around by someone in training, who obviously had no idea what she was doing. She could not answer any questions and did not seem to know anything about the frames; she wasn't interested in helping me but in following me closely as if I were about to steal something. I did make a selection of a frame, but was looking for a smaller size. The person behind the main counter said that frame didn't come in any other size, however when I went back to looking at the display, I found two other sizes of this model. This person could not place an order for me or answer any other questions, so I was wondering why they were at the front desk. The other three customer service reps in the store also seemed not very knowledgeable about what they were doing and were unprofessional.

I placed an order and was told it would take up to 7 days. Two weeks later, no glasses, and no one at the store can tell me the status. One customer rep could not operate the computer to look up my account. One kept putting me on hold when I called, and never got back to me, even when I called back. One rep said they looked up my order, but called me by another person's name so that I did not feel they really looked up my order. Big mistake to order from this store (and I will not return to Sterling Optical). I have lost confidence that I will receive these glasses and also that they will be the correct prescription. Please do not waste your money or time with this store.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Jan. 12, 2015

I purchased glasses frames and lenses from sterling optical in bay shore NY. These lenses are developing spots and staining. Whatever this defect is I have never experienced this with any other varilux lenses I have owned.

Verified Reviewer
Original review: Jan. 12, 2015

Save your Money - In Dec 2014 I had an eye exam and purchased a pair of transitional lens glasses. After trying for a week to get use to the new glasses I returned to the store and was told there was nothing they could do right now that the glasses were correct and to return after the holidays because they were too busy. I returned to the store this week only to be told that maybe transitional lens aren't for me and that I should try a single strength lens (i.e. reading glasses). They would not give a refund for the difference in the cost of the transitional lens glasses versus the single strength glasses. I wound up paying over $600.00 for Reading Glasses. Take your money elsewhere to get what you pay for because you will not at Sterling Optical in Bay Shore.

Verified Reviewer
Original review: Nov. 7, 2014

Don't go here for your glasses. This is by far one of the most poorly-run businesses I have ever made the mistake of going to. Terrible customer service, rude manager, and if you are in need if quality eyeglasses look elsewhere. I attempted to resolve my issues with the store manager and she did nothing. She was so rude and did not seem to care about losing a customer. Don't take it from just me though, look them up in BBB's report and you will see for yourself. Run out of Sterling Optical and take your money elsewhere. Here is my whole story:

I ordered a complete pair of glasses from Sterling in August.. Weeks later when I was walking by the store one of their associates ran out and stopped me. She said "I have bad news... We can't get the frames you wanted, but you can pick out another pair." I informed her I was not interested in picking out another pair and would like a refund. Then she turned me over to the manager so the manager could tell me there was a strict non-refund policy. How can this be considered a refund when I have not received the product I ordered. 600.00 later I still have a charge for this "phantom" pair of glasses I never received.

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Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Aug. 23, 2014

I had an eye exam done on 7/24/2014 at the Ithaca, NY store. Was charged for the exam when I shouldn't have been and a month later I am still waiting for my refund. I will never go to that store again.

Original review: June 30, 2014

I have been going to Sterling Optical for years. All four members of my family wear glasses or contacts. The last time I went to them my PD was measured incorrectly resulting in lenses that made me dizzy, caused headaches and made me nauseous. I returned to the store three times to have them adjusted (not knowing anything about PD) each time I went, I was told that there was nothing wrong with the lenses and that I would adjust. I struggled and after a few weeks just started wearing my old glasses. I was not aware that someone MANUALLY measured my PD, no machine was used nor we're my records for every previous year checked against the NEW measurement the woman got. Your PD could change over time, but only at most by 1mm.

This new measurement was 3mm different than ever before. AGAIN, NO ONE EVER BOTHERED TO CHECK THE NEW AGAINST THE OLD, NOR ANY PREVIOUS PRESCRIPTION, EVEN WHEN I REPEATEDLY RETURNED TO THE STORE TO HAVE THEM ADJUSTED. The lenses could have been redone in the first 30 days, but as they continued to refuse to check or acknowledge any possibility that the lenses were wrong, of course that never happened. I had to go to a REPUTABLE optician/optometrist to find out what was wrong with my glasses and that no amount of adjusting would ever fix the wrong PD AND that all the symptoms I had are the exact result of having a difference of 4mm in the PD. I will never return there. I would never recommend that anyone go there. I unfortunately only today looked online to find dozens of terrible reviews for sterling optical. This is clearly a company that does not belong in business.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: June 14, 2014

I got my glasses from Sterling about 1 year ago and nothing BUT trouble with the glasses AND the manager there. I had to bring my glasses in 7different times to get them fixed and to this day, they STILL aren't fixed right! I got the lined bifocals, the lines aren't even and I can't even see correctly out of them. After 7 times of me going in to have them fixed, I told the manager that I wanted my money back and that I was going somewhere else to get glasses. She told me that it was against store policy and that they would fix them correctly (which they didn't do!). They didn't even give me ANY of my money back. I contacted their headquarters, but I never heard from them. I wouldn't recommend them to my worst enemy!!! They should be shut down!

Original review: April 17, 2014

Sterling Optical on Lexington and 78 St., NYC. Salesperson assured me the very expensive (progressive Varilux digital) lenses would be replaced if unsatisfactory, as per policy. After getting new glasses, I found that distance viewing with left lens was blurry. I went back to ophthalmologist for re-examination and the prescription was confirmed. The technician also verified prescription on lens is correct. I believe lens must be cut wrong. Depending on the tilt of my head, I can see clearly out of one lens at a time, but cannot see clearly out of both lenses at the same time except for reading distance.

I returned to S.O., but OWNER says lens was cut correctly. He wants me to see S.O.'s optician later in the week to verify prescription. I think he wants to charge me for optician's fee and I still may not get new lens. I'm cutting my losses and will not use them again. Friends and I have always lamented that once the salesperson sold you the eyeglass frames, they wouldn't give you the time of day afterwards. At this S.O. the salespeople were very nice, unfortunately, the owner and workmanship are not.

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Original review: Feb. 11, 2014

Brought our eyeglass prescriptions from our opthamolgist for my family to Sterling Optical in Bayshore Mall because they took our new insurance. He kindly said we can get free eye exam as our prescriptions were a few months old. After all said and done he changed all of our prescriptions. I asked if this guy was a real doctor? He assured me he was with 20 years experience.. I proceed to purchase them, $600.00 for all three pairs. A few days later we pick up our new glasses and not one of us could see out of them. I kindly said redo our glasses to my original eyeglass prescription that I brought in from my own eye doctor and they did.

A few more days go by, we get our new glasses. Now, the glasses have scratches on the lenses, some sort of defect. They have to redo them, again! A week later, we get our glasses. Now we take them and go home and try to get use to them for a couple of days. They were making us sick and dizzy, etc. I finally take the glasses to a reputable eye place to see if every prescription matches. They did, but all of the measurements were wrong. (Example one of the pairs should have been cut at 60, but they were cut at 70). "Now I bring the glasses back for the fourth time," to be redone, and I have to say, I was upset. ( I don't understand why they can't make these glasses right?)

I wanted my money back! He said store credit only. Ha! Are you kidding me? He shows me on my receipt, no refunds. That's ridiculous I say! (Is my $600.00 really worth it to him)? Store credit?!? Really? Now, It's been more than two weeks and I am still waiting for our new glasses. Shame on you, Sterling Optical! You will NOT have anyone in my family as new customers ever again as I am disgusted and I will let everyone know!

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 21, 2013

On 03 October 2013, I ordered a pair of glasses for my son. Payment cleared on 05 October. I had to make sure that I called them to clarify information because I had a clear impression that they were not focused on serving me as a customer. My first hint was the fact that I had to return to the store after walking out without a receipt.

Approximately a week after ordering, I called to check on the status and was told that they would call me when the glasses arrived from my insurance provider. I waited about three more days and called again. I was again told that they would contact me when the glasses arrived from the provider. Approximately 12 days after ordering, I called again and was told that they would contact me. I finally called my insurance provider 16 days after ordering and was informed that they did not place the order until the day of my third call to Sterling.

As a consumer I should have followed my initial instinct upon entering the facility and sought out a different provider. I would not suggest using this facility, as a matter of fact; I would strongly recommend avoiding this place at all costs. My recommendation to the owner/operator of this facility would be to consider monitoring and releasing the customer service representatives who are obviously bringing down the reputation of the facility.

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Original review: July 23, 2013

I called to make an appointment and I ask the girl on the phone 3 times the price of an eye exam and she stated they started at 69.99. I asked what would make them be more and she told me why. I took my son there under the impression that the exam will be no more than $69.99. It was 109.99 and I could not get anyone to tell me why it was that much. I was never offered any specials that they offer on the internet or in the stores. His visit ended up costing me 169.99 for an eye exam and a 3 month supply of contacts. I will never ever go back nor refer anyone to this place.

Original review: June 17, 2013

I have been going to Sterling Optical since I was 11; I am now 20. Today I have decided I will never set foot into Sterling Optical ever AGAIN! I purchased $450 Swarovski glasses and contacts for $100. My glasses were junk and while adjusting them with a gentle move, they broke! The owner, Renada, told me that I would have to pay $50 to fix it and that she didn't break them so why should she pay? She said that everything breaks. Really? Well, $450 glasses shouldn't, Hun. She has always been rude talking on the phone and she's never someone I enjoy seeing when I walk in because of her rude manner. She's always on the phone ignoring customers. I understand when something breaks, we have to pay to fix it but she wasn't even accommodating. She just kept saying she didn't break them and everything breaks. No, everything does not break especially when you pay almost five hundred dollars for glasses! C'mon, I'm done with Sterling and the "owner" should actually learn how to run a business.

Verified Reviewer
Original review: June 12, 2013

Last October, my son and I visited the mall. We both had an eye exam appointment with Sterling Optical. After the appointment, I was able to get contacts as part of my insurance package. I had wanted my son to get contacts too, but he explained that he was not yet ready. The Sterling Optical employee explained that he would be happy to offer my son a free trial pair of lenses, in an attempt to sell store product. I was all for it as my son is very cute and contacts would be wonderful. My son repeated that he was not yet ready for contacts and simply wanted to stay with his glasses. As a result, we simply replaced the lenses in his current frames and called it a day. I did not push the contact lens subject.

Recently (about a month ago), my son's eye glasses lost a small screw. I, unfortunately, could not remember the name of the store we had recently conducted optical business (which was Sterling Optical). I did, however, remember where the store was located. So, my son and I went into Sterling Optical and explained the problem with my son's glasses. The employee at the time said that she would not be able to provide any service if we were not currently a customer. She looked up my name, as well as my son's name in the computer, and explained that we were not listed as customers. I felt certain I had the right store, but the employee added doubt to my memory by explaining that, recently, Pearl Vision Center occupied a store only 2 suites down. She explained that they were only located on the second floor, while their original mall location was being renovated. So, my son and I walked the full length of a large mall to visit Pearl Vision Center. I explained the story to the Pearl Vision Center representative and without hesitation the employee fixed my son's glasses. Yippie.

Now, here is my most major complaint. Today, when my son got home from school, he asked if he could get contact lenses. I, of course, was THRILLED. I have wanted my son to get contact lenses for months. Finally, my kid decided to broach the possibility of contact lenses. So, we went to Pearl Vision Center and explained that we recently had our eye exams and that my son now wanted contacts. Pearl Vision was very helpful. They searched the computer records, and even went into the paper files and looked for our information back into 2009. They were unable to locate any current information. So, here we go again.

I then called Sterling Optical in the mall and explained the situation. The employee at Sterling Optical assured me that we were not listed as customers, and they had not provided either of us with an eye exam. Frustrated, I called Lens Crafters…I did not know what else to do...and was told the same information. Finally, I was getting really frustrated. I had tried to call my husband for insurance vision information, but he was unavailable. I knew that Sterling Optical was having an eye exam special so I dragged my child to the complete other side of the mall in hopes to suit my child up with contact lenses.

When we were in Sterling Optical, I explained my situation in person, that my son and I had a recent exam and were unable to locate which store in the mall provided that service. Dutifully, the Sterling Optical employee checked the computer again and assured me that we did not have the exam in their location. I then inquired about the cost of eye exams and the $9.99 special. I was then informed that the $9.99 special was only for glasses, and that the contact exam would cost $99.99. At that moment, I decided to try and reach my husband via phone again. Finally, success!!! My husband gave me the name of our insurance carrier for vision, along with policy number and phone number. I called our insurance company and explained my situation. The insurance company employee explained that we did have services provided at ...STERLING OPTICAL!!! The same company that refused to fix my son's glasses! The same store that assured me TWICE that we had never been provided services by their company.

When I told then what the insurance company had explained, they magically found our paper records. SERIOUSLY??? THEN, they said that he did not have a script for contact lenses and would need to have another exam. I was informed by the insurance company that because we were in a NEW YEAR, 2013 versus 2012, we were eligible for all yearly benefits again. I explained that my son did have the contact lens exam. How and why would the October 2012 store employee offer my son a free pair of trial contact lenses previously? That was my final straw. First, they said we were never customers. Then, when I was able to prove we had been customers, they say he did not have a contact lens prescription on file.

By this time, Sterling Optical had wasted 2 full hours of my time. If they had accurately checked their records during my first call, I would not have wasted time speaking with Pearl Vision Center, Lens Crafters, and Sterling Optical Center again. The staff at the Columbia Mall in Columbia, MD branch are horrible!!! If I owned that store, I would fire the entire lot. I would never allow such a pack of self-absorbed, lazy workers to represent my business. I would NEVER recommend them EVER. I would, however, recommend Pearl Vision Center. They were polite, helpful, and accommodating. The monkey brains at Sterling Optical could take a lesson or 2 from the employees at Pearl Vision Center. Pearl Vision ROCKS! Sterling Optical sucks!

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Jan. 2, 2013

In mid-March 2012, I purchased a pair of eyeglasses from your Annapolis mall location, which took two months to deliver. When I called to check the status of my order, I was told that the original associate who placed my order was no longer available; therefore, my order was lost. I was then told that my request had to be reordered, which will take another 5 to 7 days to deliver. A week later, I called to check the status of my order, and I was told by an Associate that my glasses were in and were ready for delivery. It was dark outside when the delivery was processed; therefore, I didn’t notice that my lenses were not transitioning with the sunlight until the next day. I took my glasses back to the store and was then told by a female associate that my lenses needed to be reordered to include the transitions, which will take an additional 5 to 7 days to deliver.

Two weeks later, I called to check the status of my order and I was told by a female associate that my glasses were in and ready for delivery. When I arrived the next day, I was told by the manager that the female associate, whom I spoke with on the phone the previous day, wasn’t available. On that sunny day as I was leaving the building and walking to my car, I noticed that my new glasses were not transitioning to the sunlight. I returned to the store and informed the manager that my glasses did not transition with the sunlight. The manager apologized and told me that the light that they use in the lab to validate transitional lenses was broken and needed a new bulb. The manager walked with me outside, and it was confirmed that my new glasses were not transitional. The manager apologized again and informed me that he needed to reorder my lenses to include transitional, which will take another 5 to 7 days to deliver.

Two weeks later, which is now the beginning of May 2012, I called to check the status of my order and I was told by the manager that my glasses were in and ready for delivery. When I arrived the next day, my glasses were indeed transitional. It’s now six months later, November 2012, and I’m noticing that I have light scratches on my lenses. I always keep my glasses in the case when I’m not wearing them; they were never dropped or mishandled. I always clean my lenses with the solution/cloth provided by sterling optical, yet I still have these light scratches? On November 9, 2012, I was in the Annapolis area, so I visited Sterling and asked the associate if there was anything that she could do to remove the light scratches from my lenses. The associate informed me that my lenses were plastic and can scratch very easily; therefore, I have to be very careful when cleaning them. The associate proceeded to tell me that because I didn’t have the protective coating, there was nothing she could do.

On November 20, 2012, I called Sterling again and I asked for a refund. I was told by a male manager that my order did not include a warranty; therefore, I didn’t qualify for a refund. What he did offer was to order new lenses at a discounted price. I told the manager no thanks, and now, I’m contacting the corporate office. Based on my experience, I see that Sterling cares more about making a sale over customer satisfaction. I was never offered scratch-resistant coating or a warranty; therefore, I asked the corporate office for a full refund and received no response.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Dec. 7, 2012

I purchased a pair of glasses from Sterling Optical because they had a frame that I really liked. I went in 2 days after I got the glasses, because they gave me a headache and made me dizzy and I couldn't see to read out of them. Also, the frames were very uncomfortable and felt very heavy and left red marks on my nose. I had paid extra to have polished edges but the edges were not polished. I was told that the doctor and manager were on vacation and I should keep trying to wear them and come in the next week.

I returned the next week and was told the manager and doctor were still on vacation. I left the glasses there because I could not wear them anyway. They told me that the manager would call me the following Monday. The manager never called. I went back in on Friday. I was told that the bifocals were not positioned right and they would remake the lenses and they would be ready in a week. They told me to pick out another frame. There were no other frames I liked. They said I could not get my money back and said I could pick out frames from a catalog.

I told them I needed to see what I was buying. They said they would order a couple of frames for me and let me pick from those when they came in. I refused. They said I could find a pair of frames I liked at another store and get the model number and they would order those for me, but it would take 3 weeks for them to come in and another week for the lenses to be made. That would mean that it would be 7 1/2 weeks from the time I originally ordered the glasses until I get a usable pair of glasses. I could go to another store in the area and get glasses cheaper and have them in 3 days. Plus, the other store has Buy One Get One Free all the time. I am going back tomorrow to argue with them. I need a new pair of glasses now, not in 2 months!

Also, I found out that there is no customer service number you can call and no number for the company that I can find.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Nov. 5, 2012

My wife and I went to Sterling Optical in Fredericksburg, Virginia and ordered 3 pairs of glasses - 2 on 8 October and one more on 15 October. We were told it would take 10 days to 2 weeks which seems a little long. The price turned out to be quite high - but we thought we'd give it a try. My wife's finally came in after 16 days and one of her 2 pairs was wrong, very high pressure to take them anyway. Finally, they took them back but would not reorder without a new prescription. So now it has been another week and still no glasses. My order has been in 3 weeks, no glasses yet. Each time we call and ask, we get the same story - the lab has them and they'll be shipped tomorrow. Four times it was the exact same story - it has been 2 weeks since the first time they told us "they'll be shipped tomorrow". I will never ever go back. And I would warn anyone dealing with them to be cautious - in addition to very high prices, they do not provide accurate information, and they are very slow.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 24, 2012

Wrong prescription 2 times, & still no contact lens: My husband, granddaughter and I all had eye exam appointments. All 3 got glasses, along with granddaughter ordering contact lens too. All glasses were delayed in coming in or having the lens cut, etc. This was all more than a month ago. I had progressive lenses and was told to give them a week, as I didn't think they were right. I gave them two weeks, only to find out I had to continually take my glasses off to be able to see any distance. I especially need glasses at night to see when driving. My prescription is not strong for distance but does help. Upon taking them back, I found that part of my prescription was missing from the lenses. They ordered new lenses for me.

Now during the same time, we are still waiting for my granddaughter's contact lenses to come in; it has been at least a month now. We were told they were delivered to the front door but were not. They put in a trace on the shipment but haven't found them yet. So new contact lens were ordered and were to be shipped, which still did not happen within that week. So another call was placed. They were going to "overnight" the contact lens shipment to the store in Brookfield, WI. My new glasses finally came in two weeks later, at which point the contact lenses were to be at the store too. Well the glasses are in, no contacts are in and no one answers the phone in New York!

Guess what? I still can't see any distance with my new glasses. I have to take my glasses off to see any type of distance. Thank God I can see a slightly blurred distance better without these glasses than with. I will be going back to the Sterling Optical again. This will be my 5th trip into this store. At 50 miles roundtrip, I am not happy! I have been all too nice when I go in and speak with these ladies, as I'm not too sure whose fault this is! But now I am beyond mad. I am furious! My husband also was supposed to have lenses which get darker when he goes outside. They turn a very light shade of gray. Why bother!

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