Just another reason I am ill-suited to being a bride: when I get the feeling I’ve been ripped off, I tend to stomp my feet, say mean things to not-at-fault cogs in the machine, cry once I’ve reached the “privacy” of my car, write a bunch of nasty Tweets in hopes the business tracks their name, draft scathing reviews for Yelp and similar websites… and never actually feel any better for all this fussing.
About eighteen months ago, I splurged on a pair of designer glasses purchased at Eyetique, a local fancy eyeglass chain. I got “a deal,” paying only 25 dollars for the lenses, but that was on top of a cool $475 for the frames. Last night, the plastic frames snapped when I laughed too hard. This morning I went to the store and they told me the price of repairs would be $250. Also known as “the price of an entirely new pair of glasses from any reasonable establishment.”
So… I went through the above foot-stomping process. I still feel scammed, and I still don’t have glasses.
Why is any of this relevant to weddings? Because I am BOUND to overpay for various products and services for this wedding. It’s pretty much a foregone conclusion. And I really, really would like to manage to get through that without going through this unhelpful temper-tantrum process.
And I know an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure and all that. Maybe I should be focused on how to avoid getting ripped off? But that seems much more difficult than trying to learn how to react with grace when I get ripped off. I want to be able to roll with the getting ripped-off punches… because having a wedding is like being in a getting ripped-off boxing ring. How have you handled your mistreatment at the hands of wedding professionals?
[Meanwhile, let me throw out another flailing fist: if you live in Pittsburgh, just say no to Eyetique.]
June 20, 2010 at 5:31 pm
oh my gosh… our ex-venue (a local gallery) was TOTALLY ripping us off.
the guy (who was HIGH ALL THE TIME- nothing wrong with that if it floats you’re boat, but don’t conduct a business under the influence, a-hole!) kept trying to convince us to rent a smaller gallery in the building so I could “hide for my reveal.” Another $600 so I could hide. WTF?
I was livid, and like you I did whatever I could so everyone else knew how sucky he was. But I didn’t have it in me to ask for our deposit back so I asked Josh if he could. He’s much better at that kind of stuff.
The kicker? He avoided all of our phone calls and emails, so Josh had to go to the establishment to get our monies. What a joik, that guy.
June 20, 2010 at 6:15 pm
Oof that sounds terrible. I’m so glad that is your ex-venue!
June 20, 2010 at 7:34 pm
I react exactly as you do when I feel ripped off. The tantrums, the meanness, the crying. Having worked in customer service, I tend to just keep escalating things until I get the answer I want, typically via threats.
Years ago, my cellphone was shutting itself off every now and then, so I went to Verizon just KNOWING that they’d let me upgrade early due to the inconvenience (it was shutting off! Mid-call!). When the answer was that I’d have to pay full price for a new phone, I lost my shit. I threatened to take my business elsewhere because paying $175 to get out of the contract was about half of what a new phone would cost. That threat was enough for them to give me what I wanted.
It’s sad that threats have to be made in order to get good service. I’m not saying you should make threats every time you get ripped off, but I do think this Eyetique thing is worth escalation. That ain’t no chump change!
June 21, 2010 at 10:40 am
Gah, I feel ya! But for me its more that I’m really cheap…so my willingness to pay for whatever product/service is always way low and then I see the price and go WTF!?
My advice is to find vendors/products/whatever that you feel good about and believe in. For our catering we are paying a little company for local food. Its way more than I had hoped. I don’t know if that means they are ripping us off but think it more likely means that I’m just cheap. Anyway, it just makes me feel better that our money is going to a place I respect.
I dunno if that helps. Cuz sometimes that not easy. I got my dress from a place that was a nice, respectable place but I still felt ripped off because I just have a hard time paying 475 for a dress.
Maybe we are just cheapos. And thats ok too.
(sorry for the rambling, not really helpful comment….)
June 21, 2010 at 11:27 am
I hate getting ripped off. And I’m rarely very good about standing up for myself unless it’s work-related. I’m trying to get better about that in my personal world too.
I will say though, we haven’t felt ripped off once with the wedding. Those vendors exist but, more often than not, I’ve had glowy happy feeling about the people I’m working with and I know their prices are more than reasonable. After tons of research and a gut feeling, I haven’t gone wrong yet. (Let’s leave out the venue. They aren’t ripping us off. They’re just useless and stoned. Really. It’s hippie land up there, so it’s all peace and love and pricing fairness and too much pot.) I could tell the “meh” vendors from a mile away, and we’re not using services like a limo, florist, or wedding cake bakery, where it might be easier to rip people off. I will say, though, that florists and cakemakers do spend a TON of time and money on their products. Margins are often low – yes, I researched that too – and for a high quality vendor it’s totally worth it. I think there’s a difference between wedding sticker shock (common) and shifty vendors (they exist, but you can avoid them.)
June 21, 2010 at 11:30 am
I thought I would get better at dealing with this as I got more experienced with career, but in my personal life, I still lose my cool. I think it may actually be worse. Dealing with other people’s conflicts everyday means that I have less tolerance for injustice in my own world.
And I hate, hate, hate being ripped off.
June 21, 2010 at 11:36 pm
So this wasn’t a post about glasses, but oh man can I sympathize. If you want to get new frames, there is this great place in Squirrel Hill, on Forbes, across from the Chocolate Moose. If you go, ask for Morris and mention my name (tell him I work at the Chocolate Moose and it should ring a bell). He will hook you up and treat you right.
June 25, 2010 at 5:32 pm
I got totally screwed over at the Dollar rental car counter when they charged me the under 25 thing – which I knew I had had to pay, but they had been very careful to avoid telling me for sure what it was and it was twice the estimate.
I wanted to cry and yell, “I HAVE A JD FOR CRYING OUT LOUD.”
I have been lucky, so far, to avoid getting ripped off. Our venue is cheaper than we thought, we picked a caterer who didn’t tack on extras every time we talked to her (which was why we went with this one over the one that did that), our photographer gave us a sweet discount, and our cake is free.
However, I know, no matter what, the moment I stand in the alterations place, I will feel ripped off. I will feel furious. I will feel like they are charging me an arm and a leg and that I paid good money for my dress and I am sure as heck not gonna pay more for alterations than my dress.
Then I will go to the car and cry.
July 15, 2010 at 11:31 am
WOW…Really…news to me, I am happy to take care of any and all problems given the chance, hate to read about it on somebody’s blog, however, I will still stand behind our product even though they are clearly out of warranty…a new frame you need, a new frame you will get, we don’t nor have we ever ripped anybody off, we always take care of our clients…period. let me know who you are and I will order in a new frame for you…just remember, you buy a car with a three year warranty and it is 3 years and three months, there is no more warranty…most frame lines carry a one year manufacters defect warranty, and do not under any circumstances warranty wear and tear, whether I agree with their policies or not, I happen to be on your side, a five hundred dollar pair should last, and therefore I will purchase a frame for you, with all disregard for the frame company not standing behind, and it sounds like we took care of you on price at time of sale, we will carry that through the life of the frame…If and when we take care of you, I would hope that you would reblog the correct information that Eyetique a 31 year old LOCAL FAMILY owned business will always be there for its clients that we greatly appreciate…just communicate to me…firstname.lastname@example.org