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Frequently Asked Questions



No Hassle Returns Explained

One of the common challenges of buying anything online is that you don't get to see how it looks on you until you get the item and try it on. Retailers from Lands End to Reading Glass World make it easy for customers to return, exchange or just try different styles with no risk.

If a reading glass isn't perfect for you, for any reason, simply send it back to the nice folks at Reading Glass World for a full and quick refund.

Include a note explaining your wishes: exchange, refund, ect and they'll jump right on it.

No problems, no hassles, no RA# necessary, pretty simple!

Send any returns to:

Customer Returns
Reading Glass World
1734 Corley Drive
Mableton, GA 30126

STORE POLICIES

Shipping and Handling

Orders will be processed the next business day after you place your order, pending credit card approval. A business day is Monday through Friday, excluding Holidays. We offer FREE Standard Shipping on Domestic orders. For international rates, please E-Mail us at, sales@readingglassworld.com, or call us toll free at 1-800-635-1941

Shipping Information

Standard Shipping:
We offer FREE Standard Shipping on Domestic orders. We ship most Internet orders within 48 business hours. We use U.S. 1st Class Mail or UPS Ground, which may take up to 10 days, depending on where you live. Items listed as Special Order may not adhere to the above standards.

UPS 2nd Day Air Delivery:
We are happy to ship in-stock merchandise via UPS 2 Day Air for $14.95 extra or overnight Next Day delivery where available for $24.95. Web orders sent with free shipping typically arrive within 2 to 4 business days.

Overnight Air Delivery:
We can now ship in-stock items via overnight UPS for an additional $24.95.

International Shipments:
We offer shipping outside the United States & Canada on purchases by credit card and international money orders. All purchases must be in U.S. funds for the total of the purchase plus shipping. Please email us with your international order requests. If known, please note your preferred international freight carrier. We will confirm availability and email you back with the total cost of goods plus freight before we charge your credit card and ship the merchandise.

Shipping Address:
Our standard shipping can be addressed to a PO Box. However, for 2nd Day Air or Overnight, UPS does not deliver to PO Boxes. Please make sure the shipping address includes a street address where the shipment can be signed for.

Charge Card Info

Date Billed:
Your card will not be charged until your order is shipped.

Authorization Notice:
Your billing address as it appears on your credit card statement must be listed on order form. The billing name must also be exactly as it appears on your card.

Security:
All of your personal information, including charge card information is encrypted (scrambled) as you complete your order and transmit it to us in this secure mode. Experts say that this type of transaction is even safer than using your charge card in a store or over an 800 number.

Sales Tax

We must charge sales tax on the full amount of purchases to residents in the state of Georgia. At this time, no sales tax will be charged for shipments to other states or countries.

Email address sharing

We do not share or give out email addresses or any other information concerning our customers to any other source. Ever. Pretty simple. (We hate spam too!)



Why Reading Glasses?

Ready-made readers are a practical solution for many consumers vs. prescription reading glasses. Most customers can not justify the large price difference between prescription readers and ready readers. In addition, customers who do need prescription lenses should be able to buy ready-made readers in multiple pairs. A consumer can buy one pair of prescription readers for $200 once every three years, or they buy a pair of readers for $30 to $99 every eight to 12 months.

Readers are no longer interested in the "granny" styles of yesteryear but want a much more sophisticated product appealing to a younger age group. First, there is the emerging baby-boomers - early 40s, just beginning to notice the first signs of presbyopia - who does not even want to admit that they might need reading glasses yet alone wear something they associate with their parents. Secondly, and surprisingly, an even younger consumer - one who spends a lot of time on the computer or reading and is as young as 25 - is beginning to seek out low-powered readers to help with eye strain. While optical professionals may find it disheartening that pre-presbyopic patients are self-prescribing, many retailers see this a yet another swell in the ready reader wave.

Eye on Style: Clear Vision

Las Vegas Review Journal article about ReadingGlassWorld

Reprinted from the Las Vegas Review Journal, an article by staff reporter, Joan Whitely, 4/3/2005

It was the wee hours of Christmas morning. Neil Croak was assembling toys for his kids, straining to read the fine-print instructions.

"I was sitting here in a panic. The kids were going to be coming down the stairs in a couple of hours." the entrepreneur recalls.

Finally, in deperation, Croak rustled through an heriloom family sewing basket to locate a magnifying glass, which he then held to read the instruction sheets.

That's when he admitted that at age 37 he needed reading glasses.

But rather than buy old-fashioned, clunky readers like the older generation had worn, Croak -- who was already a distributor of sunglasses -- eventually founded and internet business that sells fun, high-fashion nonprescription reading glasses to baby boomers like himself.

Croak's business empire, ReadingGlassWorld.com, is based in Atlanta and now 4 years old. He estimates it sells 1,000 pairs of reading glasses a month to consumers across the nation. It carries about 15 different manufacturing lines. Its prices range from $24.95 to $179.95.

People with perfect vision may, as they age, start needing magnification to see close up. The condition is presbyopia, which Croak defines as "aging of the cornea." It means the eye's focusing mechanism grows less pliable with age. The eye can no longer sharply focus for near vision.

Stock quotes and the Yellow Pages in a phone book are typical reading challenges for the person with presbyopia, according to Croak. Or "you'll be sitting at a restaurant table with one candle, reading a menu with French (words) in italics."

He thinks most people put off buying their first pair of readers because they dislike the styling of traditional reading glasses.

"Our niche is fashion," says Croak, estimating that 60 percent of his customers are female. He notes they tend to buy multiple pairs of reading glasses at a single time, in various colors. They match the color of their glasses to the color of their outfit.

Men also buy multiples, but for a different reason, Croak says. "With guys it's more for convenience. They're going to throw one (pair) into the car, one into the briefcase."

Some people also buy multiples so they can lose a pair here or there without worry, he adds.

Lunettes is a Las Vegas eyewear retailer with an array of fashion-conscious reading glasses. Of eight local stores in the group, the Lunettes in Mandalay Place has the largest inventory of readers, according to owner Marvin Freeman. (Stores named Davante, Dolc© and Dolc© Due also are part of the group.)

Lunettes' lowest-price reader goes for $32. It's a rimless minimalist frame, in electric blue, green or red.

But the Mandalay Place shop's highest price tag is $2,780 for a designer frame by Cartier in solid 18-karat white gold. Freeman, however, remembers selling a pair by Cartier with multiple inset diamonds for $7,600.

Lunette also carries frames by Judith Leiber, Porsche, Chanel and Gian Franco Ferre.

Lunettes and ReadingGlassWorld both carry SlimFold traveling readers by Kanda, which bend and fold into a case not much larger than a business-card case.

All Lunettes prices include custom-made lenses, in the same magnifications available for off-the-rack reading glasses. Many Lunette models fall in the $250 to $500 price bracket, according to Freeman. In addition to designer cachet, often the consumer is buying high-tech frames of aluminum or titanium. "That means they're no weight," Freeman adds.

"These are executives, ladies in business," he says of his clientele. "When they're in meetings, it's part of their dress. ... It's a showpiece."

Las Vegan Susan Feldman, 45, a nurse, started wearing readers about three years ago, when she began having problems reading patient charts. Owning up to a bit of vanity, she admits she didn't like her first reading glasses, a conventional pair, and didn't openly wear them much. Then she discovered a nice selection at Nordstrom and online at ReadingGlassWorld. Now she has multiple pairs. "I have them tucked in various places around the house, by each phone, by my sewing table."

Both ReadingGlassWorld and Lunettes also carry sun readers, which are tinted full-size lenses, with magnification only in the lens' lower portion. They are intended for people who want to read as they lounge poolside or at a beach.

"You get all the (sun protection) coverage. As you drop your eyes, you can read," explains Cynthia Pizzini, manager of the Lunettes at Mandalay Place.

Reading glasses appeal to other groups of customers beyond people with simple presbyopia. They also can be useful to: people who have had Lasik surgery to correct vision; people who wear contact lenses for distance vision but are now developing presbyopia; and people who wear progressive or bifocal lenses by day, but want a lighter pair of glasses when reading in bed.

The new reading glasses can be so stylish that Croak has discovered one more group of potential customers: People who don't need any vision correction.

"We get lots of folks who ask for zero strength. They want them purely for fashion," Croak says. His company is debating whether to add no-correction readers to its inventory.

Some Industry Info

Chart Retail Sales of Reading Glasses

Sources: Jobson Optical Group Data Base and Sunglass Association of America

Learn more about your vision from the experts at The Vision Council of America?
Vision Council of America Home Page

The Fine Print

The Baltimore Sun

Reprint originally from The Baltimore Sun, written by Stephanie Shapiro

The scientific term is presbyopia, but "unable to read is the real term," quips James J. Spina, editor in chief of 20/20 magazine, a publication for the optical industry.

As millions of baby boomers enter their 40s and 50s, they've had to come to terms with presbyopia, the farsightedness that naturally accompanies aging. Over time, the lens of the eye stiffens and cannot magnify as it used to, forcing middle-aged people to grope for their readers, which they place throughout the house, in the car and at work.

If desperate, they unashamedly will wear their readers held together with paper clips or with one arm missing. In an emergency, they will borrow a pair, no matter how ridiculous they look.

Presbyopia, says Paul Hulleberg, a 48-year-old middle school music teacher at Park School in Baltimore, is one of those minor indignities of aging. A member of the Baltimore Choral Arts Society, he once arrived at a concert without his readers. Another singer lent him a pair so he could see the music. "Really saved the day," Hulleberg says.

A disconcerting rite of passage for baby boomers has become a jackpot for the eyewear industry. In the year ending in September 2004, reading glasses sales totaled $445.7 million, according to 20/20's research department. That's about 33.4 million pairs of reading glasses sold.

Entrepreneur Neil Croak, who runs ReadingGlassWorld.com, saw the potential four years ago after asking himself, "What need does the aging baby boomer population have and what demographic is most likely to use the Internet?"

The Atlanta-based Croak's research led him to the business of selling "high-end fashion reading glasses." His prices range from $20.95 to $199.95 per pair. Croak says he sells about 12,000 pairs a year. "We get so many customers who buy three or four at a time. It's not uncommon for them to spend $200 to $300 (for multiple pairs)," Croak says.

Another reason to buy more than one pair: If not tethered to a chain, reading glasses tend to get lost. "It's one of the hazards of the industry," he says.

Fashion also propels purchases of multiple readers, Croak says. "We sell fun glasses, pink ones, and stripes, and rhinestone-studded. They are things that women really like to accessorize with. If their whole `shtick' is blue, they buy everything in blue. One customer buys anything with stripes on it."

The over-the-counter industry is divided between the production of cheap readers sold in drugstores and other outlets and high-end readers found in boutiques, department stores and optician shops, Spina says. Slowly, opticians, who at one time resisted selling over-the-counter readers for fear they would detract from their prescription business, have come around, he says.

The well-constructed, more expensive reader is "undoubtedly the leader" in the expanding field of optical options, including sun clips and prescription sun wear for sports-related activities, Spina says. "Sun readers" for boomers who read on the beach, in the backyard and other outdoor spots, are also an increasingly popular purchase.

Readers, whether cheaply made or top of the line, "are not bad for your eyes," says Dr. Elliott H. Myrowitz, an optometrist at the Wilmer Eye Institute at the Johns Hopkins University Hospital. "If you're going in for a yearly exam and having the glaucoma test and your pupils dilated and everything checks out and you are comfortable with your over-the-counter reading glasses, that's fine," Myrowitz says.

"In fact, when we do refractive surgery, we tell people the most likely outcome is they're going to use over-the-counter glasses," he says.

Frequently Asked Questions About Presbyopia

Who Has Presbyopia?
Nearly everyone gets presbyopia as they age. Seventy-six million baby boomers are, or soon will be, affected by presbyopia as they move into their 40s and through their 50s

What Causes Presbyopia?
The eye's lens changes focus from near to distant objects by changing its shape. When people are younger, the eye's lens "accommodates" objects. As the eye ages, however, layers of new cells form, making the lens thicker, more sense and less flexible.

Can Presbyopia be Cured?
Presbyopia cannot be cured. However, it can be corrected easily with reading glasses, bifocal and progressive lenses or contact lenses. An eyecare professional can examine the presbyope's eyes and prescribe appropriate eyewear.

When Do Eyes Age?
Starting at about age 10, our eyes naturally and gradually lose their ability to focus up close. Although presbyopia may seem to develop suddenly, the decline takes place over the course of many years and becomes apparent in our late 40s and early 50s.

How Will Presbyopia Affect My Lifestyle?
Presbyopia will not affect your way of life if you obtain the proper prescriptive eyewear. And, new optical technology offers so many vision correction options that people can maintain their quality of life with style.

How Often Do Presbyopes Use their Eyewear?
If presbyopia is the only vision condition an individual experiences, he or she may only need eyewear for reading, sewing and other close work. However, with additional vision conditions, presbyopes may find that wearing glasses all of the time is more beneficial and convenient.

Optical Makes A Case for Readers
Increasing sales, higher price points and a growing population of presbyopes has strengthened optical's stake in the ready-made reader market

By Ellen Askin - Associate Editor

NEW YORK, Like it or not, optical practitioners are adding ready-made reading glasses to their mix in an attempt to get their share of a market that is no longer reserved for drug stores. And, according to reader manufacturers and dispensers, it is only the beginning of enormous possibilities for the optical industry.

According to Jobson Optical Group?s 1999 survey for the Sunglass Association of America, total retail sales of ready readers across all primary channels increased 6.5-percent from $331.8 million in 1998 to $353.4 million in 1999. While drug stores and department stores account for just about half of that number, optical held its own with 13.6-percent of the market, up from 13.3-percent in 1998. The total number of units sold in 1999, approximately 25.9 million with optical's share at only 2.2 million, is a clear indication that the ready-made reader business is only growing stronger and that optical is beginning to feed that growth.

However, some optical practitioners are hesitant about recommending nonprescription presbyopic correction and still maintain that ready-made readers should not take the place of prescription reading glasses for several reasons. For one, while a reader may help presbyopes see more clearly by magnifying small print or objects, standard readers allow no room for variables such as astigmatisms, varying pupillary distances, or asymmetrical face shapes. Another concern of OD's is that the "quick-fix" nature of readers discourage aging baby-boomers from eye-exams that could diagnose potential eye problems associated with age.

Still, suppliers say that baby-boomers, the demographic that has pushed the reader business to new heights over the last three years, are inevitably continuing to age, hence the reader business will continue to grow.

Larry Nathanson, president of California Optical, which manufactures CalOptix line of ready-made readers, believes that department and drug stores are gobbling up the share of the market that should reasonably be cornered by the 3-Os.

"Optical could far surpass department stores in reader sales if they are smart," says Nathanson, adding, "An optical professional can offer expertise and service that others can not, such as adjusting temples and bridges. Think about it, an optician is trained to put frames on faces that compliment. A smart practitioner would use this opportunity to build their business."

Ed Beiner, owner and president of Coco Lunette, which manufactures MySpex and Edward Beiner lines of readers, agrees.

"Why shouldn't optical look to create a relationship with patients where they can provide product for those who need it?" says Beiner. "These are the same people who go down the street to the department or drug stores. Why send them away when you can provide product for them, making them a customer for life, and then eventually provide for them when they come back needing progressive lenses."

However, many practitioners fear the convenience and affordability of readers is an inadequate substitute for prescription reading glasses. Barry Bamberger, an optician at Eyes on Broadway in New York, insists that while he does carry a small selection of ready-made readers, he recommends them to his patients strictly as "emergency" pairs.

"I usually suggest prescription readers only for heavy reading or computer use," states Bamberger. "I want my customers to be prescribed correctly and readers can not always do that. For example, it is very common for patients to have different powers in each eye which, if they use ready readers, can cause distortion. Also, not everyone's face is symmetrical, so readers may not always offer maximum comfort."

Should I buy a pair of SunReaders?

An article from the industry standard news journal, Vision Monday:

Sun Readers See a Bright Future NEW YORK. When the demographics for reading glass wearers changed a few years back to that of the baby boomer, suppliers started to recognize the need for more fashionable alternatives to the typical reader usually found in drug stores. As a result, readers have taken on a whole new identity to the visually challenged baby boomer, not as something to hide in the breast pocket, but rather, something to display on the face as a fashion accessory.

Read All About It - Article pulled from Eyecare Business Magazine.

Reading glasses have definitely turned the corner from function to fashion. And their solid sales increases attest to that transformation into a fashionable accessory. Though progressive addition lenses (PALs) are a much better visual solution for presbyopes, the simple fact is that most Americans who are baby-boomer age and beyond try readers at some point.

Reading glasses continue their slow but steady growth, increasing in sales by 1.5 percent so far in 2002 compared to 2001. Units are up 3.5 percent this year compared to 2001, according to Sunglass Association of America. And the reason for this growth? Simply put: Aging baby boomers. The majority of boomers have already hit 40 and are now looking toward 50 as their next birthday milestone since a baby boomer turns that age every 7.5 seconds. So presbyopia has most certainly set in by age 45, forcing them to search for some kind of magnifying lens power to help ascertain the fine print. Then there's the group of people who have undergone Lasik surgery and still need glasses to read.

Sun Readers

What are some Bestsellers?
Women want colorful plastic readers that come in cherry reds, burgundies, blues, and rich olive greens. Rectangular laminated plastics that look like the frames news correspondent Ashleigh Banfield wears are also popular. Rimless tinted readers and sunglasses readers have been selling well among women as well.

Among men, metal in gunmetal or bronze colors, as well as rimless and semi-rimless styles sell best. "Men prefer folding metal readers that fit nicely into a tube so they can carry them inside a jacket pocket," says Burns. Readers for men that come in beautifully crafted wood boxes to display on top of a desk are selling well also.

While men like well-crafted wood or metal boxes to house their readers, women prefer necklace chains that coordinate with their readers to hold them around their necks so they can easily access them throughout the day. Women also buy more soft cases over hard cases to store their readers. They like soft cases in bright colorations because they can fit them into smaller handbags more easily than hard cases. And the reason they prefer bright-colored cases is because they can find them more easily inside their handbags.

What's selling equally well among both men and women in readers are the new, plastic three-piece rimless mounts that come in a wide range of frame colors, tinted lenses, and sunglasses.

Women tend to like the more colorful styles with amber or burgundy bridges and temples, while men like the no-color look of crystal bridges and temples--the more unobtrusive the better.

Now, as retailers begin expand their reader selection with more appealing styles, suppliers are starting to recognize another trend in the market. Sun readers.

While sun readers may seem to be a logical evolution of the reader concept, surprisingly it is only now that suppliers are presenting product that offers fashionable reading glasses combined with sun protection.

Although Peter Granoff, president of Ready Reading Glasses Inc., has been manufacturing sun readers since the inception of his reader company ten years ago, he has noted that the market has become more saturated recently.

"Sun readers have always been popular," says Granoff. "However, it is only in the last six months that I have seen more and more manufacturers introducing this type of product to the market."

California Optical has just added sun readers to its collection of calOptix Ready Reader Collection. These great styles for men and women and feature tinted ophthalmic quality power lenses that also offer UV protection. California Sun Readers are retail prices at $39.95

While there is still only a limited amount of product in the market, retailers believe that the potential for sun readers in coming years is significant.

Ruth Long, vice president of sales for Reading Glasses To Go, a reading glass retail chain in Texas and surrounding states, predicts that with the growing popularity of LASIK surgery, more and more people will be in need of sun readers.

"Our business had already grown because of LASIK," says Long. " We have a lot of customers who have had the surgery and as a result they are buying sun readers." Other trends to note is that people are generally more weary of the sun than they were a few years ago. Long attributes this growing awareness of skin damage caused by UV rays as yet another reason sun readers have a strong potential in the optical market.

Granoff predicts that sun readers will be the next "must have" in optical accessories.

"Sun readers are wonderful," Granoff says. "Not only are they convenient because you don't have to change your glasses when you go from indoors to outdoors, but they are fashionable as well. I think we will see a lot more of them in the near future."

Eyestrain caused by extended computer usage
Computer Users

Reprinted from the eyecare industry trade magazine, VISION MONDAY:

PETALUMA, California.- Eyeglass wearers are more prone to symptoms related to Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS), according to a recent survey sponsored by SOLA Optical USA. The survey's results indicate that almost 71 percent of those reporting CVS symptoms wore eyeglasses. Eyeglass wearers also reported more neck, back and eye or vision problems than non-wearers. CVS is a term adopted by the American Optometric Association to describe eye strain, headaches and other problems associated with prolonged computer use.

The results are surprising - one can assume that people who wear glasses already have a vision problem that's been corrected, so they should not be suffering from increased vision problems. This information shows us that eye doctors and patients need to do a better job of factoring in lifestyle when determining vision correction, said James Sheedy, OD, PhD, director of professional development at SOLA Optical and founder and head of the Computer Eye Clinic at the School of Optometry, University of California, Berkeley.

The nature of these vision prescriptions make it more difficult for the wearer to see things close up and at an arm's length, the typical distance from the user to the monitor. Overall, 41 percent of those surveyed report suffering from symptoms related to their computer usage. Additionally, incidence of symptoms increased as time in front of the computer increased: 32 percent of people who spent four to six hours daily in front of the computer reported computer-related symptoms. The number jumps to 45 percent of people who use the computer six to 10 hours a day. HERE'S A TESTIMONIAL FROM A RECENT CUSTOMER ABOUT OUT MULTI-VIEW COMPUTER READING GLASSES:

I just received my PC reading glasses today and they are "Perfect"! I can be looking at the PC and then down at something on my desk without ever losing focus. They are a wonderful product and since I work on a PC all day long they are very helpful. I wear contacts for distance and my ophthalmologist suggested that I get a pair of reading glasses for up close. Those store bought reading lenses just did not satisfy me at all and then I browsed the Internet and found your web site. I have even recommended your site to my ophthalmologist and several of the people I work with. I will be ordering other products from you in the future, as a matter of fact, I just ordered another pair today. Thank you again for making my eyes see clearer.

Susie



And one final FAQ tip: Don’t forget that regular eye exams are crucial to good eye health.

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