I currently have an order in with theaterseatstore.com and so far it has been a very frustrating experience. I have read a few different reviews on here with a split of very good and very bad experiences. I wanted to share my experience so far in case anyone else is in the market for theater seats and deciding what and where to purchase. Was also wondering if anyone else has had similar experiences and how you ended up handling it and if anyone has the seats I have on order and how well you like them.
I decided to go with the Lane 222 End Zone seating. I was able to see these at a local merchant and liked the idea of ordering something I had actually been able to sit in. The seats themselves felt comfortable when I was able to try them out and I liked the motorized recline, lighted cup holders, tray tables, and in seat storage.
DECEMBER 14: I found a good price on the top grain leather version at theaterseatstore.com and placed an order for 6 of them (2 rows of 3 each) on December 14, 2012. These were advertised as "quick ship" and "delivers in 10-21 business days". This would have them to me no later than January 14 and plenty of time to set everything up for a birthday event and Superbowl.
JANUARY 9: Somewhere around January 9th I chatted support to ask about delivery. I explained that I knew the delivery date had not expired but that I hadn't heard from the shipping company yet about setting up delivery and wanted to check on the status of my order. The rep at theaterseatstore.com was very friendly and professional, contacted Lane, then sent me an e-mail explaining that they actually would not be shipping until January 16th as Lane was a bit backed up from the Holidays.
JANUARY 17: On January 17th I sent an e-mail back to the service rep asking if my order had shipped and also sent in a chat inquiry but chat was offline (which was my fault, I hadn't reviewed the chat hours). I didn't get a response to my e-mail but another service rep contacted me stating she had seen my "off-line" chat inquiry, apologized for the delay, and stated my seats would now ship January 30th as Lane was still getting caught up on orders.
JANUARY 19: It wasn't sitting well with me that at this point my shipping date has been pushed back twice and any communication regarding the status of my order has been initiated by me. On January 19th I contacted support again. Once again the service rep was very friendly. I stated that I had concerns my order had been pushed back twice, I had concerns that it would get pushed back again, and if everything goes smoothly from this point at best my seats would be about a month late on a "quick ship" item by the time transit was figured in. I explained that the service reps I have spoke to have been very friendly and that theaterseatstore.com has been fine to deal with but if the problem is the vendor they needed to stand behind the vendors they offer. I explained that I felt my order should be expedited to ensure a quick delivery or I felt I should be given an equal or better item at the same price that they knew they could ship to me right away. This was a Saturday and "Rob" explained to me he would take care of it personally on Monday and would call or have someone else call me to see what they could do for me. I didn't hear anything back on Monday but gave the benefit of the doubt as it was a Holiday. Still nothing on Tuesday, writing this on Wednesday.
My verdict is still out with this company pending how this turns out but I am far from happy at this point. Shipping is very late and I haven't even gotten to the point of seeing how the shipping company does. So far the people have been extremely friendly but the company has under-delivered on its promises. As I am waiting on this item, and expect it about a month late, the web site still list these seats as "fast ship", "delivered in 10-21 business days", "$*** price only while stocks last".
Has anyone else had a similar experience? I would cancel my order but I have already invested a lot of "wait time" on these seats and don't want to start a similar process over again with another company that will do the same thing. As of now I figure I need to wait it out until the January 30th date and see if shipping gets pushed back again and then figure out what to do. I know a lot of people have had good experiences with this company but wanted to state my experiences for anyone researching a new purchase.
January 23 Update: I have still not received my Lane 222 End Zone seating but I did receive an e-mail (he actually tried to call but I have been out of town all day) from Chris Fawcett, Customer Service Director, apologizing for the delay. He has changed my shipping to FedEx Freight Priority and included a stain protection plan. The apology he gave seems sincere and though I obviously am not happy my order is arriving so late I appreciate that someone is actually acting on my behalf now. The people I have had communications with at theaterseatstore have all been friendly and professional, and while I understand mistakes and delays do happen the lack of communication has probably been their biggest weakness (why should a customer have to initiate the communication when there is a problem with shipping dates?). I believe most of my shipping issues have been due to Lane Furniture but as a retailer you have to stand behind the actions of your suppliers. I feel much better about this situation now than when I originally posted this earlier today, and appreciate the communication and action being taken by Chris to try and make things right with me. Will try to update this post to let everyone know how this turns out and also about how well I like the seats. I am guessing a lot of people who are viewing this are trying to research a new purchase and I know I valued all the reviews I could find when I started this process.
Feb. 8 Update: I'm a bit behind on my update but I did receive my seats on January, 28. They arrived at my local FedEx Freight warehouse almost immediately (Saturday Jan. 26) but they were not going to be able to deliver until the following Thursday so I elected to take a truck and trailer and pick them up at the warehouse on Monday. Chris Fawcett came through on his word that I would have them before Super Bowl. While I would definitely say this was a very frustrating experience over all I do appreciate Chris for doing the right thing and trying to make it better.
The seats arrived in good shape and I am very happy with them so far. As a heads up to anyone who orders these (or any seats this large) be prepared to work with them a bit to get them through the door and into your house. They came fully assembled and are large and heavy, which I love, but it does make them a little difficult to maneuver through a door way. Easiest way I found was to unbox them outside lay them sideways onto a 4 wheel furniture mover and caddy corner them in. Also, my seats looked like they should "attach" to each other as the unfinished sides have a type of "flap". Turns out they actually just sit side by side with nothing physically attaching them (though they look like a single unit after setting up this way). Very happy with them over all and will try to post pictures later.