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Old 12-06-2013, 09:15 PM   #1
Skinney
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L.L.Bean IS THE BEST STORE I HAVE EVER BOUGHT ANYTHING FROM, HANDS DOWN!

L.L.Bean IS THE BEST STORE I HAVE EVER BOUGHT ANYTHING FROM, HANDS DOWN!!!!! I am an avid hiker (if you don't know this already) and over 11 years have owned only 2 pairs of hiking boots, exclusively L.L.Bean Goretex Mid-Hikers. I burned out the soles of my first pair in 2007 and bought a second pair. My second pair were way past due for retirement (my front soles were literally peeling off, they were tongues!). After a third person told me today that L.L.Bean will replace my boots free of charge due to their 100% satisfaction guarantee, and my ignorance was bliss, I called L.L.Bean to confirm this and they told me to go to Colonie Center and exchange them for a new pair!! I did so and unfortunately the boots I had were discontinued, however they let me exchange them for a similar model. The ones I decided on were $159. L.L.BEAN GAVE ME $110 CREDIT TOWARD THE NEW ONES, THE SAME PRICE I PAID FOR MY SECOND PAIR BACK IN 2007! THEY HAVE A LIFETIME 100% GUARANTEE! I WILL NOT SHOP AT ANY OTHER STORE GOING FORWARD! THEY HAVE TOTALLY TAKEN THE 100% GUARANTEE TO NEW HEIGHTS THAT OTHER COMPANIES SHOULD TAKE INTO ACCOUNT! The only frustrating part for me is that I threw out my first pair this past summer (I was attached to them, lol, they had a lot of memories!) and could have gotten another $100 credit toward my new ones and wouldn't have paid anything for them! My new ones are a new model and I am breaking them in as I post this, they are extremely comfortable and light! THANK YOU L.L.BEAN! Can't wait to break these in on a trail!
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Old 12-06-2013, 10:21 PM   #2
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They do NOT have a lifetime guarantee and they DO have a Loss Prevention Unit.

If you abuse the return policy with repeated returns of obviously very used items they will notice. One return is not going to get you on the hot list but several will.

Actually looking at this position

https://www.lpjobs.com/companyDescri...companyID=1586

I have worked in Loss Prevention there.
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Old 12-07-2013, 12:38 PM   #3
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Okay, regardless of what it is, or is not called, they are a great company and there is no intent of abuse. Please re-read the original thread for verification of so. Thank you.
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Old 12-07-2013, 01:57 PM   #4
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LLBean has a customer satisfaction guarantee. If something fails to perform as you expect, you get your money back. That is different from a lifetime guarantee. For example if your shirt comes apart after 10 washings, that is a customer satisfaction issue. No one expects that to happen. However returning your shirt after 25 years of use is another issue..

At Beans I once had to deal with an AT thru hiker that was losing sizes as he progressed along the trail... all the pants came back well worn. The intent was not to supply him with an elastic wardrobe one pair at a time.

LLB guarantee I do agree is better than REI which has a time limit..
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Old 12-07-2013, 02:36 PM   #5
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The REI time limit is new in 2013 for the exact reason YC describes. People were abusing the 100% satisfaction guarantee by returning used equipment, some years later. The time limit is one year for store items and 30 days for outlet items. There is still no time limit on defective merchandise.

http://seattletimes.com/html/busines...eturnsxml.html
http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/...68991226997928
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Old 12-07-2013, 07:06 PM   #6
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You said yourself that the second pair was way past due for retirement and you'd had them since 2007. Sorry, but I think you abused the policy and that kind of thing will eventually lead to them changing their policy as REI did.
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Old 12-07-2013, 08:05 PM   #7
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Jan, you are 100% correct. I hope Skinney realizes his error, contacts L.L.Bean and pays them what he owes them.
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Old 12-08-2013, 12:06 PM   #8
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You all may share your opinions on here if you may like, however this was not posted for your opinions, it was posted as an fyi for my fellow hikers/outdoors-men. I find it amusing you all want to debate this. Again, you all may want to re-read the original post. I specifically called L.L.Bean and told them VERBATIM the history of the boots and even copied and pasted this post to the L.L.Bean feedback website, if L.L.Bean felt I abused the policy, then all of their customer service representatives, including the ones I met with face to face, could have decided otherwise.

Thank you for all of your opinions.

Scott, Neil and Tim, if you need to lock this thread out, I understand.
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Old 12-30-2013, 04:14 PM   #9
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They may have a great return policy, though they do count on the fact that 95% of people out there will not find it worth their time to make use of it. These days it is essentially a way to make up for the fact that almost 100% of their products are no longer manufactured by LL Bean, but purchased from one of many different factories in China, with LL Bean labels on them. I have seen the quality go way down hill over the years and no longer purchase their products.

Want boots that will really last forever & you won't need a warranty on... try Alico, made in Italy. Toughest boots I've ever owned. Or Scarpa, some, unfortunately, of their boots are still made in Italy.

I had a pair of LL Bean GTX Mids I bought in 2002 & they were decent, not great, but decent boots. Wasn't happy about having to glue the soles back on after only a few years of only occasional use.
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Old 12-30-2013, 05:50 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JerseyHighlander View Post
They may have a great return policy, though they do count on the fact that 95% of people out there will not find it worth their time to make use of it. These days it is essentially a way to make up for the fact that almost 100% of their products are no longer manufactured by LL Bean, but purchased from one of many different factories in China, with LL Bean labels on them

Statement sources? Brunswick Maine (where their Bean Boots and variations of are made) is now in China?

I did a little research and this page is all the LLBean US made products



http://www.llbean.com/llb/shop/50899...ield=Relevance

Now lots of clothing IS made overseas but China is minor

http://www.pressherald.com/news/bean...l?pagenum=full

BTW the largest LLBean store is in Japan. I don't know which of the several though

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/L.L.Bean
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Old 01-03-2014, 10:43 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yellowcanoe View Post
Statement sources? Brunswick Maine (where their Bean Boots and variations of are made) is now in China?

I did a little research and this page is all the LLBean US made products



http://www.llbean.com/llb/shop/50899...ield=Relevance

Now lots of clothing IS made overseas but China is minor

http://www.pressherald.com/news/bean...l?pagenum=full

BTW the largest LLBean store is in Japan. I don't know which of the several though

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/L.L.Bean
Well, maybe my comment was a little broad and over generalized but I did say "almost 100%" I'll chalk it up to holiday grumpyness & a bad case of Wilderness Deficiency Syndrome..
Though your link shows several hundred products manufactured, to some degree, in the US, and there is always legal loophole trickery in that labeling as well, I think that accounts for a small number of their total product volume. I have several items within easy reach that family have given me as gifts, bearing the LL Bean label and a label saying Made in China, and some Made in Thailand.
China being a minor part of it now is in some ways good but also belies the never ending corporate drive for; cheaper, cheaper, cheaper... As the article you linked states. "Many retailers have moved their manufacturing to developing countries like Bangladesh as labor costs in China have risen in recent years."
Bean was a company that was born, raised & grew strong in the US. To some it is a symbol of US & Maine pride. By sending their manufacturing overseas, China or wherever is currently closest to slave labor, to me, they demonstrate a mentality driven by profits, not quality. Even beyond the labor issues, most of these countries operate so much cheaper because they have no environmental standards at all and that really doesn't sit well with me. Remember when it was like that here, when we were "developing" & GE poisoned nearly the entire Hudson River. I dive the Atlantic off the NY/Jersey coast, there are still vast, lifeless wastelands out there from decades of ocean dumping.
I won't claim to know everything about the company & fact be known, I did actually buy my father in law a pair of Bean Boots for xmas last year when I checked & found out they were still made in the US. I also have a few electronic items here that don't work worth a dam & wish it was worth my time to send the junk back.
Even with manufacturing here, as again stated in the article you linked, "We continue to seek domestic sourcing opportunities for products that can be made at comparable cost and quality,", the products aren't actually made by LL Bean, just "outsourced", something corporate management does to increase profits and make investors happy.
I just try to support the smaller, family run operations, even when they are overseas, but preferably in countries that operate ethically.

Do you have some connection to Bean? Not taking a jab here, honestly, just curious.
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Old 01-04-2014, 12:46 PM   #12
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Like many things, it not the Bean it used to be.

Scarpa, LaSportiva, Asolo, and to some degree Solomon all still make good outdoor footwear.

I personally wouldn't get a pair of hiking boots from Bean if it was them paying me. About the only thing I would consider buying there might be some clothing. Slacks and cords, not hiking clothes.

There are plenty of other companies with the same or better return policies. Osprey packs, Patagonia, and Mountain Hardwear all come readily to mind.
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Old 01-04-2014, 01:39 PM   #13
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I can't speak for Scarpa and LaSportiva but Asolo is not what it used to be either.

Salomon is OK I guess. My wife likes hers. I doubt they'd work for me though.

Boot manufacturers make a lot of claims on how their boots are better and lighter, but I don't really see the results. It may be my feet are just way worse now, but I've not had a real comfortable, durable boot since the 90's.
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Old 01-04-2014, 02:23 PM   #14
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Re: L.L.Bean IS THE BEST STORE I HAVE EVER BOUGHT ANYTHING FROM, HANDS DOWN!

Quote:
Originally Posted by l'oiseau View Post
I can't speak for Scarpa and LaSportiva but Asolo is not what it used to be either.

Salomon is OK I guess. My wife likes hers. I doubt they'd work for me though.

Boot manufacturers make a lot of claims on how their boots are better and lighter, but I don't really see the results. It may be my feet are just way worse now, but I've not had a real comfortable, durable boot since the 90's.
Good to know about the Asolo slide in quality. Being a Scarpa guy, I probably would not have bought them anyway.

Garmont is another possibility I forgot to mention.

I fully agree about the decline in boot quality since the 90's. I will never own another pair of Merrill or Montrail as a result. They just fall apart on me. That being said, they are probably fine for a lot of folks. I have to remember most folks don't do the stuff I do, and would likely not need the type of gear that I use.
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Old 01-04-2014, 10:45 PM   #15
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It's all a matter of personal preference & experience. I have a pair of LLBean Cresta boots that have served me well over the years, including some pretty off the beaten path adventures in Denali.

My trail running shoes are Montrail Masochists & I really like them. They've held up very well in some pretty nasty trail run conditions.

I haven't had any positive experiences with Merrell products. They rip, tear, and just seem to have poor quality.
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Old 01-06-2014, 08:29 PM   #16
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I've owned several hiking and camping products from LL Bean over the years and found most all to be of very good quality. A few items that didn't live up to expectations or had issues, LL Bean replaced them without any question. I've also owned a pair of the LL Bean Cresta leather Gore-Tex hiking boots and they've been exceptional...good grip, never had any blisters, and the soles and stitching has held up and still going strong after two+ 46R rounds and countless other climbs / 13+ years. I'd buy additional LL Bean products without any hesitation.

My understanding of the Bean warranty is that as long as the product has "useful life left", they'd honor the warranty if you're not satisfied with the product. If you got your worth out of the product and it's fully worn out, then not.
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Old 01-06-2014, 09:18 PM   #17
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Bean is great. The stuff might not be "stylish", but i have lots of bean stuff that has outlasted a lot of other brands. I've only had to use the returns once or twice, but never had a problem with it. I don't get all my stuff from them, mostly cause i love getting thigs on sale, but i really like most of what i've gotten fro them .
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Old 01-08-2014, 10:33 AM   #18
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Have been reading the different posts on the subject of LL Bean's customer service. Although, I agree it is a great policy, I am conscious of the effect the Return policy has on the environment. I know that some of the more wearable stuff ends up in their Employee's store, more of it ends up in landfills.
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Old 01-16-2014, 07:05 PM   #19
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-1 to the Merrell's. Had a pair that got wet and they shrunk up to the point I couldn't wear them. Called CS and they pretty much told me I was SOL. So I bought a pair of Keen's that have held up to daily wear and light hiking for the last 4 yrs. No issues
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Old 01-17-2014, 12:29 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hike53 View Post
Have been reading the different posts on the subject of LL Bean's customer service. Although, I agree it is a great policy, I am conscious of the effect the Return policy has on the environment. I know that some of the more wearable stuff ends up in their Employee's store, more of it ends up in landfills.
All of it, everything, including us, ends up in the landfill. Unless you have figured out a way to take it with you to the other side. ;0)

Someday they will mine landfills.
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