100% Money Back Guarantee* with Easy, Fair, Free Returns & Exchanges within 30 Days
"Thank you. You have excellent customer service - and pretty dresses too!"
Emy - Customer in a reply to their Refund Notification E-Mail
There are lots of reasons for returns and exchanges and we want to make the process as easy as possible and fair too. We try to provide as many pictures as we can and add a great product description to make your buying as easy as possible. Sometimes a dress just needs to be returned and we understand that. Our goal is to be fair with refunds and exchanges.
Truthfully, no reason is needed for a return. We only ask the reason for returning or exchanging because it helps us to know what we can do to prevent future returns (sometimes a minor change to the dress description or a new photo is all that is needed).
Some Reasons for Returns/Exchanges:
- Wedding was canceled
- Color does not match our wedding color
- It's too short
- The bride wanted something shorter
- It's too large
- It's too small
- Our flower girl grew since we ordered
- It's the wrong shade of Champagne
- It's the wrong shade of Yellow
- It's the wrong shade of Sage
- We ordered too many (happens with school orders sometimes)
- We bought two sizes because I was not sure which one would fit
- It's too girly
- It's too grown up
Just place a new order and we will refund the original dress with your original shipping, when we receive the return dress. An RMA number is needed for any returned dress. This enables us to get you the right dress faster, and makes our process work so much smoother.
Easy Fair Return Process:
- Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org within 30 days of our shipment and indicate your request for an RMA # (Return Merchandise Authorization #). Be sure to include your order number and which non damaged item(s) is/are being returned. If you return an item without an RMA, we may add a charge of $10. Calling is OK for returns, but often takes more of your time. The easiest way is to reply on the order confirmation email we sent and just rename the subject line.
- For items that were received damaged, please contact us within 5 days of receipt. Two people check all dresses before shipment and sign the invoice they checked. We will send you out a new replacement dress (same size, color, and style), with a return shipping label (US Only), since it's our fault. Sending a photo of the defect and putting a sticker showing where the defect is very much appreciated, but please, do not pin a note, since the pin may cause a hole that damages the dress. However, a spaghetti stain on a dress is not a believable defect that my shipping department missed. :)
- Size Guarantee - If you contacted us and provided measurements, and the dress is the wrong size based on our advice (and there will be notes on your order), we will also provide a return shipping label (US Only).
- We will then email you an RMA # along with return instructions.
- Within 5 days please send back the dress you're returning or exchanging with your invoice and a note indicating the reason for the return/exchange. Please ship it in a box! If you requested the RMA on day 30, we need to have the dress back by day 35. Any later than this, we may refuse the dress, or give store credit instead.
- Mark the outside of the dress box with the RMA #. We may refuse boxes without an RMA # on the outside.
- All refunds are done by the same method of your original payment if done within 30 days of the order date. For Gift Purchases, a store credit will be issued. If the person returning it is different than the buyer, we still need to send the refund back to the original purchaser. For exchanges, we make an exception; we will refund the new order when we get back the original dress that was ordered as a gift. Unfortunately we can't refund any customs fees. Hopefully you can request that from the customs service for your country.
- Our goal is to process returns as quickly as possible and to be fair, but please give us 2-5 days after we have received the dress to process your refund (we are working on shortening this time period).
- We email the customer once the return has been processed with the amount of the refund.
Here is our Return Address:
PO Box 8266
Rowland Heights, CA 91748
Being Fair - Details:
- Customer will need to pay the return shipping, unless it is a manufacturing defect or our mistake* If it's our
fault/manufacturing defect, we will pay the return shipping (US Only), but the
customer must agree to exchange the dress - yes, there are a couple of stories
- For exchanges, please place a new order and we will refund you the original shipping for the dress that is being returned once we receive it. Note: This does not apply to Express Shipping. Overseas orders are case by case.
- Custom and duty fees are not refundable by us. We have no control over these charges.
- All returns need to be
shipped to us in a box (Yes, there is story behind this). The Post Office provides free Boxes for Priority
Mail. If you need to use UPS or FedEx, please contact us for a physical address, since they do not deliver to a PO Box. USPS is usually the lowest cost method for shipping. Flat rate boxes for priority mail for returning multiple dresses are a good deal. USPS is very good with Priority Mail for delivering, so I don't recommend insurance (unless the value of the returned dresses are over $100). Delivery confirmation is an extra 50 cents. If you print your postage online this is included. If you're shipping via FedEx or UPS, please contact us for our warehouse address.
- Return items sent after 30
days of our shipment will not be accepted/refunded, or if we accept it, we can give you store credit, or there may be a 20% restocking fee. It's not fair to us for a customer to ask for a return after 100 days. Our credit card processor only allows refunds for a certain number of days after the initial sale. Also, the dress season could be over, so we won't be able to sell the returned dresses for another year. For example, if the dresses were for the Holiday Season.
- Items without an RMA # marked on the outside may be marked "refused" at the Post Office and returned to the customer. Or if we accept it, a $10 charge may be added.
- Merchandise must be in
unworn, undamaged, resalable condition with all original tags attached. All
items are thoroughly inspected for any sign of being worn including, but not limited to: smoke, odor, pet hair, picks/runs in the fabric, stains, tears, perfume scent, etc. - and yes, we have some interesting stories :-) It's
sad, but some customers remove the tags so they can use the dress, and
then return the dress for a refund, which is not fair to my business. We may return the items and ask you to pay shipping, charge an extra restocking fee (20%), offer store credit, or offer a partial refund if the returned items do not meet the requirements stated. My goal is to be fair with returns for both the customer and my business.
- Parts or pieces of dresses
(such as sashes and flowers) cannot be returned for credit or refund. They may
be exchanged within our 30-day policy for a one-time exchange only.
Headpieces, tiaras, tights, or accessories that have been opened cannot be
accepted for returns.
- If over $200 worth of products is returned, there may be a 15% restocking fee (translation - we may charge a 15% restocking fee to cover our costs, if for example, you ordered 10 dresses with free shipping and return 9 of them without a good reason, we would lose money. If we lose too much money, we would go out of business). If a customer places multiple orders and returns them within 30 days, the total of these orders will be used to calculate the restocking fee. And yes,there are some stories behind this, unfortunately. There is a shipping packaging cost, credit card fee, refund credit card fee, and labor costs for checking each returned dress and processing the returns. 15% is fair and covers all these hidden costs.
reserve the right to refuse service / sales to some challenging
customers (for example, if a transaction appears to be fraudulent, we
will cancel the order and issue a refund).
- We reserve the right to
refuse returned merchandise that does not conform to the above
conditions and the customer shoulders all shipping fees incurred.
guarantee the lowest prices on all of our items and are able to maintain these
competitive prices because of the way we handle returns. Our policies are
in place to protect and ensure you receive a gorgeous dress at great savings
that you cannot find at your local store.
Our goal is easy, fair returns for a win-win relationship with our customers!
The above policy is subject to change without further notice.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you feel about people who are a bit dishonest in returns and take advantage of your very nice return policy?I am very lucky that the super majority of my customers are super honest, and they are a pleasure to deal with. With the few others, we do our best balancing great customer service, and not being taken advantage of. Sometimes it's a very hard balance to keep. Out of 20,000+ customers, I have had less than a handful of returns that have been questionable. Yes, I know some people have the attitude that it's a store's fault for having a nice return policy, but I was not brought up this way. To me, taking advantage of a store is the same as stealing, and one of the 10 Commandments is, Thou Shall Not Steal. And with my small business, it's like stealing from me personally.
Is your refund policy too long?
My goal is to have a fair return process, unfortunately some customers take advantage of my return policy, which is very sad. Elitedresses is my business, and to stay in business I do need to make some money or why am I in business? Because of returns that bother me, the return policy gets updated. Behind every change is a story :-)
Return Shipping - Why not offer it?
My goal is to be fair. Currently the customer pays this, unless it's our fault, and the usual cost is between $6 to $11, depending on distance and the dress. I am thinking of changing this and paying for return shipping, but then I would need to raise my prices a bit. My concern is customers would just order a huge amount with free shipping, and then return everything with free return shipping. Unfortunately, shipping is not free for me.
For a $300 order, I would be out, including credit card fees and not counting labor, at least $30. With losing money on too many orders, it's a quick way to go out of business. And if I raise my prices to offer free shipping, then it's not fair to the people who don't use return shipping. What I have tried to do is go half way on the shipping issue, where if the customer gets a dress that is the wrong size, they can place another order and I'll refund the original shipping. Other businesses do offer free return shipping, but what I have seen is their prices are a lot higher, or they have a lot of exceptions. Read the online reviews about their business. Return shipping is something I am definitely thinking about. My goal is to have a fair return/exchange policy, where I am not losing money.
Refunds to your credit card take 2-20 days (depends on your bank/credit card company). I have no idea why it can take banks so long to process a refund, but they are so quick to process your payment. Debit cards also have a waiting time on how long the refund takes, and it varies depending on your bank.
What does RMA Mean?
RMA = Return Merchandise Authorization. It's a term used in business.
Exchanges - Why do I need to place a new order immediately?
Some customers want to wait until their dress is returned, and then have a dress sent out. The easiest and fastest way is to order another dress, and send back the one you have
for a refund. It reduces possible problems and makes shipment a lot
faster with our current system. Having customers call and ask for several days in a row, "Have you got my dress back yet? How soon can you ship out the new dress? I need it right away, so can you hurry?" just drove us crazy. By refunding the original shipping when we got the order back, seemed to take care of a major hidden issue where customers did not want to have to pay shipping twice.
What was your most uncomfortable return?
When a customer told me the reason for the return was the wedding was canceled. I had no idea if I should offer sympathy or congratulations, so I felt like I was walking on eggshells with them.
Why do you not usually charge shipping when a customer got free shipping and returns everything?
I changed my policy on this after the customer who returned due to the wedding being canceled, and I also did a survey of customers. Yes, shipping costs, so I lost money on this order, but since about 20% of customers don't expect a charge, the 20% won. It's another one of these hard decisions as I wrestle with being fair to the customer, as well as to my business.
What was your most positive return?
A customer attached a note to the box, saying please open carefully, beautiful dresses inside. I took a picture of it. Everyone in the office loved the note!
Do you make changes based on returns?
Yes! One of my goals is to reduce returns, and returns are an invaluable source of information that helps us learn and make improvements. Often a simple fix is all that is needed. So please let us know why you are returning an item! There are some items I no longer carry due to return issues.