Solar eclipse glasses are now hard to find at stores and sellers are hiking the price on the Internet. 5 On Your Side spotted one pair of glasses selling for $200 on Craigslist Friday. It's been a quick way for some local people to make some extra cash this week.
Some sellers say they've gotten criticism. People are complaining about the high prices for cheap glasses. They say it's unfair. However, Ryan Frenette can tell you firsthand that people are buying the glasses anyway.
It was a mad rush from one post office to the next Friday evening as Frenette and his girlfriend, Amanda Davied, tried to beat the cutoff time for sending mail.
"We have not slept in two days," Frenette said.
Hundreds of eclipse glasses are inside their envelopes. Distributors for major retail chains have sold the couple the glasses. Frenette and Davied posted them for sale on eBay, Craigslist, and Facebook. Customers from across the country have placed orders.
"We put about a thousand bucks in and I think we made about $5,200 so far," Frenette said.
That's a $4,000 profit in under three days.
"They're in such high demand that people will come to me off the street," Frenette said.
It happened as 5 On Your Side recorded this story. Frenette sold a California man three pair of glasses for $15 apiece. Meanwhile, medical student Lucas Thomas is charging up to $40 per pair.
"I thought, I could give these to my friends, but maybe there's a little bit of money to be made," Thomas said. "I put up a listing on Craig's List and Facebook as well."
He bought his supply for under $2 each at Lowe's.
"I've got the receipt here with me," Thomas said. "I spent $42.91 total. I didn't count it up yet but I'd estimate it's well over $500."
Frenette says the last day for one-day shipping is Saturday, but for these last couple days before the eclipse, he and his girlfriend plan to focus on in-person deliveries.