Saturday, October 9, 2010

Frugal Eyeglass Experiment.... Would Online Glasses be as good as the ones at Eyeglass Stores??

Well, My daughter was saying she was having trouble seeing and my husband's glasses were scratched and he has been complaining for some time about getting new ones. I called my insurance to find out that they don't cover much when it came to eye care, so I had to find a way to save some money.

First of all, I called 3 different optical places. The first said that they charge over $180 for an full eye exam and they didn't do any basic type eye exam.  The second place said $59 for the basic eye exam and $89 for a full eye exam. The third place said $49 for a basic eye exam and $66 for a full eye exam. So, we discussed having the entire families eyes examined.  My husband, since he hasn't had his eyes looked in 4 years, got the $66 dollar exam, the rest of us got the $49 basic.

We found out that my son didn't need glasses, my eyes changed only slightly, my daughter did need her first pair of glasses and my husband's eyes changed dramatically.  So I started asking about the cost of glasses. WHOA!! The costs were high! They quoted me about $170 for my daughter to have a basic cheap pair of frames with lens and my husband would be between $500 and $775 due to his bifocals.  I was stunned! So, I paid for the exams, asked for the prescriptions, and copies of the exam reports. $211 out of pocket for the exams and came home to do some research.  I found some great online discount sites for glasses.

The first site had great prices and a great selection. We checked out a few more, like and then found this site, .  We decided to take the risk and buy from these places to see if they would be just as good as going to Lenscrafters or  Stein Optical?  My concerns were that we didn't know if they would be good quality or if they would be made right. It's not like you can try them on or have them adjsted.

We orders a pair of rimless no line bifocals for my husband. The pair we picked for him shipped were $47.47 shipped. They even came with magnetic attaching sun glasses! The glasses were very similar to the pair he liked at Lenscrafters.

We then ordered my daughter a pair from Zenni Optical. She had seen a pair of cute pink glasses at one of the mall stores and I wasn't going to pay the $170 that they told me it would cost. So, on Zenni, she found these We ordered those for her, They came to $37.90 shipped.

Ordering was pretty simple and easy, even for my husband's bifocals. The only thing we wish we would have done at the eye doctors is ask for the Pupil Distance (PD) because we had to do that here at home and weren't sure we would get it accurate. (Thankfully we did!) Other than that, everything we needed was on our prescription! Pupil Distance is the measurement between the middle of your eyes. We had to do this at home, which took some practice.

Well, this past week both pairs of glasses arrived. I was very impressed! Both glasses looked great on my husband and my daughter. My husband said that he hasn't seen this clearly in years. My daughters frames are very nice, and they don't look cheap. We did have to adjust the arms on my daughters glasses just a bit, but they are very nice on her! The shipping wasn't too costly. Each pair came with a plastic case and cleaning cloth.

The upside is we saved ALOT of money on frames and lens. They look great and both my husband and my daughter are very happy with the quality and look.

The down side is that it takes 3 weeks to get, but for that amount of money saved, it's worth it! My husbands glasses cost under $50. The mall store quoted me  $500 to $700. So, I could buy 10 to 14 pairs of online glasses to spend as much as the mall!!! Whew!!

So, if you have to buy glasses, consider buying online. It was pretty easy to do and saved my family a lot of money!

1 comment:

Nick, Amber & Aaron said...

My mom and sister have both ordered online from Zenni Optical. They ordered 3-5 pairs that they liked online, and then decided after their arrival which one(s) they wanted to use as their primary pair once they had a chance to try them on and get them adjusted. Generally any optical place will adjust your glasses for free (I go into Lens Crafters or wal Mart every few months for a free adjustment). I haven't yet ordered online myself b/c I haven't needed to, but intend to when the time comes. I know my family has been satisfied with the quality and price. I'm glad you discovered it as well!

Frugalmommie as been on WITI FoxNews6 Television Milwaukee, WTMJ620 Radio, Several local newspapers, The Wisconsin State Journal, and is in a feature article in All You Magazine in the April 2009 edition.