Buying prescription glasses online

Now that I am on a fixed income since my retirement, I have started looking for ways to cut back on expenses. So when I noticed how scratched my glasses were, I figured I’d get a new pair, before the inevitable headaches began.

I considered the possibility of  just using the same frames and getting new lenses and using a local eyeglass store, but having all the options I wanted was still going to cost me a a pretty penny.  Besides, I wanted a more up to date style frame.

My ophthalmologist* said my prescription hadn’t changed, and he gave me a prescription to get filled.  One thing I found out, is that if you’re going to order online, you need to know you PD or pupillary distance. Usually the optometrist at the store measures for this, but your doctor can do it just as well… it might even be in your file already!

*(Before retiring, my occupation was/[is?] as a photographer and photo editor. I never take chances with my eyes. I have them examined by my eye doctor yearly.)

I did a great deal of research before placing an order, and I found I could get two pair of glasses for less that the price of one, if I was willing to do the footwork.  In the past, getting glasses with all the options like thin lenses, scratch resistent, anti-glare etc., cost close to or over $500 at a local national chain.

There are one or two things I might have done differently, but I’m totally happy with the glasses I got, and will stay with online purchasing now that I know what I’m doing.  The first thing you’ll need to do, is

measure your present glasses (especially, if you like the way they fit).

Of the online stores I visited, all measurement settings are in millimeters.  Don’t have a millimeter ruler, use one the online converters to change from inches to millimeters. The store I found most helpful (telephone contact is encouraged and I took advantage of their toll free service)  was Zenni Optical.  I should state right here, that I have no affiliation with them in any way.  All glasses come (at no extra charge) with full UV protection, anti-scratch coating, a hard case and microfiber cleaning cloth.  Their web site leaves a little to be desired in terms of design, but it’s easy enough to get around in.

These are the ones I spent the most money on.  The frames were only $12.95.  As most glass wearers know, the bulk of the price comes from the options. The most expensive of which was Transitions® lenses ($139.00).  I also got Anti-Reflection coating ($4.95) which is great for keeping glare down, especially at night.  The total … $156.90 (including the approximately $5 shipping charge.  I got a second pair without the TransitGlasses with shadesions®, but with everything else, and with clip-on shades for a total of about $52.  As I said, I was very happy with the telephone help prior to my purchase.  I had a lot of questions about the measurements and how to make them.  Oh, I forgot to mention that delivery was very fast for me… a little less than a week

Clip on polarized shades
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2 thoughts on “Buying prescription glasses online”

  1. I wish I had seen this a while back. I got some new glasses locally about a year and a half ago. The lenses are laminated and the top layer began to come off. Stoopid me didn’t realize that was happening, I was thinking my frugalness got me glasses that were pretty, but really hard to clean. Yeah, I don’t see so pretty good. 😉

    My complaints were heard and the company finally replaced the lenses. But I will never go back to them. And now that I see the price you paid, I am feeling just a little ripped off. I paid more for one pair than you did for 2 – and you got more options.

    Found your WP blog after you left a nice comment on my 1FootInTheGrave.com blog. Looks like we may both have an addiction to blogs and neither of us has time to keep them updated regularly. Too busy setting up new blogs. hahaha

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