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That much more worth it to buy prescription eye glasses from a place like Lenscrafters or Costco optical vs Online?

executivedealer 2,837 491 February 5, 2014 at 06:04 PM
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I've already had an eye examination done about 2 months ago. Need to get my current glasses replaced asap and was wondering if anyone could provide insight on the cost / quality factor for places like Lenscrafters, Sears Optical, Costco Optical, vs your typical online eyewear shops like Coastal.com where they practically give out free eye glasses with a verified prescription.

Is Lenscrafters that much better than a place like Costco optical to buy eye glasses?

I'm going to need something that's mainly going to give me the protection I need from being on the computer for too long at a time, other things like anti-glare and transitions not entirely necessary but would be good to have if I got a good deal on it.

Also, do not have insurance.

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Joined Sep 2005
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#2
I don't have any personal experience with any of the places you mentioned, but for the best deal on glasses (starting at $6.95 for prescription glasses), check out Zenni Optical [zennioptical.com] and Goggles4u [goggles4u.com].
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Joined Nov 2006
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#3
Quote from executivedealer View Post :
I've already had an eye examination done about 2 months ago. Need to get my current glasses replaced asap and was wondering if anyone could provide insight on the cost / quality factor for places like Lenscrafters, Sears Optical, Costco Optical, vs your typical online eyewear shops like Coastal.com where they practically give out free eye glasses with a verified prescription.

Is Lenscrafters that much better than a place like Costco optical to buy eye glasses?

I'm going to need something that's mainly going to give me the protection I need from being on the computer for too long at a time, other things like anti-glare and transitions not entirely necessary but would be good to have if I got a good deal on it.

Also, do not have insurance.
No. In my wife's experience (I don't wear glasses), the only difference has been selection. Obviously, when you're online, you can't try them on, which is why she's always bought B&M.
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#4
Quote from executivedealer View Post :
I've already had an eye examination done about 2 months ago. Need to get my current glasses replaced asap and was wondering if anyone could provide insight on the cost / quality factor for places like Lenscrafters, Sears Optical, Costco Optical, vs your typical online eyewear shops like Coastal.com where they practically give out free eye glasses with a verified prescription.

Is Lenscrafters that much better than a place like Costco optical to buy eye glasses?

I'm going to need something that's mainly going to give me the protection I need from being on the computer for too long at a time, other things like anti-glare and transitions not entirely necessary but would be good to have if I got a good deal on it.

Also, do not have insurance.
I've been buying online for years and I'll never go back to buying at a B&M. As I type this, I'm wearing glasses from Coastal. I've bought LOTS of glasses from Goggles4u, a couple pairs from Zenni, and a couple pairs from Coastal. Coastal's "First Pair Free" comes out about the same price as Zenni and Goggles4u. I have been happiest with Coastal and Goggles4u, but plenty of people also have great things to say about Zenni -- I just didn't like those as much. Out of probably 25 pairs between my better half and I, we've only had 2 from Goggles4u that seemed like they might not be the right prescription or something. We had bought several pairs each and didn't really care since they were so cheap. We used to pay $80 a pair from an eye doctor -- now we pay $10-13 a pair. We can buy 4 or 5 pairs and still be ahead.

Some sites allow you to upload a picture so you can see the glasses on your face, but pay attention to the frame measurements so you can get something that's wide and tall enough for you (measure your current glasses if you have some for comparison). Like I said, I've always been pretty happy.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it. Good luck. Oh -- it usually takes 7 to 14 days to get the glasses depending on the site.
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Quote from patrolTX View Post :
Is the deal dead? I've read all 2000 pages and saw over 100 post that said it was dead but I'm still not sure? What zip code should I use? Maybe someone could just do it for me and I'll pay you back when I pick it up? This internet stuff is hard.

Is anyone willing to donate one to me? I'm not poor or anything. I just don't like spending money and I'm bummed that I missed out on this deal so it would really help my self-confidence if someone else would just give one to me. kthanxbi
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#5
Zenni Optical has select prescription eyeglass frames for $7 + $5 shipping
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#6
I've been buying my glasses from eyebuydirect.com and can't imagine buying them from a store again. I have coworkers and friends who complain about how much glasses cost - and I just got three more pairs for $20 shipped, just because I wanted some new colors. I'm also constantly getting compliments on them, and I don't stress out about breaking them (though I haven't had a pair break in the three years I've been buying from them).
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#7
So you guys / gals were able to get all the extra stuff like anti-glare, transitions, protection from long computer usage under 50-60 bucks? I wonder why the markup is so high at some of these places.
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#8
Quote from executivedealer View Post :
So you guys / gals were able to get all the extra stuff like anti-glare, transitions, protection from long computer usage under 50-60 bucks? I wonder why the markup is so high at some of these places.

I'm also interested if you can get all those extras for that much.
This should help though: http://www.cbsnews.com/videos/sti...-50132676/
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#9
First off for the most part a Lens is a Lens (except progressives where it matters what you buy)
Frames do vary in quality and style.

The other factors are measurements, Rx and preciseness of the fabrication.

If your prescription is fairly simple chances are you will get a good result from just about anywhere with the main difference being the frame and the cost.

If your prescription is more complex, or stronger then you would likely be better off going to a B&M location with an Optician that can take accurate measurements also those locations usually do a better job of verifying the Rx plus they do re-makes or Rx changes also.

Online stores I cannot comment on personally I would be somewhat leery

As for B&M .Lenscrafters will cost a lot however frame choices are excellent and they do stand behind the product just be prepared for sticker shock.

Costco will be cheaper and pretty close to Lenscrafters in terms of fabrication, difference is less in frame choice some discontinued styles

As for computer lenses I would highly recommend Anti-reflective.

Hope that helps.

I used to be an Optician and worked in the Industry 18 years
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Last edited by boltman2007 February 5, 2014 at 10:36 PM.
#10
I have been buying glasses from zenni for 7 years and have mostly good experiences. I also had a good experience with goggles4u the one time I ordered from them.

When I had a 3 year old in glasses from the optician they would break every month or so. While they were repaired free under warranty, it required 2 trips to the optician and a week without glasses for the parts to come in to fix them. Then I switched to zenni. We still had frames break frequently, but you can buy extra frames and switch out lenses. When one pair would break, I would just pull a new pair out of the closet. It was so much easier, and even though there was no warranty, the overall cost was still a little less.

Now that my kids are older and not breaking glasses a lot, buying online saves me more money. I did have one experience with the prescription being wrong. I sent them back and zenni sent me a new pair that was correct.

There are problems with ordering online.
1. You can't try on the glasses before buying. If you measure your current glasses, you can get the right size, but you are taking the risk they won't look like you think they will when you get them on. At zenni (and maybe other places?) you can buy a frame only. You could try it on, if you like it order the complete glasses and have an extra frame in case yours gets damaged. Or just order a few pair and if you hate one save it for an emergency backup.

2. It takes forever to get the glasses. Plan ahead.

3. Glasses need adjustments and I feel pretty crappy going into an optician and asking them to adjust the glasses I bought online. The upside is that with glasses so cheap, I just started experimenting with adjusting them myself and taking the risk of breaking them. With 2 little kids in glasses, we were always having to go in and get adjustments, so it has saved me 50 or more trips to the optician over the years.

4. Zenni advertises really cheap glasses, but if you buy the cheapest the quality of the frames isn't very good. However, you can get a really good pair for $20 + any upgrades you choose.
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Last edited by TheWoman February 5, 2014 at 11:17 PM.
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#11
I forgot to mention that I do have astigmatism. The PD & eye glass measurements is what scares me. I think if there is anything with your body that you should take the most care of, it should be your eyes. I will plan on ahead next time, but for now it looks like I'll just stop by Costco most likely since my current pair of glasses feel like its killing me and I don't know how much longer I can wait.
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#12
Quote from executivedealer View Post :
I forgot to mention that I do have astigmatism. The PD & eye glass measurements is what scares me. I think if there is anything with your body that you should take the most care of, it should be your eyes. I will plan on ahead next time, but for now it looks like I'll just stop by Costco most likely since my current pair of glasses feel like its killing me and I don't know how much longer I can wait.
I don't have a very strong prescription (-1.25 and -1.5) but I do have astigmatism. I measured the PD myself with a ruler in the mirror, and I guess I got lucky on the frame measurements, because I haven't had a problem ordering online yet.
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#13
Quote from Guiles View Post :
I don't have a very strong prescription (-1.25 and -1.5) but I do have astigmatism. I measured the PD myself with a ruler in the mirror, and I guess I got lucky on the frame measurements, because I haven't had a problem ordering online yet.
Depends on axis of the astigmatism and total power.
At 1.50 diopters you probably are within tolerance however someone with say 3 or 4 diopters needs very accurate measurments
Otherwise you induce prism
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#14
Quote from executivedealer View Post :
I forgot to mention that I do have astigmatism. The PD & eye glass measurements is what scares me. I think if there is anything with your body that you should take the most care of, it should be your eyes. I will plan on ahead next time, but for now it looks like I'll just stop by Costco most likely since my current pair of glasses feel like its killing me and I don't know how much longer I can wait.
  1. Get your Rx and PD distance when you get your eyes checked. I wouldn't chance either to guessing.
  2. Decline ordering glasses.
  3. Take what they wrote down and fill it in exactly @ coastal.

The fastest and best was coastal (http://www.coastal.com/).

IIRC, scratch/glare/UV should run $10-$30/pair (even if you decline the "extra" scratch/glare/UV they likely put it on anyway during big sales). Transitions or other stuff can raise the price to $50-$70/pair. Coupons/sales are likely required to get.

For the fit, measure your current glasses and go from there. Because they're so cheap, just order multiple and have backups. Wink
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#15
two words. warby parker.
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