If you’re looking for affordable glasses, you have plenty of options. You can get designer frames for a fraction of the cost at discount stores and online retailers.
However, cheap glasses often sacrifice quality. They also don’t offer individual care and fittings, which you’ll get at a doctor’s or optometrist.
1. You save Money
When buying glasses, you can often save money if you shop online. Since online retailers cut out the middleman, they can offer low prices without skimping quality.
You also can use HSA and FSA funds to pay for your eyewear online, which can help you save even more cash. Some websites even let you try on frames before you buy, which can be an excellent way to ensure you get the right fit and comfort.
Unlike a traditional store, which typically has a limited selection, online vendors offer a wider variety of frame styles. Plus, online retailers don’t have the overhead of running brick-and-mortar stores or paying a high percentage of sales taxes.
2. You Get Mega Discounts
A pair of new glasses or quality contact lenses can be an expensive purchase, but it doesn’t have to break the bank. Online glasses stores are constantly running deals and promotions, with discounts on frames and lenses, and sometimes even buy one get one free deal.
Some even have virtual try-on tools to see what you’re buying before you commit to purchasing. Most sites will also send you a free sample pair to see which frames fit.
Lens Direct has an extensive line of stylish frames and offers free online vision tests for eligible customers. Its most impressive gimmick is a “mirror” feature that allows you to upload a photo of yourself to test how the glasses look on your face. In addition, the site has a free online prescription scanner app that assesses your glasses’ optical details. Coastal offers the same thing for sunglasses and has an incredible “smart shopper” program that lets you opt to have each pair of glasses you buy donated to someone in need.
3. You Can Return Them
If you’re unhappy with your new glasses, a good retailer will be willing to replace or refund them. They’ll also usually offer to remake your lenses if they were made incorrectly or if your eye doctor changed your prescription.
Many stores will offer a satisfaction guarantee and replace your glasses, offering you a full refund or a store credit for your money if you’re dissatisfied. But it’s essential to check the details before buying.
abbeglasses, for example, offers a 14-day return window. That’s the shortest of any online retailer we looked at, but you get a full refund if they’re wrong for you. Zenni, on the other hand, has a 30-day return window. However, if you buy glasses with store credit and decide to return them, the company only gives you a 50% refund instead of a full refund.
4. You Can Get A Second Pair Free
Whether you’re looking for a new pair of glasses or want to upgrade your current ones, online stores can help. These sites are often willing to give you a second pair of glasses for free when you buy one complete set at a regular price.
Depending on your shop, you can even try them out before buying. Some sites, like Warby Parker, allow you to mail them in a pair of frames and try them on for up to five days. This is great for those who want to try out new frame styles without risking their existing prescription. It’s also a great way to find out if you’re comfortable with an online glasses store and its customer service.