If you are like me, then being nearsighted means you have to buy glasses all too often. Even if yours are in good condition still, you may find that your prescription has changed and you are forced to update. While many frames allow you to simply update lenses, there are occasions when you have to buy a whole new set of frames and lenses, and since it can get costly really fast it is worth checking out our tips for how to save when you buy glasses.
Real Ways To Save Money When You Buy Glasses
Don’t buy the cheapest they offer. Sometimes going for the discount glasses seems like the best option, but the reality is that these may often be poor quality frames and not last. There are times when you buy glasses that discount frames are a great choice. If you are someone who only wears your glasses on occasion, or maybe want to have 3-4 pair in different styles and colors then discount frames are fine. If you are looking for something that will last as you wear them on a regular daily basis, you’ll want to invest a little more for a sturdy quality pair.
If you are looking to buy glasses for your kids, you may also consider that discount frames are a good choice. This is one area that I think is iffy and really depends on the child. If your kids are responsible and take good care of their belongings, then investing in a durable sturdy pair is a better choice since they aren’t as likely to damage them and need new frames soon.
However, you do want to consider that children will most likely need replacement lenses every year since their eyes change so rapidly as they grow and mature. While I would normally say quality frames can simply have new lenses placed, there is the consideration of the fact that as they grow so does their head size and shape. This can greatly change how their glasses fit and make it much better for you to get discount frames for a few years instead of higher priced frames.
Ask about closeout frames. I never realized how much frames can be a fashion statement, and since they are you will find that most brands will end up with styles they drop from their line each year. This results in sale prices and finding closeout frames at up 70% off the regular price. After you have your eye exam and you are looking at frames at your eye care practitioners office, don’t hesitate to ask them if they have any frames on closeout.
Watch for fashion forward brands like Ralph Lauren, Coach, Vera Wang, Gucci and similar to be in these closeout areas. Since their fashion lines tend to change each season their frames will also. They are higher priced frames in general, which means they are more likely to be leftover while more reasonably priced frames are sold. The result is you get a fashion-forward pair of frames for a great discount. In fact, I own a pair of Vera Wang frames I managed to buy for under $100 last year that retailed originally at over $500. All because I asked when I went in for my exam to see if they had any discount frames.
One thing to remember and ask when you are looking at closeout frames is that some may be more difficult to create lenses for. Specialty styles will cost more for special lenses. Ask the optician on staff if this will be an issue or additional cost before you settle on a unique style of eyeglass frame from the closeout area.
Skip the extras. You know there are always extras offered. Sure, you want scratch resistant lenses but the truth is you can probably just manage to be careful and use the specified cleaning cloth instead of a paper towel and have the same result without all of the money.
Think long and hard about add-ons for your glasses. Most people who buy glasses for occasional use don’t need transition lenses that adjust to the lighting, nor do they need lenses that reflect glare. They need a basic pair of glasses to step in and help them see while they aren’t wearing contact lenses.
If you wear your glasses on a regular daily basis, then you may need to add the glare resistant coating or the scratch protection, but most of the time these are splurges you can do without and save $50-$100 on your glasses purchase.
Shop online. While you still have to have an eye exam at your local practitioner, you can easily buy your actual glasses online. Make sure to have your prescription on hand, and read all the details on return policies and specs of each frame you consider. Ordering online can also be a huge savings when many companies run sales with BOGO offers. This is a great way to at least buy a backup set of frames for someone who wears glasses on a daily basis. Ordering from sites like DiscountGlasses is a great way to save money and time. Not only well you find the perfect glasses at a discount, but they also offer overnight shipping! Besides Eyeglasses, they also offer sunglasses and glasses just for reading.
Some great sites to consider:
- Glasses USA
- Coastal (I have purchased from here before and found great quality)
- Warby Parker
- Eye Buy Direct
Ask for discounts. Many places will offer a BOGO or Buy One Get One 50% off deal when you purchase multiple sets of lenses and frames or contact lenses and glasses on the same day. Even if there is no sign up about a special deal, you may be able to secure a sale price just by asking. Also, ask about things like military, student or AARP discounts when applicable. If you don’t have vision insurance, you may want to consider some of the vision discount cards available for low annual rates that could save you money on your exam and frames. VSP is another eye care insurance that charges a flat annual rate and pays for many eye care needs including exams and frames or contact lenses.
When you set out to buy glasses for yourself or your child this year, take a moment to consider our tips. You only have two eyes, and providing them with the best possible protection is well worth your time an investment.