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Old 06-09-2018, 09:20 AM
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Has anyone here bought eyeglasses online?


I am considering going this route, possibly just for a backup pair.

I'd like you hear your experiences, including which website you used.

Thoughts?


mmm
  #2  
Old 06-09-2018, 09:30 AM
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I've used Zenni optical. Had good experiences.

My only issue is make sure you get the right frame size. I bought a pair w/o paying attention to that and regret it. Luckily they were only $15 total. Make sure you pay attention to every aspect of frame size when you buy a pair.

Also make sure you get your pupilary distance. Everything else you need should be on your prescription.
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Last edited by Wesley Clark; 06-09-2018 at 09:33 AM.
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Old 06-09-2018, 10:07 AM
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Have been happy with Zenni.
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Old 06-09-2018, 10:09 AM
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Prescription or reading?

Zenni Optical was great for prescription glasses for my kids, when they want a break from contact lenses. I bought multiple pairs and they were reliably great.

Reading Glasses dot com is my reliable go to. I've been ordering from them for years.
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Old 06-09-2018, 10:14 AM
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I've been very happy with my $30 progressives from Zenni.

ETA: there are several previous threads about this if you want more in-depth information.

Last edited by Tim R. Mortiss; 06-09-2018 at 10:14 AM.
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Old 06-09-2018, 10:24 AM
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Shityea. I have two pairs of regular glasses and to pairs of sunglasses. Total cost probably $75.

Do make sure all of the sizes match. My suggestion would be to buy one pair then base your additional purchases on how they fit

The flimsier of the regular glasses are getting a little rickety after a year. Whatever. They were $15.
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Old 06-09-2018, 10:51 AM
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I've bought several pairs from Zenni over the years. Never been disappointed. Even having moved up to no line bifocals, I'm still paying around $50. And that's with nice flexible frames, not cheap plastic.
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Old 06-09-2018, 11:55 AM
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Very, very disappointed with Zenni.

Quite happy with EyeBuyDirect. Not as dirt cheap, but you're not going to get garbage either.
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Old 06-09-2018, 12:53 PM
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Very interesting NPR podcast about Warby Parker on NPR's How I Built This.
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Old 06-09-2018, 10:12 PM
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I had a very expensive pair of glasses that lasted me for years. I ordered a spare pair for traveling from Zenni, another one tinted, and I liked them so much, they are my daily drivers, I put the other ones away. They've lasted me about five years, still no problem.

My wife used to order them by the dozen from Zenni, and pick out the fashionable one for the occasion. Some tinted, some clear, some reading only. It would take her a year to lose or break most of them, and she'd order another dozen, a hundred bucks or so.

Last edited by jtur88; 06-09-2018 at 10:13 PM.
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Old 06-09-2018, 11:38 PM
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I had my progressives checked at my optometrist’s office. They were slightly off, with the worst error being the reading portion being 2.00 rather than 2.25.
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Old 06-10-2018, 01:07 AM
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Very, very disappointed with Zenni.

Quite happy with EyeBuyDirect. Not as dirt cheap, but you're not going to get garbage either.
I'd be interested in hearing more about your disappointing experiences with Zenni. I've mostly heard praise for them. What should we be watching out for?
  #13  
Old 06-10-2018, 07:08 AM
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I'd be interested in hearing more about your disappointing experiences with Zenni. I've mostly heard praise for them. What should we be watching out for?
We ordered a pair each around the same time.

For my glasses the frame was way too flimsy despite ordering nicer (pricier) frames. The lineless bifocals had a tiny area of the reading part that was usable. Had to constantly wave my head around to read. The protective coating almost immediately began to wear off leaving a speckled pattern on the lenses. The protective coating needed a protective coating!

Mrs. FtG's pair were just badly done and largely unusable.

Keep in mind: we didn't go with the low end versions of things at all. Paid extra hoping to get better quality. Nope.

Definitely done with Zenni.

Ordered so far two pairs from EyeButDirect. Standard bifocals and a pair for the computer. Costs only a little bit more. Happy with both after a year+.
  #14  
Old 06-10-2018, 09:03 AM
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I've had generally good results with EyeBuyDirect and Zenni. They look as good, work as well, and are slightly more durable than the last pair I got from a bricks-and-mortar optician. In part, that's because I avoid the cheapest of the cheap frames. After a few missteps, now I buy only frames that have spring hinges. They're more comfortable, less likely to get bent out of shape and are of higher quality overall. If the description doesn't explicitly say they have spring hinges, then they don't. I've had quality frames for under $30 online.

As others have mentioned, pay close attention to the size and shape of the frames. When I first started buying online, I ordered a pair that looked nice in the picture but turned out to be much smaller than I expected.

Even if you are disappointed, don't give up. You can buy 5 or 8 pair of glasses online for the price of one from a b&m optician. You can afford to order a few until you get it right.
  #15  
Old 06-10-2018, 09:18 AM
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I have used Warby Parker for years without complaint.
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Old 06-11-2018, 08:05 PM
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I bought 2 pairs from Zenni about 6 years ago. They swapped the lenses on both. It wouldn't have been a big issue but I was leaving for New Zealand a few weeks after I got them. I survived using my old glasses while Zenni fixed their screw up. I have used my local place since with no issues.
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Old 06-11-2018, 08:24 PM
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I wear a large frame. I've been frustrated that the majority of frames offered are M. I clicked over a dozen frames on eyebuydirect. Only 2 were offered in L.

Couldn't find any way to filter by size. I had to keep clicking till I found this one. Boring, but at least it's inexpensive and in a L.
https://www.eyebuydirect.com/eyeglas...-black-l-18269

Last edited by aceplace57; 06-11-2018 at 08:26 PM.
  #18  
Old 06-11-2018, 08:31 PM
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NM

I found the frame filter. Lower left hand corner of screen. I'm accustomed to looking at the top of the screen for menus.

Life is better, with glasses and a filter by size.
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Old 06-11-2018, 08:45 PM
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I have used Warby Parker for years without complaint.
I just bought a pair of sunglasses from Warby Parker. And if you're not totally comfortable with buying totally online, they have quite a few retail stores. (I like the sunglasses but didn't like most of the eyeglasses.)
  #20  
Old 06-12-2018, 12:30 PM
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I've been using Zenni for years and I love it. I especially like the filtering options on the site. I have wide set eyes and not every frame will work for me. This way I don't have to scroll through a hundred pair that won't work. Also the "Try it on" feature works very well. You upload a head-on photo and then enter your pupilary distance. The software automatically figures everything else out from there, and you can see approximately what the frames will look like on your face.

Ditto to whoever said "Have your pupilary distance measured." I tried to measure it myself the first time and those glasses were never quite right. The second time I asked the optometrist to do it and all the glasses since then have been right on.

I have used them for bifocals, distance only, prescription sunglasses and clip-ons. (Always get the $3 clip-ons, you never know how handy they will be!)
  #21  
Old 06-12-2018, 12:57 PM
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Another happy Zenni customer for about four years. Sunglasses, blue light prescription, back ups, etc. Never had an issue with any of them and my glasses are for astigmatism.
  #22  
Old 06-29-2018, 05:51 PM
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OP checking in.

I just got my pair from Zenni and I couldn't be happier. I had to make some adjustments to the nose pieces, which was a little scary, but all is good.

The prices are a little misleading, but still far cheaper than my old way of buying. This pair cost a little over a hundred bucks; I'll be ordering another pair.


mmm
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Old 06-29-2018, 06:17 PM
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Wow. I couldn't spend $100 at Zenni if I tried. I can't imagine what you must have been paying elsewhere! Mine were about $45 including the sunglass clips.
  #24  
Old 06-29-2018, 08:04 PM
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Wow. I couldn't spend $100 at Zenni if I tried. I can't imagine what you must have been paying elsewhere! Mine were about $45 including the sunglass clips.
Really? Interesting. Maybe it's because my lenses are progressives?


mmm

ETA: I'm used to paying $300+.

Last edited by Mean Mr. Mustard; 06-29-2018 at 08:05 PM.
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Old 06-30-2018, 07:29 AM
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Mrs. FtG went to the optometrist a couple weeks ago and got an upgraded Rx.

Went to a national chain store. The service was astonishingly horrible. The "specials" scheme was ridiculous. E.g., using a "discount" or "coupon" was not a good idea. The "discount" was off the "regular" price so it always came out much higher than the normal store price.

Just walked out, went online and bought from eyebuydirect. Not here yet so we'll see.

Brick and mortar stores might complain about online stores "stealing" their business. But they themselves need to take the majority of the blame.
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Old 06-30-2018, 08:43 AM
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Really? Interesting. Maybe it's because my lenses are progressives?
A couple of months ago, I got progressive lenses for the first time. The optician had to make measurements and mark on the sample frames where the curvature should change, so I'm wondering how well it works to buy progressives online.
  #27  
Old 06-30-2018, 06:50 PM
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A couple of months ago, I got progressive lenses for the first time. The optician had to make measurements and mark on the sample frames where the curvature should change, so I'm wondering how well it works to buy progressives online.
It's possible I just got lucky, but I am very satisfied.


mmm
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Old 04-29-2019, 02:24 PM
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Mrs. FtG went to the optometrist a couple weeks ago and got an upgraded Rx.

Went to a national chain store. The service was astonishingly horrible. The "specials" scheme was ridiculous. E.g., using a "discount" or "coupon" was not a good idea. The "discount" was off the "regular" price so it always came out much higher than the normal store price.

Just walked out, went online and bought from eyebuydirect. Not here yet so we'll see.

Brick and mortar stores might complain about online stores "stealing" their business. But they themselves need to take the majority of the blame.
Bumping this thread and hoping to find out how you liked EBD.

I was ready to buy some glasses from Zenni, but bailed when I found they did not have a "check out as guest" option. I have something like 14 logins and passwords for work alone and I'm done. Not ordering from any business that makes me create an account. EBD seems to have the option as do a few others, so I'm hoping their products are good too.
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Old 04-29-2019, 02:49 PM
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Wow. I couldn't spend $100 at Zenni if I tried. I can't imagine what you must have been paying elsewhere! Mine were about $45 including the sunglass clips.
I imagine high refractive index plastic, progressive bifocals and spiffy coatings will drive the price up FAST.
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Old 04-29-2019, 03:25 PM
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Bumping this thread and hoping to find out how you liked EBD.
We continue to be happy with EyeBuyDirect. E.g., Mrs. FtG's most recent glasses are better than her most recent "store bought" ones. Which broke and they tried to avoid covering it under warranty despite the wording making it clear that this was explicitly covered.
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Old 04-29-2019, 03:52 PM
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I have one pair fully covered, and another lenses only every two years. Then I buy several pairs based on those via zenni, EyeBuyDirect or Clearly.ca.

I have had one pair I did not like, which I returned and got a refund.
  #32  
Old 04-29-2019, 04:26 PM
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My Zenni progressive half-rim aviators with Transition lenses came in the mail Friday-$150, and they work fine.
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Old 04-30-2019, 12:55 PM
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SWMBO bought her sunglasses from clearly.ca and she's proclaimed them the best she's ever had. Her prescription is pretty intense so to have a set that works this well is a minor miracle in itself. I'm looking at adding a set of extra readers through them and maybe a set for the computer or sunglasses as well.
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  #34  
Old 04-30-2019, 05:20 PM
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OP checking in again.

Still happy with my Zennis, but they are a little heavier than I like.

The pair I bought from EyeBuyDirect - which I bought paying attention to the weight - are what I wear 80% of the time.


mmm
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Old 04-30-2019, 06:48 PM
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I've bought single-vision eyeglasses from Zenni and other places before. But my most recent pair of glasses have progressive lenses, which I bought in person. The optometrist had to make careful measurements to spec how the lenses should be made. So how well does it work to buy that sort of lens online?
  #36  
Old 04-30-2019, 07:12 PM
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I've bought single-vision eyeglasses from Zenni and other places before. But my most recent pair of glasses have progressive lenses, which I bought in person. The optometrist had to make careful measurements to spec how the lenses should be made. So how well does it work to buy that sort of lens online?
I bought my progressives online from Zenni, and they are wonderful. Maybe I just got lucky, but even so, it was only a $30 gamble.
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Old 04-30-2019, 07:43 PM
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I've been buying single vision lenses for years from Zenni and have always been really happy with my glasses. I recently had to get my first pair of progressives and went with Warby Parker, because they process my type of vision insurance and thought I might want something a little trendier. I did the try-the-frames-at-home thing and even went into the brick & mortar store to try on frames. When I got my glasses, I wasn't that happy with them. They slip down my nose. I went in and had them adjusted and still didn't like them. SO...I ordered another pair from Zenni. Love them. Tons of compliments, super comfortable, progressive lenses are perfect. I'll use the others as back-up. I also got my reading glasses (which I wear with my contacts) at Zenni. Much nicer quality than you would get at a drugstore or Target, and I paid $14.
  #38  
Old 04-30-2019, 08:27 PM
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I've bought single-vision eyeglasses from Zenni and other places before. But my most recent pair of glasses have progressive lenses, which I bought in person. The optometrist had to make careful measurements to spec how the lenses should be made. So how well does it work to buy that sort of lens online?
The two pair of progressives I bought online both work fine. That said, I'm sure there are others where that is not the case. It's a bit of a gamble, but a relatively low cost one.


mmm
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Old 04-30-2019, 09:21 PM
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i can't remember the name of the place but there's one that has commercials with an owl.... I've wondered if anyone used that place ..... too bad my health plan won't let me use online places .....
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Old 05-01-2019, 09:22 AM
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i can't remember the name of the place but there's one that has commercials with an owl.... I've wondered if anyone used that place ..... too bad my health plan won't let me use online places .....
There might be a reason for that.

https://www.quora.com/Why-has-the-US...Glasses-market

They own Eyemed, the 2nd largest vision insurance in the States.
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Last edited by swampspruce; 05-01-2019 at 09:24 AM. Reason: add-on
  #41  
Old 05-17-2019, 10:17 AM
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Received my glasses from EBD and I'm not thrilled. They seem very flimsy. That could be because of my selection of frames. Had I seen them in person I never would have chosen them - hadn't realized they were so thin as to be practically filaments.

Also, what's "normal" for transitions? These lenses are supposed to go dark in sunlight and clear indoors. They do, but it's very, very slow to happen. And when fully dark in sunlight, they're not nearly dark enough. Like the weakest sunglasses ever. Is that typical?
  #42  
Old 05-17-2019, 10:58 AM
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The standard Transitions only go somewhat dark and don't darken as far in warmer weather.
The XTRActive will darken to full sunglass levels but are still sensitive to temperatures.
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Old 05-17-2019, 10:58 AM
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Received my glasses from EBD and I'm not thrilled. They seem very flimsy. That could be because of my selection of frames. Had I seen them in person I never would have chosen them - hadn't realized they were so thin as to be practically filaments.

Also, what's "normal" for transitions? These lenses are supposed to go dark in sunlight and clear indoors. They do, but it's very, very slow to happen. And when fully dark in sunlight, they're not nearly dark enough. Like the weakest sunglasses ever. Is that typical?
I was an optician for 15 years. I was frequently the one people brought their online glasses to because they didn't work right. The online places sell incredibly poor quality crap. And I get sick of people claiming that eyeglasses have a huge markup.I worked much of my career in a shop that had a reputation for being expensive, but the markup on frames and lenses was considerably less than the markup on clothing when I worked regular retail. If they had the huge markup people claim I would have retired a wealthy man ten years ago.

As far as Transitions - yes, that is typica. They take much longer to lighten than they do to darken. They also don't get as dark as most people would like. Our Transitions marketing material (not pamphlets for consumers but info for opticians) stressed that they are not sunglasses and are not to be positioned as sunglasses. We always found that if we made sure people didn't have unrealistic expectations that those who chose them would be happier. It was far better to talk someone out of it than to talk them into it and have them unhappy.

Same thing with anti-reflective coatings. Make sure people understand the disadvantages as well as the advantages before they spent extra. We'd always show people how fingerprints show more and that they still have some greenish or bluish reflections in the periphery.
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Old 05-17-2019, 12:32 PM
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I was an optician for 15 years. I was frequently the one people brought their online glasses to because they didn't work right. The online places sell incredibly poor quality crap. And I get sick of people claiming that eyeglasses have a huge markup.I worked much of my career in a shop that had a reputation for being expensive, but the markup on frames and lenses was considerably less than the markup on clothing when I worked regular retail. If they had the huge markup people claim I would have retired a wealthy man ten years ago.
How would the markup on frames make you a wealthy man, unless you made the frames yourself? Were you working for Luxottica, or ordering frames from their many subsidiaries? If so, then those frames were most likely vastly overpriced.
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Old 05-17-2019, 02:18 PM
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How would the markup on frames make you a wealthy man, unless you made the frames yourself? Were you working for Luxottica, or ordering frames from their many subsidiaries? If so, then those frames were most likely vastly overpriced.
Right. It's not retail markup that's the problem.
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Old 05-17-2019, 02:59 PM
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I recently got a pair of glasses from EyeBuyDirect. So far I'm very happy with them. They cost less than a quarter of what my last glasses cost, and seem to be of comparable quality. I have no inside information about eyewear pricing, but I don't understand how to explain that price difference if there isn't a big markup somewhere.
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Old 05-17-2019, 05:16 PM
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I was an optician for 15 years. I was frequently the one people brought their online glasses to because they didn't work right. The online places sell incredibly poor quality crap. And I get sick of people claiming that eyeglasses have a huge markup.I worked much of my career in a shop that had a reputation for being expensive, but the markup on frames and lenses was considerably less than the markup on clothing when I worked regular retail.
Sure, if you say so. All I know if that last time I got my eyes checked for new glasses, the frames at the optometrist's started at around $350. Maybe it takes a couple hundred dollars to turn 15g of metal into eyeglass frames but if someone else has noodled out how to do it for 25% of that price, I'm going to check them out.
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Old 05-17-2019, 11:55 PM
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Sure, if you say so. All I know if that last time I got my eyes checked for new glasses, the frames at the optometrist's started at around $350. Maybe it takes a couple hundred dollars to turn 15g of metal into eyeglass frames but if someone else has noodled out how to do it for 25% of that price, I'm going to check them out.
Optometrist's dispensaries tend to have higher markups than independent optical shops, in large part because there's not much effort put into enforcing the federal eyeglass rule. That's the law that says your eye doctor has to hand you a copy of your prescription after your exam, even if you don't ask for it (only exception is if you haven't paid for the exam they can make you wait until it is paid IF they normally require payment at time of service from all patients).

And no one has "noodled out how to do it for 25% of that price". The crap that online places sell is poor quality metal and poor construction and would have a manufacturing cost far less than what brick and mortar stores sell.

But that's not all. They also cut costs by not having any opticians to do the measuring and fitting. That means no one can checking things like facial wrap, tilt, vertex (the distance between the lens and the eye), vertical optical center placement - things that can't be done online because they can only be measured by putting the frame to be used on the patient.
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Old 05-18-2019, 07:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Doug K. View Post

And no one has "noodled out how to do it for 25% of that price". The crap that online places sell is poor quality metal and poor construction and would have a manufacturing cost far less than what brick and mortar stores sell.

But that's not all. They also cut costs by not having any opticians to do the measuring and fitting. That means no one can checking things like facial wrap, tilt, vertex (the distance between the lens and the eye), vertical optical center placement - things that can't be done online because they can only be measured by putting the frame to be used on the patient.
I’ve gotten over 20 pairs of glasses in the United States over the last 30 years. The maximum length of the “fitting” process has been under 5 minutes. And focused entirely on making sure they aren’t crooked on my face and not slipping off my nose.

Vast majority of these have been at the Luxottica owned chains. I’ve bought two frames from other sources recently (in the last five years). Neither fell apart or deteriorated in any way that was visible to me.

In Japan, where almost everything except healthcare and education is a lot less expensive than in the US, eyeglasses are 15-25% of the price in the US.

No doubt you will try to convince me that the industry in Japan is dishing out crap, but I’m not going to believe it. The Japanese seem to be obsessed with quality, especially in anything related to health and wellness. I doubt they allow opticians to dispense second hand frames and lenses imported from Mozambique with a “Meh! Close enough.”
  #50  
Old 05-20-2019, 11:14 AM
ashtayk is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheMightyAtlas View Post
I’ve gotten over 20 pairs of glasses in the United States over the last 30 years. The maximum length of the “fitting” process has been under 5 minutes. And focused entirely on making sure they aren’t crooked on my face and not slipping off my nose.

snip
Totally agree. I doubt that the sales people who actually "help" selecting the frame and write up the orders are actually opticians. In the many decades I spent thousands of dollars on eyeglasses, they have never done anything more than offer fashion advice, measure the PD (that they are supposed to anyways) and try to upsell lenses, tints etc.

And how come the Anti reflective coating costs about a tenth online than in a store?
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