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52 Different Ways to Save $100 Per Year: Order Prescription Glasses Online {Week 4}

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At the beginning of every week in 2013, I’ll be sharing a different way you can save $100 this year. If you do all of these things, you’ll be able to save over $5,000 this year alone! Many of these things will likely be things you’re already doing, but hopefully all of you will pick up at least a few new ideas or some inspiration from this series.

This tip won’t work for everyone because some of you are blessed to not have to wear glasses and some of you won’t need to buy glasses this year. But for those of you who need to buy glasses or who end up needing to buy glasses, this tip will definitely save you $100+ this year.

Buy Prescription Glasses Online (Week #4)

A number of years ago, when I first started blogging here, a reader emailed me recommending I try purchasing glasses online. Truth be told, I’d never even considered ordering glasses anywhere but from the eye doctor, so I was thrilled to consider that there were other options.

I didn’t need to purchase glasses at the time, but I posted the tip because it seemed legit and I thought other people might benefit from it. To my delight, I discovered that other readers had tried ordering glasses online and they’d had good experiences, too.

I don’t know about you, but when I stumble onto an outside-the-box money-saving tip like this, it gets me so excited. And it reminds me that there are always new discoveries to be made in the world of frugality — especially in the age of the internet.

Since I didn’t need to order glasses right then, I tucked away the tip for later. Not too long afterward, my toddler broke my glasses beyond repair — and I was ever so thankful that I knew there were options out there for saving money on prescription glasses!

Where To Order Prescription Glasses Online

While there are a number of different online sites that you can purchase prescription glasses from, two that I’m very familiar with and have purchased from personally are Zenni Optical [3] and Coastal Contacts [4].

Zenni Optical [3] is my go-to site for ordering glasses online. In fact, we’ve purchased three pairs of glasses from them so far. Not only have we always been pleased with our orders from them, but on our second order from them, there was a shipping delay so they sent out another free order — which meant we got two extra pairs of glasses for FREE! That level of customer service really left an impression on me.


Most of the glasses from Zenni Optical are under $20 total for the frames and lenses. They even have some glasses that are as low as $6.95 [5]! Shipping is just $4.95. If you need to upgrade your lenses, it will be extra. But I promise it will still be much, much less than buying prescription glasses in-store.


I also recommend checking out Coastal Contacts. If you’ve never ordered from Coastal Contacts [4] before, you can get a free pair of glasses [4] when you use coupon code FIRSTPAIRFREE at checkout.

This coupon code covers standard lenses. Upgrades or coatings are available for an additional cost. Shipping will be anywhere between $10 and $20. What I like best about Coastal Contacts is that if you receive the glasses and they don’t fit, return shipping is free.

Pros & Cons of Ordering Glasses Online

As with any purchase, there are pros and cons to ordering online versus ordering in-store. The price is fantastic, but one of the downsides of ordering glasses online is that you can’t try them on ahead of time. If you wear glasses full-time or struggle to find glasses that fit your facial shape, ordering them online might be more difficult.

However, if you only wear your glasses part of the time or aren’t incredibly particular about how they look, definitely save yourself some money by ordering glasses online. In addition, I’d highly recommend ordering glasses online if you have children who are prone to go through pairs rather rapidly.

The other thing to keep in mind when ordering glasses online is that you have to do all your own measurements to submit to them. We never found it difficult to do these measurements, but I know some people have had trouble with getting them right.

All in all, our experiences of ordering glasses online have been very positive — and we’ve saved hundreds of dollars over the past four years by doing so!

Have you ordered prescription glasses online? If so, I’d love to hear about your experiences — either positive or negative.

photo credit [6]