Ripping Off the Blind

7 Jan

I’ve had glasses for a bajillion years. I got my first pair in kindergarten, and because my eyesight was so poor, I couldn’t get contacts until my sophomore year in high school. In second grade, they prescribed bifocals for me because my eyes weren’t focusing properly. I used those until my mid-twenties, when my doctor decided I would be fine without them. I can’t see a thing without my glasses.

I have gas-permeable contact lenses, but those are a pain. Literally. It feels like there’s something hard in my eye (because there is). I can’t wear soft contacts because I’m so stinking blind. Even though I wore contacts through most of high school, all of college, and into my young adult life, I reverted to glasses after child #1 was born. I did this mainly because I am lazy. I had a kid; I didn’t need any other hassles like poking hard things into my eyes. Plus, I had gained a lot of weight during my pregnancy and I felt like I could hide behind my glasses (I know – doesn’t make much sense, but there you have it).

I hate those ads on TV – “get two pairs of glasses for only $99!” That never works for me because I’m Blind Girl. They always tell me that, because my prescription is so strong, they have to break out the Coke bottle bottoms for my lenses. My vision insurance pays for much of the lens cost and $130-ish of the frames, but we’re still left with a chunk of change to pay.

Because of that, I started ordering glasses online from Zenni Optical. Granted, I’m taking a chance when I order because I can’t try on the frames in person until I get the completed pair. Plus, the frames are not high-quality, but I’m not doing anything that requires heavy-duty frames. I managed to get my last pair from Zenni for $90.90. Not bad, even for a prescription in the “hardly blind” range.

This year, I decided to go with a mortar-and-bricks glasses shop. I wanted to try on my frames, get a professionally measured pupillary distance, and all the customer service that comes with it. So this morning, I went to my local optical shop and perused the not-so-impressive array of frames. I finally settled on a pair I like and that look good on my large head.

When I walked out, I had a pair of glasses on order and a receipt for $584.31. FIVE HUNDRED EIGHTY-FOUR dollars. And that was with a 10% discount because my local shop is out of network for my vision insurance. Without the discount, it would have been $650. Are you freaking kidding me? Granted, I got transition lenses (because it’s cheaper than getting a set of prescription sunglasses), the super-thin lens option, and the anti-scratch/reflection coating, but still. That much?

sigh

The frames were $185. I guess that’s not too bad, right? Well, as I was searching online just now for a photo to show you nice people, I saw that my frames were on sale from framelot.com for $140.14.

My new glasses

My new glasses

Hmmm. If the frames are $45 less,  I wonder how much cheaper everything else is?

I punched in my old prescription for testing purposes. Guess how much cheaper this place is than my local place?

$499 vs. $650

Guess who I just called to cancel my glasses order?

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5 Responses to “Ripping Off the Blind”

  1. iampotassium January 7, 2013 at 1:06 pm #

    Wow… That’s a lot of money for glasses! I’m glad you were able to find them cheaper from Framelot…

    Booo glasses… why do you cost so much money?!

  2. thechocolatepudding January 7, 2013 at 1:42 pm #

    I like the glasses, they’re very you. Ugh glasses… I hate doing it! I hate the exam, I hate trying to choose frames, and I HATE paying for them. I can never do the one-hour either because they always have to order one lens specially and it takes 2 weeks. Not both, just one. And then there’s all kinds of nonsense with choosing frames that don’t make it obvious that one lens is a Coke bottle and the other is not… I’m glad the thick frames are a trend right now because I don’t have a choice. 🙂 Someday, Lasik…

  3. That Nolen Chick January 7, 2013 at 2:18 pm #

    Woo hoo! Even cheaper! If I’d actually read all of the descriptions of the options, I would have seen that the extra-super-thin lenses included a premium anti-glare finish. Don’t have to pay extra for that! My new total is $427.63. Boo-yah!

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

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    […] my bellyaching about how much my glasses cost? The plot thickens. I got a call on Wednesday from my eye doctor’s […]

  2. A Swan Dive Off My High Horse | that nolen chick - February 21, 2013

    […] my glasses saga? How I feel that, as a blind-as-a-bat person, I’m overcharged for necessary eyewear? And then how my optical shop called and added insult to injury? The story doesn’t end when […]

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