June 21, 2011

Zenni Optical

A few days ago we ordered FIVE pair of prescription glasses for various members of our family for about $100! That included several pair of prescription sunglasses. I posted about our experience with Zenni Optical in 2009, but thought it was worth mentioning again.

GUEST POST by Jerry (Shelly's husband):

As a lifelong eyeglass wearer, I am always on the lookout for a deal on glasses. Zenni Optical is an online only retailer of prescription glasses and general eyewear.  They have complete single vision lenses including frames starting at the incredibly low price of $6.95.

My total cost for new glasses was $25.90 including shipping. I was a little nervous about such low prices.  Would the quality be acceptable?  Would the frames fall apart in shipment? [Now two years later we can confindently say they were definitely worth it! Both the lenses and the frames held up just as well as any other pair of glasses.]

I picked out a pair of glasses that were $8.00.  Zenni does consider certain prescriptions to be extra strength.  The order page on their website will tell you if your prescription is considered extra strength.  These prescriptions have an additional $9.00 charge.  While this more than doubles the $8.00 glasses, $17.00 is still quite an improvement over typical retail prices. The total cost for my glasses was $17.00 and shipping and handling was $4.95.

The other $3.95 came from the purchase of some clip-on sunglass lenses that I added to my order.  Unfortunately, Zenni hasn't yet applied their revolution in eyewear to the area of clip-on lenses.  I think these will have to be put away until I start driving a Cadillac, collecting Social Security, and eating supper at 4:00. So for my $25.90 I got a complete pair of glasses, the clip-ons, a Zenni optical lens cloth, and a space-age looking plastic case.

The frames available at Zenni seemed to be similar to what you would find at most retail eyeglass sellers.  The ordering process requires you to fill out the detailed information from your prescription, so when you see your eye doctor, be sure to get a copy to take home.  There are two pieces of information that you will also need that you don't normally find on your prescription.  The first is the distance between your pupils.  You can measure this at home by following the directions at Zenni's website, or you can ask your eye doctor for this information as this is something they measure during a routine eye exam.  The second item is the size of your frames.  The frames on Zenni are listed by their dimension in millimeters.  I wasn't sure what size frames I needed, so I measured my current frames and could see that they matched many of the frames available on Zenni.

Purchasing glasses online means that you may have to adjust them yourself at home.  I used a guide I found online to help with the adjustment and they fit pretty well. The quality of the lenses doesn't seem to be an issue.  My prescription had a change and I could see things more clearly from the moment I put the new glasses on. So with the exception of the $3.95 I wasted on the ridiculous clip-on sunglasses I am very happy with my Zenni Optical experience.


Liz Cat said...

Do you know if they accept/work with vision insurance? Or do they not submit to insurance becuase they are already offering at such a low price? I couldn't find anything when I looked on their site and couldn't tell if that was just becuase I didn't go through the order process. I know from my experience with insurance that if the provider does not submit to insurance, you can always pay and then send in the bill for reimbursement.

GB Savers said...

Good question! We have vision coverage for exams only, not glasses/contacts so it never even crossed my mind! :) From what I can tell they do not process insurance. You would just have to submit your claim to your insurance yourself.