Glasses at high street opticians are too expensive

I’m fed up with the attempts of some high street opticians to overcharge me.  They want to charge me 99 for the same pair of glasses that I can buy online for 25.

Recently I wanted another pair of glasses as I was down to one pair having accidentally broken my spare pare.  I decided that I would have look in Specsavers first of all and I asked for a quote on a pair that I liked.

I then went home, did a Google search for ‘prescription glasses and about five minutes later I was browsing through a nice selection of glasses on  I found a similar pair and could even try them on (virtually) to see what I would look like wearing them.

They seemed to be very good value for money so I took the plunge and ordered them.  Three days later they arrived and I was one very happy rabbit – they were great and I had saved myself 74!

I found cheap glasses online, high street opticians are a rip off!But why do the large high street chains have to charge such silly prices?  Is it their plush shops or are we expected to pay for the large advertising campaigns I keep seeing on the telly and in the press. Personally, and I suspect a lot of people feel the same; I would rather not pay for a large advertising campaigns or a plush shop.  I would prefer instead to pay considerably less money for my glasses.

When are the large retail organisations going to realise that and do something about it?

By: Verdam

104 Responses

  1. hazzer12 09/08/2014 / 11:29 pm

    Boots opticians though have a great range with plenty of designers are so expensive. £200+ that the retailers of the brand stores aren't even selling at such a price. I saved £140 going online after I found a pair I liked, and they don't even do the second pair for free, it's just half price!

  2. Peter 22/01/2014 / 4:18 pm

    Optitions buy frames for 50p similar with contact lenses. Not a bad profit. Don't be fooled by sales talk. Trust me I know have friend in the business.

  3. Time We Closed The Scam Opticians Down 20/12/2013 / 1:02 pm

    Indeed the high street opticians/optmetrists in this country run a scam. They make far too much money for what is bit a very limited profession. When they measure your eyes, it's the NHS who is paying the bill (out of your taxes). They ought to state exactly how much they are charging the NHS for their service. It's your right to know.

    When they give you your eye test results, you must not be pushed by any kind of sales person into buying glasses. There must be a cooling off period.

    When they give you the results, they must be fully comprehensive with no factors left out, no illegible scrawl on the form.

    Important matters like Pupillary Distance must be accuerately measured and stated on the results form.

    They must give you your results for reading, computer and distance [and driving].

    They MUST give you your data (your exact prescription) for
    Sphere (SPH), Cylinder (CYL) Axis? and Near Addition (ADD)

    Many high street opticians skimp on this service. Don't let them do this.

    My last set of glasses cost me online £24. They are more than perfect.

  4. Stop the Scam 25/11/2013 / 2:24 pm

    I went to an optician in this country and again to another in another country a few weeks later. The prescriptions I was given by each was wildly different, by as much as +2 for each eye.

    Why do they advertise "free eye tests" when in fact it is the NHS which is paying for them? I pay for the NHS in my taxes, therefore the eye tests are NOT FREE for me

  5. grosvenormusic 25/10/2013 / 2:33 pm

    I was quoted £160 for frames only and £150 for average quality vari focal lenses at a high street optomist recently…..A week before I had purchased a new 18 gear good quality hybrid bicycle for about the same price of £300…..I am not going to be convinced by anyone that spectacles are complex and expensive objects to make and dispense. Its just another example of a profession that has ripped off the public for years.

  6. ron 19/11/2012 / 5:37 pm

    stop the scam,
    +/- 1.00 wont make a difference? – what on earth are you basing that on? -1.00 difference in a prescription is enormous. ie -1.00 will have approx 6/18 vsion (could be better – but not much – could be worse). -1.00 prescription would certainly exclude you from driving. +1.00 difference would mean a serious difference in the ability to read close up. You are talking drivel. You say you have studied for four years, what in? I'm sure I know nothing on your particular subject and would never attempt to pretend to be an authority on it, Half as much as an optometrist then please tell me how much they earn – I know the answer – do you?

  7. Stop the Scam 27/10/2012 / 1:20 pm

    Optometrists are overpaid, grossly overpaid. In time their profession will suffer, as automatic means of measuring eyes are developed and one eventually is independently able to order one's glasses online. I undertook 4 years college education, including postgraduate, and I don't earn half as much as they do.

    In our high street there are 4 opticians. Who needs that many?

    Does it really matter how accurately they measure your optical prescription? Not really. plus/minus 1 on the scale won't make any real difference. I bet if you went to two separate optometrists each would measure your eyes at completely different values.

  8. Freddie 19/07/2012 / 8:52 am

    Back from my holidays with two lovely new pairs of glasses. One pair retails in the UK for £500, the other for £200. I bought two as I am a bit forgetful from time to time and I need to keep a pair in my briefcase for work.
    The total price for this was €370 and they were ready after two days. Not only this but the optician, not a shop assistant, helped me choose the frames which suited me best. He rejected some more expensive ones as they did not suit me so it is clear that service is considered more than turnover and profit. How refreshing!

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