The Weekly Gripe

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 www.nuglasses.co.uk.  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


Leave a comment

   

First Prev Page 1 of 9 Next Last

hazzer12

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!
9th Aug 14 11:08

!

0

Peter

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.
22nd Jan 14 04:01

!

1

Time We Closed The Scam Opticians Down

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.
20th Dec 13 01:12

!

3

Stop the Scam

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
25th Nov 13 02:11

!

2

grosvenormusic

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.
25th Oct 13 02:10

!

1

ron

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?
19th Nov 12 05:11

!

1

Stop the Scam

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.
27th Oct 12 01:10

!

-1

Freddie

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!
19th Jul 12 08:07

!

-5

Bmx

Yes not only are you being overchaged also opticians work on conversion rates so you get glasses even with no or a very tiny change in prescription also opticians offer discounted eye tests yet charge the nhs over twenty ponds for an eye test,I beleive whatever the discounted rate is that is the amount that should be claimed.As for the first reply wow as many staff in opticians are now very under trained and most are unregulated spectacles should be cheaper
17th Jul 12 10:07

!

3

realist

The high street opticians are not overchargeing you - it turns out infact that you are just a ignorant uneducated one tracked person, who cant see the bigger picture. How do you think the opticians would survive if they gave u a free eye test and glasses for about £20.. they have to pay the salary of the optometrist who studied the eyes for 4 years before qualifying - He or she should recieve a salary worth there qualification. then there are the other staff to pay, the rent the rates the other bills, the expensive equipment.. Before complaining and shooting off at the mouth why dont u think for a minute.. Ur like those people is which magazine who know didly squat... goodluck..
21st Feb 12 12:02

!

-7

Freddie

Or you could get your eyes tested when abroad and buy the frames there too. I do this. As I visit Cyprus regularly I go to an optician out there. The test is free, the frames are half the price of the UK and the finished product is ready in 48 hrs. My optician is UK trained and the eye test is every bit as good as the UK. In fact, I'd say it is better. So, if you have holidays booked and need an opticians apointment, I would suggest you try and kill two birds with one stone. I have an eye test due in June and already have my apointment for the first morning of the holiday.
20th Jan 12 03:01

!

0

funtimefrankie

In the UK, the price paid for an eye test, whether it's you who pays or the NHS who pays, nowhere near covers the amount it costs to provide that eye test. What I mean is that if you have an eye test and pay say £20, it will have cost somewhere between £45 and £75 to provide that eye test for you, depending on rent levels and equipment used. Generally speaking, the test fees will pay a bit more than the opticians salary, leaving hardly anything left to pay for: rent other staff equipment fixtures and fittings utilities (light, heat etc). For this reason, the price of glasses in the UK has always been set at a level that subsidises the provision of eye tests. That is, you pay more for your glasses, because the eye tests are so cheap. In the USA, you will generally pay more for an eye test and less for glasses. OK, I hear you say, why doesn't some enterprising soul set up an opticians in the UK charging £60 for an eye test (instead of £20) and selling glasses £40 cheaper? Well, think about that for a minute. Such an establishment would sell lots of glasses, but do hardly any eye tests, because people would get their eye test for £20 from somewhere else. The optician would be sat around getting paid for doing not very much, and all that expensive eye testing equipment would still have to be paid for, but you wouldn't be charging enough for the glasses to pay for it, and you wouldn't be getting enough eye test fees to pay for it either. So, the only way it would work is if EVERY optician agreed to charge a lot more for an eye test and a lot less for glasses, and they all did it at the same time. What do you think are the chances? In any case, the customer who got his eyes tested and bought glasses at the same optical store wouldn't see any overall price reduction for a visit which included one eye test and one pair of glasses. Only if he returned after six months and bought more glasses without an eye test would he save any money. At the end of the day, whatever shop you go to, and whatever you buy, it's you, the customer who is paying for everything that it costs to provide you with those goods, ie the wages, equipment, fittings, goods, etc, even down to the carpet tiles and the paint on the walls. Where else would the money come from to pay for all that? Internet suppliers don't supply eye tests at far less than cost, as they don't supply them at all. So, they don't have to recover those professional staff and equipment costs when they sell glasses. Nor do they have to provide staff to adjust the glasses they sell you, or fit a screw or nose pad or do any kind of running repairs for you. So the reason you can buy glasses cheap on the internet is not because high street opticians are all ripping you off, it's simply that they have far higher costs to pay than internet suppliers. It's the same with HMV versus Amazon when it comes to buying CDs and DVDs. Having said all that, you will find big differences in prices between different opticians, partly due to the different buying power they have when dealing with suppliers, so as with anything, it pays to shop around on the high street.
20th Jan 12 02:01

!

-1

First Prev Page 1 of 9 Next Last

spinner