Best Places to Buy Cheap Glasses Online


Support Cheapism: Do your shopping with our retail partners.

View as:

Photo credit: Nicoleta Ionescu/shutterstock


Many people who wear glasses pay a pretty penny for stylish frames with lenses that provide a clear view of the world. Ordering prescription eyewear online is an efficient way to save big bucks, with prices starting at less than $50.

The cheapest packages include frames and lenses at the lowest index available. Consumers must pay more for thinner, lighter high-index lenses that make strong prescriptions less bulky. How much more depends on the company, the lens index, and what the lens is made of. Polycarbonate and high-index plastic lenses generally cost more than lenses made of CR-39 plastic. Those who need bifocals or progressives also pay extra, and add-ons such as tints, anti-glare coating, and light-adaptive lenses push the final tally higher. Even on a discount eyeglasses site, it's easily possible to spend $150 or more.

Still, thousands of satisfied customers crow about prices that fall well below what they used to pay at a chain provider or private optometrist. scoured scores of reviews to determine the best online retailers of cheap eyeglasses for men, women, and children. These sites deliver on product quality, customer service, and price.
Photo credit: goodluz/shutterstock


Zenni Optical amasses the most online reviews, by far, and arguably the most enthusiastic patrons. The company offers hundreds of fashionable frames, manufactured in its own factory, at prices low enough to let customers order multiple pairs at a time. A tiny minority grouse that you get what you pay for in terms of quality. The website is easy to navigate and loaded with information and help guides. The basic entry-level package for a frame with single-vision 1.50-index lenses starts at $6.95.
Photo credit: goodluz/shutterstock


Despite a higher starting price than other low-cost eyewear sites, 39 Dollar Glasses wins over consumers with generally accurate lens correction, speedy shipping, and responsive service (smoothing over a customer error when placing an order, for example). It puts new lenses in frames that customers already own and also sells contact lenses. The user-friendly website goes a step farther than most, letting users print images of the frames to cut out and try on to see how they look. The starting package includes a frame with polycarbonate single-vision 1.59-index lenses for $39.
Photo credit: kurhan/shutterstock


Recently redesigned Coastal wins a spot on the list on the strength of mostly positive reviews and an unusually long 365-day window for returns, no questions asked. Fans appreciate the product quality (both frames and lenses) and the good customer service. Naysayers gripe about shoddy frames, shipping delays, and prices that seem high compared with other budget providers. Coastal also sells contacts and lenses designed for use with digital screens. The starting package with frame and single-vision 1.59-index polycarbonate lenses costs $35.
Photo credit: Yuriy Rudyy/shutterstock


Satisfied reviewers extol the helpful customer service, accurate corrections, and especially the low prices at Goggles4U. Some carp about inconsistent quality in the frames and lenses and customer service that doesn't really provide any. The website is pretty basic compared with the other online sellers of eyeglasses, but it's easy enough to use. The cheapest package costs $6.95 and includes a frame with single-vision 1.57-index lenses. Buy-one-get-one deals on select frames start at $15.95.
Photo credit: Syda Productions/shutterstock


EyeBuyDirect doesn't rank with the big-name competition but earns decent reviews from many customers. These patrons say things have improved recently, and product quality is not compromised by low prices. Unhappy customers complain about problems with lens correction and order delivery. The website is easy to use, but upselling pressure is strong. There are a handful of frames for $6 that come with single-vision 1.50-index lenses; anti-scratch and anti-reflective coatings cost another $6.95. The company charges $4 for a case and cleaning cloth, accessories that are free from other online eyewear providers.