Your eyes are important, and we want you to spend the time to take care of them. That said, if you have glasses, you know firsthand how expensive and time-consuming it can be to balance your glasses prescription, contacts, contact solution, and all the other annoying baggage that goes along with imperfect vision. (Don’t worry, we think that you’re perfect!)
Here are 5 important ways to save on eye care:
Check Your HSA or FSA.
If you have a health savings account or a flexible savings account, check to see if you can use it to pay for eyewear, recommends Dr. Barry Eiden, chairman of American Optometric Association’s Contact Lens and Cornea Section. These accounts can also pay for additional expenses like contact lens solution. Before leaving her job, our friend used her FSA to pay for many months of contact lenses, which saved her over $100. Especially if your FSA is expiring or the end of the year is approaching, buying a bunch of contacts is a great way to use up the funds.
See If Your Regular Insurance Will Help.
Even if you don't have a vision plan, your regular medical plan might actually provide for vision care and even eyewear. Start by calling your medical or vision insurance provider to check if you are covered for eyewear, says Eiden. “Most employers don’t offer a vision plan, and if they did, it’s one of the first things that has been getting cut” in the recession. “But most people have no idea that their medical plan” might be able to lend a hand when you need a new pair of glasses or additional contacts.
Ask Your Optometrist About Rebates.
If you buy eyewear through your optometrist, Eiden suggests asking about mail-in rebates, which are provided by most major manufacturers to lower costs for consumers.
Buy Eyewear That Comes With Repair and Replacement Plans.
“Doctors who sell contacts might provide benefits to patients that they cannot get online, such as replacing contacts for no charge if they are broken or lost,” Eiden says. “Also, if our patients’ eyes change six months down the road, we give them a new prescription for no charge.” Also, you can often obtain a repair and replacement plan when buying eyewear from big retailers like Wal-Mart and Lens Crafters.
Get One Set of Eyewear for Multiple Uses.
Okay, so, TruFocals are a little funky-looking. But, newly-developed adjustable focus eyeglasses are a single pair that works for distance, reading, computer work, sports, and sun. The initial cost of these glasses is higher than that of traditional ones, but you'll save money in the long run because you only need to buy one pair. If TruFocals don't jibe with your fashion taste, consider transition lenses with more stylish frames, which would combine regular glasses with prescription sunglasses. If you buy transition lenses with any frame from FramesDirect, you'll save $15 with coupon code TRA15.
Now, how does that look to you?