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I wrote a quick piece a couple of years ago about what to consider when buying online. The rules haven't really changed during that time, but the process has gotten better. A few of the major players are getting better at dealing with difficulties and prices have stabilized a bit lower than before.

I get thousands of new people visiting the site each week and wanted to highlight the steps to getting a great pair of glasses at prices you never imagined.

Here are those steps again:

  1. Get your eyes checked. This is important from a prescription strength and an eye health perspective. Keep a schedule and get this done annually -- yes, I've changed my tune a bit on this.
  2. Get your full prescription. You paid for it. Make sure you leave with it. If you didn't bring it with you, give them a call. The law says they need to provide you with it.
  3. Get your Pupillary Distance (PD). This isn't a part of your prescription by default. See here for some ideas on getting this measurement. It's important and it's not that difficult to get for a single vision prescription (bi-focal or multi-focals require a bit more expertise).
  4. Get your frame measurements. There are a couple of good ways to do this. I liked my old frame style, so I knew that frames with similar measurements would likely end up being decent looking. If you're looking for something new, find a pair you like at the store and write down the measurements from the frame. In either case, the measurements are typically stamped inside the temple and/or on the bridge.
  5. Find a frame. Hit the websites listed to the left and start browsing. You're looking for sizes as well as style here -- don't forget that! If the site offers a way to drill down to a temple size, for instance, use it! It will save you a ton of time. There is no reason to look at all of the 130mm temple-lengths when you need a 140mm.
  6. Choose your lens options. I was oversold on "featherwates" and hi-index lenses for years. Depending on your prescription strength and the lens size for the frames you're looking at, you may be fine with the standard thickness lenses. I like anti-reflective lenses and I'm amazed at how much I like the photochromic lenses. With the low cost of these glasses, pick up a pair with sunglasses lenses. I don't buy lenses that don't include UV protection -- neither should you.
  7. Order up! Use a credit card (not a debit card) to aid in unlikely event of problematic resolution issues. Pay a couple dollars extra for faster shipping from a number of the retailers.
  8. Wait. This was the hardest part for me -- mostly because I was without a spare pair. It gets easier when you're not in that pinch.
If you follow these steps, you're going to end up (with a MUCH better chance of being) happy. Order from a reputable online retailer and you may just be starting a mutually-beneficial long-term relationship.

Good luck!



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3 comments:

At March 25, 2010 at 5:32 AM Anonymous said...

Eyeglasses: Buy Prescription Eyeglasses Online at OrderYourGlasses.com! Prices from $14.95, with a wide selection and the best quality lenses available online. We offer fashionable frames for Men, Women, and Kids at prices that will help you save money while getting the best quality lenses!

 
At March 27, 2010 at 7:14 PM meg said...

Well! Goggles4You has jumped in with new charges for coatings! Online glasses aren't quite as inexpensive as they used to be.

 
At April 13, 2010 at 11:52 AM BKaye said...

(If this posts twice, I apologize...been awhile since I replied to something online.) I'm glad I ran across your site as I'm starting to look for new prescription glasses and sunglasses for running and biking. You mention temple measurements. How do you get that measurement? (did I miss that somewhere?) Is that something they will tell me when I go to my next eye exam in the next week? I appreciate your feedback.

 

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