Mall Eyeglasses Are An Expensive Mistake

Buying eyeglasses at the mall when you can get the same quality for a tenth the price online is an expensive and silly mistake. A pair of glasses that costs $300 or more locally can be ordered online from a reputable company for less than $30.

And the glasses are exactly the same. Only the price is different because of the expensive overhead costs involved in running an eyeglasses store in a shopping center or mall.

When I first learned that you can get cheap eyeglasses online from Zenni Optical and other similar companies, I ordered a pair of prescription reading glasses. With a special antiglare coating to make it easier to work at the computer, the total costs was about $17. I’m still using that pair all the time.

If you want designer frames or have bifocals, the cost is a bit more, but it’s still likely to be a tenth of what those mall stores charge. If you just need plain single-vision glasses with no coatings, there are dozens of frame choices that are just $7, lenses included.

Zenni Optical is the only company from which I’ve ever ordered cheap eyeglasses online, but there are others. All of them are substantially less expensive than going to a local place because they just have one or two facilities and one small staff — not hundreds or thousands of employees all around the country.

Size isn’t a problem either. The sites feature complete measurements for the glasses and explain how to measure your face. You can also measure old glasses, if you have them, for comparison with the measurements presented on the sites.

If you’re trying to be frugal and save a few pennies on groceries but aren’t getting your glasses online, you’re saving pennies while costing yourself hundreds of dollars. It doesn’t make sense to be frugal only on the small things when you can save even bigger on the big things.