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This post was most recently updated on August 7th, 2020
Anyone that has vision problems knows that being able to see comes at a cost and a cost that you can’t avoid if you want to be able to see. That doesn’t mean you can’t shop around for the best prices so that you don’t have to pay top dollar to be able to see.
If you are a full-time contact lens wearer, your average annual cost for your contact lenses can be quite high depending on your prescription and which brand of contacts you are wearing, and where you get them from. There are dozens of online retailers, but they are not all the same, some of them are small operations with horrible selections, others have high retail prices. Below you will find a list of the top retailers where you can find affordable contact lenses online.
7 Places to find affordable contact lenses online
The number one concern when it comes to contact lenses is always the cost, which means there are more people turning to the internet every day to see if there are better alternatives. As with anything else on the internet, it is important to make sure that the retailer you are purchasing from is an authorized and trustworthy retailer.
So if you already have your prescription and are searching for places to buy contact lenses, we have done hours to research to find safe, authorized and affordable retailers for you to purchase your contact lenses online, see below.
- LensDirect – Lens Direct is a New York-based company that carries many top brands of contact lenses, and at times they have one of the best prices. They also offer free shipping if you spend over $49, which shouldn’t be hard to achieve, one box for each eye should easily get you over that. They will also price match any authorized online retailer.
- ACLens – AC Lens is a Texas-based company that carries most top brands of contact lenses, as well as a small selection of color cosmetic contact lenses. AC Lens offers free shipping if you spend over $99, but one of the best features for AC Lens is their price match guarantee. AC Lens will not only price match, but they will beat their competitor’s price by 5%.
- Eyeconic – Eyeconic is a company run by the vision insurance company Vision Service Plan Vision Care. Eyeconic is one of the few online retailers that you can apply your vision insurance benefits directly to your order. Which means you can save money right away and spend less out of pocket. Eyeconic offers free standard shipping on all their orders, and price matches authorized online retailers.
- Walgreens – Walgreens is an Illinois-based drugstore that at times can have some great deals on their contact lenses. They often offer promotions where you can get a percentage off of your entire contact lens order, and offers free standard shipping on all their orders. Walgreens does not offer a price match guarantee, however when they are running their promotions they often times will be the best price.
- Coastal – Coastal is a Vancouver-based company that is known to the United States as Coastal, but the rest of the world as Clearly. Owned by French lens manufacturer Essilor, this is one of the most reputable online eyewear retailers out there. They offer a price match guarantee, but with a maximum discount of up to $100, and offers free standard shipping.
- WalmartContacts.com – Walmart doesn’t exactly need an introduction, but this Arkansas-based company is one of the largest retailers that operate globally. While they are extremely lacking as far as prescription glasses online, they offer a great selection of contact lenses and will price match any authorized retailer. They also offer free standard shipping on all their orders.
- 1800Contacts – This is probably one of the most well known online contact retailers on the market today. They are a Utah-based company that offers a large selection of contact lenses and will price match and beat competitors’ prices by 2%. They also offer an express eye exam renewal service where you can get your expired prescription renewed online. They also offer free shipping on all of their orders.
How to find the best prices on your contact lenses
Now that you have a list of places that you can trust to purchase your prescription glasses from, it doesn’t mean that you should just dive right into the first retailer on the list and order your contacts. There are ways for you to lower the cost of your contact lenses, whether you buy your contacts online or at your local retailer. Many retailers will often run promotions or rebates which could help reduce the cost on your contact lenses.
But you wouldn’t be able to find those promotions or rebates if you weren’t looking for them. Below you can find how to find the best prices on your contact lenses.
- Shop Around – This tip cannot be stressed enough. Just because one retailer had the best prices this one time, doesn’t mean that they will always have the best price. Shopping around will also show you if there are any promotions such as coupon codes, or rebates that you might be able to take advantage of.
- Inquire About Brand Change – If you would like to see if there is a brand of contact lenses that are less expensive, inquire with the doctor’s office in which you got your eye exam done. Your doctor will be the only one that will be able to let you know if there is another brand of contacts that you can wear, your doctor will also need to prescribe them to you.
- Check Vision Insurance – If you have vision insurance, it is always worth it to at least check and sees if you have any coverage. Although most online retailers do not directly bill with your insurance. If you have VSP, MetLife, or Cigna Vision you would be able to apply your benefits directly to your order over at Eyeonic.
- Shipping Cost – Don’t forget to factor in the cost of shipping for your contact lenses. If you are purchasing from a retailer that does not offer free shipping, then make sure you factor in the cost of shipping when making your decision. Try not to order contact lenses last minute as well since that will drive up your shipping cost if you have to expedite contacts.
- Rebates – Always check the website of the manufacture of your contacts to see if there are any current rebates available for you to take advantage of. Manufactures usually run promotions on newer contacts that are released to try and get that brand more exposure.
- Purchase in Bulk – This is an easy way to save money on your contact lenses IF you can fit it into your budget. Many online retailers offer discounts if you purchase a 6-month or annual supply. You should make sure you check what the return policy is on UNOPENED boxes of contacts. Many retailers will give you up to a year to exchange your unopened boxes which will keep you from being stuck with contacts if your prescription happens to change.
- FSA/HSA – Flexible Spending and Health Savings Accounts are a great way to save money on your contact lenses. These accounts have money that has already been put away tax-free for moments just like these. Purchasing contacts is a great way to spend that leftover money at the end of the year before it expires.
- Ask For Price Match – If you already have a retailer that you generally go to and trust, you can always ask if they would be willing to price match the lower price you found. It doesn’t hurt to ask, and the worse thing you can be told is no.
Wearing contact lenses can be a bit more costly than using glasses, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t look for ways to save you money on them. We’ve guided you towards the most affordable and trusted online retailers, now with a bit of effort on your part, you will be on your way to paying the best prices for your prescription contact lenses and saving money.
Where do you currently purchase contact lenses? How do you like purchasing there? Let us know below!
If you have any questions or comments, don’t hesitate to leave them below and we will get back to you as soon as we can.
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8 thoughts on “7 Places to Find Affordable Contact Lenses Online 2020”
Hi there, thanks for a thorough and informative review about contact lenses. I have not used them myself and wonder if any of these places that you have recommended supply globally? Or would you suggest I research more locally for suppliers? I can see how they would be possibly a better option than glasses if the costs were reasonable. Thanks for providing some options. Cass
Hi Cass thank you for stopping by, so out of the retailers I have listed ACLens, and 1800Contacts ships internationally, and Coastal operates worldwide as Clearly. Hope that answers your question.
Thank you very much. Cass
You are very welcome!
I like ACLenses and 1800 Contacts. The brand I like is OASIS and EQUATE. These companies provide these two brands. I know it has really made it easier for me in wearing contacts. They last longer and my eyes do not feel them. I have heard that there are people who feel like their eyes tickles or itches. That has never happened to me.
hi Linda thats amazing! Over the years in the field I have come across patients that have had issues with their contact lens brands and it usually is an easy fix with a revisit to the doctor’s office for a recheck. Different contact lens brands feel different to different people. Thanks for stopping by!
Hi Huy, I have been following your site since I read your post on the best places to fund glasses – my 7 yo goes through them like water. We are considering contact lenses for him as he get a little older. Do you know what the minimum recommended age is for contact lenses in a child? I feel this would not only save us some $$ but also allow him to remove the glasses making is easier for his sport etc.
Hi Paul, thanks for stopping by again, in regards to your question, there is truly technically no minimum age but what I usually tell parents is that if they feel like their child is responsible for contacts than you should definitely inquire about them at the next eye exam with your prefered eye doctor. Contact lenses are technically medical devices and have to be cared for or else it could lead to serious eye complications so basically at which ever age you feel like your child is responsible enough to care for them properly. I have seen children as young as 10 wearing contacts.