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This post was most recently updated on April 7th, 2021
Reading glasses are one of those things that not many people know are eligible for reimbursement through your FSA (Flexible Spending Account) or HSA (Health Savings Account) Accounts. Keep in mind that if you have a DCFSA (Dependent Care Flexible Spending Account), those are not eligible for purchasing reading glasses.
Reading glasses are eligible for reimbursement through your FSA or HSA whether or not they are prescribed reading glasses or non-prescription reading glasses.
As we get older a gradual loss of the ability to focus on near objects starts to set in. This condition is referred to as Presbyopia and is caused by the lens in your eye losing elasticity. This is something that eventually will happen to most people and is a natural part of aging. One of the most popular ways to help with this is, of course, reading glasses.
There are a few ways that you could go about getting reading glasses, you could either get reading glasses with a prescription, or you could purchase non-prescription reading glasses. If you are getting non-prescription reading glasses you don’t have to be stuck getting those really cheap ones from your local retailer, there are many online retailers that allow you to select the frame and power you need and they will make a pair of reading glasses for you, no prescription needed.
What Is FSA/HSA, and How Does It Work?
FSA (Flexible Spending Account) and HSA (Health Savings Account) allow you to set aside pre-tax money to use towards qualified medical expenses. Most people use these funds to cover out-of-pocket medical expenses such as copays, coinsurance, qualifying prescriptions, and certain medical equipment.
Back in the day, you would have to pay for everything and submit for reimbursement but these days you generally get a debit card with affiliation to VISA or MasterCard and you could be able to spend it just like you would a normal debit card on eligible expenses. Some retailers will have items in their stores programmed for FSA/HSA so it won’t pay for any items that aren’t an eligible expense.
Other Eyecare Expenses Eligible For FSA/HSA
Reading glasses aren’t the only eyecare expense that is eligible for FSA/HSA, there are actually quite a few things you could spend it on such as:
- Prescription Glasses – It doesn’t matter if you wear single vision lenses, bifocals, or progressives, prescription glasses is an eligible expense to purchase with FSA/HSA. Everything from the frames to the lenses are eligible expenses that you could use FSA/HSA for, this includes any lens add-ons you may want on your glasses such as anti-reflective coating, blue light filtering, or transition lenses.
- Eye Exam – When you go get your comprehensive eye exam from your eyecare practitioner, this is an expense that is eligible for you to use your FSA/HSA to pay for it. Keep in mind when you go get your comprehensive eye exam your eyecare practitioner is not only checking your eyes to see if you need a prescription, but they also check for signs of various diseases. This isn’t only limited to eye diseases, a comprehensive eye exam could also uncover other health conditions such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and more. If you have vision insurance coverage, you could use your FSA/HSA to cover your copay for your exam.
- Prescription Sunglasses – If you are looking for some prescription shades, this is an eligible FSA/HSA expense as well. The important part is that it has a prescription, FSA/HSA will not cover non-prescription sunglasses. If you have leftover FSA/HSA money, prescription sunglasses are a great investment. Especially if you are someone that does a lot of driving, or spends a lot of time outdoors.
- Contact Lenses – Another great way to spend leftover FSA/HSA dollars. If you wear prescription contact lenses, using those leftover FSA/HSA dollars to stock up your supply of contact lenses if never a bad idea. If you wear contact lenses full time you know how expensive they could be. Keep in mind that if you are just wearing contact lenses to change the color of your eye, this is not an eligible expense it must have a prescription.
- Eye Surgeries – This is another hefty expense that is eligible for FSA/HSA and it is a good thing that it is because these surgeries can be quite expensive. Surgeries such as Lasik and PRK (photorefractive keratectomy) could potentially correct your vision and remove the need for corrective eyewear. Surgeries for conditions such as cataracts and glaucoma are also eligible for FSA/HSA.
- Eye Drops – If you use OTC (Over-the-counter) eye drops to help with red, dry, itchy, or watery eyes, these are also eligible for reimbursement through FSA/HSA.
- Contact Lens Solution – The solution you use to keep your contact lenses clean and moist is also an eligible expense you could use FSA/HSA on. Even rewetting drops you use throughout the day to prevent your contacts from drying out can be purchased with FSA/HSA.
- Contact Lens Case – In order to keep your contact lenses clean and properly stored you will need to purchase contact lens cases every so often. It is usually recommended to switch out your contact lens case once every three months. The good thing is that they are an FSA eligible item.
Where To Buy Reading Glasses Online With FSA/HSA
If you need reading glasses and would like to use your FSA/HSA to purchase them online there are a few ways you could go about doing so. If your FSA/HSA provider has given you a debit card affiliated with VISA or MasterCard then you could just use that card to make your purchase just like you would using any other credit card.
If your FSA/HSA provider didn’t give you a card you could still make your purchase online. The only downside to that is that you would have to pay for the items out-of-pocket and then submit your receipt in to get reimbursed.
If you are unsure of where you could purchase reading glasses online with your FSA or HSA here are some of our favorite places. Some have reading glasses ready to ship, and some will actually make you reading glasses in the frame and power that you choose.
This is definitely one of my favorite places to recommend to anyone that is looking for reading glasses, especially anyone looking for reading glasses that are stronger than what you are used to finding at your local drug, and retail stores.
At Readers.com you will find reading glasses from powers starting from +0.50 and up to +7.00. Types of readers include fully magnified readers, bifocal readers, sunglass readers, multifocal readers, and customized readers.
They have many different frame styles for you to pick from and offer a 90-day Happiness Guarantee to make sure that you are 100% satisfied with your purchase. Check out Readers.com Here
If you want a pair of glasses that are better in quality than the usual over-the-counter premade reading glasses this is a great place to look.
At Warby Parker you can pick out any of their frames on their website and select a reading power anywhere between +0.25 and +2.75 and they will be made and shipped out to you. If you would like to try on frames before making your purchase you can do so through the Home Try-On Program. This program allows you to select 5 frames to be sent to your house to try on to help you with your decision.
Warby Parker’s glasses come standard with polycarbonate lenses, anti-reflective coating, and scratch-resistant coating. They offer a 30-day no-hassle return policy along with a 1-year guarantee for scratches on the lenses. Head here to order your free Home Try-On Kit and try on some frames today.
If you are looking for a big selection of all kinds of reading glasses to pick from Amazon is a great place to check out.
They have some reading glasses that are so thin that you could fit the glasses into your wallet like a credit card. If you are looking for reading glasses that also filters out blue light, they have those also. If you want reading glasses that you could fold up really small, you could find those too. Not to mention you can basically find any color reading glasses you want and in pretty much any shape and size.
The good thing is that they have all the glasses that are FSA eligible labeled accordingly so you will know for sure that it is eligible for you to use your flexible spending to purchase. The best part is that most of the reading glasses are a part of Amazon Prime which means you can get free two-day or next-day shipping. If you aren’t an Amazon Prime member, you can try it out here for 30 days for free.
Vint & York
If you love vintage looking frames you have to give Vint & York a look, they have taken some classic and vintage styles and turned them into sleek and new frames that are modern and stylish.
At Vint & York, you can order reading glasses without a prescription in powers from as low as +0.25 and it goes up in increments of +0.25 all the way up to +4.00. The glasses are made with the power you pick and shipped to you free of charge.
Vint & York offers a 15-day return policy and a 1-year limited warranty on all of their frames. Visit Vint & York Here.
This is a website that doesn’t sell anything but 100% items that are eligible for flexible spending.
Among all of those FSA eligible items is a pretty nice selection of reading glasses as well as reading sunglasses. They have some that are really inexpensive as well as some that cost a bit more than your average pair of reading glasses but also filter out blue light.
Reading glasses aren’t the only vision care items you could find at FSAStore.com, they also offer a wide range of other vision care items such as contact lens solutions, cases, and eye drops as well. Take a look at the FSA Store here.
If it is getting close to the end of the year and you still have a good chunk of money in your flexible spending or health savings account you should definitely consider spending some of it purchasing some reading glasses.
Don’t forget that flexible spending also covers other vision care such as eye exams, prescription glasses, and contacts as well.
Always double-check with your plan carrier to know exactly when the funds in your account expire. Some accounts allow you to roll over your balance into the first few months of the year to give you more time to use the money, but not all accounts allow this so it is best to double-check before you lose the hard-earned money you put in there.
Thanks for stopping by Eye Health HQ, if you have any further questions or concerns feel free to drop me a comment below.