Where's the right place to buy contact lenses online?
January 28, 2009 10:19 AM   Subscribe

Where's the right place to buy contact lenses online? Is this a bad idea for any reason?

(Calling all spammer slimebags, come hawk your sketchy site!)
posted by gleuschk to Computers & Internet (14 answers total) 10 users marked this as a favorite
I've used 1-800-Contacts, they were helpful and honest. However their prices weren't any better than the doctor's office.

Plus you of course need to have a prescription from your doctor that is not out of date.
posted by wocka wocka wocka at 10:25 AM on January 28, 2009

I've always had good luck with 1-800-contacts. They do send a lot of advertisements and e-mails to me now, though. Not sure if that matters to you. On the plus side, they were very helpful in contacting my eye doctor when something was wrong with the prescription and I got my contacts pretty quickly even with the issue, and they have good customer service. You might be able to find a coupon online, too.
posted by k8lin at 10:26 AM on January 28, 2009

Not online, but in the US many Costco and Walmart stores sell contacts, presumably at discounted prices.
posted by zippy at 10:28 AM on January 28, 2009

1-800-Contacts, I was about to buy it from them, but I found out that I could get them cheaper from BJ's. They were pretty cool about me canceling my order because of that.
posted by QueenHawkeye at 10:28 AM on January 28, 2009

Best answer: This was asked pretty recently.
posted by Flamingo at 10:37 AM on January 28, 2009

I have bought from 1800Contacts for about 10 years. No problems. Next day delivery, and they will take boxes back if your prescription changes (which mine does, relatively often). No reason to fear doing this online; they are 100% identical to the ones I get from the doctor and usually considerably cheaper.

Furthermore, they will match the price of any competitor. For instance, my product of choice, Acuvue Oasys:

1800Contacts: $33.99/box or $29.99/8
OptiContacts.com: $23.25/box or $22.79/8

I bought 8 boxes from 1800Contacts for 98% of the OptiContacts.com price. And got the 1800Contacts customer service, free next-day shipping and the ability to return any unopened boxes at any time. Can't beat that with a stick.
posted by jckll at 10:37 AM on January 28, 2009

Have you had contact lenses before? It might be a good idea to go to a store and be fitted for a trial pair of contact lenses. When you try a new brand of contacts, they'll give you a free trial pair to see how you like them.

When you go for a fitting, the optician measures the curvature of your eye, among other things. You might have unusually flat or round eyes, which would be good to know before going ahead and buying contacts online. That info might be on the box. Then when you find a pair you like via free trials, then you can search for a good deal online.
posted by lizbunny at 10:40 AM on January 28, 2009

Hard or soft and if the former, which type exactly (rigid or the rigid gas permeable)?
posted by variella at 11:06 AM on January 28, 2009

Just a note, if you have really bad vision, you may not be able to use 1800Contacts. For example, I can't, they just don't sell contacts in my prescription level. Sigh, being blind as a bat is never easy.
posted by katers890 at 11:28 AM on January 28, 2009

I'll nth 1800Contacts, they've been very helpful and even expedited my order (they sent things the moment they got confirmation of my prescription) with free shipping when I needed something in a hurry before a long trip.
posted by ob at 11:34 AM on January 28, 2009

I'll put in my nth to the nth degree recommendation for 1-800 Contacts. The contacts arrived quickly and at a good price. If I didn't need a new prescription this year, i'd so order from them again.
posted by arishaun at 11:43 AM on January 28, 2009

When I have had problems with an individual lens from 1800contacts, they Priority Mailed me a replacement one. *shrug* They just take good care of their customers.
posted by wenestvedt at 12:03 PM on January 28, 2009

Also recommending 1-800-contacts. I've never had a problem with my order and they always arrive very soon after I place my order.

I do not recommend lens.com. I had a huge problem with them when they clearly sent me the wrong lenses for one eye. They were the wrong prescription AND the wrong brand. Customer service was not helpful. They would not send out the correct lenses until I sent the wrong ones back. Then they tried to charge me a higher price when they sent out the correct ones.
posted by Nolechick11 at 12:20 PM on January 28, 2009

I've used 1-800-contacts previously as well. In order to get a decent discount you have to order like 8 boxes which costs 200 bucks anyways, so its not really worth it. They are okay enough. I haven't had problems with them but they're retail priced (and I like a deal). They will take old (more than a year old) prescriptions if you provide the eye doctor's name and telephone number.

If you have a local eye doc and health insurance, you may get a better price through them. I know I did in the last city I lived in. You usually will just have to call them a week or two in advance of when you need them to ensure they have them in stock. Luckily both my eyes have the same Rx so I can just get one box if I wanna get 3 pairs at a time.
posted by ijoyner at 2:17 PM on January 28, 2009

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