Sunday, November 24, 2013

Buying glasses online, just my experience

Rosie's misplaced glasses, last seen June-ish 2013;
photo taken on Memorial Day '13.

Back in January, Rosie had an eye exam that showed a need for vision correction. We purchased glasses for her the traditional way, through an optometrist's office and insurance and received her pair by February. However, by the beginning of last summer Rosie lost that pair of glasses. It wasn't a big deal during summer camps and outdoor activities, so I put off replacing them for a few months. Our insurance only allowed one covered purchase of glasses per year, so with September and the start of school looming, I was at a loss as to how we would get another pair for less than $350 (starting prices at brick-and-mortar shops around here).

Then, I remembered that Kelly had recommended shopping online with Rosie really wanted a pair that was exactly like the one she lost, and Zenni didn't appear to have it.

After searching a couple of other glasses sites, I found a pair that was close to identical to Rosie's old pair at I dug up her Rx, but was a little stumped as to what "PD" meant. It wasn't on the doctor's Rx and the site didn't give any details, so I just went with their default number. I placed my order, and waited. And waited some more. And sent some frustrated emails. The estimate was nine days to deliver, but it ended up taking two months. I understand that they shipped from China, but they shouldn't say nine days if they can't back up their claim. To add to my frustration, the GlassesShop 800 number never seemed to get answered, so I was dealing with everything primarily through emails with a major time lag. I learned later that the GlassesShop glasses order got held up in medical customs in California and I was less than thrilled about the wait.

Rosie's absolutely favorite new glasses from Zenni Optical
(photo effects added by Rosie).
Since we were a month into the school year and Rosie needed to see the chalkboard, I ended up ordering a second pair from The Zenni website is more robust and the services (online chat!) are more helpful. Their pupillary distance (PD: finally found out what it meant) ruler was especially helpful (it's a PDF that you can print and take your own measurements).

Our order from Zenni arrived exactly on time at the beginning of October and Rosie loves the new glasses. Rather than returning them, we are using the second pair (which arrived in late October) as back up to the first, because they were both so cheap...compared to local prices anyway. That's the intel! I recommend giving this a try. 


  1. Ugh, I can't believe it took that long to get to you. Insane. But, yeah, Zenni rocks.

    1. I'm certain that they were just as annoyed as me, and had to deal with many freaked out customers. They told me that customs had never put a hold on their glasses as medical supplies before. No bumps with Zenni! Thanks for the referral.


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