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Cheap Eyeglasses - No, it isn't SPAM Answered

Ok, first off, this isn't SPAM - I'm not advertising, just trying to figure something out about this company.

Zenni Optical

They sell glasses starting from $8! Glasses from a local glasses retailer cost around $120, at least! How can they afford to go down that low, compared to other stores? Is it their method of production, like they use different, cheaper materials? I've order 2 pairs off of their site, one regular, one sunglasses. I'll be awaiting the results. Still, it's crazy how low they can go, or how overpriced local stores are.

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Brennn10 (author)2008-06-04

I read an article about Zenni Optical and the man who wrote it had no problems with it; except maybe shipping time. He also mentioned googles4u as a site for even cheaper glasses.

You are not spending a fortune, so I guess it is worth a try. I bought my eyeglasses at Wal-Mart for $12. I did that because I only wear them before I go to bed. Which is about 2 hours every day.

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Goodhart (author)2008-06-04

In some cases you "get what you paid for", so I am skeptical, having dealt with places similar to this in the Mail order era, BPC (before PC's). There is both a good side and a bad to most of the discount places....even the local ones.

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joechuk (author)2008-06-04

My pupillary distance was measured as 72.5. Is that normal for a first time bifocal lens? the web page thinks it is abnormal. What is the normal range? Sincerely, Chuk

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trebuchet03 (author)2007-09-16

So the cost of eyeglasses piss me off... I prefer thin glasses that are decently wide (rectangular lenses). My current glasses are 49X18's (My last one's were 58x21's). I can understand if lenses are the expensive part as they are custom made/cut from optical glass. But the frames... Which are mass produced and overly expensive. I think my frame was a little over $200 - and the only reason they were considered, insurance covered a big chunk of that. Luckily, my last frame lasted something like 8 years. It was replaced after they were stepped on and I just couldn't get it back to normal again...

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acer73 (author)trebuchet032007-09-17

Go to costco thats where I get them I think I got a $40 frame with the flexon noes bridge but for me its the lenses that cost alot. I got polycarbonate with transitions for about $80 so I ended up paying $120 which wasn't bad at all. I don't like large glasses I feel they make me look like an old man then again I have a narrow face so everything is to big.

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Weissensteinburg (author)acer732007-09-17

Being under 18 gives you a HUGE discount at costco...normal polycarb lenses cost $20 for a kid there. (Not that they're not cheaper for adults too..just especially for kids) Be warned though, it can take two weeks to get them.

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acer73 (author)Weissensteinburg2007-09-18

Oh I didn't know about the discount he didn't say anything about that. It did take two weeks but that wasn't a problem because my pair was still kinda okay and they gave me contacts.

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Weissensteinburg (author)acer732007-09-18

Yeah, it doesn't make as much a difference if it's not your first pair.

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acer73 (author)Weissensteinburg2007-09-18

I've had glasses since 5th grade, so im in 11th now so 6 years give or take. Then just in January I got contacts which are nice but i don't wear them on the weekends.

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lemonie (author)2007-09-16

More comments on Zenni here.

We then asked for the name of the president of the company to write to. Her response? "The president is in China and I have another call."

L

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acer73 (author)lemonie2007-09-17

Wow some of the posts are way too positive I'm thinking they were payed off.

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lemonie (author)acer732007-09-18

Or just made-up... Yea, some of them look that way, but they're balanced by negative ones. L

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Weissensteinburg (author)2007-09-15

It seems weird that they could do that online, seeing as when you buy glasses they measure something themselves with a blocky old thing. Nacho has a point in that they wont be able to adjust them when you get em. As for price, they probably just use really cheap materials. Maybe stock lenses with small imperfections that the manufacturer sells cheap to get rid of?

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user

They are measuring pupil distance - which, years ago, used to be done with a regular old ruler :p Looks like you can choose you option on the site.

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user

So you have to measure yourself?

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user

Or have a friend do it ;) But yeah, a doctor isn't doing it - but in my experience, the doctor has never done it. It's always the person behind the counter (salesperson).

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user

Yeah, but they also have that blocky measuring thing, and have been taught just how to do it.

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user

Next time you get measured -- ask to look inside ;) There's just a ruler on there - it makes measuring more convenient by adding extra steps :p I'll bet if you ask, they will use a regular old ruler. When I got my first pair, my mother asked about it and mentioned how she used a ruler when she work for an optometrist when she was young... I got measured with a ruler :p

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user

Why would she want you to be measured with the ruler instead? Or am I just missing something?

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I think it was more of showing off - "aHa! I can do it that way too" - she didn't ask for it (as far as I can remember- I was probably 10 :p), she just mentioned that that's what she didn't have the option for the crazy new measuring tool.

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..and then when you got your glasses, you had to be cross-eyed if you wanted to see through them :P

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Bran (author)Weissensteinburg2007-09-16

Yes, you find glasses that a) look good, and b) are around your size, in millimeters. Then, you measure your pupil-to-pupil distance, but mine was on my prescription. I was a normal 62.

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lemonie (author)Weissensteinburg2007-09-16

Did you read the comments that I posted? L

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Weissensteinburg (author)lemonie2007-09-16

Which? All of your comments are listed as being Sept. 16, while mine was posted on the 15.

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lemonie (author)Weissensteinburg2007-09-16

Oh yes, I hadn't spotted that. the way these things are formatted gives me false perceptions sometimes. Or otherwise: sorry. L

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Brennn10 (author)2007-09-16

After reading some of those comments, it makes me want to go to the Zennie headquarters and put them in their place. They sound like complete jerks.

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lemonie (author)2007-09-16

Not having a prescription I couldn't get as far as adding to cart. However, I did notice lots of extras, domain registration by DomainsByProxy (anonymous), general poor site quality, and no online ordering.

Googling turned up some reviews, one comment included "It was after that I learned that Zenni just shoots orders to China where American standards don't apply." (click "8 more messages »" to expand the one at the bottom)

L

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chooseausername (author)lemonie2007-09-16

"It was after that I learned that Zenni just shoots orders to China where American standards don't apply."

Globalization is so great ! ... sometimes ...

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lemonie (author)chooseausername2007-09-16

I guess Mexico aren't up to cheap spec's? L

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NachoMahma (author)lemonie2007-09-16

. Great link, L! . . While they seem to have plenty of satisfied customers, there also seems to be a higher than normal number of disgruntled clients. I think I would look elsewhere. Since you've already ordered, it will be interesting to see how it turns out. . Your OD may be able to offer you something at a reasonable (but probably not cheap) price, if you ask nice, and I'd be willing to bet they will be of much higher quality. I'd at least call and see what they have to offer for a cheap pair of "backup" glasses.

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Brennn10 (author)2007-09-15

Well, being that I only wear my glasses at night, when I take my contacts out, Wal-Mart is good for low-end eye frames. I got my prescription, went to Wal-Mart, spent 15 dollars, and I was out of there.

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NachoMahma (author)2007-09-15

. You still have to go to an Optometrist to get a prescription. When you buy glasses from a doctor, the price of the lenses and frames is a small part of what you are paying. And Zenni is not going to be much help making sure the frames fit your face right. . Looks like a good place for a pair of spare glasses, but I'd go to the doctor first.

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Bran (author)NachoMahma2007-09-15

I have a new prescription, and that does cost a bit of money. I guess I'll have to wait a few weeks to see about the quality of the frames and such. Plus, prescriptions are good for a year, and optometrists are required to give you a copy.

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Goodhart (author)2007-09-15

Other then employing really young children in a foreign country, I am not sure. I remember when much younger (and glasses were $30 for the prescription, $20 for grinding and $50 for a decent pair of frames) I got a $10 spare pair, from a place in Florida (Mail order) as a backup pair, kept in the car (boy am I glad I did that....broke them while I was at a 16 hour drive from home). Now, even with insurance it can range over $100. But if they use "cheap" frames, that would cut a lot of the cost out.

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