Lens.com vs. Discount Contact Lenses vs. Lensmart: Online Contact Lens Companies Reviewed
Which Online Contact Lens Company Is Best?
These days you can get just about anything online, and contact lenses are no exception. If you need replacement contacts, or backups, using an Internet service for the purpose can be ideal. The exact service you’ll want to use will depend on your specific needs.
Lens.com has been around since 1995, and they claim to get most orders out in the mail within 48 hours. You can pay for your lenses with all major credit cards at any time online, 24/7. They also use both McAffee and Norton for securing your data against theft.
Lens.com has a vast selection of different brands, and you can even search for them on the “Shop” page that has them listed alphabetically. You can purchase anything from Acuvue to Vertex Toric. They also have popular brands including the following.
-1-Dau Avenue Moist
-Refer a Friend Program
Lens.com offers a “Refer a Friend” promotional program for customers to help with pricing. The way it works is every time you refer a friend to Lens.com, you get $10 from their first purchase, and they receive $10 off their first purchase as well. This means that if you refer enough people you could actually seriously cut into your contact lens costs this way.
You pay by the box which contains 90 lenses. The boxes cost and Lens.com boasts some of the lowest prices in the industry. There are a lot of rebate offers as well that lower the price of the boxes by up to 100 dollars if you purchase eight packs of 90, for example. Price can range from $20 to $40 or so per box. For example, after rebate, the Air Optix Aqua is about $33.99 for 3 boxes, a 6-month supply.
The shipping at Lens.com costs $7.95 for the cheapest option. They also charge “handling” fees on top of the shipping costs however. You can also spend 21 dollars on Fedex next day delivery if you need the lenses as soon as possible. Between shipping and processing times, this makes the quickest time somewhere around 3 days, with the average regular shipping time being more on the order of 7-9 days.
Customer Reviews (Pros/Cons)
There are many rave reviews for Lens.com, including one customer who wrote “recommended by my eye doctor. They have fast delivery and great rates. So awesome!” Others talk about how easy the site is to use. The options for finding “most popular” contact brands right on the sidebar and the prominent “reorder” option available right at the top of the page makes for very simple ordering which can be a hassle in other services.
On the other hand, one customer wrote “Hidden Fees Watch out for This Scam!” This refers to the handling fees that Lens.com charges on top of shipping. A few like-minded customers report that they spent, for example, 400 dollars or so and had to pay around a 20 dollar “handling” fee that went beyond the shipping cost of the boxes.
Discount Contact Lenses
Although Discount Contact Lenses has a smaller selection of lenses, they also have additional deals not shared by other contact lens companies involving free shipping and price matching. If you want to take the time to look for better deals and then apply them through the price matching program at this site, it could be well worth the effort in the extra money saved.
Discount Contact Lenses includes less of a selection than Lens.com, but they still have many brands which include the following.
-Bill Me Later
The “Bill Me Later” program allows people to pay for contact lenses over 6 months, without paying any interest at all! This only applies if the full amount is paid within 6 months, but it certainly allows for more options than other contact lens sites.
For specific brands that qualify, Discount Contact Lenses will match any cheaper price you find online, and then even take 5 percent more off.
The pricing here is often slightly more expensive than a site like Lens.com. For example, after rebate Air Optix Aqua lenses cost around $39.99 for a 6-month supply.
Discount Contact Lenses offers the following features
-USPS First Class Mail (about $7) 5-7 business days with prescription verification needed.
-Free Shipping on $99 or more
Customer Reviews (Pro/Con)
Customers have written, for example- “Customer Service exceptional.” Most said that the delivery was shipped on time. There were a few reports on there being a problem where coupons were actually not properly applied during purchase, which could be a problem since this is how a lot of the discounts happen.
The product list at Lensmart is comparable with Lens.com with an exhaustive alphabetical list. What Lensmart has a lot of, are various extra options for particular brands. For example, there are more than a dozen options just for “Acuvue” brand. They also have more unique brands and specialty “fun” lenses including the following-
-Vader Red Wolf
-White Cat Eye
-Fun Vampire Red
Lensmart tends to charge slightly more than sites like Lens.com or Discount Contact Lenses, at least when it comes to an example like Air Optix Aqua, the cost is $49.99 per box before any rebate. Other options the site has available include the 5 % back on every purchase deal. This helps you save a lot of money on individual brands, especially unique ones. There is a $25 rebate with purchase of 4 boxes when buying Air Optix Aqua day or night contact lenses. Many brands have similar rebates.
Lensmart prides itself on letting you order and get delivery with just 3 steps online.
-Free Shipping on purchases of $99 or more.
-Auto-delivery option-This allows you actually keep ordering contact lenses on a regular basis when you are likely to need more, which can be a real convenience for avoiding wasting time.
The auto-delivery ill of course only work as long as your prescription still checks out.
Customer Reviews (Pro/Con)
One customer wrote “Exceeded expectation” in terms of Lensmart delivery and pricing. Many were satisfied with the speed they got their lenses and the deals they could get on them, including the 5 percent money back deal, with few complaining about the coupons not working.
On the other hand, the lack of secure guarantee on the site troubled some people, since online theft can be a serious problem in the modern Internet era. Additionally, some referred to their site as “Misleading,” in that sometimes they ship alternate brands to the one ordered with claims that they are the same thing.
Take Away Points
Lens.com has the best prices generally, although it’s often only by a dollar or two per box. Discount Contact Lenses has the unique 6 month funding option though, making them ideal for people who need the lenses now but more time to get the money together.
Lens.com and Lensmart are comparable in selection, with Lensmart having the edge in novelty brands.
The sites have comparable delivery programs concerning free shipping on orders, though Lensmart has one of the more unique options with auto-delivery.