Where can I buy affordable contact lenses?
Unless you opt for laser eye surgery, vision correction is part of your annual spending. According to contact lens manufacturer Acuvue, the yearly cost of contact lenses can range from $120 to $1,200, depending on your insurance and the type of contacts you need.
Thankfully, numerous retailers can help contact lens wearers save money. If you’re tired of overpaying for this necessary expense, you need to know where to buy affordable contact lenses.
Where to Buy Affordable Contact Lenses
Various in-store and online retailers offer affordable prices on a range of contact lens brands, especially if you buy in bulk.
Just remember: You must have a valid prescription to buy contact lenses if you live in the U.S., so have physical and electronic copies of your contact lens prescription ready.
Limited Time Offer: Save 25% off contact lenses plus free shipping with coupon code CONTACTS25.
- Pros: 25% off first-time purchases; free shipping
- Cons: Savings fall off after your first order
- Verdict: Shop GlassesUSA.com to use the first-time discount, but explore other retailers for buying annual supplies
GlassesUSA.com offers affordable eyewear that starts at just $29. But it’s also an affordable way to order contacts online.
Plus, GlassesUSA.com now sells its own private-label daily contact lenses called Vista plus. They may be inexpensive, but they’re not cheap. They’re made with hyaluronic acid to retain moisture and combat dryness, helping them stay comfortable all day. They also provide critical protection from harmful UV-A and UV-B rays, a must in both sunny and snowy climates. Vista plus lenses are FDA-approved and endorsed by health experts.
If the $1 free trial on the in-house brand isn’t enough to make you switch, you can also shop lenses from brands like:
Lens categories include daily, weekly, and monthly disposables. Lens types include single-vision, multifocals, toric lenses for astigmatism, and color lenses.
The 25% discount helps cut costs for more expensive contacts. For example, GlassesUSA.com sells a 90-pack of Acuvue Oasys 1-Day for $97.17 per box. But with the discount, the price drops to $72.88 per box. At Walmart, these lenses cost over $75 per box unless you shop in bulk.
Shipping is free, and GlassesUSA.com works with over a dozen vision insurance providers.
If you can make use of the one-time 25% discount or other promo codes like a pair of free eyeglasses, GlassesUSA.com is one of the most affordable choices.
- Pros: Brand variety; 20% off on new orders and subscriptions; free online vision test
- Cons: Doesn’t have the lowest possible prices
- Verdict: Shop at Discount Contact Lenses if you want more brand variety or if you want to subscribe for 20% off reorders
As the name suggests, DiscountContacts.com sells contacts at a discount. The company says you can save up to 70% on contacts, and it also offers free shipping on orders over $99.
DiscountContacts.com also carries more brands than many other online options. You can find over 30 popular and niche brands, including:
- Air Optix
- Bausch + Lomb
- Johnson & Johnson
Lens categories include conventional vial lenses and daily, weekly, and monthly disposables. Single-vision, multifocals, toric lenses for astigmatism, and colored lenses are available lens types.
DiscountContacts.com also sells rigid gas-permeable (RGP) lenses. These lenses are harder than soft contact lenses and allow more oxygen to pass through the lens material. RGP lenses last longer than soft lenses and provide sharper vision. However, it takes time for regular contact lens wearers to become comfortable with the lens type. RGP lenses start at $35 per lens, but they can last for years with proper care.
Overall, prices are competitive. For example, a 90-count box of Acuvue Oasys 1-Day costs $94.99 on DiscountContacts.com. However, there’s a 20% discount for new customers and reorders on subscriptions. Students and military members also qualify for a 20% discount on all orders. That reduces the price to $75.99. At Walmart, the same box is about $80 unless you order six or 12 months’ worth of lenses.
Unlike many online providers, DiscountContacts.com offers limited eye care via an online test and a remote eye doctor. The free online vision test is available to people between the ages of 18 and 55. You use your computer and smartphone to complete the vision test. Your computer displays letter charts like at the optometrist, and you complete vision test questions on your smartphone.
It takes one day for the optometrist to review the 15-minute test before you get a new contact lens prescription. If you feel your current contact lenses aren’t working, it’s a useful feature. However, it’s no substitute for in-person optometrist appointments since online tests can’t check eye health or for conditions like macular degeneration and glaucoma.
DiscountContacts.com is an out-of-network provider for most vision insurance plans, including Davis Vision, EyeMed, UnitedHealthcare, and VSP.
If you want to save even more money on contact lenses, you can also shop through Rakuten to earn cash-back rewards at DiscountContacts.com and other online retailers. It’s a simple way to get paid for shopping, and Rakuten pays your cash back quarterly through PayPal or check.
3. AC Lens
- Pros: 20% off subscriptions and first-time purchases; free online vision test; free shipping
- Cons: AC Lens becomes less affordable than bulk shopping options after your first order if you don’t subscribe
- Verdict: AC Lens is a solid option if you subscribe for contact lens delivery, but it’s not the most affordable choice for one-time purchases
If you’re a fan of subscription services, AC Lens is one of your best options for buying contacts online. If you subscribe for lens delivery, you receive 20% off future deliveries. You also get free shipping on all orders.
If you don’t like subscriptions, you can still shop directly for contacts. Additionally, new customers usually get 20% off their first order.
There are numerous brands, including:
- Extreme H20
Lens categories include daily, weekly, and monthly disposables. AC Lens carries single-vision, bifocal and multifocal lenses, toric lenses to correct astigmatism, and color lenses. You can also find conventional vial and RGP contacts.
Like some online contact lens suppliers, AC Lens offers a free online vision test if you’re between 18 and 55. It’s a 15-minute test, and you receive your new contact lens prescription within one business day.
To take the test, you read letters from a distance using your computer’s screen and record your answers on a smartphone. Online eye exams don’t examine eye health or work well for powerful prescriptions. If you have a strong prescription, it’s better to go to an optometrist than use an online vision test.
Standard U.S. shipping is free and takes five to seven business days. You can get faster shipping for $9.99 and overnight shipping for $19.99. AC Lens is an out-of-network provider for most vision insurance plans, including:
- Davis Vision
AC Lens is worth it if you subscribe for the 20% discount and use free shipping. But without discounts, it’s priced too high for smaller one-time orders.
- Pros: Savings on annual supplies; multiple discounts and rebates; price matching; free shipping or pick up in store
- Cons: $29.99 fee for online vision test
- Verdict: ContactsDirect is one of the most affordable options for buying an annual supply of contacts, especially if you leverage discounts and cash-back options
If you want to buy an annual supply of contact lenses, ContactsDirect has some of the lowest prices on the market.
According to ContactsDirect, you can save up to $100 when you buy an annual According to ContactsDirect, you can save up to $125 when you buy an annual supply of lenses from certain brands. The website displays a product savings badge that shows how much you save purchasing a yearly supply, so it’s easy to spot deals.
ContactsDirect carries over a dozen brands, including:
Lens categories include daily disposables, two-week lenses, and monthly lenses. For lens types, ContactsDirect offers single-vision, bifocals and multifocals, toric lenses to correct astigmatism, and color lenses.
ContactsDirect doesn’t always have the best prices on bulk orders at first glance. For example, an annual supply of Dailies AquaComfort Plus 90-packs, which is eight boxes, drops the price per box from $65.99 to about $57 per box. But the same bulk shopping choice at Walmart brings the price per box to around $51.
Still, ContactsDirect separates itself from the competition with discounts and promo codes. For starters, it often runs a 15% off promo code. New customers can get 20% off when they sign up for the site’s newsletter. Additionally, ContactsDirect has a 15% discount for students, military service members, teachers, first responders, and U.S. government employees.
You can’t stack regular promo codes and unique student or employment discounts, but 20% off is nothing to scoff at. Better still, the site has a price match policy. If you find a better price at Walmart, Costco, Walgreens, 1-800 Contacts, or Coastal, call 1-844-5-LENSES and ContactsDirect will beat that price.
If that weren’t enough, ContactsDirect is a Rakuten partner, so you can earn cash-back rewards for your purchases.
Standard shipping is free, and you also have the option to pick up your order in person at a LensCrafters store. ContactsDirect accepts most major vision insurance plans. However, it is not an in-network provider for VSP.
ContactsDirect also offers a vision test to renew your prescription. You can take it with either a smartphone or a computer rather than needing to use both. But it costs $29.99, whereas some online sellers offer free vision tests.
It’s worth noting that online vision tests don’t check for eye health or conditions like glaucoma. Additionally, you need an existing prescription to take the test, so you can’t be a first-time contact lens wearer. If it’s been a year or two since you’ve taken a regular eye exam, go to an optometrist instead.
If you want to save money buying an annual supply of contact lenses, ContactsDirect is possibly the best online option. Just use promo codes, compare bulk prices between other retailers, and take advantage of price matching if necessary.
- Pros: Brand variety; online vision test; excellent limited-time deals
- Cons: No free shipping
- Verdict: Shop at Lens.com if you’re willing to bargain-hunt for limited-time deals for massive savings
You don’t have to settle for cheap contact lenses and low-quality brands to find savings on Lens.com. Popular brands include Acuvue, Biofinity, Biomedics, Dailies, and SofLens. You can also find over a dozen other brands such as:
For lens categories, options include daily, weekly, and monthly disposables. Single-vision, toric lenses for astigmatism, bifocals, RGP, silicone hydrogel, and color lens types are available. Lens.com also carries novelty lenses for changing the appearance of your eyes.
Lens.com runs limited-time deals that often beat the competition. For example, one recent deal featured a 90-pack of Dailies AquaComfort Plus for $53.44 per box, with a $135 rebate for buying four boxes. In comparison, Walmart was selling the same box for $65.86 per box, with a $120 discount for buying eight boxes. At Costco, the price was $81.98 per box, with a $50 mail-in rebate for buying eight boxes.
Plus, you can renew your prescription by taking a 10-minute online eye exam. You have to be 18 to 55 years old to take the exam, and it requires both a smartphone and a computer. The cost is $9.99.
The primary downside of Lens.com is that U.S. shipping costs a minimum of $9.95.
In terms of vision coverage, Lens.com is an out-of-network provider for most vision care providers, so if you have vision care insurance, reimbursement shouldn’t be an issue.
Because of the potential savings from deals, it’s always worth comparing Lens.com prices to wherever you typically shop, especially if you’re not in the market for bulk contact lenses.
- Pros: Discounts for buying in bulk; free shipping on most orders
- Cons: Requires a Costco membership
- Verdict: If you already shop at Costco, you can purchase an annual supply of contact lenses to save
- Air Optix
Costco carries single-vision, toric lenses for astigmatism, multifocals, and color lenses. Lens categories include daily disposable lenses, two-week lenses, and monthly lenses.
Costco also has its own Kirkland Signature pack of 90 lenses for $58.99. But in true Costco fashion, there are usually offers for buying multiple boxes at once or purchasing larger packs that help you save money. For example, buying four boxes of Kirkland Signature contact lenses saves $35, and buying eight boxes saves $95.
Non-Costco brands can also offer mail-in rebates. For example, one offer is to buy eight (90-count) boxes of Dailies Total 1 multifocals to receive a $70 mail-in rebate. Each box is $109.87, so it’s a significant upfront expense. But in exchange for bulk shopping, you save $70 with the rebate.
You still need a Costco membership to buy contact lenses. It’s worth noting that Costco shipping is free for most orders, including optical purchases. Additionally, Costco accepts most vision insurance plans.
You should factor in Costco’s $60 annual membership fee to what you save on contact lenses and anything else you would shop for. But if you shop at Costco regularly, you can likely offset the membership fee with your savings.
Plus, you can also shop with the Costco Anywhere Visa card to earn cash back for shopping at Costco and travel, dining, and everyday spending.
- Pros: Discounts for buying in bulk; free shipping
- Cons: No discounts for using the subscription service
- Verdict: Shop at Walmart if you want to buy at least six to 12 months’ worth of contacts and don’t have a Costco membership
Walmart Contacts is also a convenient way to save money when buying contacts. Aside from free shipping, Walmart carries popular contact lens brands like:
- Air Optix
- Air Optix
Walmart has daily, one- to two-week, and one- to three-month disposables. Lens types include single-vision, toric lenses for astigmatism, color and tinted, conventional (vial) lenses, and bifocal and multifocal lenses.
Prices can be slightly more expensive than Costco for larger orders. For example, Walmart’s 90-count box of Dailies Total 1 multifocals is $135 (or $127.50 apiece if you buy four boxes). Costco sells it for $109.87 per box with a $70 rebate for buying eight boxes that reduces the cost to $101.12 per box.
However, there are still numerous affordable options.Many packs of daily disposable lenses cost less than $1 per day. Two-week lens users can purchase Walmart’s own Equate brand for just $14 per box, or $0.33 per day.
Additionally, buying contact lenses for six- and 12-month periods often drops the price per box significantly. For example, a three-month supply of 1-Day Acuvue Moist lenses costs about $82 per box. But if you buy 12 months’ worth of boxes, the price drops to about $69 per box.
Plus, you can set up a no-hassle contact lens subscription to receive regular deliveries. Unfortunately, you don’t receive a discount for subscribing, but subscribing ensures you’re always stocked up.
As for vision insurance, Walmart Contacts is an out-of-network provider for:
- Cole Managed Vision
- Davis Vision
Walmart has an impressive brand and inventory selection. If you want to buy in bulk or try the subscription service, Walmart is a worthy alternative to Costco.
- Pros: Savings on bulk purchases; $10 referral bonus
- Cons: No free shipping; doesn’t work with all insurers
- Verdict: ContactLensKing.com is another affordable option for buying a year’s supply of contact lenses, especially if you don’t have a Costco membership
Another bulk-shopping option to save money on contact lenses is ContactLensKing.com.
ContactLensKing.com encourages you to buy your lenses in bulk. Almost every product on the website has an “as low as” price next to regular pricing that shows the potential discount you can score for buying a certain number of boxes.
ContactLensKing.com carries over a dozen brands, including:
- Air Optix
Lens categories are also standard, and you can buy daily, weekly, and monthly disposables. Other options include toric lenses to correct astigmatism, color, and bifocal and multifocal lenses.
If you’re only buying one or two boxes of contact lenses, it’s tough to score discounts on ContactLensKing.com. Additionally, shipping is at least $7.95 in the U.S. The focus on bulk shopping and lack of free shipping ultimately means Contact Lens King is best for buying at least six to 12 months’ worth of contact lenses.
ContactLensKing.com says vision insurance reimbursement varies depending on your provider and doesn’t include a list of insurance partners. So if you want to use vision insurance at ContactLensKing.com, call your provider first to see if your purchase is eligible for reimbursement.
On the bright side, ContactLensKing.com has a $10 referral program. Each time one of your referrals places their first order, you receive credit in your account. But it’s still best to use ContactLensKing.com for bulk shopping and other retailers for smaller orders.
9. 1-800 Contacts
- Pros: 20% first-time order bonus; free shipping
- Cons: A 5% subscription discount isn’t the best subscription deal
- Verdict: 1-800 Contacts is worth it to leverage the 25% welcome discount for a first-time order, but it’s more hassle to get deals for the long term
For a limited time, new customers can receive a 25% discount at 1-800 Contacts (at other times, the discount is 20%). You can also subscribe for regular deliveries to save 5% off future orders. You can also subscribe for regular deliveries to save 5% off future orders.
For brands, 1-800 Contacts carries popular choices like:
- Air Optix
Lens categories include vial lenses and daily, one- to two-week, and monthly disposables. You can find single-vision, bifocal and multifocal lenses, toric lenses for astigmatism, and color lenses.
The 25% discount helps 1-800 Contacts remain competitive for first-time orders. For example, a 30-pack of Dailies AquaComfort Plus costs about $20 with the discount. Discount Contact Lenses sells the same box for $23.99. If you spend more on a 90-pack, 1-800 Contacts’ price per box is under $75, whereas Discount Contact Lenses’ price per box is over $85.
If you need to renew your contact lens prescription, you can take an online vision test on your smartphone in 10 minutes. The site charges $20 for this service.
Online vision tests help you renew your prescription but don’t examine eye health. If it’s been a year or two since you went for an in-person eye exam, renew your prescription through an optometrist instead.
U.S. shipping is free, and 1-800 Contacts is an in-network provider for:
- Davis Vision
- Superior Vision
- Blue View Vision
- Anthem BCBS
You can use it as an out-of-network provider with other vision insurance plans.
The site also has a best-price guarantee, promising to beat any publicly available deal from a U.S. competitor. However, you can’t combine this price match with insurance. Instead, the site compares your final price for both and gives you whichever one is lower. And to maximize your discount, the site also works with Rakuten.
The first-time discount makes 1-800 Contacts worth considering if you’re spending a lot of money on your first order. And the price matching makes it a decent value for recurring purchases, though it takes a little more work to use.
- Pros: Multiple ways to save through rewards programs and rebates; regular deals for new customers; free shipping
- Cons: Limited selection; no subscription savings; doesn’t work with all insurers
- Verdict: For those without insurance, Walgreens can be an affordable place to buy contact lenses if you can find a rebate, but with insurance, there are better options
If you want to save money on prescriptions and over-the-counter medications, shopping at Walgreens is a smart move. Weekly deals, the myWalgreens rewards program, and senior discount days are just a few ways Walgreens makes shopping more affordable.
If you wear contacts, Walgreens also has affordable options to help you save.
For starters, all customers can get 20% off their purchase of one of over 100 different types of contact lenses with the coupon code “DEAL20,” though this offer is subject to change or discontinuation at any time. Walgreens also has rebate savings for contact lenses if manufacturers offer them.
In terms of brands, Walgreens carries popular choices like:
- Avaira Vitality
You can find daily, weekly, and monthly disposables for single-vision, toric lenses to correct astigmatism, multifocals, and color lenses. You can also find some conventional vial lenses, although the selection is sparse.
Shipping is free for all contacts, and you can choose in-store pickup if a nearby Walgreens has your contacts in stock. However, you cannot pay with your vision insurance at Walgreens. Instead, you must contact your insurer to ask about reimbursement procedures.
Finally, if you shop with the right cash-back credit card, you can also earn rewards on drugstore purchases, including Walgreens. The Amazon Rewards Visa Signature card and AAA Member Rewards Visa Signature card both pay unlimited 2% cash back on drugstore purchases, making either card an excellent choice to have in your wallet if you frequently shop at Walgreens.
- Pros: Up to $200 in annual contact lens savings; AAA and AARP member benefits; free shipping
- Cons: Not the cheapest option if you aren’t shopping for annual supplies
- Verdict: If you’re an AAA or AARP member and want to buy a yearly supply of contact lenses, LensCrafters is for you
While LensCrafters specializes in eyewear and carries many premium brands, it’s also an effective way to save money on contact lenses. LensCrafters even says you can save up to $200 on your annual supply of contacts by shopping online or in-store.
The website displays how much you save for buying an annual supply of certain contact lens boxes. Most boxes grant $30 or $100 in savings for bulk purchases.
As for brands, LensCrafters carries options like:
LensCrafters also has its own contact lens brand, but these are not the most affordable option. For lens types, it carries single-vision, toric lenses to correct astigmatism, multifocals, and color lenses. Daily, biweekly, monthly, and semiannual lenses are available.
For annual savings, LensCrafters is worth looking into. For example, a yearly supply (eight boxes) of Biotrue ONEday for presbyopia (age-related far-sightedness) costs $657.92. At Costco, the cost is $511.84, but you need a membership to shop at Costco.
Furthermore, AARP and AAA members can receive 10% off eligible contacts at LensCrafters, and this discount stacks with manufacturer rebates. Which means if you’re an AARP or AAA member and can stack your savings with a rebate, LensCrafters is surprisingly affordable.
LensCrafters’ shipping is free. And LensCrafters has an extensive network of vision insurance partners and accepts most plans for payment, in store and online.
- Pros: Save up to 70% on contact lenses, even without a subscription
- Cons: Expensive vision test; shipping is only free on orders over $89
- Verdict: Great alternative to in-person buying without the pressure to commit
WebEyeCare offers deeply discounted eyewear and contacts from recognizable brands and budget-friendly alternatives alike. Top-selling names include:
- Air Optix
WebEyeCare also carries specialty goods at surprisingly affordable prices. For example, you can save over 5% off list price on a six-pack of Air Optix Colors and an extra $20 off if you buy an annual supply.
With up to 70% off name-brand contacts, it’s hard to find fault with WebEyeCare’s value. The only downside is the shipping cost, which is only free on orders over $89. Also, WebEyeCare charges $34.99 for its vision test, a service some sites provide for free.
Vision care is expensive. But when it comes to buying contact lenses, you rarely have to pay full price considering how much competition there is in the market.
Try shopping online with shopping browser extensions and daily discount websites to take your savings even further. Websites like Rakuten and Capital One Shopping help you earn cash back and find coupon codes and are free to use.
And if you can use websites that offer free shipping instead of paying extra every time you buy contact lenses online, that’s another simple way to save.
Additionally, take advantage of other ways to save money on vision care. For example, most contact lenses and lens solutions are eligible purchases under your health savings account and flexible spending account, which help you save money when filing your taxes.
As long as you spend time looking for deals and use the discounts and tools at your disposal, you can put a dent in your annual vision care expenses without sacrificing quality.