Finances & Money Insurance

Save Money On Glasses At Costco


My wife has had quite the adventure getting new glasses this year. First, we tried a different optometrist for our eye exams. They were horrible and she declined to purchase her eye wear there. Then, recently some frames grabbed her attention while we were walking through Costco. Not only did we like the look of them, we liked the price tag as well. Unfortunately, Costco isn’t an in-network provider for our vision insurance.

We wondered if the reduced cost of the eye wear at Costco in combination with our out of network coverage would be cheaper than going an in-network optometrist. We decided to get an estimate from Costco for new frames and lenses for my wife and compare it to what we paid last year for her glasses at an in-network optometrist.

Here’s how the cost comparison turned out:

In-Network Optometrist:

  • High index thin lenses plus frames: $609.95
  • Insurance Benefits: ($369.99)
  • Tax: $6.51

Total Cost: $246.47


  • High index thin lenses plus frames: $174.47
  • Out Of Network Insurance Benefits: ($60)
  • Tax: $3.50

Total Cost: $118.47

Both places described the high index thin lenses exactly the same, however I will mention that last year’s invoice from the in-network optometrist lists several options on my wife’s lenses that she didn’t get at Costco. However, my wife doesn’t notice any difference with her new lenses so we likely just wasted money on them anyway.

My wife’s new glasses from Costco, even with no insurance benefits, turned out to be cheaper than what we paid last year after full insurance benefits were applied. After out of network benefits are applied, our out of pocket cost will be less than half of what we paid last year. I just have to remember to fill out a short form and send it in.

One might think there might be a difference in quality between the two, but again, my wife doesn’t notice any difference. Time will only tell whether they hold up as well as the more expensive glasses from the in-network provider. But given what we know right now we’ll be seriously considering going back to Costco for eye wear in the future.   In any event, if you don’t like them, the chances are good Costco will take the eyeglasses back – their return policy is really first rate.

Have you bought eye wear from Costco? How do you perceive the quality?

Brought to you courtesy of Brock

About the author

Brock Kernin


  • Costco has it’s own state of the art labs and use the latest technology. They have excellent prices on designer frames and designer sunglasses too. You probably paid for anti-reflective coating at your last place. It’s free at Costco…

    • My wife was looking at the sunglasses, they did look good, Sam. Thanks for the tip on the anti-reflective coating….something to keep in mind!

  • We experienced the exact same thing.

    I’ve purchased two sets of glasses from Costco (and will soon need a third) and my daughter is getting a pair soon.

    As you point out, it’s always MUCH cheaper than using insurance and buying elsewhere.

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