Opticians/glasses etc.

19 Replies

Hi, can someone tell me if it is cheaper to go to an Optician in the UK or France for new glasses?  My mutuelle gives me very little for glasses so for the sake of argument say it gives me nothing.  I had an eye test just over a year ago so I don't need a full eye test - although if I go in the UK then I'll have one anyway.  

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kerho-871858 1454516375

cheaper in england

dozygirl 1454516398

Cheaper in the UK.

dozygirl 1454516803

I don't think they're any cheaper in England than anywhere else in the UK, ie Wales, Northern Ireland or Scotland!

Kerroux 1454519060

How can it be cheaper in the UK.If you add on the cost of the crossing it has to be the same or much more.?.Just a thought.

Hilary Briss 1454519335

The one advantage of going to the UK is that you will be able to get an Eye test straight away.

And there is sometimes offers on for two for one etc


dozygirl 1454519441

And you can visit friends, family etc and make a little holiday of it.

MoutonRouge-437553 1454529443

Thanks for the replies, I'm going over to the UK anyway so I'll include a visit to the Optician in my trip.

geegee42 1454535833

Before you go prescription glasses are available over here from 30€, a lot of opticians do vision tests for free, the eye test you pay for is full test at opthalmist, glasses can be purchased online cheaper than UK from French sites, the old days of expensive glasses here have gone, go to a big town and compare prices.

Anonymous 1454536207

Last time I was dragged kicking and screaming back to UK I got a free eye test in Tesco.  I then bought my nice, lightweight varifocals online from Zennioptical for £34.  There are loads of cheap online sources for specs.

c2oafc-383379 1454577717

Hello I work over here for a carpentry company, and our mutuelle covers all our glasses 100 % + several hundred euros , I am covered through my work with Pro BTP. 

The cost for 3 of us with glasses was circa  2,800.00 euros the last time ... I got approx 45 euros off Cpam and the rest was covered by the mutuelle.we all got the 2nd pair for a euro deal too !!

Maybe its the level of cover on your mutuelle you need to look at , my glasses cost so much because I have a stigmatism ...

We are lucky I guess, plus from now on its split 50/50 with our employer before this year the employee paid more than the employer ... my contributions has just gone down approx 40 euro per month ... shop around for mutuelle , and dont rule out your banks insurance , my eldest daughter is with C/A ... all the best


Dibbyspot 1454579181

The cost of glasses if it is a standard prescription is cheaper online - loads of choice, low prices and generally prompt efficient service. If you visit the UK go for the eye test but not the glasses that is where the real money is made from those who pay a lot for their glasses.

PR&SM 1454583562

Just obtained new glasses in Plemet  (2 for 1, second pair prescription sun glasses) cheaper than Specsavers.

Watty-794352 1454585106

Like many things, it all depends on your individual circumstances.

I am extremely shortsighted and, although wear contact lenses mostly, need to have a pair of specs for emergencies.  Because of the strength of these, they require special 'thinner' lenses which come from Germany.  These cost more in the UK than here in France. (I have no mutuelle to cover this.)  However, because my myopia exceeds a certain limit, the state contributes towards them.  


rose budde 1454593056

There is a really good website that sells inexpensive glasses in the UK. it is called Spex4less. I ordered two pairs from them on and they arrived four days later. As long as you have a current prescription (French of English) you can order from them.

husch 1454635111

To have a proper eye test in the UK you now have to go to an optometrist just like you have to here, not just your local optician. And if you are not resident there you will have to pay for that service too. So it will probably cost you more!

janes-394036 1454679036

You can get a proper eye test in Boots for a fraction of the cost over here.

plouyepaul 1454680398

Having experienced obtaining eye tests and glasses here (Brittany) and in the UK from a variety of sources I can tell you with absolute certainty that the only way to get a proper eye test for vision and eye health is to go to the UK. Ideally you will make the most of it and visit family and friends, buy up all those goodies and bargains, decent clothes at a reasonable price etc at the same time. Having waited for a year (twice) for eye tests at the clinic in Morlaix, to be rushed through in 5 minutes like something on a production line, exactly the same in Carhaix with ineffective prescriptions and over priced glasses (cheap crap sold as quality glasses) this amounts to rackateering and criminal behaviour by some in the profession and downright fraud for the money they claim from CPAM and mutuelles. The best places I have found for glasses is Optic 2000 in Carhaix where the service is good and the informal vision test better than the official ones from Opthalmists and Optical Centre in Morlaix who do a decent vision test and produce simple prescription glasses whilst you wait or more complex ones within a few days, quality of frames I found poor though. I have booked an appointment with Specsavers i Portsmouth for the 16th, with ferry, B&B and everything else I expect to get good quality glasses for around the same outlay as here, the important thing is I can try them and have any problems sorted before I return. I will of course make the most of my visit in any way I can.

Buying glasses online is a lottery unless the prescription is for single vision only anything else is a lottery from my own fairly extensive experience!

Before anyone jumps to the conclusion that I am anti-French and why not go back to live in the UK etc I can tell you that for no other purpose than visiting our kids and grand kids or obtaining glasses the rest I can live without, wild horses wouldn;t drag me back to live there. I have the choice and I'm making it. You do whatever you want.

Watty-794352 1454700787

I cannot agree with the comments about eye tests here in France.

I have my eyes tested by an ophthalmologist each year because of myopia, a cataract and family history of glaucoma   ...   each test being thorough and taking approx. 2 hrs (including a period of waiting for eye drops to take effect).  My contribution (no mutuelle) is just over 8€.  In 11 years I have never paid more than this, both in Normandy and now in Brittany.

Making an appointment is never a problem as I know well in advance when my next appointment is due and book accordingly.  

Huey-407259 1454753595

I agree with Watty.  Have had 2 eye yests here in France, very thorough.  Had nothing but trouble with Specsavers (the tester would not listen to me).  It cost them 2 more pairs of glasses for free.

Went to Vision Express in Jersey, and said what quality of lenses I wanted.  Yes we can do but dont have them at the moment, will post them to you for free.

When I needed more checked a lot of shops here, (incl Optic 2000 etc).  Our local optician was a 1/3 cheaper, and cheaper than VE.  He also confirmed that despite charging me, they had not supplied the quality of lens I requested.  All his lenses, (and frames) are top quality French, and his service is excellent.

Our youngest daughters eyes are terrible (real milk bottles), and she was quoted £300 for a pair of single vision lenses in UK.  Our Opt. supplied them in 24hrs, (much thinner, almost normal), complete with frames of choice for less than €300

Why waste time going to UK?

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