Prescription Lenses

Hi, I am moving to France soon and am wondering if anyone knows if prescription varifocals lenses are cheaper in France than in the UK. I can get a eye test done in the UK and I want to use my current frames. Boots have quoted me £350 - 450.

Don’t know about France but they’ll be much cheaper online.

Extremely unlikely to be cheaper here. The amount that is reimbursed by social security is peanuts and unless you have a good (read expensive) mutuelle then you are looking at a similar figure.

These people are among the cheaper end of the market, so choose a basic frame and fill in details of your lenses to get an idea of the cost. Note that some lens the cost is per eye, not per pair of glasses.

We chewed this over a while ago… so I’ve attached the link…

Cat discusses her experiences etc… in the following thread

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I’d say start with Specsavers - otherwise there are endless online suppliers at a fraction of the cost. So long as you have a prescription its simple

As a varifocal lens wearer myself I would caution choosing your lenses by price alone. Cheaper lenses may be less complex and give you headaches or be less “seam less” - particularly if you have a high prescription. Good lenses will be in the hundreds, depending on the thickness you choose.

My last pairs I bought from the Opticians in Tesco with a 2nd pair free.

I recently purchased a pair from a new start up company called Lance Glasses. Cost me €99 which included graduated lenses. They’re superb quality and everything is done online. They recently created a new kickstarter here
You have to wait a little while to get them but well worth it

Hi Lesley and welcome to the Forum

Thanks for the interesting link …

How long was it between Order and Delivery… for your glasses ???

Hi Stella and thank you. I got my first pair last year. It was their first attempt so was a bit delayed. Took five months.

This time (I’ve ordered again!) I placed my ‘bid’ in December and they’ve said it’ll be April but I think that’s a little optimistic. I don’t mind waiting though they’re fantastic value for money.

Hope that helps

Fascinating… certainly a site to keep an eye on :wink:

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Thanks to everyone who replied. I think I will get them done here .

You only have to look at those French opticians shops. Banks of frames on display and a couple of assistants idling their time away, waiting for customers. You just know you are going to get ripped off!
We get ours on-line from Zenni Optical. Around 50 Euros for frames and progressive lenses. Excellent quality, delivered by post in 7 to 10 days. And don’t tell me that you wouldn’t trust Chinese optics. They probably made your expensive digital camera which is about 100 times more complicsted!

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Hi Mike, are you able to get any reimbursement from mutuelle etc. using Zenni? Thanks.

When you think that most Mutuelles do not pay for the full cost of lenses etc. 50 euros seems very little to pay.

Agreed, however for some reason my prescription always attracts higher prices, e.g. Lunettes Pour Tous advertise from 10€ including single vision lense – mine cost me 160€ (plus the travel to Marseille) , of which the frames I chose were 30€.
I’ve just discovered from my mutuelle that I have to have an ordonnance from my doctor before I go near an opthamologue, only then can I expect to have the max possible reimbursement – which again depends on my particular ocular needs!

Hi Celia,
I suspect that a mutuelle would be reluctant to give a reinbursment for glasses purchased outside France, but you would have to look at the details of your contract.
I don’t have a mutuelle. France provides free treatment for anything life threatening and I have found that most minor ailments tend to cure themselves or respond to a change in lifestyle.
So I have saved a lot of money over the years and that should more than cover any health expenses I may have in the future.
The worst thing that can happen is dementure, in which case it will cost every lasy penny wherever you live, so there isn’t any point in even thinking about it!

While on the subject, it is interesting to note that part of the millions that the UK “gives away” to the EU is to pay for expats health care. Should the UK “crash out” it could take some while to establish an alternative system and that could result in serious financial problems for some of us.

And probably a six month wait for an appointment.
It is one of the worst things about France, it is supposed to be improving, but wait and see.

I shall report back, it may be useful for someone. A one-month wait for the opthalmologue, by the way, which isn’t too bad, I already made the appt and am seeing my doc tomorrow for the prescription to visit her.
Incidentally, I now understand what they meant at Lunettes Pour Tous when they said I could only claim a reimbursement with a prescription – I’d thought they meant one from their optician. You can visit without a rdv and get a free eye test with only a short wait. The downside is that you have to buy the specs through them and if you don’t see a pair of frames you can live with, they don’t provide you with your prescription to get a pair made elsewhere. Even if you offer to pay for it!

Opticians aren’t qualified to examine your eyes, they are not doctors and cannot write a prescription, unlike ophtalomolgistes who can operate on your eyes as well as give diagnoses. You can get a prescription made up anywhere as long as it is less than 3 years old.

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