Nearly half of the people living in the UK wear glasses at some point in their lives and about 3 million wear contact lenses, so the majority of adults in the UK are certainly aware of just how expensive it can be to look after your eyes.

If you pay the standard eye test fee, you will be paying somewhere between £20 and £30 depending on your age and circumstances, so you’re already paying out money before you even get to the point of paying for the prescription.


Getting Help

Many households are struggling with their finances as wages have struggled to keep up with inflation, and this has led to some corners being cut in budgets, just to make ends meet at the end of the month.

The problem with this when it comes to things like eye care, is that the longer you put diagnosis or treatment off, the more likely it is that the end result will be that your eye health suffers and you may even end up paying more also on the long term.

Any child under the age of 16 and students in full-time education can get their eye test for free and anyone over the age of 60, should also be entitled to vouchers that will give them money off the cost of a test.


Strain at Work

If you are in employment and your job involves regular work at a computer screen, the Health and Safety Regulations Act 1992, stipulates that your employer should pay for a sight test and any further tests required, but you do have to make a request for them to arrange this beforehand.

For UK Families: Cutting the Cost of Eye Care

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20/20 – 35/365 by Allan Foster, on Flickr.  This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic License.


Using Your Test Results

Many people feel obligated to use the local optician that has given them the eyesight test, in order to arrange the glasses or contact lenses that they need.

There are now many options available online and other treatments worth finding out about, such as the costs of LASIK eye surgery in the UK, so be prepared to shop around for the best deal if you want to save money and also get the best solution for your eyes.

Your optician will produce a prescription as a result of your eye test and you should ask for a copy of this so that you can use the information to see whether you get your glasses or contacts made to specification elsewhere for a cheaper price, or use the data to consult a laser eye specialist, which is a viable alternative to just settling for glasses or contacts and can offer a long-term solution as well.


Never Miss an Eye Test

If you have to pay for your eye tests, it may be tempting to consider missing out to save money, but this is never a good idea and could well be a false economy as well as harmful to your eye health.

A sight test will not just confirm the general health of your eyes but will also help to identify conditions such as diabetes, macular degeneration and glaucoma, which need to be treated as early as possible for the best outcome.


There are ways that you can cut the cost of eye care and treatments now available such as laser eye surgery can work out cost-effective in the longer term, so despite the struggles to balance the books, don’t be tempted to make cutbacks with your eye health that prove costly in more ways than one.


Arnel Ariate is the webmaster of Money Soldiers.

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 1 comments
Nick @ Millionaires Giving Money - February 25, 2015

The cost of eye care is definitely rising however I always try to put a certain amount to pay for these expenses. I normally have my eyes tested at the cheapest priced optician and then order glasses online to minimise costs completely. Great post, thanks for sharing.


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