When I wanted to sign up for my driver’s license at 17, I had to pass a quick eye test just like everyone else. After I had guessed the final, completely blurred characters correctly, with more luck than skill, my optician let me get away without the obligation to wear glasses when driving. Nevertheless, he urged me to have my eyes examined closer again in the near future and maybe get a pair of spectacles.
That was almost exactly ten years ago, and my vision has since become worse and worse. Yet I still don’t have glasses.
Now, one would think that the fact, that my own sister is an optician, would somehow facilitate the purchase of glasses. But it was her who kept telling me: “You won’t get anything good under 300 dollars.” And to me, it was simply not worth so much money, because I really only needed the glasses for things like watching TV, cinema, etc. (Only driving became a more and more unpleasant and dangerous thing over the years.)
Even at the (allegedly) incredibly cheap opticians that we know from advertising, “wearable” glasses usually still cost above 150 dollars – unless you like big, ugly plastic frames.
All the time I have wondered: What about people who simply can’t afford this? There must be cheap glasses for them somewhere that do not look completely stupid.
As this article proves, it is indeed possible (at least in the U.S.). The eyewear manufacturer “Zenni” described there offers eyeglasses starting from eight dollars! The only small drawback is that they are manufactured in China and therefore you have to wait a couple of weeks for your spectacles. In addition, you must know your pupillary distance, so the lenses will sit at the right place later. Although you can roughly measure this value yourself, it would be better to simply ask your eye doctor for the number.
I think, if you take a look at the eyeglasses from Zenni, even the models for eight dollars look pretty damn good! Anyway, good enough so you don’t have to sink in shame when wearing them. ;)
I really think about ordering something from them. :D