Went for my routine eye test today at a private practice. optometrist. Have been going to the same guy for about 15 years as he has the equipment to determine if my diabetes is causing any retina damage, and detect any changes. The guy does a good job except for one part. Part of the ritual is to give you a somewhat pressured sales pitch for new glasses after you get your prescription checked. By law here, they have to give you your prescription without buying any glasses from them. However, they never give you the prescription until you specifically ask for it, and only after you have endured a sales pitch. It is kind of like going to your car dealer for an oil change and then they won’t give you the keys to the car until after you have endured a sales pitch for a new car.
Same story every year, but I have gotten used to it. However, what it reminds me of is the issue of buying hearing aids (or glasses) at Costco. The common pitch is that Costco sells low end or de-featured product for a low price, and that you really have to pay a premium price to get a premium product at a private practice. The old “you get what you pay for”. Well I have checked eyeglass quality a number of times, and similar to hearing aids that is not the real story.
The Costco eyeglasses are premium quality. If they have a fault is that they do not offer the more modest quality product. It is premium product at a low price or nothing at all. Today they tried to tell me that after I told them I was going to shop at Costco for glasses. What they did in the end was offer me the very lowest quality glasses at a price still well above the premium quality product at Costco. Just like hearing aids, it is buyer beware!
The common story is actually reduced in fact. You are more likely to get a lower quality level at a premium price when you go to a private dealer, especially if you price shop.