Can I get eye exam and glasses on the same day?

optometrist providing same day eyeglasses

There are many reasons you may need a new pair of prescription glasses sooner rather than later: Maybe your glasses broke, you lost them, or you’re suddenly realizing your current prescription isn’t cutting it. Either way, you’re left wondering, “Can I get an eye exam and glasses on the same day?”

While you can get your glasses in a reasonable amount of time (in many cases, it takes around three days to a week), it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to get them on the same day as your eye exam. Here’s what you need to know: 

Can I get same-day eye exam and glasses?

The amount of time it takes to receive your new prescription glasses depends on a few factors, including: 

  • Purchase location: Some places have different timeline estimates for prescription glasses.

  • Lens modifications: Are you getting anti-glare or scratch-resistant lenses? This could lengthen your timeline for getting your glasses.

  • Your prescription: Do you have a complicated prescription? If so, this could mean your lenses will take longer to make.

  • Frame availability: The frames you tried on in the store and loved are just for display, so they’ll have to order the frames for your glasses. If that particular frame style has low quantity at the factory, there could be a delay in your delivery.

  • In-house edger availability: Some optometrist offices and eyewear outlets have in-house edgers. This means they can fit a pair of frames to your prescription lenses almost immediately, which means you could get your glasses on the same day.

Depending on how many of the above factors you’re juggling, it could take anywhere from a few hours to 10 days to receive your prescription glasses.

Some retailers offer special expedited services, such as EyeBuyDirect’s 2-Day Delivery. For an extra $29, you can get your new glasses delivered (within the U.S.) in just two business days. 

SEE RELATED: How long do glasses take to make?

Do I need an eye exam to get new glasses?

Technically, you don’t have to get an eye exam to get prescription glasses — at least not every time you want to buy them — but you will need a current glasses prescription.

Prescriptions typically expire after one to two years, so if you haven’t had an eye exam recently, your prescription has expired or you just don’t have your prescription information handy, make an appointment for an eye exam.

IS YOUR PRESCRIPTION CURRENT? Find an eye doctor near you and schedule an eye exam.

Do retailers provide same-day eye exam and glasses?

Selecting frames and lenses from your eye doctor’s office is a common and convenient option. In addition to your eye doctor being nearby to answer your questions and discuss your concerns, the office should already have your vision insurance information, making the buying process quicker and easier than with other retailers.

If you don’t find what you’re looking for at your eye doctor’s office, you can take your prescription to an eyewear chain like LensCrafters or Target Optical, and select your frame and lens options just as you would at your doctor’s office. The advantages of going elsewhere for your prescription glasses are that you might find a larger in-store selection along with better (or more frequent) deals on frames.

There’s no shortage of online eyewear retailers for people who prefer shopping for prescription glasses from home or office. With so many styles and colors to choose from, you’re sure to find a great fit for your face shape and personality.

One downside to buying online is that you don’t have an eye doctor there to answer any questions you may have. However, many websites have an online chat function for customers to ask a professional about any issue that may pop up during the online shopping or buying process.

READ NEXT: Where can I get a walk-in eye exam?

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