I’ve been wearing contact lenses for 22 years. I’m shortsighted as you would expect from 80% of Asian people and I also have astigmatism. As my yearly supply of contact lenses was down to one pair, I had to quickly understand where is the best place to buy contact lenses in Oslo.
My husband came back with a flyer from SpecSavers who had just opened a store on Henrik Ibsen Gate. They opening offer was 50% off everything in store and complete eye test was 595 Kr. I then compared it with Brilleland which is much closer for me and the eye test was from 495Kr, so I booked an appointment there.
When I arrived, OMG, the optometrist was epic! He explained how my Norwegian wasn’t great and he happily spoke to me in English as he is Danish anyway. He was talking with full gestures and long pauses just like a comedian. It was very entertaining and thorough at the same time. It took 45 minutes instead of the expected 30 min. He also asked if I wanted pictures taken of my retina for an extra 100Kr and I agreed.
- I was happy I went as we sligthly adjusted my prescription
- The optometrist recommended I should book an appointment with eye specialists near Frognerhelsesenter just in case to make sure all is fine. It’s 1000 Kr but is worth checking every 10 years or so
- Surprisingly he didn’t follow up with an attempt to sell me lenses from the store! I had to ask where I could order the lenses and he honestly said that it would be cheaper on the internet…
Ordering contact lenses
I still asked the store how much it was for my Cooper Vision toric lenses and the lady at the counter said 2,800Kr for 12 pairs (2 boxes of 6 for each eye).
I then searched the Internet and found my year’s supply from DiscountContactLenses.com based in the US for 180 USD including 15USD shipping. I thought that even with an extra 25% tax to be paid at customs it would equal to 1,870Kr which is a saving of 1,000Kr. Totally worth it right?
How long did it take to get my contact lense order?
That’s where it went pear shape:
- 4th May (or should I say May 4th, star wars day): I place my order. I needed it by the end of the month and the shipping time to Norway was 14 to 21 days.
- The website gave me a USPS tracking number. I could see that the parcel arrived in Norway on 9th May
- Then I checked USPS tracking tool every day for the following 10 days but didn’t see any progress on the parcel
- 24th May, I contact the website who tells me that I need to wait 21 days before they can send me a replacement order
- 25th May afternoon I receive a notification from the post office telling me the parcel is there and I need to pay 500Kr tax and duty. I then go straight to the Post Office and they tell me that they resent the parcel that very morning because it has been sitting there for 14 days!!!! It was the second notice they sent, apparently…I was like “Are you kidding me????”. They gave me a number to call customer service. So I did, right there in front of them, the customer service lady rang that post office while I was on hold to ask them if the parcel was really gone. And the parcel was gone. ARGH
- 25th May evening, I emailed customer service at DiscountContactLenses.com about the situation and asking them to do something urgently as I would run out of contact lenses on 31st May
- 26th May, the website happily agreed to send a replacement for free but didn’t send it with express service. I would have happily paid extra for that.
- 31st May the parcel is shipped. Bad luck it too 5 days to ship when last time it shipped the day the order was placed.
- 4th June the parcel arrived in Norway. Once the parcel arrives in Norway, USPS doesn’t update you on where your parcel is so I went everyday to the post office to check status. I stuck to my month old contact lenses and my eyes began to hurt.
- 6th June the post office lady starts to recognize me and tells me my parcel is being held at customs. Thank god I had a spare emergency pair of contact lenses that I used to keep in my travel bag. I used it.
- 12th June I received a notice that the parcel had arrived, went to the post office and got my parcel… without any tax or duties to be paid! I guess it’s because the website reordered it with a zero value.
Where to buy contact lense cleaning solution?
I was looking for Optifree. I seems to clean my lenses better than Renu. At Brilleland, they have Optifree under another brand, called iWear all in 1 Supreme, also made by Alcon and the price is surprisingly good: 89Kr per bottle of 350mL and buy 5 get one free! Among those bottle you can also chose a pack of small individual mini flask that are great for traveling!
I received my contact lenses a bit late, got a lot of stress, spent a lot of time at the post office but saved 1,000 Kr (until someone from Customs reads this and decides to charge me).
If you order from DiscountContactLenses.com and don’t receive any notification, pop by your post office no longer than a week after you see in the USPS tracking tool that it arrived in Norway. You don’t want your parcel to be returned to the sender.