LASIK vs contacts & glasses

LASIK not only offers you the potential of total freedom from glasses or contact lenses, it can also save you money!

Laser eye surgery can seem expensive and unaffordable, but for many people, the procedure is cheaper than the long term costs of other methods of vision care. Read on to compare the cost of laser eye surgery to the most common vision care methods in Australia, like glasses and contacts. Or try our Savings Calculator here, where you can determine the cost savings, and find out just how affordable laser eye surgery is in the long run.

Cost consideration for contacts:

  • Monthly or annual costs for new lenses
  • Solutions supplies
  • Possible doctor visits if you develop eye irritation or infection from wearing contact lenses

Cost consideration for glasses:

  • New glasses with lenses and frames on average every two to three years
  • Reading glasses
  • Multifocal options
  • Prescription sunglasses

In comparison, laser eye surgery is a one-time investment — glasses and lenses require a lifetime commitment and this involves ongoing costs.

Your actual saving will vary based on your personal situation, e.g. glasses, lenses, or both; how often you require a new prescription; maintenance solutions; etc. Try our Cost Calculator and see yourself how much LASIK could potentially save you.

Depending on the correction required, the cost for LASIK can vary. With personalEYES our packages start at $2,275 per eye.

Case Studies

Franks lenses
Max’s glasses
Melissa’s Ortho-K lenses

Franks lenses: Laser eye surgery vs contact lenses

Frank has worn contact lenses for more than ten years. Like most contact lens wearers, Frank uses soft contact lenses. He typically buys a box of six disposable lenses for $30 and changes his lenses at least every two weeks. He also buys at least $150 worth of contact lens solution and cleaning products per year. Like many Australians, Frank needs an annual eye-exam and consultation to check-up on his eyes and prescription. Unfortunately, Frank's check-ups are not covered by Medicare.

He was recently approved for PRK laser eye surgery after a free consultation but is not sure if it’s worth the cost.

Let’s compare the cost of Franks contact lenses against PRK surgery:

  • Consultation fees: $100 per yearLenses: $30 per box or $258 per year
  • Maintenance/cleaning: $150 per year
  • Total annual cost: $508
  • Total cost of contact lenses over 11.5 years: $5,842
  • Average cost of PRK surgery: $4,800

Result: In 11.5 years Frank will spend more on contact lenses than she would on PRK surgery, although laser eye surgery has a much higher upfront cost.

Max’s glasses: Laser eye surgery vs prescription glasses

Max is one of more than 50% of Australians who wear prescription eyeglasses. Max has one pair of glasses that he wears every day that cost him $190. He also has a back-up pair and a pair of prescription sunglasses. Max buys a new pair of glasses every year or due to regular wear and tear, breakage and wanting to keep up with the newest trends. He has an annual eye examination with an ophthalmologist, which is covered by Medicare.

Max has recently taken up running, and has grown increasingly frustrated with the limitations of wearing glasses while exercising. He has been considering LASIK surgery and has been told he is a potential candidate, but he thinks it is too expensive.

Let’s compare the cost of Max’s eyeglasses against LASIK surgery:

  • New pair of glasses each year: $190
  • Annual eye examinations: $0
  • Total annual cost: $190
  • Total cost of prescription glasses over 30 years: $5,700
  • Average cost of LASIK: $5,000 for both eyes

Result: Though LASIK has a higher upfront cost than wearing prescription glasses, Max will pay less for laser eye surgery than glasses over a 30 year period.

Melissa’s Ortho-K lenses: Laser eye surgery vs orthokeratology

Melissa is a swimmer who has been using orthokeratology lenses for four years. She wears the rigid lenses every night to reshape her corneas and takes them out every morning, allowing her to swim every day. Melissa’s lenses cost $1,500 and she has to replace them every two years. She also has to have six-monthly check-ups with her optometrist, costing her around $100 per year.

Recently, Melissa dropped her Ortho-K lenses just months after receiving a new set, breaking them and forcing her to pay for two sets of lenses this year alone. She is frustrated by the ongoing maintenance and expenses of her Ortho-K lenses. Melissa has been approved for Implantable Contact Lenses or ICL, but she is concerned about the high price as ICL is the most expensive type of laser eye surgery available.

Let’s compare the cost of Melissa’s Ortho-K lenses against ICL:

  • Ortho-K lenses: $1,500 every two years
  • Follow-up appointments: $100 per year
  • Cleaning/maintenance: $150 per year
  • Total annual cost: $1,000
  • Total cost of Ortho-K lenses after 11 years: $11,000
  • Average cost of ICL: $10,900 for both eyes

Result: After 11 years, Melissa will spend approximately $11,000 on her orthokeratology lenses, compared to the one-time cost of $10,900 for ICL.

Our price guarantee on LASIK

We will match any publically advertising price or formal quotation; based on the same procedure and inclusions. In some cases, we may require verification of the procedure and/or inclusions.

One price — no hidden costs like extra charges for tests, medications or follow-up visits.

Visual Freedom from $30 per week!

For the cost of a cup of coffee a day you could bring your life into focus again.

Our Price Guarantee

Find Out More >

Visual Freedom from $30 per week!

Find Out More >