Specsavers plans to reverse the trend of British Columbians deprioritizing essential healthcare needs by offering high-quality glasses from $69

As rising interest rates and inflation leads to cost of living increases, British Columbians are becoming more price-conscious, and that attitude extends even to necessary health checks.  Specsavers survey, conducted by Research Co., showed that 55% of British Columbians believe prescription eyewear is not affordable1 and many feel that price is a top consideration when purchasing a new pair of glasses (65%), and when selecting an optometry clinic for an eye exam (69%)2.

According to survey results, 56% foresee changing how they approach shopping for prescription eyewear, such as finding a cheaper alternative or avoiding the expenditure altogether when it comes to buying glasses, due to an increasing cost of living in B.C.3 The cost-saving mentality doesn’t stop there – almost half (48%) plan to look for ways to minimize or avoid costs associated with having an eye exam altogether4, despite Health Canada’s recommendation that adults get their eyes checked at least once every two years5.

“What many don’t know is that the vast majority of eye conditions progress with no symptoms and regular eye exams are essential for early detection to ensure vision is protected,” said Naomi Barber, Specsavers Director of Optometry. “At Specsavers, every eye exam includes OCT (optical coherence tomography) – a 3D eye scan, as part of a standard eye exam.”

“It is clear that the high cost of eyewear is becoming one of the main barriers for people to access comprehensive eyecare, and Specsavers is committed to making sure no one has to put off getting their eyes checked, which is why we offer high quality glasses from $69,” said Bill Moir, General Manager at Specsavers. “With prescription glasses at other retailers costing between $240 to $1,000, and premium lenses within the $700-$1,000 range6, it is not surprising that more than half (55%) of British Columbians feel eyewear is not affordable7.”

Specsavers customers receive cost-savings for high-quality frames, including designer lines by Hugo Boss, Liberty, Marc Jacobs, Vivienne Westwood, and more. Thanks to Specsavers vertically integrated supply chain across the world, customers have access to a wide range of high-quality glasses starting at as low as $69 for a complete pair, and progressive glasses from $149.

“I’m so impressed with the quality of Specsavers glasses and service,” said Helen, an 84-year-old North Vancouver resident. “The care and thoroughness made me feel well looked after and gave me comfort. I purchased a pair of designer glasses with transition and progressive lenses for far less than I usually pay for just the prescription alone.”

Specsavers is an optometrist-owned and -led company, known in many countries for its high quality and affordable eyewear and accessible eyecare. As part of its goal to redefine accessible eyecare for Canadians, Specsavers offers OCT (optical coherence tomography) – a 3D eye scan, as part of a standard eye exam. The technology has proven to have a measurable impact on the early detection of sight-threatening eye conditions and diseases such as glaucoma and diabetes.

With 17 stores already open in B.C., and a plan to open 50 in the province and 200 across Canada by 2024, Specsavers is focused on increasing store location accessibility, and changing lives through better sight.

Specsavers British Columbia Eye Health Affordability Poll – Fast Facts:
  • In British Columbia, 65% feel the most important characteristic when purchasing new eyeglasses is price/affordability.
  • Over half of respondents in British Columbia (52%) claim that inflation and rising costs are impacting purchasing decisions, and 56% feel as though prescription glasses are an expenditure that they seek to spend less on or eliminate altogether. This jumps to 60% for residents in Metro Vancouver.
  • 48% plan to eliminate or reduce costs associated with having an eye exam, and 20% would avoid the expenditure altogether.
  • The top considerations for British Columbians when selecting an optometry clinic are the affordability of eye exams (69%), convenience of the location (69%) and affordability of eyeglasses and contacts being sold (60%).
  • One-in-three British Columbians haven’t visited their optometrist in the past three years. This is concerning considering Health Canada recommends adults visit every two years. Many eye conditions have no symptoms, and if detected early, vision can be saved.
About Specsavers

Founded in the U.K. nearly 40 years ago by optometrist husband and wife team Doug and Mary Perkins, there are now more than 2,500 Specsavers healthcare businesses across 11 countries caring for 41 million patients and customers. Specsavers delivers style, and function with quality eyewear at an affordable price, while using the most advanced clinical equipment as a standard part of eye examinations.

Polling Methodology

This poll was commissioned by Specsavers, conducted by Research Co. Results are based on an online study conducted from June 14 to June 18, 2022, among 402 adults in British Columbia who wear glasses or contact lenses. The sample was statistically selected according to Canadian census figures for age and gender in British Columbia. The margin of error—which measures sample variability—is +/- 4.9 percentage points, nineteen times out of twenty.

An earlier poll was commissioned by Specsavers, conducted by Research Co. in February of 2022. Results are based on an online study conducted from February 18 to February 20, 2022, among 1,009 Canadian adults (incl. 154 respondents from British Columbia). The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region in Canada. The margin of error—which measures sample variability—is +/- 3.1 percentage points, nineteen times out of twenty.

1 Research Co. polling, February 2022
2 Research Co. polling, June 2022
3 https://www2.gov.bc.ca/assets/gov/data/statistics/economy/cpi/cpi_highlights.pdf
4 Research Co. polling, June 2022
5 https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/news/2018/05/vision-health-month.html
6 https://groupenroll.ca/cost-of-prescription-lenses-in-canada-2021-guide/
7 Research Co. polling, February 2022

SOURCE Specsavers Canada