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Free Eye Tests Incl Specsavers & Optical Express

Last updated: 8 May 2018
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This is a rundown of all the current free eye test deals, incl Specsavers and Optical Express.

Remember if you're under 16 (or up to 19 and in full-time education) or over 60, you're already entitled to free eye-tests on the NHS.

And if you live in Scotland, EVERYONE gets free eye tests.

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Specsavers logoFree 20ish Specsavers eye test voucher*Print or show on phone at 300 stores. Book test in advance

Get by 30 June

You can get a voucher for a free eye test (norm £20ish) at Specsavers*, valid at 300+ participating stores until Sat 30 June.

Specsavers says you should book your eye test in advance. To find out if your local branch is participating, simply enter your postcode on the eye test booking page* and click on your store in the list that appears. You should then see the free eye test voucher (you may need to scroll down). If your store isn't offering free eye tests, you may still see a voucher for a different offer (eg, £10 eye test).

You can then book online or by calling your branch. It's worth mentioning the voucher when you book.

Specsavers won't always be the cheapest place to buy your specs though - see our Cheap Glasses page for the latest deals, including two pairs for £17 at Glasses Direct.

Can I get a free eye test on the NHS?

If you're under 16 (or up to 19 and in full-time education), over 60, or if you live in Scotland, you're entitled to free eye tests on the NHS.

More info

It's one voucher per person. Can't be used with any other vouchers, or by customers entitled to a free NHS eye test.

Optical Express logoFree 20 eye test at Optical Express*MSE Blagged voucher also gets 10% off glasses or lenses

41 days left

Reckon it’s time you had your sight checked? We’ve blagged you an Optical Express voucher for a free eye test (norm £20), available until 11.59pm on Tue 3 Jul.

Simply go via this Optical Express* link, fill in your details and request a call back to book an appointment at your local branch (find your nearest*). You'll then receive your voucher digitally in an email, but make sure you print it out for your appointment if you can. Optical Express says it should be able to accept vouchers on phone screens, but it's usually safer to present a printed version.

The voucher's valid UK-wide and Optical Express has confirmed there's no obligation to act on its advice, or to make a purchase. However, if you do decide to buy a pair of complete glasses or prescription sunglasses (lenses and frames) that cost £110+, the voucher will also get you 10% off. Optical Express won't always be the cheapest place to buy your specs though - see our Cheap Glasses page for the latest deals.

Can I get a free eye test on the NHS?

If you're under 16 (or up to 19 and in full-time education), over 60, or if you live in Scotland, you're entitled to free eye tests on the NHS.

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Health and Safety Executive logoGet a FREE eye test if you work on a computerHealth & Safety rules can mean your employer's responsible

Ongoing

If you work on a computer or laptop - sometimes technically known as a VDU (visual display unit) or DSE (display screen equipment) - for the majority of the day, you could be entitled to a free eye test from your employer.

The Health and Safety Executive has rules in place which mean that your employer may be obliged to offer you a free eye test if you ask for it. Each employer will have a different arrangement for this - some will let you book your own eye test and claim the money back on expenses, while others may prefer that all staff are seen by the same optician. It's best to speak to your employer and ask how it works for you. 

Some employers will also pay for, or contribute towards, a pair of glasses if you need them to carry out your work. Again, it's best to ask your employer how this works for your company.

Remember to always keep your receipts as these may be needed, particularly if you need to claim the costs back yourself.

Do you qualify for a free eye test on the NHS?

Some people are always entitled to eye tests, incl anyone under 16 (or up to 19 if in full time education), anyone over 60, and those with certain medical conditions (see the NHS website for full information).

What's more if you live in Scotland, eye tests have been free for everyone since 2006.

What to look out for with prescriptions

By law you're entitled to your prescription after having an eye test and cannot be forced to buy glasses or contact lenses from the retailer the optician works for. However some opticians carry out extra assessments such as eye photos, for which they may charge, so always double check the total price in advance. Prescriptions have a 'lifespan' of two years.

Pay less for specs

If it turns out you do need a new or different prescription don't make a purchase straight away. First see our Cheap Glasses deals and Cheap Contact Lenses guide to make sure you get the best deal possible.

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use the money mantras

Before spending, use Martin's Mantras. If you answer 'NO' to any, Don't buy!

are
you
Skint? ask:
  • Do I need it?
  • Can I afford it?
are
you
not skint? ask:
  • Will I use it?
  • Is it worth it?
Section 75

Free protection for all shopping!

There's a little-known piece of legislation that turns any credit card into a financial self-defence superhero. 'Section 75' of the Consumer Credit Act means your plastic must protect anything you buy for more than £100 for free, so if there's a problem or the company goes bust, you can still get your money back.

And although Section 75 doesn't apply to debit cards, there is something else to fall back on if you've paid using a debit card, or used a credit card for a purchase under £100. Known as Chargeback, this is part of banks' and card companies' internal rules and not a legal requirement. Read full details of Section 75 or Chargeback, plus how to claim, in our guides.

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For the sake of transparency, so you can check there's no difference, here are duplicate versions of the * links that don't help MoneySavingExpert.com: Optical Express Specsavers

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