Buying new glasses has always involved a certain amount of trauma for me. I know much of that is my fault - or at least the fault of my prescription (long sight and severe astigmatism) - but it is still a pain when you have to go back to a store three of four times for adjustments, after you've spent a fortune on a new pair of glasses.
So I decided a few years ago to give Vision Express a go, particularly as I wanted a new pair of prescription sunglasses, and they had a special offer. It has become my regular optician ever since. First impressions of the store are good - it's spacious, with clean modern decor, and a wide selection of frames. Most of the staff are relatively young (well, in their 20s), and some of them were slightly clumsy and heavy-handed in terms of customer service to start with, in an over-eager sort of way. But once I had had my eye examination, and they got to know me a bit more, we got on fine.
They have a nifty gadget to ensure the alignment of the glasses on your face is correct (essential for my prescription) - and to be fair, it has worked every time. My new sunglasses gave me the best vision I've had in years, and have needed no further adjustment. That's high praise from me.
Their prices are not the cheapest, but they are still reasonably competitive. But to date, it's one of the best opticians I have used.
I've been coming here for over eight years and I used to be so satisfied I'd still have my eye tests here after moving to London.
My most recent eye test resulted in two weeks of feeling sick and dizzy. Which I had never experienced in my lifetime of wearing glasses. The change in my sight wasn't great, they had quite simply given me the wrong prescription. Which, I'm sad to say, as of writing this has not been corrected.
After a retest (which was a feat to get in itself) the optician implied I was lying after having tested me three times (apparently) with the same results. Ultimately the optician agreed to lower my prescription as she said "I'm so confused, I don't know what's wrong."
But... This wasn't the end... Firstly, they said I'd have to wait two weeks for the new lenses because I must have thin lenses. Strange, having never needing them before. They ultimately agreed to fit my glasses with standard lenses (which, from straight off seem so much more natural) leading me to assume the £50 extra thin lenses are a con.
Then... Having bought contact lenses in my new prescription (I also had a lens fitting on the same day, which they tried to charge me for when they said it was free, but that's another story) I demanded they compensate or provide contacts in my new prescription. I was told I would require another fitting as contact lenses can be a different prescription. I don't know how much of that is true, but my contact lenses have always been the same strength as my glasses. And considering I wear dallies which seem to consist of two bass curves I couldn't understand how the change would warrant a new fitting. And on a side note: the fitting didn't have much technicals elements to it, it consisted of a salesman insisting I bought the most expensive contact lenses they stock...
Ultimately they provided me with sample lenses in both the reduced prescription and the strong (wrong) prescription to try and as I'm writing there's still something very wrong with both...
Having trusted this branch for almost a decade I am extremely upset with this outrageous disappointment.
I will be seeking an independent optician to take another eye test, if you have had a test here recently GET ANOTHER and if you're considering going here (they do have nice glasses) don't.
Vision Express in Churchill Square is really a one-stop-shop for eye care. They have an optician on site, and a one-hour lab to prepare glasses. The shop also supplies various accessories - cleaning supplies, decorative strings or chains and contact lenses.
Several frames are on sale at the moment - from 25% - 75% off several designers. The sale doesn't apply to sunglasses, though they do stock some less expensive brand names, like Pepe, starting at around £45. Other designers include Police, Tom Ford, Rayban and Gucci, with styles costing into the high £200s.
I'll probably return when I've run out of contact lenses, or get bored of my frames.
if you need new glasses or just a check up this is th best place to go, they have a great selection the staff have been trained very well Price's seem to be around average but they really go though it with you properly the first time i went i just browsed no problems second time i want help and i got it, end up buying a very nice pair of glasses nice thing as well get there advantage card its really cheap £20 for 2 years if you break your glasses take them in they fix them free i have had min fixed 3 times with no charge and endless amounts of free cleanings. great shop, very quick, great service
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