I have lived in Thailand for 15 years, and always had problems buying eye glasses.
Unlike the US, where there is an optician at most eye glass places, in Thailand there’s usually a technician to give you an eye test but they are not a properly trained optician.
Because of this, I have always found eye tests a bit spotty and, buying eye glasses annoying, as I have often arrived home to discover I couldn’t see through them. Mister Eye at Central Ladprao Mall though was different.
An in-depth eye exam at Mister Eye
I knew Mister Eye was different than the usual Thai opticians and eye glass shops as, when I got there, my eyes were immediately checked with an opthalmoscope for any problems. Then I was shown into the eye examination room, where my eye exam began.
But, unlike other eye glass shops in Thailand, the eye technician did not examine my old eye glasses first. Usually in Thailand, the technician does check your old eye glasses, and these are then used for the basis of the exam.
If you cannot see out of your old eye glasses however, this can be a problem as, because the eye exam is based on them, I have often come out with new glasses that I can’t see out of any better than I could out of my old glasses.
At Mister Eye, however, the eye technician did a complete eye exam, checking many times with different lens strengths to make sure the lenses he finally chose were accurate.
Only at the end of the exam did he check my old eye glasses and inform me, in one eye my vision was the same, but in the other eye it had worsened slightly.
Once my eye exam was over, I was shown back out into the main shop area and the technician went through a book explaining which lenses I could purchase and the cost of each. I had a choice of normal thickness lenses (which with my poor eyesight would mean my lenses would look like old Coke bottles) that were only 1,480 baht, thinner lenses at 2,700 baht and extra thin lenses for 5,200 baht.
As I only wear the glasses at home, I chose the thin lenses at 2,700 baht.
A huge number of eye class frames to consider
Next, we moved on to choose frames and I was immediately happy to see he showed me straight to two tables that had hundreds of eye glass frames on sale.
The average price of the frames was between 1,500 and 2,700 baht; the 2,700 baht frames being designer frames. I spent at least 20 minutes trying on frames, with the technician helping me, and finally settled on a pair that was 2,300 baht.
Total cost for me eye glasses at Mister Eye with designer frames? $161 for eye glasses with thin lenses, specially coated for anti-glare and in designer frames.
The last time I bought similar eye glasses in the United States? $470 and another $75 for the eye exam. In Thailand, at Mister Eye, the eye exam is free.
Contact lenses at Mister Eye
Once I had chosen frames, I also picked out daily wear contact lenses — (36 contact lenses (18 pairs) for only 550 baht — and, as they were running a promotion, I was given another 2 pairs free of charge.
The eye technician wrote out my receipt, and I paid a deposit for everything. I was then told my glasses would be ready in 4 hours if I wanted them that day or the day after, if not. I chose to come back the following day.
Fast glasses creation at Mister Eye
When I returned to Mister Eye the next day, my eye glasses were ready. I was given immediate attention the minute I walked into the store, and was soon trying on the glasses. They fit perfectly.
I could also see much better out of this pair of eye glasses than I could out of the pair I bought at another Thai optician the year before. I paid the remainder of my money and was back outside the shop in less than five minutes.
Overall, from beginning to end, getting an eye exam at Mister Eye in Bangkok, choosing frames, getting contact lenses and picking them up took less than an hour.
The service was impeccable, the eye technician was incredibly kind, my glasses and contact lenses are perfect and the total cost for an eye exam, a pair of glasses with designer frames and 36 contact lenses was only $180. An unbelievably cheap price for great products and wonderful service.
Next time you are in Bangkok, Thailand and needing a new pair of eye glasses look no further than Mister Eye.
Mister Eye has several locations in Bangkok, usually at shopping malls. There is one at Central World Plaza, and another at The Mall Bang Khae. The Mister Eye at Central Ladprao is where I bought mine.
Mister Eye also often has sales so you can pick up a pair or two of eye glasses with designer frames for a cheap price.