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Thursday, July 29th
Coastal first opened in 2000, specializing in online sales of contact lenses and later branching out into the eyeglasses market.
Easy Shopping Experience
Shopping for contacts is easy with Coastal. Since you probably already have a preferred brand, start by finding it under the Popular Brands heading at the top of the page. From there, use the filters on the left side of the page to quickly get to the type of lenses you need (e.g. daily, weekly, or monthly; type of prescription).
Prices Significantly Higher
When looking at our comparison-shopping contact lenses, the Acuvue Oasys 1-Day for Astigmatism, Coastal was priced significantly higher than most retailers at $47.99 per box. They offer a price match guarantee, but you'll have to jump through the hoops of making the request for the match with one of their representatives. Do you really want to go to all the hassle when you can get lower everyday prices elsewhere?
Shipping Is Extra
Shipping will cost you $5.95 if your order is less than $99, otherwise it's free. We spotted a line item for "Handling & Insurance" on our checkout page, but it was zeroed out by a mysterious discount that we're not exactly sure where it came from.
Discounts Available Onsite
When we visited the Coastal site, there was a coupon code offering a 10% discount on orders of $99+. We didn't see any other discounts mentioned, but when we clicked on the Auto Refill setting in the shopping cart, we appeared to get a discount of 5% as well as free shipping. That wasn't featured or explained in detail anywhere we could find, so it would be easy for a customer to miss out on that opportunity.
A Few Customer Issues
We also saw in some of the customer reviews on the Coastal site that there may be glitches when shopping here, especially with that Auto Refill service. One person mentioned that despite getting a confirmation email, her subscription didn't go through; disappointingly, the customer service representative said it was a one-time offer (you have to do it at the time you place your order) and that she couldn't manually override it. That review also highlighted the fact that your order will be refilled on the same calendar date as the original purchase: if you buy on January 15, your refill will happen on the 15th as well, and there's no way to change it.
Generally Positive Reviews
Coastal earns a "B+" rating from the Better Business Bureau. That's not an amazing grade, but it comes from problems similar to the one described previously. On a more positive note, we found more than 1,300 customer reviews for Coastal that averaged out to an encouraging 4.6 out of 5 stars.
Would Like To See More Competitive Pricing
We'd love to see Coastal get their pricing more in line with their competitors, without the extra step of requesting a price match. That would help earn this store a higher ranking among contact lens stores.
If you answered, "at the optometrist's office", you might be missing out on some serious savings - on the exact same contacts you'd get from your doctor! Shopping for your lenses online could get you prices at discounts of as much as 70% over the everyday retail price, but with the benefits of ordering from home and having them come right to your doorstep.
Have you ever wondered if contact lenses are right for you? Maybe you tried to wear them a decade (or two) ago and just couldn't find a comfortable fit. You may want to schedule an appointment with your eye doctor, because technology has advanced to the point that many people can now comfortably wear contacts, even when previous attempts have failed. Where once it took a hard or gas permeable lens to achieve the right amount of correction, there are now soft lenses for astigmatism and even presbyopia (i.e. age-related farsightedness).
You may also be surprised to see just how many options are available. Multifocal contacts instead of eyeglasses? Yes! Daily lenses that you throw away at the end of the day, eliminating any need for cases and cleansers? That too! While it may take some trial-and-error in the beginning, to find both the prescription and the type of lens that feels most comfortable, it's definitely worth it to take advantage of the convenience and flexibility contacts offer compared with traditional eyeglasses.
With so many online retailers of contact lenses, how can you tell which one to choose for your order? It may be helpful to keep these criteria in mind:
TopConsumerReviews.com has reviewed and ranked the best online retailers of contact lenses available today. We hope this information helps you get your contacts quickly and affordably, so that you can see clearly and comfortably for a long time!
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