Miles and Points for Contacts

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Recently my husband made his annual trip to the optometrist.  This is a visit I usually don’t mentally focus on very much since it is his visit, it is usually annoyingly expensive, and I like to pretend that I don’t also need to go to the optometrist.  Hey, I have no restrictions on my driver’s license and I’m sticking to it!  I do give him props for double checking on which rewards credit card to use before going to the appointment.  He already knew the answer, but gets bonus points for double checking.

He came home from the visit and proudly proclaimed that his contacts were no longer available, and he decided to switch to new fancier contacts.  I thought whatever, boring, boring, yay for no more sticky contact lens solution on the counters, boring…..wait, it costs how much?!  Having never had contacts myself, I am out of touch with how much they apparently cost.  He has used 1-800-Contacts in the past, so was ready to place a new order with them for his new prescription (they let you just text a photo of your prescription which is pretty cool).  Right before he pressed “purchase” I pretty much yelled “wait”!  I remembered seeing 1-800-Contacts in some shopping portals, so I did some quick research and found they were in several portals with the highest being Ultimate Rewards at 5x.

This is by no means one of those “high level” or advanced ways of upping spending to earn miles and points.  However, it is exactly my style of earning – getting the most for everyday stuff you were going to have to do anyway.  In this case, the extra step of remembering that I had seen 1-800-Contacts on a portal netted us a couple thousand points.  Well done in my book.  Next year he says he wants LASIK, so we will move on to maximizing that large purchase.

So if you happen to use this source for contacts, then remember to earn some extra points for your next order!

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  1. Ultimate rewards are very versatile but I prefer cash back. I had to buy contacts as well and got %15 (%10 shop discover and %5 on all online shopping) back from my discover card.Scored $45 on the deal!

  2. @Linda: is great for looking at the offers for specific sites for most of the cashback and shopping portals. It’ll also list several promo codes and deals for the sites.

  3. I know this isn’t MommyTaxes, but contacts are also an FSA-eligible expense, so you can save an additional 25%+ while getting points and putting spend on the card. I typically make my contacts purchase in January. That way, if I have any money left in the FSA at the end if the year I can make another purchase in December to use up the remaining funds.

  4. Couldn’t agree more with SC Parent. Assuming you have the option for an FSA through your/your husband’s health insurance (which I think you would), absolutely take advantage of it. Don’t over-invest in there (losing money is the WORST!) but at a minimum set aside his contact costs. 30% off (since you aren’t paying taxes on it) crushes any portals any day…and considering you can almost certainly combine the FSA savings with portal/cc points. It’s a slam dunk!

    Same goes for LASIK – if he’s serious about it, max out that FSA and use those funds for the procedure. I’m thinking about doing this for next year, so all this eye-related tax-free mumbo jumbo’s been on my mind recently 🙂

  5. Lasik is offering 1,000 Dividend Miles for a consultation and another 25,000 for treatment treatment through the end of the year. The downside is residents of Texas are excluded, but maybe that will change next year.

  6. I have been shopping for contact lens too and looking to earn miles/points but 1800contacts doesn’t have the best price even after factoring the miles/points.

    I found Focal Dailies 90 pack much lower at then at, $35.99 vs $47.99.

  7. is the only place to order contacts from. However, its best not to use the website and call the order in. You miss out on the extra points but they will pricematch anyone. So search the web and find the best deal on contacts and they will match, but you have to call. They have by far the best customer service.

    I used for orders for awhile, but they won’t take the contacts back if your prescription changes.

  8. Linda, there is probably a prior post somewhere, but I can do a refresher soon. is a good place to compare some basic options.
    Tim2, if you have a discover card that is a great option for this one.
    Chris, thanks for helping out!
    Dan, thanks. 😉
    SC Parent, we loved that as well with my old job. We plan to do it again with my husband’s job next year. It is a great way to save!
    Nicole, that’s the plan. The beauty is you can stack it with portals (at least with the contacts). We loved using our rewards credit cards to earn points and then get reimbursed from the FSA. 😉
    Ariana, good to know. I will have to do some research in that area next year s I think he really is serious!
    MichaelIP, good to know. I didn’t do any of the contact shopping, so I have no clue who is the cheapest. I just deferred to him on this one.

  9. I think my post didn’t make it on here– but here goes. I have been ordering from visiondirect from years. Check the prices. It is also listed on Ultimate Rewards. They are very reliable and the prices are great. They have a coupon going right now for first time customers 25NEW for 25% off and free shipping for any contact lens order. I have always been able to find coupons for refills as well. Hope this helps someone.

  10. Yes, make sure you use a shopping portal and pay more than you have to just to get some points which are worth less than the extra margin paid. Sounds like a great plan.

    • Seth, did you wake up on the grumpy side of the bed today? Where did I say use a portal to pay more? It says if you “happen to use this source for contacts make sure to earn points”. Online was cheaper than from the optometrist, and it seems that 1-800-Contacts price matches with a 2% better price guarantee. Admittedly, I am not the contact shopper in my family (and have enough on my plate so don’t want to be), but if you use this or another similar source anyway make sure to earn points.

  11. Without looking too hard I found which has better prices than 800-Contacts on the few products I spot checked and I can offer 9% cash-back on purchases made through my shopping portal if I wanted to. I would assume that there are other portals offering similar or better.

  12. Seth, then use that price to price match and save an extra 2% and go through the portal that offers the best rewards for you. That was kind of the point of the post.

  13. Woke up on the normal side of the bed. And happened to find more advice which I don’t think is the best option out there.

    Yes, if you happen to like over-paying anyways then by all means make sure you also get points for it. But when you can spend less and still get more cash back (or more points) then this sort of advice isn’t all that great. Just my opinion, but the fact that it took me all of 5 minutes (including checking my affiliate link rates) to scan a handful of sites and find a better deal makes me think that it isn’t all that hard.

    • Seth, still sounds like 1-800-Contacts is the best deal to me if they indeed beat anyone by 2%, so not sure it is recommending overpaying. But again, use whatever is best for you (portals, companies, FSAs, etc). The point is to make sure you don’t forget earning rewards for contacts.

  14. Few points:

    1. You can still use a reward card and submit the receipt to the FSA. Given that you have to submit paperwork with basically everything FSA oriented at this point I see no benefit to using their debit card.

    2. Choosing a lasik doctor based on miles is not the basis I would choose a surgeon on.

  15. I always use as I find their prices beat everyone else for my contacts when you factor in the coupon codes (25% off right now) plus the ultimate rewards mall.

  16. Hmmmm….

    If you buy discounted Walgreens gift cards, say at Cardpool, can they be used via Bigcrumbs to go to Walgreens where you can use the coupon code?

  17. From what i hear Walgreens gc cannot be used online but I haven’t tried myself…they are supposed to be changing that in the future

  18. Nice share. I like the idea of using your existing spending, like contact lenses, to earn miles rather than running up a balance by buying stuff you don’t need.

  19. I recently used a shopping portal (Ultimate rewards 2x extra) after getting an insanely cheap price on a certain digital camera. It was looking at an obscure place on Best Buy website (I paid $129 plus $10 sales tax, $139ai–next cheapest online was $199!! plus shipping) and checked the online portals. Ultimate rewards had the best bonus and with one extra click, I bought the camera and picked it up at the store. (almost 400 UR points and was part of our minimum spend on my wife’s CSP MC!!). Not alot of points this time but every little bit adds up!! This camera is Panasonic Lumix ZS8 14MP/16X zoom and it ranks decently in Consumer Reports.

    This is a Christmas gift for my wife that will replace her ancient 5 MP/3X zoom digital camera we bought when we got married in 2006. The old camera worked fine for years until very recently and we paid around $120 at that time.

  20. 1800contacts is WAY overpriced, and it really doesn’t matter where you buy contacts. You should go with the lowest net price, period.

  21. As others have said I for go the points because 1800 contacts is very expensive. Contact lens King is way cheaper. And I Still get card points and then reimburse thru my FSA….

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