Getting routine eye exams can be an important part of protecting the health of your eyes and catching early signs of disease.1 Humana Vision* offers members a comprehensive eye exam once every 12 months with a $15 copay at participating providers.2 But if you don’t have insurance, you’ll likely pay more for an exam than you would with vision coverage.

How much is an eye exam without insurance?

If you don’t have vision insurance, the average cost of an exam is around $95, with prices ranging from about $50 to $250.3 The costs can vary based on where you get the exam. If you visit an independent eye doctor, you could be paying up to $200 as a new patient or up to $150 as a returning patient. You could also visit an eye doctor at a large chain or retailer, where the cost for an exam without insurance may be lower:4

Retailer Cost of exam without insurance Costco About $70 Target About $70 Walmart Vision Center $75 and up LensCrafters $73 and up America’s Best $50, or free with purchase of 2 pairs of eyeglasses Sam’s Club $45 and up

Source: Vision Center

Types of eye exams

There are a few different kinds of eye exams. If you just want a general checkup on the health of your eyes or an update to your prescription, you probably want a comprehensive exam. But you may need another type of eye exam, depending on your needs.

Comprehensive eye exam

A comprehensive (or routine) eye exam involves several tests to check the eyes for vision problems and signs of disease. An eye doctor will examine the sharpness of your vision, your pupils’ reaction to light and the alignment of your eyes. The eye care professional will also measure your eyeglasses prescription and may test for signs of eye diseases such as glaucoma.5

Contact lens exam

If you want to wear contacts, you’ll need a special exam to make sure that contact lenses are right for you. During a contact lens exam, an eye doctor will measure the size and shape of the cornea and check for signs of conditions such as dry eye syndrome. If you are a good candidate for contacts, the exam may include a trial contact lens fitting.6 The cost of a contact lens exam without insurance may vary based on where you get the procedure done. An eye exam and contact lens fitting at LensCrafters may start at around $113,7 while an exam and lens fitting at Target may start at around $125.8

Vision screening

Unlike a comprehensive eye exam, a vision screening is usually performed by a primary care provider, not an eye doctor. Routine screenings are not normally recommended for most adults who have no vision issues, but they may be performed for children as part of regular pediatric checkups. Vision screenings involve quick tests such as eye chart readings that check the eyes for nearsightedness, farsightedness, astigmatism and other common eye problems.9

Where to get an eye exam

If you need an eye exam, there are several options to choose from. You could schedule an appointment at a local eye doctor’s office or visit an eyewear chain store location. Some large retailers, such as Walmart or Target, may sometimes include vision centers at their locations.

Typically, if you have vision insurance, you will have access to a network of vision care providers where you can receive an eye exam. Since exams are routine preventive care, they are usually covered or subject to a small copayment in vision insurance plans.10

Why regular eye exams are important

Comprehensive eye exams are an important part of preventive care for your eyes. Many common eye problems are easy to manage if caught early. But if left undetected and untreated, some eye disorders could lead to macular degeneration or blindness.11

With Humana Vision, members get a comprehensive eye exam through participating providers once every 12 months with a $15 copay. The cost of vision insurance through Humana depends on your location and age. Get a quote to find price estimates for where you live.

*Humana Vision plans are not available in all states.

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Sources

  1. “The Importance of Eye Exams,” Abrams Eye Institute, last accessed December 29, 2021, https://www.abramseyeinstitute.com/blog/the-importance-of-eye-exams/.
  2. “Humana Vision,” Humana.com, last accessed December 29, 2021, https://apps.humana.com/Marketing/documents.asp?file=2890277, PDF.
  3. Melody Huang, “How Much is an Eye Exam Without Insurance?” Vision Center, last accessed December 29, 2021, https://www.visioncenter.org/blog/eye-exam-without-insurance/.
  4. Huang, “How Much is an Eye Exam Without Insurance?”
  5. “What to expect during an eye exam,” University of Utah, last accessed December 30, 2021, https://healthcare.utah.edu/moran/what-to-expect-during-eye-exam.php.
  6. Russel Lazarus, “The Contact Lens Exam,” Optometrists Network, last accessed December 30, 2021, https://www.optometrists.org/general-practice-optometry/optical/guide-to-contact-lenses/what-are-contact-lenses/the-contact-lens-exam/.
  7. “LensCrafters Eye Exam Cost,” Health Med Cost, last accessed December 30, 2021, https://www.healthmedcost.com/lenscrafters-eye-exam-cost/.
  8. “Target Eye Exam Cost,” Health Med Cost, last accessed December 30, 2021, https://www.healthmedcost.com/target-eye-exam-cost/.
  9. “Vision Screening,” MedlinePlus, last accessed December 30, 2021, https://medlineplus.gov/lab-tests/vision-screening/.
  10. Amy Hellem, “What is vision insurance, and what does it cost?” All About Vision, last accessed January 3, 2022, https://www.allaboutvision.com/vision-insurance/what-is-it.htm.
  11. “The Importance of Eye Exams.”