Optician Salary

Opticians in the United States take home an average $15.10 per hour. Bonuses, profit sharing, and commission all factor into final incomes for Opticians. Ranging between $23K near the bottom and $51K near the top, total earnings can include up to $5K from bonuses and up to $4K from profit sharing, with a high-performing minority reaping commissions of $8K. While career duration and geographic location impact pay for this group, the specific employer is the most influential factor. Not all workers are lucky enough to have benefits; in fact, nearly two in five are without coverage. Medical insurance is claimed by just under one-half and dental insurance is reported by just under one in three. Men are in the minority of survey respondents, with female Opticians making up 78 percent. Job satisfaction is reported as high by the vast majority of workers. This report is based on answers to PayScale's salary questionnaire.

$27,059 - $61,005
$27K
$41K
$61K
MEDIAN: $40,669
10%
50%
90%

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$10.64 - $22.22
$11
$15
$22
MEDIAN: $15.10
10%
50%
90%

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$0$61K
Salary $27,059 - $61,005
Bonus $290.47 - $5,077
Profit Sharing $294.79 - $4,249
Commission $601 - $7,637
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$22,886 - $50,774
  • Country: United States
  • Currency: USD
  • Updated: 11 Jul 2017
  • Individuals Reporting: 361
Hourly Data $0$32
Hourly Rate $10.64 - $22.22
Hourly Tips $0.00 - $9.67
Overtime $15.12 - $32.56
Annual Data $0$50K
Bonus $290.47 - $5,077
Commission $601 - $7,637
Profit Sharing $294.79 - $4,249
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$22,886 - $50,774
  • Country: United States
  • Currency: USD
  • Updated: 11 Jul 2017
  • Individuals Reporting: 2,314

Find Out Exactly What You Should Be Paid

United States (change)

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Job Description for Optician

Opticians assist customers who require vision tests, prescriptions, repairs, and, in some cases, minor eye surgery; essentially, they helps customers determine which prescription they require and assist with any other questions or needs that they may have. Opticians use a piece of equipment called an phoropter to measure the depth of vision that each customer has, and then they are able to determine exactly which prescription the customer needs. Other equipment is also used, including a tonometer, which injects a small amount of air pressure into the eyeball to test for glaucoma. All opticians should be familiar with this equipment, and some may also be able to operate laser surgery machines for outpatient correction procedures.

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Optician Tasks

  • Design, measure, fit, and adapt lenses for patient according to written optical prescription.
  • Adjust frame and lens position to fit patient.
  • Prepare work order for optical laboratory containing instructions for grinding and mounting lenses in frames.
  • Measure patient for size of eyeglasses and coordinate frames and optical prescription.

Common Career Paths for Optician


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At the upper end, Opticians who move into an Optometrist role can end up with a hefty increase in pay. The average income for Optometrists is a much higher $96K per year. An Optician often moves on to become a Dispensing Optician or a Certified Optician.

Optician Job Listings

Popular Employer Salaries for Optician


Leading companies who hire large numbers of Opticians include Wal-Mart Stores, Inc, LensCrafters Inc., Visionworks, Sam's Club, and Pearle Vision Center. Heading up the field in terms of compensation, Costco Wholesale Company offers the most; Opticians earn $51K on average there. Opticians can also look forward to large paychecks at U.S. Vision, Inc. ($39K), Visionworks ($35K), and LensCrafters Inc. ($34K).

Other low-paying employers include National Vision, Inc. at $24K and Wal-Mart Stores, Inc at $26K, though some Opticians there earn up to $40K.

Popular Skills for Optician


Survey takers working as Opticians report using a large range of professional skills. Most notably, facility with Office Management, Optical Fabrication, and Inside Sales are correlated to pay that is significantly above average, leading to increases of 32 percent, 17 percent, and 10 percent, respectively. Skills that pay less than market rate include Optometry, Inventory Management, and Bilingual. Most people familiar with Customer Service also know Insurance.

Pay by Experience Level for Optician

Pay by Experience for an Optician has a positive trend. An entry-level Optician with less than 5 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $27,000 based on 1,094 salaries provided by anonymous users. Average total compensation includes tips, bonus, and overtime pay. An Optician with mid-career experience which includes employees with 5 to 10 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $33,000 based on 669 salaries. An experienced Optician which includes employees with 10 to 20 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $36,000 based on 764 salaries. An Optician with late-career experience which includes employees with greater than 20 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $42,000 based on 560 salaries.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $33,024

Larger city markers indicate a job is popular in that location.

Surpassing the national average by 29 percent, Opticians in New York receive some of the highest pay in the country. Opticians will also find cushy salaries in Denver (+21 percent), Phoenix (+19 percent), Portland (+13 percent), and San Diego (+13 percent). Falling short of the national average by 10 percent, the area with the worst salaries is Chicago. San Antonio and Dallas are a couple other places where companies are known to pay below the median — salaries are 10 percent lower and 5 percent lower, respectively.

Optician Reviews

Q: What is it like working as an Optician?

Optician in Dearborn Heights:
"Good."
Pros: Flexibility and I make the choices and schedule.
Cons: Traveling in winter.

Optician in Hayward:
"It is nice to help people select eyewear & to see better."
Pros: I enjoy interacting with people and educating them on eyewear and contact lens options. There is a pleasant work atmosphere with the doctors, co-workers and patients. The doctors are are generous with lunches, treats and bonuses.
Cons: Sometimes the office is under staffed and it causes a little stress.

Optician in Madison:
"Work Flexibility."
Pros: The people I work with are amazing. I love interacting with patients and helping them pick out glasses.
Cons: The management is really passive and we never know what we are supposed to do.

Optician in Portland:
Pros: Diverse work environment, opportunities for challenging tasks, increased responsibility.
Cons: High stress, employer micromanagement tendencies, high staff turnover.

Optician in Houston:
"Opticians Pay."
Pros: The one on one time with customers.
Cons: Corporate culture, work flexibility, office conditions, stress level, the management.

Optician in Plano:
"Having the ability to ensure people see well through eyewear."
Pros: Educating patients on the importance of protecting their sight.
Cons: How insurance dictates people's decision on thier eyewear. How my boss can be difficult and cause stress.

Optician in Los Angeles:
"Fashionable and fun."
Pros: The people the styling the newness of everyday.
Cons: No dr and that sometimes optician are looked as retail salesman.

Related Job Salaries

Key Stats for Optician

Gender

Female
78 %
Male
22 %

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 425 votes.
Less than 1 year
4%
1-4 years
32%
5-9 years
19%
10-19 years
25%
20 years or more
21%
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Location:
Years in Fields/Career:
United States (change)

Experience Affects Optician Salaries

▲28%

▲9%

▲1%

National Average
$33,000

▼18%

Skills That Affect Optician Salaries

Office Management
▲32%


Inside Sales
▲10%

▲6%


edging
▲2%

dispensing
▲1%

National Average
$33,000

Sales
▼1%

Medicaid & Medicare Billing
▼1%

▼2%


▼3%

Bilingual
▼3%

▼5%

Inventory Management
▼5%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 425 votes.

Gender

Female
78 %
Male
22 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
4%
1-4 years
32%
5-9 years
19%
10-19 years
25%
20 years or more
21%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 47%
dental benefits
Dental: 31%
vision benefits
Vision: 39%
no benefits
None: 39%
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