Optician Salary

The average Optician in the United States earns approximately $14.93 per hour. The final incomes of Opticians generally vary between $22K and $50K; higher pay grades include potential for bonuses, profit sharing, and commissions as high as $5K, $4K, and $8K, respectively. While tenure and geography impact pay for this group, the particular firm is the most influential factor. Health benefits are not claimed by all — approximately two in five lack any form of coverage — but a little less than half have medical insurance, and just under one in three have dental, too. Most Opticians survey respondents are women (78 percent). Most Opticians report high levels of job satisfaction.

$26,166 - $60,281
$26K
$40K
$60K
MEDIAN: $39,971
10%
50%
90%

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$10.40 - $21.80
$10
$15
$22
MEDIAN: $14.93
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$21K$42K$63K
Salary
$26,166 - $60,281  
   
Bonus
$290.47 - $5,182  
Profit Sharing
$305.21 - $4,249  
Commission
$605 - $7,796  
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).
)
$22,449 - $49,860  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 18 Jan 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 362
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$11$22$33
Hourly Rate
$10.40 - $21.80  
   
Hourly Tips
$0.00 - $9.91  
Overtime
$15.13 - $31.61  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$22K$44K$66K
Bonus
$290.47 - $5,182  
   
Commission
$605 - $7,796  
Profit Sharing
$305.21 - $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).
)
$22,449 - $49,860  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 18 Jan 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 2,327

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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Opticians may experience a large salary bump if they progress into a role such as Optometrist. The latter position pays an average of $96K annually. An Optician may also move into a role as a Dispensing Optician or a Certified Optician.

Optician Job Listings

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Popular Employer Salaries for Optician


Known for taking on a considerable number of Opticians, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc, LensCrafters Inc., Visionworks, Sam's Club, and Pearle Vision Center are leading firms in the industry. For Opticians, comfortable salaries can be found at Costco Wholesale Company; in fact, median earnings sit around $51K, the highest in the area. Opticians can also look forward to large paychecks at U.S. Vision, Inc. ($39K), Luxottica Retail Group ($36K), and Visionworks ($35K).

Other low-paying employers include National Vision, Inc. at $23K and Wal-Mart Stores, Inc at $26K, though some Opticians there earn up to $40K.

Popular Skills for Optician


Opticians report using a deep pool of skills on the job. Lucky workers who know Office Management can expect a significant pay bump, scoring salaries 34 percent above average. Optical Fabrication and optician are also correlated to pay that is above average, with increases between 6 percent and 34 percent. Scheduling and Inventory Management, on the other hand, are typically associated with much lower pay. Those proficient in Customer Service are, more often than not, also skilled in Insurance.

Pay by Experience Level for Optician

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


Experience seems to be a major factor in determining the incomes of Opticians. Those in the early stages of their career can expect to make around $27K; however, individuals with five to 10 years of experience bring in $33K on average — a distinctly larger sum. People with 10 to 20 years of experience make an average of about $36K in this role. Seasoned workers who boast more than two decades of relevant experience enjoy a median salary of $42K, which is substantially larger than the medians reported by folks with fewer years on their resumes.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $32,426

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

For Opticians, New York provides a pay rate that is 31 percent greater than the national average. Opticians will also find cushy salaries in San Francisco (+22 percent), Denver (+21 percent), Phoenix (+21 percent), and Portland (+15 percent). Trailing the national average by 10 percent, Chicago is the market with the smallest paychecks. Two other places where employers offer below-median salaries are San Antonio (7 percent less) and Dallas (5 percent less).

Optician Reviews

Q: What is it like working as an Optician?

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 Gary:
"Work Flexibility."
Pros: I like that I work a typical 9-5 Monday through Friday schedule. There are NO nights and rare weekends. This is a great "mom" schedule.
Cons: No benefits, not much above minimum wage, everybody does the work of two people, no room for growth/raises, asked to do jobs outside your experience level or area of training.

Related Job Salaries

Key Stats for Optician

Gender

Female
78 %
Male
22 %

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 352 votes.
Less than 1 year
4%
1-4 years
32%
5-9 years
19%
10-19 years
24%
20 years or more
22%
Location:
Years in Fields/Career:
United States (change)

Experience Affects Optician Salaries

▲29%

▲11%

▲2%

National Average
$32,000

▼16%

Skills That Affect Optician Salaries

Office Management
▲34%

▲6%

Optical Fabrication
▲6%


edging
▲4%

dispensing
▲2%

Medicaid & Medicare Billing
▲1%

Sales
▼0%

National Average
$32,000

▼1%


▼2%

▼2%

Bilingual
▼2%

Inventory Management
▼7%

Scheduling
▼25%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 352 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
24%
20 years or more
22%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 47%
dental benefits
Dental: 30%
vision benefits
Vision: 37%
dental benefits
None: 40%
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