Optician Salary

An average Optician in the United States can expect to take home roughly $14.96 per hour. Total cash earnings of Opticians range from $22K on the low end to $50K on the high end; the final amount can include bonuses and profit sharing proceeds that occasionally exceed $5K and $4K, respectively. The most influential factor affecting pay for this group is the particular firm, though career duration and geography have a (lesser) impact as well. Not all workers are lucky enough to have benefits; in fact, roughly two in five are without coverage. Medical insurance is claimed by just under one-half and dental insurance is reported by just under a third. Job satisfaction is high and work is enjoyable for most Opticians. Female Opticians make up most of the survey respondents at 78 percent. The information for this snapshot was generated by responses to the PayScale salary survey.

$26,166 - $60,544
$26K
$40K
$61K
MEDIAN: $40,178
10%
50%
90%

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$10.40 - $21.91
$10
$15
$22
MEDIAN: $14.96
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 - $60,544  
   
Bonus
$293.31 - $5,138  
Profit Sharing
$440.42 - $4,305  
Commission
$602 - $7,452  
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).
)
$22,498 - $50,138  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 25 Mar 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 351
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 - $21.91  
   
Hourly Tips
$2.50  
Overtime
$15.06 - $31.97  
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
$293.31 - $5,138  
   
Commission
$602 - $7,452  
Profit Sharing
$440.42 - $4,305  
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).
)
$22,498 - $50,138  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 25 Mar 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 2,243

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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As Opticians transition into upper-level roles such as Optometrist, they may see a strong upturn in salary. Optometrists earn $96K on average per year. It is not unusual for an Optician to become a Dispensing Optician or a Certified Optician.

Optician Job Listings

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Popular Employer Salaries for Optician


Wal-Mart Stores, Inc, LensCrafters Inc., Visionworks, Sam's Club, and Pearle Vision Center are some prominent firms with considerable interest in employing a large team of Opticians. The biggest paychecks can be found at Costco Wholesale Company — the median salary there is $51K. Other leaders in compensation levels are U.S. Vision, Inc. at $39K, Visionworks at $35K, and LensCrafters Inc., where Opticians annually earn $34K.

Others at the bottom of the scale for this job include National Vision, Inc. at $24K, and Wal-Mart Stores, Inc where $26K is the norm, but it is worth noting that some Opticians there earn up to $40K.

Popular Skills for Optician


Opticians report using a large range of skills on the job. Most notably, facility with Office Management, Optical Fabrication, and Inside Sales are correlated to pay that is significantly above average, leading to increases of 34 percent, 19 percent, and 11 percent, respectively. At the other end of the pay range are skills like Optometry and Inventory Management. The majority of those who know 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: $32,525

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 can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like Denver (+22 percent), Phoenix (+21 percent), Portland (+15 percent), and San Diego (+14 percent). Trailing the national average by 9 percent, Chicago is the market with the smallest paychecks. Not at the bottom but still paying below the median are employers in San Antonio and Dallas (8 percent lower and 4 percent lower, respectively).

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 355 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

▲30%

▲11%

▲2%

National Average
$33,000

▼16%

Skills That Affect Optician Salaries

Office Management
▲34%


Inside Sales
▲11%

▲8%


edging
▲4%

dispensing
▲3%

Sales
▼0%

Medicaid & Medicare Billing
▼0%

National Average
$33,000

▼1%


▼2%

Bilingual
▼2%

▼3%

Inventory Management
▼3%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 355 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: 46%
dental benefits
Dental: 30%
vision benefits
Vision: 37%
no benefits
None: 40%