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Old 24.10.2014, 22:58
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Cost for eye examination (driving license exchange)

Hi. As everybody wth a driving license me and my wife need to change our foreign to a Swiss one. So we went to an eye clinic so they would do the examination and fill the papers with which one goes to the transportation office. I first called them and asked how much it would cost. They said - around 150 or 200 CHF, if nothing more complicated is needed.

I went there, they did some test: dot of light coming from various angles and me pushing a button. Then test with showing smaller and smaller digits (with a correction). Then blowing some air into the eyeball (to check the pressure?). Then the doctor looking into the eye.

Was it more complicated than standard check? I don't believe it was. We both wear glasses, but without any special correction, like for astigmatism.

Now I got two receipts - each for 362 CHF!

Is there a way to question that? Was everything they did necessary to fill the form? Or maybe everyone pays that amount of money for the examination for the driving license exchange?
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Old 24.10.2014, 23:07
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Re: Cost for eye examination (driving license exchange)

Where did you go for the test? It sounds more like a full blown ophthalmic examination than a simple test for the driving licence.

Ours cost 15 CHF three years ago and I can't imagine that the price has increased much since then.
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Old 24.10.2014, 23:17
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Re: Cost for eye examination (driving license exchange)

Eye clinic at the Zurich airport.

I know it is probably one of the last places to have an examination with a reasonable price, but nearly double than estimated??
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Old 24.10.2014, 23:22
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Re: Cost for eye examination (driving license exchange)

This is like going to a plastic surgeon when you need a haircut.
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Old 24.10.2014, 23:26
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Re: Cost for eye examination (driving license exchange)

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Where did you go for the test? It sounds more like a full blown ophthalmic examination than a simple test for the driving licence.

Ours cost 15 CHF three years ago and I can't imagine that the price has increased much since then.
That's what I paid in 1994. All that is required is a simple test not an examination, as long as 1 eye has 60% uncorrected vision you will pass without the requirement to wear glasses. Any optician in CH can do the test.
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Old 24.10.2014, 23:26
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Re: Cost for eye examination (driving license exchange)

Lesson learned. Was I Switzerlanded did I do that to myself?
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Old 24.10.2014, 23:41
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Re: Cost for eye examination (driving license exchange)

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Lesson learned. Was I Switzerlanded did I do that to myself?
yes indeed you were switzerlanded ...more carefull next time...Good Luck
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Old 24.10.2014, 23:59
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Re: Cost for eye examination (driving license exchange)

Maybe your health insurance will pay for the eye examination? It's worth a try.
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Old 25.10.2014, 00:15
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Re: Cost for eye examination (driving license exchange)

I did it in the beginning of this year in Fielmann Thalwil and it was only 10 CHF.
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Old 25.10.2014, 09:07
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Re: Cost for eye examination (driving license exchange)

So only the visual test (they show me digits, I read them) is required? Or is optician also doing all this stuff like measuring pressure and others I described for 5% of the price?
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Old 25.10.2014, 09:55
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Re: Cost for eye examination (driving license exchange)

Jasieek, you were Switzerlanded. The vision field and glaucoma tests that were done certainly were not required for a driving license back when I had this done years ago. The driver's license test I took years ago was done from a Strassenverkehrsamt booklet - color blindness, basic 'can you see this?' (Can anyone verify that this hasn't changed?)

Did you go to an Augenarzt (opthalmologist) instead of an Optiker (optician)?

FYI, the prices you were given - estimate and actual - are similar to what my Augenarzt charges for a medical eye exam.

As others have said, the driver's license vision test is very simple, can be done by an optician, one usually has this done at the kind of place that sells glasses, for between CHF 10-25.

Take this as part of the learning curve in Switzerland. We've all been there, made the same expensive mistakes so we empathise.

You'll need to figure out who does what, and always be very very clear as to exactly what you need - and state what you do not need. ("I do not need a full medical eye exam, I only need the vision test required for a driver's license. Here is the write-up from the Strassenverkehrsamt as to what is required.")

One of the cultural differences newcomers often stumble across is that in Switzerland a service provider will do exactly what you say, and only what you say - even if it is clear that what you need is something different. He will not warn or advise you otherwise. Switzerland works on the 'selber schuld' principle, that is, it is up to you to unambiguously define your requirements, and it is up to you to determine if the person you are interacting with is the right person to meet them, and it is up to you to determine if what is provided is the right thing, or not.

For those of us coming from more 'ostensibly helpful' cultures, this comes as something of an expensive shock the first few times we come up against this.

As another poster mentioned, if you saw an opthalmologist rather than an optician your insurance might cover the cost (minus franchise and self-pay). It's at least worth a try.

Sorry this happened... but hopefully the experience will help you learn to spot such 'Switzerlanded' moments in the future.
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Old 25.10.2014, 10:02
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Re: Cost for eye examination (driving license exchange)

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So only the visual test (they show me digits, I read them) is required? Or is optician also doing all this stuff like measuring pressure and others I described for 5% of the price?
Probably a little more than reading digits, but not checks like measuring pressure.

The problem is you went to an 'eye clinic' , all you had to do was visit an optician and then it would have been like 15 CHF (what I paid 5 months back).

Didn't your License Conversion application form already mentioned the authorised opticians in that Kanton from where you can get Eye test done ?
AFAIK in my form they had listed quite few.
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Old 25.10.2014, 10:18
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Re: Cost for eye examination (driving license exchange)

I did my eye exam a few months ago. I had to click the bouton when I saw the light, read letters and I think a color test! the whole thing took less than 10 minutes and was about 25 CHF.
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Old 25.10.2014, 10:50
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Re: Cost for eye examination (driving license exchange)

TBH having a proper eye examination is not a bad thing, I go by choice once a year, then my eyes are my livelihood. Far better to catch a potential problem early than loose your sight.
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Old 25.10.2014, 10:58
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Re: Cost for eye examination (driving license exchange)

Yup me too.. 20chf

Follow this pencil, read that chart. Done.
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Old 25.10.2014, 11:19
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Re: Cost for eye examination (driving license exchange)

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TBH having a proper eye examination is not a bad thing, I go by choice once a year, then my eyes are my livelihood. Far better to catch a potential problem early than loose your sight.
Absolutely. It's recommended to have a full ophthalmologist eye exam done every two years but once a year for people at risk of problems.( diabetics, family history of glaucoma etc.
As others have pointed out the cost of the consultation should be reimbursed by basic insurance and having consulted our bills for recent visits it costs between 150 and 200 CHF.( the higher one involving detailed examination of the retina for my diabetic OH).

I think the OP probably paid extra for visiting the eye clinic at the airport.
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Old 25.10.2014, 12:51
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Re: Cost for eye examination (driving license exchange)

I knew I was doing something wrong!




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This is like going to a plastic surgeon when you need a haircut.
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Old 25.10.2014, 13:17
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Re: Cost for eye examination (driving license exchange)

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Jasieek, you were Switzerlanded.
(...)

Did you go to an Augenarzt (opthalmologist) instead of an Optiker (optician)?

FYI, the prices you were given - estimate and actual - are similar to what my Augenarzt charges for a medical eye exam.

(...)

As another poster mentioned, if you saw an opthalmologist rather than an optician your insurance might cover the cost (minus franchise and self-pay). It's at least worth a try.
Thanks for the thorough explanation. As I said before, the lesson is learned - a rather expensive one.

Yes, I definitely went to opthalmologist as I did not research the topic well enough to know about the other possibility, and the price difference - my fault.

So you went to the opthalmologist and paid around 360 CHF after being informed about 150-200 up front? To me it's a bit poor estimate, having to pay 100% more... Is it normal here?

As for insurance - it will not be covered as my franchise is the highest possible, and these are the first medical expenses for us this year. Or is there any exception to that?
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Old 25.10.2014, 13:33
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Re: Cost for eye examination (driving license exchange)

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Then blowing some air into the eyeball (to check the pressure?).

That part of the eye examination is a Glaucoma Test, I am a bit surprised you have never had it on a previous eye test, but was not necessary when my O/H popped into an Opticians on a quiet patch with the form & to ask what was required for the form to be completed.

Charge was minor, maybe chf25.00. Mainly remember the humour of the conversation by the eye test O/H & optician.
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Old 25.10.2014, 13:59
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Re: Cost for eye examination (driving license exchange)

It's good to know that some things don't really go up in price. about 25 years ago i paid 10 francs for the Driving License eye test.

I may need to get proper reading glasses and have a proper eye test done.

Is what the OP paid the norm? Or are there cheaper ways to do it? As in getting it done in the UK?
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