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Opticians


Optician Salary

The salary for opticians, like most other occupations will vary, mainly through location because of the cost of living, but it is also affected by other factors as well. Experience is a reason for increased salary and opticians who have worked for a while and are licensed, even in states that do not require licensing, tend to earn more money. Licensed optician salary will depend on the state and area and could be lower than an unlicensed optician in another state. The type of work area also determines the salary for opticians who are employed in different industries such as the office of an optometrist, large department store, and hospitals will all make contrasting pay.



Looking at the Numbers

According to the BLS, the median annual pay for dispensing opticians in May of 2008 was $35,060, with the lowest 10% earning less than $21,250 and the top 10% earning over $50,580 based on a 40 hour work week.

For May of 2009 these numbers decreased with a new median annual pay of $32,740 with the lowest 10% earning less than $21,120, and the top 10% earning over $50,560. Although some opticians are on a yearly salary, for those who are paid by the hour this comes out to a range of anywhere from just over $10 dollars to almost $25 per hour.

Another point to look at when it comes to an optician’s yearly income is the industry they are employed in. Most are employed in offices of medical providers or in department stores, but some are employed in management positions or at hospitals where the hourly mean wage is above $20 per hour (although not too many opticians work in these industries). The hourly mean wage for offices and general department stores range from $15 to $19 dollars, resulting in yearly earnings from $32,000 to just under $40,000. The statistics of self-employed opticians is harder to summarize as many do not report to the BLS. Self-employed opticians can make a lot more money than regular opticians because of the potential of profit from selling eye care products and services. Read the optician career and advancement page for different opportunities.

Licensed Optician Salary by State

Data from May 2009

State

Employment(1)

Hourly mean wage

Annual mean wage(2)

Alabama

840 $14.63 $30,430

Alaska

150 $18.89 $39,290

Arizona

990 $15.68 $32,620

Arkansas

640 $13.79 $28,680

California

6080 $18.01 $37,460

Colorado

1440 $17.15 $35,660

Connecticut

460 $25.09 $52,180

Delaware

180 $17.51 $36,420

D.C.

250 $17.00 $35,360

Florida

4260 $17.87 $37,170

Georgia

1150 $16.88 $35,110

Hawaii

90 $20.34 $42,310

Idaho

210 $12.59 $26,190

Illinois

3140 $14.46 $30,090

Indiana

1610 $13.40 $27,870

Iowa

930 $13.32 $27,700

Kansas

530 $12.58 $26,170

Kentucky

640 $16.08 $33,450

Louisiana

690 $14.35 $29,850

Maine

250 $15.63 $32,520

Maryland

1140 $16.99 $35,340

Massachusetts

1550 $23.89 $49,690

Michigan

2090 $15.48 $32,210

Minnesota

1140 $17.38 $36,140

Mississippi

530 $14.05 $29,220

Missouri

1800 $12.78 $26,580

Montana

390 $13.53 $28,150

Nebraska

620 $12.39 $25,760

Nevada

470 $18.19 $37,830

New Hampshire

340 $18.47 $38,410

New Jersey

1350 $23.62 $49,130

New Mexico

420 $14.67 $30,520

New York

2920 $22.09 $45,940

North Carolina

1750 $17.49 $36,380

North Dakota

350 $13.50 $28,070

Ohio

3090 $16.47 $34,250

Oklahoma

780 $11.54 $24,000

Oregon

950 $17.28 $35,950

Pennsylvania

2900 $15.78 $32,820

Puerto Rico

440 $13.00 $27,030

Rhode Island

110 $19.17 $39,870

South Carolina

820 $16.21 $33,720

South Dakota

360 $13.35 $27,760

Tennessee

780 $15.52 $32,290

Texas

4110 $13.28 $27,630

Utah

350 $14.76 $30,700

Vermont

90 $17.04 $35,440

Virginia

1880 $22.37 $46,540

Washington

1360 $18.94 $39,400

West Virginia

260 $12.99 $27,030

Wisconsin

1550 $14.51 $30,190

Wyoming

(8)- $13.95 $29,010
Footnotes:
(1) Estimates for detailed occupations do not sum to the totals because the totals include occupations not shown separately. Estimates do not include self-employed workers.
(2) Annual wages have been calculated by multiplying the hourly mean wage by 2,080 hours; where an hourly mean wage is not published, the annual wage has been directly calculated from the reported survey data.
(8) Estimate not released.

 

 
 

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