The holiday season is finally almost here! There’s a lot to be excited about, but with the holidays also comes another thing to think about.
If you have flex spending, you’re running out of time to use it. Not sure how to spend it? Keep reading for some ideas on how you can put those flex dollars to good use!
What is flex spending?
The concept of flex spending, FSAs, and how it all works can be a little confusing. FSAs or flex spending accounts are accounts that you can sign up for through your employer.
With this special account, you put in money that you can then use to pay for certain approved out-of-pocket health care costs. Unlike a savings account you might open at a bank, the money in your FSA is money you don’t have to pay taxes on.
That means you’ll save an amount that’s equal to the taxes you would have paid on the money you set aside in your FSA. Your employer can contribute to your FSA, but they do not have to.
How does it work?
FSAs sound pretty great because they are! But they also have some stipulations that you have to follow if you’re going to use them.
One of the most important ones to know is that you have a limit to the amount you can save per year, which is $2,650 per year per employer. If you’re married, your spouse can also put in up to that amount ($2,650) in an FSA with their employer as well.
Another important stipulation to know about FSAs is they have a time limit on them. The money you have in your FSA must usually be used within the year of your plan unless your employer allows you to carry over up to $500 per year to use the next year or they give you a grace period of up to 2 and a half extra months to use the money in your FSA.
Again, this is not something that your employer is ever required to do. Unless they tell you that you can rollover the funds in your FSA, you should probably assume that you’ll lose the money in your account if you don’t spend it by the end of the year.
Get an eye exam
One of the easiest ways to use up any flex spending dollars you may have is by getting an eye exam. If you haven’t been to the eye doctor in a while, or you can’t even remember the last time you had your eyes examined, it’s been too long.
And yes, eye exams are something that is usually covered by your FSA! If you have insurance with vision benefits, you may be able to pay for your co-pay using your flex spending dollars as well!
At this point, the only thing standing in your way of having healthy eyes is you, so why not make getting an eye exam before the holiday season gets too crazy?
Buy new glasses
If you’re already at the eye doctor getting an eye exam, you can easily buy a new pair of glasses with your flex spending dollars as well. Whether your current glasses are scratched or you know you need a second pair to up your style factor in the new year, buying a new pair is always a good idea.
Your flex spending dollars can be used to buy both the glasses and your frames, which will make buying glasses a much more enjoyable experience! Spend less time focusing on how much you’re spending and more time finding the perfect pair that accentuate your bone structure and make you feel like a supermodel strutting down the catwalk.
Buy your contacts for the year
Wear glasses and contacts? Did you know that you can actually buy your entire year’s supply of contact lenses using your flex spending dollars? Instead of having to haphazardly buy contacts when you’re right about to run out, you can buy them all at once.
You can also pick up all the contact lens solution you need and any other necessary accessories as well. Flexible spending dollars make your life so much easier!
Say so long to glasses and contacts with LASIK
Tired of dealing with the little frustrations that come with wearing glasses and contacts? You can actually use your FSA to pay for LASIK.
This is something that a lot of people may not realize. Although LASIK is an elective procedure, it is covered by most FSAs.
There’s not much that’s better than finally being able to get LASIK. After all, with LASIK, you can say goodbye to glasses and contacts for good.
It seems crazy but it’s possible because the procedure permanently reshapes the cornea. Having an irregularly shaped cornea leads to refractive errors like nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism.
By reshaping the cornea, LASIK allows you to see clearly and achieve the visual freedom you’ve always wanted. Can you imagine how amazing the holiday season could be when you experience it with the best vision of your life?
LASIK can make that possible if you’re a good candidate for the procedure. To find out, you’ll need to schedule a LASIK consultation at See Clearly Vision.
Undergo cataract surgery and get your clear vision back
If you have cataracts, you may have not realized that you can also use your flex spending dollars to pay for cataract surgery. In the case of cataract surgery, you can use your FSA to be reimbursed for the procedure.
You cannot use your flexible spending dollars to pay for cataract surgery if you have a limited care flexible spending account (LCFSA) or a dependent care flexible spending account (DCFSA). If you’re not sure what kind of FSA you have, make sure to ask your employer before scheduling any kind of procedure like cataract surgery!
If you do have the right kind of FSA though, you can use your flexible spending dollars to pay for cataract surgery and finally see clearly again!
Have flexible spending dollars that you need to use before the end of the year? Schedule an appointment at See Clearly Vision in Tysons Corner, Rockville, or Arlington!