Top 9 Affordable Swiss Watches For 2021
Finding the best affordable Swiss-made watches can be a pain as most timepieces with this label are expensive. Most quality Swiss brands like Omega, Breitling, Rolex produce expensive watches with amazing designs. However, you can still pick up some durable watches at affordable prices if you know which Swiss brands to look into.
We’ve taken the time to narrow down the range of watches for you. In this detailed review, we’ll outlined some of the best Swiss timepieces you can buy on your next trip to Switzerland.
The best cheap Swiss-made we discuss in this article
- TISSOT : Tissot Visodate, Tissot Men’s T-Race Touch Watch
- VICTORINOX : Victorinox Swiss Army I.N.O.X Watch
- HAMILTON : Hamilton Khaki Field Watch
- CERTINA : Certina DS Action Diver Watch
- MONDAINE : Mondaine Classic Automatic Day-Date Watch
- MIDO: Mido Ocean Star
- SWATCH: Swatch Sistem51 Irony
- GLYCINE: Glycine Combat 6 Vintage
What exactly is Swiss-made?
The FH (Swiss Watch Federation) permits watch brands to label timepieces Swiss Made after they comply legally with a set of criteria. Swiss-made doesn’t mean every bit of the work was done in Switzerland. For a watchmaker to label a watch Swiss Made, they must meet the following.
- The movement of the watch has to be Swiss: There are criteria watchmakers must meet so they can label their movements Swiss Movement. You can read it here.
- The movement must be cased in Switzerland.
- Finally, an inspection of the entire timepiece must take place in Switzerland.
- A watchmaker must generate at least 60% of the manufacturing costsin Switzerland.
- The research and development of the watch must take place in Switzerland: This change will come into force in a year or two.
The FH is continually updating the requirements for the Swiss Made label. We will monitor that and update this post when necessary.
Affordable Swiss Watch Brands
Swiss timepieces are known for their quality and durability. They are also known for being expensive. However, there are Swiss watch brands out there that offer high-quality affordable watches. Learn more here about some affordable Swiss brands.
Some Cheap Swiss Mechanical Watches
The Visodate is a beautiful watch with similar specs to the Japanese Seiko SARB033. This elegant dress watch comes with a case diameter of 40mm, case thickness of 11.6mm, and a lug-to-lug distance of 47mm.
The Visodate is a very versatile watch. It’s a dress watch, but you can use it for both business and casual settings. It looks great with a suit and tie but also with jeans and a tee-shirt.
The watch has an exhibition case back that shows Tissot’s Swiss automatic movement. Breathtaking when you watch the timepiece ticking from the back.
This timepiece is powered by an ETA-28362 movement. This movement is accurate, losing only 7 seconds a day or 1 minute in 8 days. This movement has 20 jewels that operate at 8 beats per second and comes with a 36-hour power reserve.
What makes this timepiece stand out is its beautiful and simplistic frosted black dial. The hour and minute hand on this watch give you an authentic vintage look that speaks much about its heritage. You also get a day/date complication at the 3 o’clock mark on this timepiece.
This Tissot timepiece comes with a doom sapphire crystal that looks awesome. This gives the watch a lot of distortion making it easy to read the dial at all angles. The crystal itself is scratch-resistant.
The Visodate comes with a dark brown leather strap that looks great with the white dial. If you don’t like the white dial, this timepiece also comes with a black dial that looks attractive too.
Hamilton Khaki Field Watch
Originally an American brand, Hamilton has made a lot of transitions to become a Swiss watch brand. It’s well known for its aviation timepieces. In modern time, this company manufactures stunning elegant watches.
The Hamilton Khaki automatic watch offers a timeless design based on military watches used in world war two. This is a potential piece you can wear for your outdoors activity.
Its design makes the watch legible and easy to read. Pick up this watch if you don’t have a slim automatic watch in your collection.
This timepiece offers a 42mm case diameter, a 53mm lug-to-lug distance, and a case thickness of 10.55mm. With this thickness, the watch is very slim and attractive.
This field watch features an exhibition case back with an H-10 caliber Swiss automatic movement powering it. The H-10 caliber is Hamilton’s version of the Powermatic 80 movement on Tissot timepieces.
The case of this Swiss watch is very simple with the lugs curving downwards. This makes the watch very comfortable on the wrist. This high-quality case is well brushed with a very noticeable crown at the 3 o’clock position.
A curved sapphire crystal protects the watch dial, though it lacks an anti-reflective coating. The dial is a typical field watch featuring a 24-hour military time and a date window at the 3 o’clock position.
It comes with a comfortable strap, though its durability is questionable. The brown leather strap has the Hamilton engraving on it.
If you don’t like the brown leather strap, you can go for the bracelet version. Also, you can use nato straps on this watch, which kind of makes sense since it’s a military design watch.
Certina DS Action Diver Watch (Model: C0324071104100)
If you love Swiss dive watches, checkout this Certina Action Diver. This timeless diver style watch wears perfectly on larger wrists. It is a luminous watch and comes with an attractive smooth turtle case back.
This Swiss automatic watch comes in with a 43mm case size, a 13mm case thickness, and a lug width of 21mm. Its case lug-to-lug width is 51mm, though the first set of bracelet links are fixed taking it to 56mm. So this watch won’t fit people with smaller wrists.
A Swiss Powermatic 80.111 Automatic movement powers this timepiece. It contains 23 Jewels and has a power reserve of approximately 80 hours.
On the feature side, this is a sapphire watch. It has a scratch-resistant sapphire crystal and a silver-tone stainless steel case.
Its markers are marked by a luminous chemical that glows in the dark, though its hour and minute hands have a brighter glow. It also features a date window at 3 o’clock.
Being a dive watch, this timepiece comes with a uni-directional bezel which you can use to time your duration underwater. Also, it is water-resistant to 300 meters. It comes in a variety of dial colors including a striking blue dial that catches your attention.
This timepiece comes with a stainless steel bracelet or resin straps. The stainless steel bracelet tapers down to 18.5mm with an extensible section. You can also check out this Certina Action Diver watch with resin straps.
Mido Ocean Star (Model: M0264301105100)
This Swiss automatic dive watch from Mido wears large on the wrist with a beautiful black matte dial. It comes with a case diameter of 42.5mm, a lug width of 22mm, a lug-to-lug distance of 49mm, and it is 11.75mm thick. Particularly for a diver watch, this is a thin watch.
The Mido Ocean Star comes with a flat sapphire crystal which has a double anti-reflective coating. This makes the dial super legible under bright light and scratch-resistant. This is also a luminous watch with its markers and hands coated with blue lume.
The case is well brushed except for the top lugs. This makes it less likely to pick up scratches. Around its case is a 60 click bezel which is uni-directional. It comes with minute graduations for the first 15 minutes, typical of dive watches.
For a dive watch, this timepiece has a screw-in case back with 5 screws. The case back has a nice decoration with a Mido ocean star engraved on it. For your diving requirements, this is a 200-meter water-resistant watch. its crown is a screw-down crown.
It features a Mido Caliber 80 Swiss Movement with a power reserve of 80 hours. It runs at a bit rate of 21600 vibrations per hour or 6 vibrations per second. This movement is similar to Tissot’s Powermatic 80 or Hamilton’s H10 movement.
Other features include a day/date complication at 3 o’clock and a rubber strap with an adjustable fold-over clasp. You can wear it to the office or at work.
One downside though is the crown. It’s very small and lacks good texturing. It’s also a little difficult to manipulate. Besides this fallback, this is a good Swiss Made watch coming from a brand little known around the world.
Swatch Sistem51 Irony (Model: YIS402)
Swatch took off during the Quartz Crisis when most Swiss watch brands struggled. The company manufactures a wide variety of quartz timepieces today.
The Irony is the most attractive in its Sistem51 collection. It’s a 42mm case diameter watch, and it is 13.8mm thick,
This timepiece is powered by an in-house automatic self-winding movement completely made by machine. This movement has a 90-hour power reserve.
Besides its unique style, the case of this timepiece is brushed with an acrylic crystal protecting its blue dial. It also features an exhibition case back which is protected by an acrylic crystal too. You can easily find a date window at the 3 o’clock position.
The crown is not a screw-down, it’s a push-in/pull-out crown. It is water-resistant to 30 meters, has a clear dial, bright colors, and a day-date complication.
One thing that puts me off of this watch is its lug design. It is proprietary, meaning you can’t add an aftermarket strap to it.
Glycine Combat 6 Vintage (Model: GL0123)
Glycine is a lesser-known brand but carries the mark of Swiss quality.
The design of this watch reflects Glycine’s old inventory watch for the army. It is a thin watch with a 10.9mm thickness, 43mm wide, 49mm lug-to-lug, and a 22mm lug width.
The dial is very simple with a 24-hour military time format. The timepiece is legible with white Arabic numerals and hands over a black dial.
The Combat 6 dial is protected by a dome-shaped sapphire crystal which is scratch-resistant. The case is polished, and you have an exhibition case back to go with it.
This Swiss automatic watch is powered by Glycine’s GL224 movement. This Swiss automatic (self-winding) movement has 26 jewels and 38 hours of power reserve.
Other features of this watch include a 50-meter water resistance rating, a push-in/pull-out crown, and a date window at the 3 o’clock position.
This elegant timepiece will suit any formal dressing and it’s comfortable on the wrist. It’s a good buy.
Affordable Swiss Watches With Quartz Movement
Mondaine Classic Day-Date Watch (Model: A667.30314.11SBB)
Just like the Hamilton Khaki Field Watch reviewed below, this dress watch has a minimalist design. This Mondaine watch comes with a 36mm case diameter and it’s 8mm thick. For an automatic timepiece, this Swiss watch is very slim.
What stands out on this watch is its simplistic dress design that comes with a very legible dial. The black markers and hands over a white dial make it very easy to read. There at the 3 o’clock position is its day/date window. One thing to note though is that this is not a luminous watch.
This Swiss quartz watch is powered by a Selita SW 220 Swiss movement that has 26 jewels and a 38 power reserve hacking.
This classy timepiece comes with a brushed case so it doesn’t pick up scratches easily. A mineral crystal protects its dial, and it is water-resistant up to 30 meters.
The black genuine leather strap on this timepiece comes with a red inner lining. If you have small wrists, this watch is for you.
Tissot Men’s T-Race Touch Watch (T0814209705703)
Tissot is well known for its wide range of models to choose from. The company manufactures timepieces from simple minimalist designs to complex chronograph dials.
This Tissot Swiss watch is suitable for those with medium size wrist. It’s a preferred choice for backpacking and other outdoor use.
For the case dimensions, this is a 42mm case watch with a 51mm lug-to-lug distance and 14mm case thickness. You’d also get a lug width of 23mm from this timepiece.
This sleek Swiss quartz watch offers lots of comfort and functionality. The white case is made from aluminum with black rubber straps. This outdoor watch comes with a touch screen sapphire dial that is activated using the middle button on the side.
Its dial features an analog and a digital display. There is a digital compass and a second timezone that you can activate by touching the sapphire screen.
This sporty timepiece is powered by a chronograph quartz movement operated by an ETA E49.301 Caliber. One cool feature on this Swiss watch is the tide function which you can use set to high tides.
Other features of this sporty timepiece include an alarm function and 100-meter water resistance.
Victorinox Swiss Army I.N.O.X Watch
Victorinox is known for its Swiss Army Knives but they manufacture a wide range of products including travel gear, timepieces, etc. Timepieces made by this company offer elegance and high quality engineering.
If you need an entirely durable sports watch, go for this Victorinox stainless steel Swiss watch. This Swiss Army watch comes with a 43mm case diameter and a 13.5mm thickness. It is neither too thick nor thin on the wrist.
This timepiece has a well polished and brushed stainless steel case that looks attractive. The case is extra thick to protect the Swiss Ronda quartz movement that powers the watch on the inside.
On the protective side, this Swiss quartz watch comes with a “triple anti-reflective coated” sapphire crystal. This coated crystal offers a clean view to its matte black dial.
To increase its legibility, the matte black dial is overlaid with well-polished hands and markers. There’s also a date window beside the 5 o’clock position.
This is a 200-meter water-resistant dive watch. You can use this Swiss watch for swimming and diving, but I’d say this isn’t ideal for professional diving.
With its straps, there are various options to choose from. This dive watch comes with the following strap types: paracord strap, rubber strap, or stainless steel bracelet. Also, it comes with a plastic case guard that attaches over the bezel and matches the color of the dial and strap.
We’ve just reviewed the best cheap Swiss timepieces you can find on the market. Considering their design, the finishing, and the movements, you’d agree that these timepieces are fairly priced.
Switzerland has a long history in watchmaking and it reflects in their watch companies marketing hard to push timepieces on consumers.