Fact – the best feeling in the world is bagging a good bargain! If you’re looking to invest in the best watches for men under a specific budget, then you’re going to need to research before parting with your money.
The great news is there’s now plenty of Swiss watch brands creating affordable watches that bridge the gap between something that feels luxurious and something that delivers on a practical level.
They may not be crafted from high-end materials like platinum or titanium, or boast the same “I cost a million bucks” status – but for the modest gent, a practical watch goes a long way these days.
Our review guide to the best Swiss watches under 500 dollars will cover everything from the classic steel watch, the best Swiss watch, to the best automatic watch powered by a mechanical movement.
We’ll look for models with the most impressive power reserve, the best quartz timepiece, and all the latest features that make the best Swiss watches under 500 dollars so functional and so practical.
View The Best Swiss Watches Under 500 Below
1. Hamilton Men’s Automatic Jazzmaster Black Dial Stainless Steel Watch
Hamilton Jazzmaster watches are associated with innovation, modernity, and sophistication. An automatic movement powers this superbly crafted wristwatch. The H-10 provides a date function and delivers an impressive power reserve of 80 hours.
The engine has received an elegant snailed and pearled decoration to its surface that you can admire through a sapphire-backed case. The stainless steel model will span a 40mm diameter across your wrist, presenting the time on a guilloche, black face, and Arabic numerals mark out at 12, 6, and 9 o’clock. If you’re in search of a smart-looking watch on a leather band, this classic black leather strap will envelop your wrist effortlessly with its traditional stainless steel pin buckle.
+ Anti-reflective sapphire crystal glass lens
+ Date aperture at 3 o’clock
+ Powered by the H-10 movement – an in-house developed caliber
+ Luminous central hands for easy timekeeping in the dark
+ 50 meters water-resistant
Why We Liked It – You can alternate this Hamilton Jazzmaster watch with another timepiece at the start of the weekend and come back to it first thing on a Monday morning to find it has kept perfect timing.
2. Tissot Mens PRC 200 Swiss Quartz Stainless Steel Sport Watch
The Tissot PRC 200 offers incredible value for your money. Priced so reasonably, it combines sporty colors with an impeccable quartz movement that will guarantee you uncompromised precision no matter what.
A sleek black dial is punctuated by zesty yellow hints of color, seen in the central chronograph seconds hand and the smaller sub-counter hands. The 30-minute, 1/10th of a second, and small seconds features are facilitated by activating the polished push-pieces at 2 and 4 o’clock on the smooth 42mm stainless steel case.
As well as its practical date aperture, nestled between the 4 and 5 o’clock location, this Tissot PRC 200 Sport watch provides a tachymeter scale and luminous coated detailing for an assisted reading of the time in dark conditions.
+ Available on a leather band with stainless steel buckle
+ Quartz powered movement
+ Anti-reflective sapphire crystal glass lens
+ 200-meter water resistant
+ Arabic numerals and indexes on the hour track
Why We Liked It – This quartz chronograph is ideal for you if you’re a fan of Tissot and their rich heritage within the motorsport industry. It showcases features that equal the quality of the most premium chronograph watches on the market today.
3. Victorinox Swiss Army Men’s Watch
Another chronograph watch that oozes appeal, but this time manufactured by a company which first came onto the market under the name “Swiss Army.” Their rugged timepieces are tailored towards the Alpha male; specifically, their chronograph watches like this model.
It features a black dial and matching black fixed PVD coated tachymeter bezel. The sub-dials feature 60 seconds, 30 minutes, and 1/10th of a second facility. A date window is also located at the south of the display, enabling you to keep track of your week while exuding a stylish and modern look.
This broad 45mm Victorinox watch is one of the best watches on our list since its design promises 100-meter water resistant capability, an elegant black leather strap, and luminous hands positioned under a sapphire glass lens.
+ The ultimate sport watch design
+ Powered by a quartz movement
+ Red central chronograph second hand
+ 100-meter water-resistant
+ Broad 45mm stainless steel case with PVD coated fixed bezel
Why We Liked It – This attention-grabbing Victorinox chronograph watch pairs legibility with a high-performance quartz battery.
4. Glycine KMU 48 Kriegs Marine Uhren Rose Gold Plated Steel Mens Watch
This Swiss watch makes our list of best mens watches. Time reading is kept simple, enhancing a purist look. The black dial features a 24 hour track marked out in red, along with large classic Arabic numerals in a crisp white hue. Glycine has equipped this watch with a manual-winding movement that performs at an impressive rate, providing a 46-hour power reserve.
The rose gold hands of the Glycine KMU 48 watch enhance a vintage-inspired look, matching the beautiful rose gold PVD coating on the steel bezel and case, spanning a broad 48mm diameter across the wrist. If you like your wrist to remain classic yet create a huge wrist presence, this mechanical Glycine watch is certainly for you.
+ 45mm steel case with rose gold PVD coating
+ Black Arabic dial
+ 24-hour track
+ Manual winding movement
+ 46-hour power reserve
Why We Liked It – Men’s watches like this Glycine hand-wound model are kitted out with a sapphire-backed case for you to admire a peerlessly performing movement through its lens.
5. Tissot Mens Couturier Swiss Quartz Stainless Steel Dress Watch
Tissot creates an unusual look with this Courtier GMT model. Its black dial features different sized sub-counters offering a 24-hour track in silver, 12 hours counter and small seconds dial. Its robust steel case creates the illusion of a much broader case despite its rather comfortable 41mm diameter.
Equipped with 100-meter water-resistant capability and powered by an ultra-reliable Swiss made quartz, this Swiss watch will promise you the highest level of precision. This is combined with smart aesthetics, whether you choose to wear it traveling on business to New York or when taking a luxury vacation.
+ 41mm steel GMT watch
+ 24 hour sub-counter
+ Tachymeter scale
+ Stainless steel bracelet with a foldable clasp
+ Quartz operated movement
Why We Liked It – The ultimate companion for keeping track of home time and local time.
6. Victorinox Classic Quartz Watch Collection
This ladies’ analog Victorinox watch features silver-tone hands and a legible Arabic hour track for keeping accurate time. Stamped with the iconic Victoronix lettering emblazoned onto the surface of the dial, this lady’s watch will make for a stylish addition to formal or casual attire.
The brand has chosen to equip this watch with a Swiss-made quartz movement, encased within a robust 100-meter water-resistant steel case. Integrated lugs and a 3-link steel bracelet elevate this watch to a sophisticated yet subtly-sporty model with luminous detailing and a practical date window.
+ Black Arabic dial
+ Strong scratch-resistant sapphire crystal glass
+ Date window at 3 o’clock
+ Quartz movement
+ Stainless steel bracelet with deployment clasp
Why We Liked It – This elegant lady’s watch is integrated with a Swiss quartz movement for guaranteed 24/7 accuracy.
7. Wenger Men’s 0641.102 Sea Force 3H Analog Display Swiss Quartz Black Watch
Wenger Sea Force watches are built to resist the most extreme conditions underwater. That’s why this watch makes our list. It’s a perfectly crafted diver’s watch at an affordable price, featuring a black horizontally textured dial accompanied by a date aperture at 3 o’clock.
This Wenger watch features a sapphire glass lens integrated with anti-reflective and scratch-resistant technology that will enable you to take a clear glance into the dial while exploring depths of 200 meters. Its 43mm case diameter creates a bold and daring look upon the wrist thanks to its luminous stick indexes and chunky central hands.
+ 200 meters water-resistant
+ 43mm stainless steel case
+ Quartz powered
+ Black colored diver’s bezel
+ Supple black rubber strap with steel fasten
Why We Liked It – Men’s watches, like the adventure-seeking Wenger Sea Force model, promise robustness and reliability, since a blend of innovative materials and cutting edge technology are used for its manufacture.
8. Stuhrling Original Men’s Swiss Quartz Stainless Steel Sport Analog Dive Watch
Stuhrling has developed a dive watch that provides a comfortable fit on the wrist, as well as an incredibly precise quartz battery. Oversized Arabic numeral markers around the hour track are marked out quarterly, combining with chunky batons and a set of luminous treated central hands.
An anti-reflective sapphire glass lens protects the dial from dust, debris, heat, light, and moisture. A rugged stainless steel case, which takes residence on the wrist at 42mm in diameter, is equipped with 200-meter water resistance, enabling you to take part in water sports swimming and scuba diving.
+ High contrast white and black dial
+ Oversized Arabic numerals
+ Date window at 4:30
+ Quartz operated movement
+ 200-meter water resistant
Why We Liked It – This confident diver’s watch is equipped with a stainless steel bracelet with a folding clasp for optimum comfort on the wrist.
Swiss Watches Under 500 Buyer’s Guide
The style of a watch is paramount to ensuring you’ve found a timepiece that you’ll be able to wear for years without getting bored or underwhelmed by it after a few weeks. Whether planning to invest in one at the top end of your price range or not, choose wisely when it comes to finding a watch that will compliment your personality and your taste. Here are one or two pointers to help you decide whether you want a watch for sport, business, or leisure.
Chronographs under $500
Chronograph watches have measured precise time on the racetrack, in the air, and space. Many a watch enthusiast will own a watch from this category, especially if they’re into sports watches. If you’re looking to invest in one, and your budget stretches no further than $500, you can still get quite a lot for your money.
Before putting your hand in your pocket, however, ensure the one you have your eye on embodies the quintessential characteristics that define a chronograph watch – those features that will enable you to carry out all the calculations and functions you’ll need it for.
The key attributes to a good chronograph watch include a high contrast dial that will enable you to carry out what you need to without struggling to see elements on the display. A quality chronograph watch, whether priced at under 500 dollars or more, should have luminous coated appliques to assist with this.
The sub-counters are typically finished in a different color to the rest of the dial. One popular design, in particular, is the “panda” dial or the “reverse panda” dial, featuring a white dial with black Chrono counters or vice versa, respectively. Aside from legible hands and markers – both in and around the sub-dials – a chronograph dial may also feature a date aperture.
This is as well as a tachymeter scale. The tachymeter facility will enable you to measure speed based on travel time or the distance of something based on speed. Quite often, the tachymeter scale on a chronograph watch is featured on a bezel with luminous detailing, or around the periphery of the dial itself.
If you’re looking for a Swiss-made chronograph within a budget of 500 dollars or less, consider the fact that you’ll be wearing the watch in several situations and for several purposes. A watch on a rubber strap may, therefore, be a better option if you intend to wear the watch to the gym most days.
Some models come fitted with a perforated rubber strap that will allow your skin to breathe, as well as molding to the contours of your wrist for ultimate comfort. On the other hand, chronograph watches on a stainless steel bracelet make for a nice alternative to the sportier rubber strap, since you’ll be able to pair the watch with evening attire much better. Watches on metal bracelets can exude a sophisticated look without you needing to put much effort into your attire at all.
Tissot has been manufacturing wristwatches in Switzerland since 1853, and their heritage inspires many of their chronographs in car racing. These timepieces are loved, not only for their functionality and impeccable performance but for the fact that they’re so affordable.
Dress-attire Watches Under $500
A dress watch should earn a place in everyone’s watch collection – even better if one can purchase it for 500 dollars or less. Glycine is a watch brand renowned for creating beautiful dress watches. Designs like the Glycine KMU 48 watch boast pilot-inspired aesthetics enabling them to become a talking point when dressed with any smart suit or professional attire.
Dress watches are defined by a simple three or two-handed dial design. Simplicity and timelessness are also considered key qualities of a dress watch. The more you wish to spend on these watches, the more luxurious finishes and high-quality materials you will expect to find.
Some wristwatches worn for dressy occasions are encased within 18k gold or platinum cases that add a beautiful luster to the wrist. But for a budget-friendly dress watch, those models that feature a stainless steel case PVD coated in alluring rose gold or yellow gold finishes will achieve the same look for a more realistic price tag.
Dress watches can also represent the time through several dial designs. Needle-fine central hands enhance a contemporary aesthetic, while sword-shaped hands that taper to a point look more traditional. Central hands can also be designed in the iconic Breguet style, whereas others will be coated in a luminous material to enhance readability during the night or in dark conditions.
Swatch Group-owned company Longines – a brand associated with elegance and performance – often equip the dials of their dress watches with blued steel hands – some of which match the finish of the central second hand.
The hour track of a dress watch can also vary, If you’re looking to invest in a watch that you can wear to special occasions, decide whether you like the look of classic Arabic numerals, traditional Roman numerals or modern baton indexes. As with any watch, the strap attached to a dress watch will also determine whether you opt for an elegant look, a smart-casual look, or a professional look.
Some higher-end dress watches are also completed on mesh stainless steel bracelets; others create a modest look on the wrist with a traditional 3-link metal bracelet design. A supple leather strap in brown or black, however, will enable you to pair your dress watch with formal attire or something more casual at the weekend.
Diver-friendly Under $500
There are several dive watches out on the market right now that can be bagged for under 500 dollars or less, so long as you know what you’re looking for. To ensure you’re investing in a quality dive watch that will stand the test of time, consider materials, dial design, and also precision.
High-end dive watches are often developed with a mechanical movement. Watches on a budget can be powered by a quartz battery, protected inside a rugged and bold case diameter. Buying a dive watch under the 1000 dollar bracket requires the same logic involved in buying a luxury dive watch worth over 5000 dollars.
You still want a watch that is going to perform under great depths of water, present the time clearly and also feel confident and sporty on the wrist. More expensive dive watches come completed on a stainless steel link bracelet with a diver’s extension facility on the fastening, enabling you to secure the watch over the top of heavy diving gear. Less expensive watches for diving, however, can still offer a refined foldable clasp that makes dressing the watch on an off the wrist easy.
Luminous hour markers and chunky hands are distinct qualities of a diver’s watch. Settle for no less than a 200-meter water-resistant capability when investing in a watch for underwater exploration, and you won’t go far wrong.
Many timepieces feature a legible display protected underneath a robust sheet of sapphire crystal glass, integrated with anti-reflective and scratch-resistant properties, which when paired with the luminous detailing on the hands and markers, will easily enhance the readability of the dial-in situations where you need it the most.
Diver’s watches are also broad and masculine-looking, so consider whether your wrist size can take a powerful-looking watch without becoming lost, or opt for a case diameter that is slighter below the norm for a diving tool (smaller than 42mm in width).
If you’re looking for a watch that will go with everything, choose a stainless steel watch since its silvery luster will complement any style and color of outfit.
Did you know?
You can still expect a decent level of craftsmanship and functionality from a Swiss watch under 500 dollars. The best watches men are looking for right now are those that imitate timepieces from the most desirable Swiss brands like Audemars Piguet, Patek Philippe, and Vacheron Constantin.
From the dynamic Tissot Quartz Chronograph Sport watch to the sophisticated pilot-inspired Glycine KMU 48 watch, our guide to the best Swiss watch within a 500 dollar budget proves that it can be done! You can get your hands on a quality watch from an iconic, globally-recognized brand for half the price of a high-end timepiece.
With a choice between navy blue, light blue, green, and silver-tone dials, as well as displays with a standard three-hand layout or a highly complex and technical-looking design – there’s a watch for every kind of guy and every scenario.
Thorough research into the values of a Swiss watch brand before purchasing can prove key to finding the perfect companion for you. Decide whether it’s the difference between an automatic or quartz watch that will seal the deal, or whether style comes before function. The rest is easy!