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The 20 Most Affordable Swiss Watch Brands of 2024

By Vlad Craciun


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Affordable Swiss watch brands
Raymond Weil

Everybody knows that Swiss watchmakers are the best in the world, but they’re often associated with luxury watches and high-end timekeeping, and that leaves most people with a feeling that Swiss-made watches are simply untouchable because of their steep acquisition costs, and only afforded by a select few.

That is partly true only, because there are quite a few Swiss watch brands that are affordable enough for the everyday consumer.

There’s another elephant in the room here, and that’s affordability. What people mean by affordable depends a lot on how much money they make, the country they live in, the overall costs of living there, and more, which leads us to defining what affordable means.

For the purpose of this article, we call a brand affordable if it has at least a few watches that usually cost less than $1,000, but we also included some that are going upwards of $1,000, but are still considered affordable alternatives to more luxurious names in the watchmaking world.

With these out of the way, let’s take a look at what we consider to be the 20 most affordable Swiss watch brands right now.

20. Tudor

Tudor Black Bay Fifty-Eight
Tudor Black Bay Fifty-Eight

Tudor is well known for being the sister company of Rolex, the luxury watch brand most people think of when they think of luxury watches. The key difference between the two is that Tudor was founded as an affordable luxury alternative to Rolex, with a focus on tool watches, and sharing similar characteristics when it comes to design and aesthetic.

The primary difference between the two, and the one that gives the huge difference in pricing, consists in the movements they use, with Rolex using in-house movements, while Tudor is using Swiss E.T.A. movements, and thus making them more affordable overall.

While you won’t find a Tudor watch under the $1,000 mark, there are quite a few good options several hundreds above.

19. Oris

Oris ProPilot X Calibre 400
Oris ProPilot X Calibre 400

Dating back to 1904, Oris is another large Swiss watch manufacturer, part of the affordable luxury category as well. When it comes to pricing, they’re on par with Tudor above, since you won’t find Oris timepieces under $1,000, except maybe on the used market, but they’ve got several models which rise a few hundreds above that mark.

But for those whose budget rises that high, Oris is a wonderful choice, as they’re a unique watchmaker focusing primarily on mechanical timepieces, with a distinct red rotor design that sets them apart. And they also have a commitment to only use the finest materials and the highest manufacturing standards.

18. TAG Heuer

TAG Heuer Carrera Chronograph
TAG Heuer Carrera Chronograph

Another Swiss watchmaker that sits on the edge of what affordable can mean for most people, is TAG Heuer. It’s a very popular name among watch enthusiasts, and they’ve got quite a wide range of timepieces available, including some models that go under the $1,000 mark, which is the upper limit of what we would call affordable.

The brand is mostly focused on sports inspired watches, because they have a long history of being involved in sports events, and their chronograph watches are some of the best in the world. If that’s your style, we highly recommend checking their collections, as even their cheaper watches are well crafted, good looking and functional.

17. Longines

Longines Pilot Majetek
Longines Pilot Majetek

Longines is part of the Swatch Group, and their range of timepieces focus on luxury and high-end watchmaking, so you can expect most of their watches not to be cheap. On the other hand, they’ve got plenty of models priced around the $1,000 mark, which makes them affordable enough for some.

Their watches come with a nice elegance in design, but they also offer a few sporty models. What’s important to know here is that Longines watches, no matter how low priced, they’re all high quality and benefit of the same high-end engineering the brand puts in all their timepieces.

16. Frederique Constant

Frederique Constant Classics Heart Beat Moonphase Date
Classics Heart Beat Moonphase Date

Frederique Constant is another cherished Swiss watch brand, despite its short age. It was established only in 1988, but it already expanded all over the world, with its creations mesmerizing watch enthusiasts and collectors all over the world.

Just a few years ago, Frederique Constant became part of the Citizen Holding Group, a positive move on their part, which helped them grow even more and reach a wider market.

15. Hamilton

Hamilton Ventura XXL Skeleton Automatic
Hamilton Ventura XXL Skeleton Automatic

Hamilton started as an American watch brand, but eventually became part of the Swatch Group, which made it officially a Swiss brand, and now operates from Bienne, Switzerland. Each of their timepieces come with a Swiss ETA movement, so they’re fully Swiss made.

Despite the fact that it’s considered one of the low end brands in the group, being mid-priced and not luxurious as other names, Hamilton is extremely well regarded by watch connoisseurs all over the globe, especially for offering premium quality watches at very affordable price points.

There’s almost no better option if you’re looking for a mechanical or automatic timepiece in Hamilton’s price range. And since we talk about affordability with Hamilton, we talk about well under the $1,000 price point for some of their watches.

14. Rado

Rado calibre R734
Rado calibre R734

Another one of those big Swiss watchmakers, Rado, originally called Schlup & Co. until the rename in 1950, was founded in 1917 in Lengnau, Switzerland. They’re well known for their use of unique materials and advanced technology in their manufacturing process, often coming up with innovations that push the industry forward.

If you’re not familiar with the brand, think about high-end ceramic bracelets for your watch, which is something you rarely see. Though their highly praised Captain Cook ceramic diver collection costs hundreds above the $3,000 mark, they do have watches priced as low as $500-$600.

13. Mondaine

Mondaine Classic watch
Mondaine Classic watch

Mondaine is one of those watch brands instantly recognizable through their design, and one that you won’t pay too much for, so it should fit the bill for those looking for affordable and good looking timepieces.

Though younger than most other Swiss watchmakers and initially making clocks for train stations, Mondaine was among the first to develop watches with LCD screens back in the day. Their digital models became extremely popular, so their fame grew large enough to become recognized worldwide. And that red seconds hand has become the defining feature that makes their watches instantly recognizable.

12. Glycine

Glycine Airpilot Chronograph
Glycine Airpilot Chronograph

Glycine may not be very popular with everybody, but if you’re an aviator, or aviation enthusiast, you either know or should know about it. Glycine’s story started in Bienne, Switzerland in 1914, with ladies’ watches, but it wasn’t until 1953 when they released the Airman that they became famous as a watchmaker.

They became the favorite watch brand for military personnel, especially airmen, and we can’t blame them. Though extremely cherished back in the day, you won’t find many watch collectors talking too much about the Airman today, or Glycine for that matter, but that doesn’t mean their watches are bad. In fact, they’re high quality, reliable, functional and, what interests us most, they’re reasonably priced, providing great value for the money.

To this day, they continued to stay true to their original niche, continuing to improve their collections oriented towards the military and aviation.

11. Movado

Movado SE Automatic
Movado SE Automatic

Movado has a long history if you consider it started back in 1881 under a different name, changing to the present one in 1983. Though when the name change happened it was also purchased by an American company, the brand remained true to its Swiss origins, and continue to craft their timepieces in Switzerland, with Swiss movements.

They aren’t considered a high-end brand, but the quality of their watches is high-end without any doubt. Pair that with a unique and intriguing design and accessible prices, and you’ve got a recipe for success.

10. Raymond Weil

Raymond Weil Maestro Men’s Automatic Visible Balance Wheel
Maestro Men’s Automatic Visible Balance Wheel

Raymond Weil was and still is a small family run business that has stayed true to its original artistic inspiration, values, heritage, and the high level of craftsmanship that the creator instilled in it back in 1976 when he founded the company.

It’s the kind of brand you can expect meticulous craftsmanship, excellent attention to details, and premium quality only. And though these kinds of brands typically come with prices that are too high for the average Joe, it’s not the case with Raymond Weil, as they’ve got plenty of affordable options to choose from.

9. Mido

Mido Commander Chronograph
Mido Commander Chronograph

Mido brought together the Swiss precision of watchmaking and the art deco style. They later got inspired by the automotive world, and they soon became popular for their water resistant and waterproof watches, among other achievements.

The company was first established in Biel, Switzerland, but today it’s based in Le Locle, and is also part of The Swatch Group.

The brand was a pioneer of the industry, bringing plenty of innovations to the market and creating some remarkable timepieces that have become extremely popular. Though they’re well known for their certified chronometers, Mido is considered an underrated brand, since it’s less popular to the majority of people than other names.

The very good thing is that you’ll find affordable options in their more than impressive collections.

8. Certina

Certina DS Podium
Certina DS Podium

Also part of The Swatch Group, Certina started its watchmaking journey in 1888, building watch movements. It grew slowly, and eventually was taken under the Swatch umbrella in 1983, which brought it a wider market.

Also helpful is the fact that Certina is an affordable luxury watch brand, so their audience is wider. Their collections are mostly focused on sports watches, and they’re deeply involved with motor racing events, where you’ll probably spot their name often.

That, plus the lack of focus on marketing makes them a little less known outside of Europe, but their watches are well worth your attention, and decently priced.

7. Alpina

Alpina Alpiner Extreme Automatic
Alpina Alpiner Extreme Automatic

Alpina is another one of those old Swiss watchmakers, but a brand name that’s less known outside the military, air force, navy, diving, and mountaineering worlds. They make sports oriented watches, tough and rugged and durable, but with such a style that you wouldn’t say they’re anything else but stylish and classy, perfect to wear with a suit during a business meeting.

Despite their characteristics, Alpina defeats the expectations of large, bulky watches, and instead delivers elegant timepieces for tough individuals operating in some of the toughest conditions.

Though you can expect extreme prices from most of their high-end timepieces, they’ve also got several models which break into the affordable range.

6. Wenger

Wenger Avenue watch
Wenger Avenue

Wenger, the makers of the legendary Swiss Army Knife, might be an odd brand on such a list, but for those unaware, they got into watchmaking two decades ago, and they approached it with the same quality and craftsmanship they did everything else.

Thus, Wenger timepieces are well received and praised for their toughness, accuracy, and affordability, all three important characteristics when looking for a watch.

5. Torgoen

Torgoen T47 Jumbo GMT
Torgoen T47 Jumbo GMT

Torgoen may not have the long lasting tradition of other Swiss watchmakers, but it’s got enough of the qualities that made brands like Hamilton or Tissot what they are today.

The brand is actually based in the US, started by two aviators with watchmaking experience, but all their timepieces are made in Switzerland, using Swiss movements only. As you might expect, you’ll find preponderantly aviator style watches, all of them sporting designs that are rarely seen on other brands, a thing that helps them stand out on the market.

4. Charmex

Charmex Salzburg 2960
Charmex Salzburg 2960

The story of Charmex, officially Montres Charmex SA, started in the Swiss village of Bubendorf in 1926, when Max Bürgin was an apprentice watchmaker. His meticulosity helped him learn and rise in the world of watchmaking, eventually starting his own company.

The company continues to be dedicated to the excellent craftsmanship, outstanding quality of their manufacturing process, plus the careful choice of materials, exactly the way Max started it.

Charmex has two main lines, a lower end one with both mechanical and quartz movements, called Charmex of Switzerland, and a mid to high end range, the CX Swiss Military, which focuses on multifunctional military and sports watches.

3. Victorinox

Victorinox I.N.O.X. V
Victorinox I.N.O.X. V

After a long time making knives, the iconic inventor of the Swiss Army Knife, Victorinox, has began exploring other markets, including the world of watchmaking.

Their exploration, which officially started in 1989, resulted with some very interesting watch ranges, especially the “Swiss Army” collection. Initially, production started in the United States, but nowadays, most of their timepieces are made completely in Switzerland, so they can proudly wear the label “Swiss Made”.

Though some of their collections are luxury oriented, they do make a great variety of sports watches, with plenty of them into affordable territory.

2. Tissot

Tissot T-Touch Connect Solar
Tissot T-Touch Connect Solar

Tissot is one of the older Swiss watchmakers, a company that’s been around since 1853, based in Le Locle, the heart of Swiss watchmaking.

Their range of watches is very elegant, yet still affordable, so if you want something that looks good without breaking the bank, Tissot is one of your best options.

1. Swatch

Swatch James Bond 007
Swatch James Bond 007

Swatch is a well known watch brand, despite being around only since the 1980s. They offer very cheap watches, but all of them reliable, durable, and more than ideal for everyday use.

With the majority of their watches coming in between $50 and $100 in price, they’ve got almost no competition when it comes to this price range.

Just don’t expect high end materials, as most of their timepieces are made from plastic and rubber, which is expected given the prices. What matters is that the quartz movements inside are high quality.

Final thoughts

Having a high quality Swiss made watch on your wrist doesn’t necessarily mean your wallet should go dry after the acquisition. But it means you should look for those brands that offer at least some of their watch ranges for better prices.

With the hope of helping some of you find their affordable Swiss made watch, we’ve rounded up the best Swiss watchmakers that will give you that option.

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About Vlad Craciun

Vlad has over 7 years of experience writing content about subjects such as travel, cars, motorcycles, tech & gadgets, and his newly discovered passion, watches. He’s in love with two wheeled machines and the freedom and the thrills that motorcycle travel provides. Learn more about Luxatic's Editorial Process.

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