Avoid purchasing a fake Swiss watch and read our tips to help you decide if your future wrist candy is the real deal.

There are 9 glaring signs that will tell you right away if the watch you have your eye on is of authentic Swiss quality, or whether it is simply a fake. 

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1. Price

Swiss watches are famously expensive, and for a good reason. Switzerland‘s watch manufacturers pride themselves on the fine quality of their materials and hand-manufactured intricate watch mechanisms from diamonds, platinum and gold clearly doesn‘t come cheap.

Expect to pay at the very least 5,000 chf for a steel watch. Gold watches will start at 20,000 chf but be prepared to spend much more than that as, with premium watches, the sky is the limit price-wise.   

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2. Sales point

Any Swiss watch house will want to protect the reputation, quality and desirability of its products. Therefore it makes sense that only certain retailers will be allowed to sell their watches. On their official website, all high quality Swiss brands list authorised retail outlets for your city and country, including own-brand stores and luxury retailers.

If in doubt, always contact the company to check: it‘s in their interest to make sure you are buying an original product.

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3. Engraving

While a real watch will be finished to perfection, a glaring giveaway of a fake is a watch that displays anything less than crystal clear engraving.

Under a magnifying glass, any engravings should be perfectly cut and not appear sandy or misshapen. They must be sharp and crisp. Also, check for correct centering of the logo, easily comparable with other watches.  

4. Errors

You might think that someone going to so much trouble to create a fake would spell things right, however this is not always the case. Words like Professional on Omega watches are commonly spelled with only one s. Be wary of low quality pictures where spelling is ambiguous, always use a magnifying glass to check the fine print. 

It‘s usually slightly tricky to access these parts of the watch, but it‘s worth it to verify the authenticity of your timepiece: and it‘s also very easy to check what the correct information should be on the official manufacturer‘s website. 

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5. Certificate of authenticity

Since most luxury Swiss watch brands trade on the heritage value of their timepieces, it‘s certain that an authentic watch will come with a certificate of authenticity, whether or not the watch is part of a limited edition.

In many cases, the certificate itself is unique and must be stored as safely as the watch itself. It‘s also almost always the case that a timepiece will have to be physically examined by experts at an official, authorised retailer.

6. Silently Efficient

Swiss high quality watches are engineered to function at an exceedingly low volume. If you are purchasing the watch in person, do have a listen. You should not be able to hear the ticking unless the watch is brought close to your ear.

7. Fully Functional

A luxury watch often does more than just tell the time. It sounds obvious, but often this is overlooked, make sure you check that all the functions that the watch is supposed to have either work or are even present.

Check sub dials and helium release valves as well as in the case of Omega, the chronograpah and time zone settings.

8. Sealed Securely

If you are buying a watch that you are told is brand new, there are a few ways to verify this and subsequently whether it is fake or not.

Omega prints a red dot on the back of their watches csing to show whether the watch has been opened previously. If this is missing it could mean the watch is just second hand but if someone is selling ti as new it most likely means its not authentic.


9. The Weight

Lastly look out for the weight of the watch. Gold Rolex watches are very heavy when compared to fakes. These are very light for their apparent mass. This is because the weight of gold is much greater than that of a base metal, used in fakes.

Stainless steel Rolex watches also have more weight to them because stainless is also much heavier than the base metal used in knockoff watches.

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