Think You Can’t Afford a Rolex? Perhaps You Can.  

The Rolex: the ultimate luxury watch that conveys status, prestige, and excellence. Once you own one, it’s likely you won’t ever need another timepiece.

Not only are they built to last several generations, but Rolex designs are classic and enduring. The key to a stylish man’s wardrobe is having accessories that offer versatility and practically and a Rolex watch certainly fits the bill.

While Rolex watches were once out of reach for most because of their hefty price tags, today there are plenty of more affordable options. The secondary market for pre-owned Rolex timepieces is flourishing and with good reason. A second-hand Rolex watch can save the buyer up to 70% off of retail prices and they can be conveniently shipped to almost anywhere in the world.

All of this translates to more value, choice, and convenience for the customer.

Although there are certainly many used Rolex watches that still cost tens of thousands of pounds, there are a great deal that are more sensibly priced too. You just need a solid strategy to find them.

A Solid Strategy to Find An Affordable Rolex

First off, stick to Rolex models that use stainless steel. Aside from being the most inexpensive material to choose from, it’s also the most robust and can withstand daily wear and tear better than gold and platinum. Plus, stainless steel is both smart and sporty at the same time and the metal’s more understated look means it will complement almost everything in your wardrobe without overshadowing it.

Most Rolex collections offer stainless steel versions of their famous watches such as the Datejust and Submariner.

Second, opt for Rolex watches with minimal functions, such as just the time or perhaps a date window too. Good options include the time-only Oyster Perpetual, Air-King, or Explorer, in addition to the date-included Date and Datejust models.

Once you start looking at more intricate functions like chronographs, dual time zones, annual calendars, or regatta timers, that’s when things can get really pricey. In any case, though they may be posh, to be frank, some of these functions have limited everyday practical applications anyways.

Lastly, for even more savings while still staying stylish, look at older, discontinued models rather than newer more contemporary ones.

The beauty of a Rolex timepiece is that they’ve essentially kept the same design for decades, thus, a model like a Submariner, GMT-Master II, or Datejust from 20 years ago will look similar to ones made today. Likewise, master Swiss watchmakers have ensured that the automatic movements powering Rolex watches will continue to keep accurate time almost indefinitely, so age in this case is not a big factor.

Affordable Rolex Watch Recommendations

With the above listed strategies in mind, here are some of our recommendations for (relatively) reasonably priced Rolex watches.

Rolex Oyster Perpetual


As an everyday watch, we recommend the Rolex Oyster Perpetual 39 ref. 114300. Although this is a current model from the brand, it is positioned as an entry-level Rolex watch that has everything you need and nothing you don’t.

Its 39mm case and bracelet are both fashioned from tough stainless steel while its dial is offered in an assortment of colours including grey, blue, and red grape.

Find Out More 

Rolex Explorer

rolex model

For a more casual and smaller Rolex watch, we recommend the Explorer ref. 14270. Sized at a restrained 36mm, this all steel Rolex watch with a black dial is perfect for those with smaller wrists.

The Rolex Explorer initially debuted in honor of the historic summit of Mount Everest by Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay and has continued to be a collection for adventure seekers. The watch is characterized by the three numerals at 3, 6, and 9 o’clock as well as its Mercedes-style center hands with lume for optimal legibility in the dark.

Find Out More 

Rolex Datejust

rolex datejust

If it’s a dressier timepiece you’re looking for that’s smart enough for both the office and a nice dinner, then we recommend the Rolex Datejust ref. 116200 with a black Roman dial and Jubilee bracelet. Also sized at a more traditional 36mm. as its name suggests, the Datejust includes a date indicator for added practicality.

The date window at 3 o’clock is magnified thanks to the famous Cyclops lens attached to the sapphire crystal.

Find Out More

So if you’ve always thought that you would never be able to afford a Rolex, take a look at the pre-owned watch market and you may be pleasantly surprised. As it turns out, there might just be a perfectly priced one out there for you.

For a solid range of pre-owned Rolex watches at affordable prices, browse the collection at