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The waitlist for the most popular watches for men can take years — experts offer alternative picks

The best backup watches to grab when the most popular ones are sold out

A man wearing a Tudor Black Bay GMT watch.

It doesn’t matter if you want a budget-friendly watch or a luxurious timepiece — if you have to wait to buy it, your patience turns a bit rage-fueled. If you keep refreshing your screen to see if a certain luxury watch is available, you could be hitting the button anywhere from a year up to five years, depending on the one you want. Since that sounds like the absolute worst way to spend your time, look through the list Watchfinder & Co. put together. They found the underappreciated underdog watches for men that carry all of the sophistication as the hard-to-get models but are easier to get on your wrist.

Edouard Caumon, U.S. Country Manager for Watchfinder & Co., said, “Most Americans can expect to wait 12 months for a new Rolex Submariner, up to three years for a Daytona, and five years for a new Audemars Piguet, Royal Oak.” If you don’t have that kind of patience however, check out Watchfinder’s list.

Model wearing the Zenith Chronomaster Titanium watch with rubber band.
Courtesy of Zenith

The alternative picks for your next luxury watch

The Tudor BlackBay GMT watch.
Watchfinder & Co.

Tudor Black Bay

The sleek look of the face and the color scheme on the Tudor Black Bay would immediately capture anyone’s attention. But what might capture your attention even more is the price. Tom Holland, a Watchfinder UK manager, wants people to know the GMT M79830RB-0001 model is a deal, as “the somewhat similar Rolex GMT Master which will cost you three or four times as much.”

A Zenith Chronomaster watch.
Watchfinder & Co.

Zenith Chronomaster

For those who love a look that goes with every outfit and occasion, the Zenith Chronomaster is the one to add to your collection. Based on a 1970s prototype by Zenith, the matte finish on the titanium case gives the 97.T384.4061/21.C822 model a stunningly stealthy look.

The Glashutte Original PanoMaticDate.
Watchfinder & Co.

Glashutte Original PanoMaticDate

The clean aesthetic of the PanoMaticDate radiates the kind of quality you expect from Glashutte Original. The asymmetric time display gives the watch a modern look while lending it a bit of an edge. But the black band with the silver case and white face on the 90-01-02-02-04 model is a classic look that never goes out of style.

The A. Longe And Sohne Grande Lange 1 watch.
Watchfinder & Co.

Lange And Sohne Grand Lange 1

If you love the look of the Glashutte Original PanoMaticDate but want something a little more elegant and upscale, the A. Lange And Sohne Grande Lange 1 is your match. The finishes on the watch are gorgeous, with the off-center display balancing out the cutout window for the date. The 115.205 model is perfect for those who want a luxury statement piece full of those amazing little details to make it special.

A Tudor BlackBay watch.
Watchfinder & Co.

Tudor Black Bay

A retro look of the Tudor Black Bay 58 isn’t the only awesome feature of the piece. If you want a longer time between wind-ups, the 70-hour power reserve is a perk and makes it a great daily wear watch with little to no fuss. If all of that doesn’t quite sell you on it, the price on the M79010SG-0002 model will lock you in.

The Zenith Chronomaster trilcolor with a dark face.
Watchfinder & Co.

Zenith Chronomaster

Zenith loves to deliver a watch that looks like it was pulled from the shadows. Adrien Fourlegnie of Watchfinder France says the Chronomaster 97.T384.4061/21.C822 is one to keep your eye on, calling it a true underdog of the watch world. We agree, but make sure you give the watch a flip and check out the case back because those details are ridiculous.

The IWC Ingenieur watch.
Watchfinder & Co.

IWC Ingenieur

The alligator brown color throughout the watch with the brown baton dial give the IWC Ingenieur 5857ST/12/5ZU a cozy but fun look suited for everyday wear. The dial is simple with no frills but offers everything you need, with a small cutout window for the date. Waterproof up to 120 meters and index markers with beige luminescence are just a few details wearers will enjoy.

The Breguet Marine watch.
Watchfinder & Co.

Breguet Marine

The face of the Breguet Marine is just cool. The steel and white gold case makes the blue-toned Roman markers and hands pop beautifully. It also makes it just a bit easier to read. Andrew Morgan wants potential buyers to notice a few other details of the Breguet Marine 5857ST/12/5ZU, like the fact the watch is waterproof up to 100 meters, and to take in the stunning view of the caliber on the underside of the piece.

The Zenith Chronomaster tricolor watch.
Watchfinder & Co.

Zenith Chronomaster

If you love color and want a watch that you could stare at endlessly, the Zenith Chronomaster 03.3100.3600/69.C823 delivers. Not only is the blue band a breath of fresh air in a sea of black or silver bands, but the tri-colored dials are beautiful. With a 60-minute counter, a 60-second counter, and a 60-hour power reserve, this Chronomaster has enough features to keep you busy.

Waiting for the watch of your dreams to come back in stock is just frustrating. Having a backup list of watches for men that offer similar specs and features — but are available to purchase — is an excellent plan to have. You won’t have to settle for a lower level of luxury with these timepieces, either, so everyone wins.

Editors' Recommendations

Dannielle Beardsley
Dannielle has written for various websites, online magazines, and blogs. She loves everything celebrity and her favorite…
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