Buying Your First Rolex? Here’s Everything You Need to Know

Last updated: February 13, 2022

So, you’ve decided to buy a Rolex! One would think that in today’s world where anyone can pull out their phone to check the time, and when people wear supercomputers on their wrists, that the classic analog wristwatch would fall out of style. And yet, quite the opposite has proven true!

Wristwatches remain a staple accessory in men’s wardrobes, a tried and true way to elevate one’s appearance. They bring elegance and class to any outfit, and can serve as a sort of timeless (no pun intended) status symbol that represents your hard work and success. And Rolex, of course, is the gold standard among watchmakers.

In fact, the Rolex brand has outperformed gold itself in the stock market over the past decade. Made of durable and high-quality materials, Rolex watches last far longer than many other name brands on the market, so purchasing one is a good investment in both your image and your finances.

With that out of the way, let’s get down to the brass tacks of what you need to know before purchasing your first Rolex!

How Much is An Entry Level Rolex?

Hopefully, if you’re reading this article, you aren’t under the impression that a Rolex is an economical option for the everyday guy or gal. We’re talking a Ferrari here, not a Honda. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with a minivan to get the job done, but a Rolex is a luxury item, and you should expect the ticket price to reflect that.

That being said, you don’t want to break the bank on your first go. For an entry watch, you want to look for a good value, so we’re balancing quality and affordability here. After all, this is your test run.

You want to see how it feels, how it fits, what suits you in particular. You can always shoot higher in the future. Ergo, you should expect to pay anywhere between $6,000-$15,000 dollars for your first watch. Luckily, there are many options for a first-time Rolex customer that fall in this range that will check all your boxes.

Where Do I Buy a Rolex?

Now, before we go over the various retailers that sell Rolex, don’t discount (again, no pun intended) buying a used Rolex from a third party. I know, I know, we’re all afraid of receiving damaged goods, and there’s nothing quite like the luster of a brand-new goodie fresh from the factory. But, buying used will not only save you a significant amount of money, it has also become much easier to find high-quality, like-new Rolexes being sold second hand from reputable sources.

Now, there are a few online retailers that sell used Rolexes, such as swisswatchexpo.com and thewatchbox.com, but you can also buy from private merchants on websites such as Ebay. The most important things to look for are:

  1. Multiple positive reviews from people who have purchased similar products.
  2. Plenty of high-quality images of the watch in question (NOT STOCK PHOTOS).
  3. A robust refund policy and/or quality guarantee with details on what to do if the watch arrives damaged.

If you play your cards right and stay away from shady dealers, you can get a Rolex that looks and feels brand new while lobbing a big chunk off of your expenses.

Now, if you decide that second-hand isn’t for you, there are plenty of retailers that sell new Rolexes both online and in-person. Crownandcaliber.com, and bobswatches.com are examples of reputable sites where you can buy new Rolexes and have them shipped directly to your house.

Of course, there is nothing quite like the experience of walking into a jewelers, peering into the sparkling case, and having a watch fit right onto your wrist, then boxed up in front of you. If you’re more of a hands on type of guy, this might be just what you’re looking for. If that’s the case, the official Rolex website (https://www.rolex.com) has a feature which uses your GPS location to find the nearest outlet or jewelers near you that sells their product.

Simply punch in your zipcode or give the website access to your location, and presto, you can head on down and shop in person. This has the added benefit of allowing you to see and test the product IRL, so to speak. Whether we like to admit it or not, there is always an unknown element involved in purchasing things online, and there is comfort in seeing the object right in front of you so you can feel fully confident as you walk back out those doors.

What Is The Best First Rolex To Buy?

Ah, the moment we’ve been waiting for. Everything else aside, the titular question remains: but which one? Of course, you can always hop onto the Rolex website and browse their lineup yourself, but it can be hard to know which ones offer that perfect balance of price and quality (we’re looking for value here, remember?). And with an inventory that has been expanding for over a hundred years, the sheer number of options can easily become overwhelming. Luckily, that’s what we’re here for! Below, I will list a few examples of the sort of price range and features that would be ideal for your entry Rolex.

For a Lover of the Classics: Rolex Oyster Perpetual 41

Rolex Oyster Perpetual 41

Now, if we’re talking about classic timepieces, it doesn’t get more classic than this. The Oyster line has been around almost as long as Rolex itself, and the clean, slick look of the Oyster Perpetual 41 is perfect for an entry watch enthusiast. This elegant piece will mesh well with almost any ensemble, and is perfect for daily wear.

Waterproof and outfitted with an anti-glare backing for easy time-keeping, this watch has high wearability, and you can expect it to last a long while. The hands of the clock, as well as the hour markers, are made from 18K gold, and the band from Rolex’s trademark Oystersteel.

An all-around versatile, luxurious item with an impressive legacy, this is a great entry watch and retails at the lower end of our budget, around $6,500.

For the adventurer: Rolex Sea-Dweller

Rolex Sea-Dweller

If you often find yourself seeking adventure scuba diving, mountain-climbing, racing, or placing in Triathlons, but still want a luxury timepiece, this watch may be perfect for you. Built for the deep sea diver, the Sea-Dweller is durable beyond belief. Not only is it, obviously, waterproof, but the quality construction of the watch itself makes it a strong contender for anyone who’s not afraid to get a little dirty.

With luminescent hour markers, a scratch-resistant sapphire lens, and a helium escape valve that allows the watch to function at depths of 4,000 feet, this watch perfectly combines functionality and beauty. Of course, with all these bells and whistles, the price stands a little higher than our last at around $12,400.

For the collector: Rolex Datejust

Rolex Datejust

Now, just to add a little flavor to this lineup, let’s take a look at the sort of piece that you can buy used with a high level of satisfaction with the Datejust. While there is a modern Rolex Datejust (priced at a whopping $29,000), the vintage line from the 1960’s and 70’s, of which there are still many floating around on the market, are the epitome of style, history and taste.

If you find yourself drawn to Rolex’s legacy as a hundred year-old watchmaker, you might be intrigued by these beautifully crafted timepieces from decades past that still hold their luster in our modern day. Retailing at a much more comfortable $3,000, this may be the perfect place to start in your watch-collecting journey, and will give your style an extra kick to boot.

Well, there you have it! Everything you need to know about buying your first Rolex. We hope this article was helpful for you, and wish you luck in your search. Hopefully someday soon, you’ll be clasping that band around your wrist for the first time.