5 tips to identify fake watches

5 tips to identify fake watches

Knock-off clothing and accessories are on the rise, and with today's cost of living crisis, the counterfeit goods market is only going to get larger.

When purchasing a high value watch, it’s important to know the details you should be looking for when checking your watch is real.

Price & Payment

Sadly, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. That’s not to say you can’t snap up an authentic bargain, but usually with high value watches comes a hefty price tag, so be aware if the price looks suspiciously low.

When making high value purchases, we always advise using credit cards if available as an extra security measure. Credit cards make it much easier to avoid losses from fraud, meaning you’ll be more likely to get your money back if your watch is proved to be fake.


When trying to spot a fake, it’s important to look at every detail including font, number/text size, quality of any written elements.

Something as slight as the text being raised can help prove if its real or counterfeit, as can be seen above.

To the untrained eye, it might be hard to notice these slight differences, but most jewellers or authorised dealers are happy to value watches, helping to prove authenticity if you are unsure.

Serial Number

A key factor in your watches’ authentication will be its serial number. We found a few websites to help with specific brands:

Research the seller

Do some digging on the seller if you're purchasing online. Be cautious that good reviews don’t always mean a good seller, be sure to take a look at what else they are selling.

If you are purchasing in person, we always recommend asking to see the watch prior to the purchase, this way you can take images to check for authenticity, and if you’re happy it’s authentic can go back to purchase.

Be aware of cash only sellers... Although sometimes innocent, cash only means no trace or proof of actual purchase, we always advise against cash or bank transfer for transactions of high value like this.


Watch packaging is a great indicator of not only the authenticity of the watch, but also the condition the timepiece has been kept and maintained in.

We always advise against purchasing a watch without its original packaging, as not only is it running the risk of being counterfeit, but it also raises the question of where the watch has been stored and its condition on arrival.

Pictured below, packaging can be a great indicator of real vs fake, which is why it’s key to ensure your purchase includes packaging!

Protect your timepiece

Once your genuine watch is purchased, you’ll want some genuine storage to keep them in! To The Hour offer a range of genuine Peli watch cases, designed to protect your watches.

Whether you're travelling with one watch or storing your 8 watches at home, we have a range of cases to suit your needs.

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