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Summer holiday coming up? Let's discuss what makes a good dive watch.

Updated: Jun 16

With summer just around the corner (surely this grim weather can’t last much longer!) I thought it might be fun to discuss what makes a good dive watch, or should I say, a good holiday watch. Most of us like to have a watch for every occasion (it’s how we justify buying more!) but when it comes to going on holiday, we tend to choose security over variety and go for one watch that can cover all bases.

Water Resistance

Assuming that most of us like to take a dip in the water to cool off on holiday, we probably need a watch that’s water-resistant. But what does water resistance really mean? I often hear “30m is fine, as I’m not planning to dive any further than the bottom of the pool”. But it’s more to do with the pressure your watch can withstand (30m = 3 bar of pressure), so the pressure placed on your watch as you cannonball into the hotel pool is probably more than a gentle swim with the local fish. As a general rule, watches with a water resistance of 30m – 50m are only really considered splash proof. With 100m, you’re probably okay with surface water sports and light swimming. And for more adventurous water sports and serious diving, you want to be looking at anything with a water resistance of over 200m.


Many dive watches boast fantastic legibility and impressive lume, and while you might not be planning to test that out on the ocean floor, you’ll appreciate it on your walk home in the dark after one too many cocktails. And who doesn’t love a cool lume shot after your watch has been charging in the sun all day?


Next, we need to consider strap options. Taking multiple straps on holiday allows you to change your look to match your outfit or activity, without the need for taking multiple watches. For many holiday watches, leather is a no-go due to its dislike of sweat and water. Personally, I love a rubber strap, or even a NATO could be a great option. Of course, you can’t go wrong with a metal bracelet and a clasp with a diver’s adjustment is essential if, like me, your wrist expands in the heat.


If you do decide to take multiple watches away with you, I can’t recommend enough either the Cased in Time or Time Travel cases. You can find a selection of their cases, as well as straps from Under the Cuff, and accessories like spring bar tools and lume torches in our shop here.

Choose your favourite dive watch

If I were to choose a holiday watch from our current stock it would probably be the Omega Seamaster 300 or Zodiac Super Sea Wolf. Both are over 200m water resistant, easy to wear, and would look great on any number of straps. Or if I was feeling bold, maybe the Omega Ploprof or Rolex GMT-Master II “Root Beer”.

I’d love to know what you think makes a good holiday watch, and if you’ve got a favourite piece in your collection that you can’t go away without – please comment below!

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