Best Military Watches: Tough and Practical Timepieces
These top military watches are great for everyday wear
The Drive and its partners may earn a commission if you purchase a product through one of our links.Read more.
PUBLISHED ON December 19, 2019
If you want a watch that's a little more rugged and durable than a standard timepiece, you may want to consider a military watch. These tactical devices are practical, tough, and able to withstand a variety of conditions, including rain and snow. Sometimes nothing but a heavy-duty watch will do. Check out our top picks in the buying guide below.
- Best OverallSeiko 5 Automatic Stainless Steel WatchSummarySummary
This automatic mechanical watch is powered by the movement of the wearer’s arm. It features a scratch-resistant hardlex crystal and a brushed stainless steel case and is water-resistant to 30 meters. A day and date display are set at three o'clock.ProsPros
It's a strong, sturdy, well-made, good-quality watch. The luminescent hands make it easy to determine the time day or night. It's suitable for snorkeling and swimming. The black nylon strap wraps comfortably around your wrist.ConsCons
If the mainspring is not wound properly, timekeeping may become less accurate. For accuracy, you must wear the watch for eight hours or more a day, manually wind the mainspring, or use a watch winder.
- Best ValueCasio Men's 'G-Shock' Quartz Resin Sport WatchSummarySummaryThis shock-resistant sports watch is water-resistant to 660 feet and features an alarm, stopwatch, hourly time signal, auto calendar, and 12/24 hour formats. It has a Quartz movement with a digital display.ProsPros
The watch can be used for professional marine activity and surface water sports. It's comfortable, light yet sturdy, and resistant for urban and sports activities. It's a great value for the money and is suitable for every day, around-the-clock use.ConsConsThe display is a little small, and the strap may break after a short period of use. Also, the sound of the alarm is very weak, and you may bump the buttons into active mode by accident.
- Honorable MentionMarathon Watch Navigator Swiss Made Military Issue Pilot’s WatchSummarySummaryThis Swiss-made watch has been designed according to government specifications for use by military personnel, pilots, and paratroopers. It is self-illuminating due to tritium gas tubes, submersible, and features high-torque Quartz movement.ProsProsThis watch is stylish, thin, lightweight, reliable and well built. It can stand up to everyday wear, is accurate, and is very easy to read in the dark. It’s perfect for running, working out, swimming, hiking, and more.ConsConsThe watch is quite expensive, and there have been complaints that it scratches very easily. Also, the bezel around the outside may break and fall off after a short period of use.
Why Trust Us
All of our reviews are based on market research, expert input, and practical experience with each product we include. This way, we offer genuine, accurate guides to help you find the best picks.
- Look for a military watch that is easy to read regardless of the time of day and that can keep on ticking, even when exposed to shock, impact, and vibration.
- A good military watch will be waterproof or water-resistant. Most can be used for swimming and are not affected by rain. You can also wear them in the shower.
- The more features a watch includes, the more expensive it will be. Advanced features include a barometer, altimeter, GPS, or GLONASS.
Q: What is a military watch?
A: Military watches are created with high-impact materials and are designed with a variety of features. They are meant to withstand tougher conditions than standard watches.
Q: Who needs a military watch?
A: Military or tactical watches are great if you are an outdoorsman. They are very versatile and durable and are worn by mountain climbers, hunters, hikers, campers, surfers, etc.
Q: What kind of watches do Navy SEALs wear?
A: Many Navy SEALs favor the Casio G-Shock DW-6600. It is lightweight, water-resistant, and has good shock protection. However, there is no standard watch or a specific model that all Navy SEALs wear.
Our pick for the best military watch is the Seiko 5 Automatic Stainless Steel Watch. It is scratch-resistant, water-resistant, well-made, and sturdy.
For a more budget-friendly option, consider the Casio Men's 'G-Shock' Quartz Resin Sport Watch.