The term ‘affordable’ has a very different meaning in the world of haute horlogerie (that’s French for ‘very well-made and usually quite expensive watches’). The brands that sit by Lake Geneva aren’t au fait with three-for-a-tenner deals; these are watches that individual craftsmen take weeks to make. Six figure price tags are not uncommon.

But because non-CEOs need to tell the time too, most marques have an entry-level offering, built from more affordable parts and with less complications. So you can have a prestige brand on your wrist, without the hole in your wallet.

TAG Heuer Formula 1 – £750

One of the most identifiable watch brands on the planet, a TAG stamps authority on any wrist. This take on the Formula 1 moves the decimal point by swapping the mechanical movement for quartz, but still references the brand’s long motoring heritage.

It also offers total wardrobe versatility; you’ve got a gym watch, an everyday watch and a weekend watch at one of the lowest price points TAG Heuer offers.

Available at The Watch Gallery.

Baume & Mercier Classima – £1,230

Baume & Mercier has developed an excellent reputation within the watch industry thanks to superb craftsmanship at a (relatively) low price point. Dropping over a grand on a timepiece may not sound thrifty, but the Classima line boasts an eternally classic design that will likely last longer than you do.

Available at Watches Of Switzerland.

Gucci G-Timeless – £525

If you’re looking to combine fashion brand prestige with Swiss manufacturing, look to Gucci. The G-Timeless is a real highlight, with the Italian powerhouse’s signature underpinning a boardroom-friendly, weekend-appropriate stainless steel design.

Better yet, it’s available at a fraction of the brand’s ready-to-wear clothing.

Available at The Watch Gallery.

Burberry The City – £495

Cool Britannia will never abate and, with Burberry, you can pair homegrown credentials with horological nous. The City line in particular boasts clean, pragmatic designs that work with almost anything.

The brand is set to discontinue much of its accessory line-up, so chances to grab a Burberry timepiece at this price point might not last long. Move fast.

Available at Watch Shop.

Ronde Solo De Cartier – £1,880

Cartier is as luxury as watches get, but not every model requires remortgaging your home. The Ronde Solo clocks in at just under £2k, which buys you the same prestige on the wrist – and unparalleled craftsmanship – as watches that would normally set you back five figures.

The iconic Rotonde can reach sums up to £41,600, which puts the Ronde into perspective.

Available at The Watch Gallery.

Rolex Oyster Perpetual – £2,450

Rolex is the most coveted watch brand of them all – the Lionel Messi of the watch world. This demand often inflates prices to the point of comedy, but steer pre-owned and you can still wear the crown.

The Oyster Perpetual is one of the brand’s most iconic pieces and, with legit second-hand sites such as Watchfinder, you can grab discounted gold without being stung.

Available at Watchfinder.

Longines Conquest – £480

Big, bold and beguilingly affordable, Longines is a respected brand that refuses to break your bank account. Case in point: the Longines Conquest.

Ideal for bigger wrists with monochrome tastes, this stainless steel beauty will keep on ticking, with enough change left over for a second strap.

Available at The Watch Gallery.

Montblanc Star Date – £1,915

Montblanc is pretty unique in that it crafts a host of luxury goods, not just ones that sit on your wrist. The Star Date is one of its most affordable options, but still every inch the German maison’s product: standout black dial, classic features and incredibly wearable.

The price tag demands consideration, but if you compare it to Montblanc’s writing instruments and leather range, it’s cash spent wisely.

Available at Fraser Hart.