Is It Cheaper To Buy A Watch In Dubai

When it comes to buying watches for a cheaper price, there are always a few places that come up. One of these places is Dubai, but are watches actually cheaper in Dubai?

Luxury watches are cheaper in Dubai, but only by a small margin. This is because Dubai is a rich city with many potential buyers. The laws of supply and demand ensure that the price of a luxury watch is a little lower than in other places.

But how much cheaper are these watches here? And should you actually make the trip to Dubai purely for a watch? In this article, we’ll take an in-depth look at how much cheaper the watches in Dubai are and how the prices can be lower than usual.

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Why Would A Watch In Dubai Be Cheaper

Dubai is a beautiful city, known for its riches and luxe. It should be of no surprise that a city with this status is often linked to luxurious and expensive watches.

That’s also why many people might wonder if a luxury watch could be cheaper in Dubai. And the answer is actually yes, although not by a large margin. Unlike watches that are sold in Switzerland, which aren’t really any cheaper (read this article to find out why!), Dubai actually offers luxury watches, especially Rolex watches, for a slightly cheaper price.

However, the difference in price is usually only around $100 bucks. Luxury watchmakers are actually in control of the price and retailers can’t change too much about that, so therefore, you won’t really see a large difference.

On the other hand, because Dubai is a city of luxe and wealth, there’s actually a much larger demand for these expensive watches. And a larger demand usually also means that the price is a little bit lower.

That’s the case here in Dubai, where many luxury watches are sold. If these watches were to go for the original price, chances are that the buyer just goes to a competitor with more favorable prices. This leads to luxury watchmakers to drop their prices slightly.

But as mentioned before, these drops in prices are very minor. Don’t expect to find a luxury watch for half the price, as this simply won’t happen.

How The Price Of A Watch Is Determined

To understand why a luxury watch won’t really budge in price, you’d have to look at how a luxury watch is priced in the first place.

The price of any luxury watch is always set by the watchmakers themselves. This is a common practice in any business, but luxury watch brands also make deals with their retailers that prohibit them from lowering their prices.

This is done because a luxury watch brand wants to keep up the luxuriousness. And if a retailer starts to discount these luxury watches, chances are the luxurious feel will start to decay.

But how do these watchmakers set a price for their watches? This has everything to do with the manufacturing process and the materials used to make the watch.

Because every luxury watch is made by hand, only by the very best watchmakers available, you’re already looking at a premium price. Your timepiece is made by experts, who can take up to several days or weeks to complete a single watch. This really drives up the price already.

Secondly, these experts make their watches with high-quality, expensive, and even exotic materials. Yellow gold or platinum are no rare sights.

These materials are much more expensive than the materials used in a budget watch. And when you pair that with the experts that make these watches by hand, you’ll quickly get to a very high manufacturing cost.

On top of that, the luxury watchmakers also need to make a profit, and the margins on luxury products are always absurdly high. This all combined leads to a high price tag with little wiggle room.

Other Factors That Determine The Price Of A Watch

Of course, there are other factors that come into play when pricing a watch. These are some minor impacts on the price and these mostly apply to buying the watches in different countries, but these do have some influence.

Supply And Demand

Supply and demand will always be of influence on a price, even when talking about luxury products, which usually don’t budge.

Supply and demand is actually one of the main reasons why watches could be cheaper in Dubai. It’s actually pretty simple. Once there’s a lot of supply of a certain product, the prices can drop a bit. And since Dubai is a rich city, targeted to the richer people, naturally, there will a many luxury stores.

When you keep those prices high, customers can easily go to a competitor. To avoid that, luxury watch companies in Dubai usually lower their prices slightly.


Another factor that comes into play when you purchase something abroad is the currency. Currencies are always changing in value, and sometimes this could lead to an even lower price.

When you purchase something in Dubai, as an American, and the dollar is positioned strongly against the UAE Dirham, you indirectly pay a smaller price.

However, this could also be the other way around. So don’t bet everything on the currency differences, as this could have either a positive or negative effect. In any case, these currency differences usually don’t make for a substantial difference anyway.


VAT is yet another factor that can influence the price. VAT can be different from country to country. In the United States, you’ll often find 10%, but in some European countries, it can be as high as 21%.

In Dubai, the average VAT rate is only 0.05%, which is really low. This can already shave off a nice chunk of the price. Added to that are all the other benefits as well!


Lastly, there’s something called a customs duty. This is something put in place to defend the local economy of a certain country. What they do is they place an extra ‘tax’ on items bought abroad. They do this to encourage you to buy the same item in your home country instead of abroad.

The customs duty can vary from country to country. As for the United States, you can bring back up to $800 worth of items. Anything over $800 will be subject to 3-5% in customs duty.

Now, a luxury watch will definitely be more expensive than $800, so expect to pay a small percentage extra when you bring back your new luxury watch.

Should You Buy A Watch In Dubai; Yes Or No

Now that you know that a luxury watch could be cheaper in Dubai, you might start to wonder if you should book a trip here once you’re ready to buy a luxury watch.

Before you do, please consider a few things. Booking the trip, your hotel, and renting a car, will probably cost you more than the decreased watch price will save you.

So should you go to Dubai just to purchase a watch? Probably not. Not only are you probably spending more money than you’re saving, but you’ll also have to go on a long flight. This seems like a little too much of a hassle if you’re going here purely for a watch.

But if you’re already planning a trip to Dubai, and you’re already planning on purchasing a luxury watch, buying it in Dubai will probably be beneficial. Even if it doesn’t save you that much money, buying your new timepiece on a wonderful vacation makes it just that much more special!


Jasper has always been a fan of watches. But when he took on a project of restoring a nearly 30-year-old timepiece, he was hooked. Throughout the years, he has learned a lot about horology and shared his passion on Watches of Today!

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