Tissot Watch Serial Numbers Guide: What Do They Mean


Tissot watches are classics and highly popular among watch-lovers around the world. The first Tissot watch was made in the 1850s, and there have been different types of serial numbers since then. 

Until the 1980s, Tissot watches serial numbers indicated the year the watch was made. However, these serial numbers were abandoned in the mid-80s. Since 2016, all Tissot watches have a 9-digit alphanumeric code on the case back that can be traced to the place of production.

The rest of this article will discuss Tissot watch serial numbers in greater detail. If you want to learn more, be sure to keep reading!

Where Can I Find the Tissot Watch’s Serial Number?

You can find the Tissot watch’s serial number on the case back of newer models. On older models, the precise location of the serial number varies. It could be on the movement or the case back on older models. Some watches post-1983 and pre-2016 don’t have any serial numbers.

If you’re trying to find a serial number on your Tissot watch but can’t seem to find it anywhere, it’s likely because there’s no number. If you would like to date your watch and it doesn’t have a serial number, you’ll need to date it another way.

The best way to get more information about the date of your watch is to contact your local service center. 

Some older models have serial numbers located inside the case back or on the movement, so you may need to take your watch apart to find the number. However, all models made since 2016 have serial numbers on the case back, so they should be easy to find.

What Does the Tissot Watch Serial Number Look Like?

The Tissot watch serial number looks like a numeric or alphanumeric code, depending on the watch’s production era. Any models from 2016 onward all have two letters followed by 9 characters, and older models can have between 1 and 8 characters. 

Since Tissot watches have been in circulation since the 1800s, there are so many serial numbers, and it can be difficult to understand what exactly they mean.

Below, I won’t go as far back as the 1800s because not many people have Tissot watches as far back as that. I will start with watches from the 1960s onward.

Here are some examples of Tissot watch serial numbers by era:

  • 1960: Serial numbers range from 4560000 to 4867999.
  • 1961: Serial numbers range from 4868000 to 5197999.
  • 1962: Serial numbers range from 5198000 to 5932999.
  • 1963: Serial numbers range from 5933999 to 6498999.
  • 1964: Serial numbers range from 6499000 to 7039999.
  • 1965: Serial numbers range from 7040000 to 8280999.
  • 1966: Serial numbers range from 8281000 to 8864999.
  • 1967: Serial numbers range from 8865000 to 9910999.
  • 1968: Serial numbers range from 9911000 to 10492999.
  • 1969: Serial numbers range from 10493000 to 11594999.
  • 1970: Serial numbers range from 11595000 to 13046119.
  • 1971: Serial numbers range from 13046120 to 139996999.
  • 1972: Serial numbers range from 13997000 to 16173999.
  • 1973: Serial numbers range from 16174000 to 16811999.
  • 1974: Serial numbers range from 16812000 to 18902999.
  • 1975: Serial numbers range from 18903000 to 19397999.
  • 1976: Serial numbers range from 19398000 to 20030999.
  • 1977: Serial numbers range from 20031 to 21093.
  • 1978: Serial numbers range from 21094 to 21515.
  • 1979: Serial numbers range from 21516 to 22097.
  • 1980: Serial numbers range from 22098 to 22857.
  • 1981: Serial numbers range from 22858 to 23238.
  • 1982: Serial numbers range from 23239 to 23596.
  • 1983: Serial numbers range from 23697 to 23905.

This list is just for the watches produced since 1960. Tissot has been around for a much longer time, and the image below will show you the serial numbers for all watches produced before 1983:

As you can tell from the long numbers above, it can be difficult to tell what year a watch is from. That’s mainly because there are no specific numbers or letters that correspond to a particular year or place.

Seiko, for example, has a serial number that starts with the year of production (a 3 means that the watch was made in 2013, 2003, 1993, etc), followed by a number (1-9) or a letter (O, N, D) that corresponds to the month of production. Tissot doesn’t use this method, making it difficult to understand the serial numbers.

Really all we can do is see if the serial number fits in any of the ranges we gave above. Those are the best indicators of when a Tissot watch was manufactured.

All Tissot Watches Made After 2016 Have Serial Numbers

I’ve discussed what serial numbers looked like on old models of Tissot watches, but I haven’t discussed newer models in too much detail. So now, I will explain what more recent serial numbers look like and why Tissot changed them.

According to Tissot’s official FAQ page, all new Tissot watches have serial numbers that start with the letters’ WS,’ which translates to ‘WATCH-SECUR.’ These two letters are followed by a 9-character alphanumeric code generated by an algorithm.

Why does Tissot use an algorithm to generate the serial number? Well, the main reason is to prevent fake serial numbers from being made. When watches have serial numbers that clearly indicate the year of manufacture, it’s easy for people to make fakes.

Since Tissot uses an algorithm to generate a code, there’s less chance of believable fakes being made. It’s all part of their attempt to protect their brand and customers from scammers.

All watches (post-2016) have unique algorithm-generated serial numbers, so each watch has a unique code. Unfortunately, there is no way to tell what year your watch was made by examining this new serial number by yourself. Only the team at Tissot or a watch professional can decode this number.

If you have a Tissot watch made after 2016 and want to find out the exact year it was made, you’ll need to contact a Tissot service center directly to get more information. They might be able to help you, but many people find it difficult to get much information from them.

Tissot states that their team can trace where a watch was produced and where it was sent to in order to be sold by reading the WS serial number on newer watches. So contacting them may be of help to you.

However, they may not be able to give you any information on the watch other than confirming that it’s an authentic Tissot watch, so it’s a good idea to manage your expectations.

How Can I Find Out the Year a Tissot Watch Was Made?

To find out the year a Tissot watch was made, you can examine the serial number. This would be most useful if the watch were made pre-1985. If your watch was made after this time, it’s best to contact Tissot directly to get more assistance.

Suppose your watch is an older model. Then you can try to use this watch decoder to give you an idea of when your watch was made. However, this won’t always work and is not an official Tissot decoder, so you shouldn’t trust it entirely. But it could help, so it’s certainly worth a try!

If the watch were made after the mid-80s, it would be much more challenging to find out the year because the serial numbers were abandoned by then.

As I’ve already mentioned before, it’s best to contact a Tissot service center. They might be able to find out the year of production, and they may even be able to find out where it was produced and the overall history of the watch. 

How Do I Know if a Tissot Watch Is Fake?

You should examine the Tissot watch’s serial number to find out if it’s fake. Since all Tissot watches made since 2016 consist of the letters’ WS’ followed by a 9-character alphanumeric code, any new watch that doesn’t have this is most likely fake. 

You can find the serial number on the case back of all new models of Tissot watches. If you notice a code that doesn’t have ‘WS’ written on it, or if there are too many or too few characters, you’ll know the watch is fake.

However, that’s not to say that a watch with the correct amount of characters is authentic. Some fake watches will have serial numbers that look more believable than others. 

Plus, they might even incorporate the ‘WS’ letters. If the serial number looks correct, but you’re still worried that it’s fake, consider doing the following:

  • Check the price. Tissot watches aren’t as expensive as other luxury watch brands, but they generally cost a couple of hundred to a couple of thousand dollars. If you see a watch being sold for a lower price than usual, it’s likely too good to be true.
  • Pay attention to the crown. All Tissot watches have a logo on the crown. If you notice that your one doesn’t, it’s a fake watch.
  • Get the overall feel of the watch. Generally, you can get a feel for the watch by touching it and examing it. By feeling it and wearing it on your wrist, you can get a better idea of whether it’s fake.

As a last resort, you can contact Tissot or a service center if you’re worried your watch is fake. Although they may not always be able to confirm the era in which your watch was made, they’ll undoubtedly be able to tell whether the serial number is fake or not.

The Serial Number Should Match the Number on the Booklet

When you purchase a Tissot watch, you should receive an information booklet, too. This booklet contains some valuable information, including the serial number of your watch. You should check the booklet to ensure the serial number matches the one on your watch.

If they don’t match or there isn’t any serial number in the booklet, your watch is fake.

Conclusion

Tissot watches serial numbers indicate the year the watch was made and where it was produced and sent. However, not all watches have serial numbers, making it difficult to know how old a watch may be.

Until the mid-80s, all Tissot watches had serial numbers that indicated the year of manufacture. After this, serial numbers were left behind. It was only in 2016 when Tissot brought back serial numbers.

An algorithm generates all-new serial numbers, and only the Tissot team can decode these numbers. 

Jasper Pieterse

Hi all! My name is Jasper and I'm an avid watch fan. On this site, I'd like to share my experiences!

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