The secondary watch market has been likened to the west, with unscrupulous dealers endlessly waiting in ambush to bail out those unsuspecting by the wads of dollars. Moreover, with the development of modern technology, counterfeiters have become increasingly adept at replicating Rolex designs, making very elaborate replicas — known as “super fakes” — that are difficult to identify. There are a lot of good people, but it will take a lot of research to find them.
A good start is online at many dedicated Rolex forums where knowledgeable commenters will happily share their experiences with individuals or companies. From there, check out the sellers’ credentials and look for things like third-party certificates of authenticity on every watch they sell, and some kind of money-back guarantee. The best dealers will also offer their own warranties and stand behind their timepieces with lifetime authenticity guarantees.
Purchasing your next luxury replica watch brand-new from an official Rolex retail location does have some attractive benefits. For one, just like driving a new car off the lot, there is something particular about being the first person to strap on a luxury timepiece.
Secondly, it gives you the chance to develop a relationship with the Authorized Retailer, something that might eventually get you preferential treatment when the latest must-have models come in in the future. You also get a five-year Rolex warranty and the comfort of knowing that there is practically no chance of you buying a fake.
But against that, you have to deal with several significant downsides – such as the store’s (usually) very limited selection. Basically, unless you want a Datejust, Day-Date, Oyster Perpetual or something ultra-premium in solid gold, you’re probably to leave disappointed. Additionally, you won’t ever be getting a discount.
If you want any truly popular fake watch, such as the sports watch on which Rolex first made its name, or some other discontinued product, the second-hand market is the only option. Similarly, the used Rolex market is where you need to go if you want to buy or invest in true classics for less than the retail price.
The key to buying a real, trouble-free luxury watch is to do thorough research and always buy from a trusted, reputable dealer who will support your product.