Day-Date watches are, well, pretty self-explanatory. These are timepieces that incorporate day-date complication, displaying the current day and date and standard timekeeping capability. Both day and date are displayed within tiny apertures within the dial face.
The positioning of these apertures varies depending on the brand’s design. However, the most common or traditional design is with the day display below the 12 o’clock marker while the date display is beside the 3 o’clock position. Some day-date watches place these two side-by-side as well.
Quite possibly, one of the most sought-after timepieces with these additional complications is the iconic Rolex Day-Date Watch. I know Rolex watches have an extremely steep price that will undoubtedly be out of reach for most – however, the good news is that Rolex does not have the monopoly for day-date watches.
There are many alternatives that deliver their unique charm to the day-date watch design. To help you expand your options on this particular timepiece complication, we have compiled the best affordable day-date watches available today. Check them out below.
Best Affordable Day-Date Watches
Timex Men Easy Reader Day-Date Watch
Let us begin with a name you almost certainly recognize, one of the best affordable watch brands on the market – Timex.
The Timex Easy Reader Day-Date Watch, as the name implies, delivers excellent legibility with its bold Arabic numeral hour markers and broad baton-style hands.
The Timex Easy Rider also comes in three color options: gold, silver, and silver/dark blue dial. Besides the readable dial, the Easy Rider also features a neat design – no unnecessary visual bells and whistles here.
This timepiece is relatively compact with its 35mm stainless-steel case, while the mineral crystal window adds considerable scratch resistance and protection level. In addition, the Timex Easy Rider comes equipped with the Indiglo backlight technology for optimum visibility even in pitch darkness.
The dial and day-date all operate via Japanese quartz movement that pretty much ensures the watch’s accuracy at all times. However, keep in mind that the Easy Reader only comes with a 30-meter water resistance rating. So this timepiece can survive splashes of water but do refrain from getting it totally submerged.
Casio Classic Day-Date Black Dial Watch (MTP1381D-1AV)
Who says that affordable entry-level timepieces need not have a sophisticated style? Case in point, the Casio Classic Day-Date features a distinct dial design that helps separate it from the competition within its particular price bracket.
The day and date apertures are on the opposite sides of the black sunray burst dial, with the day display on the top and the date display at the bottom. The dial’s other vital aspects are the luminous hour markers and analog hands.
The Casio Classic Day-Date features a 40mm stainless steel case with an accompanying steel bracelet. This full-steel aesthetic adds a class level to this entry-level day-date watch that makes it appear more expensive than it is.
Other notable features include a Japanese quartz movement and a 50-meter water-resistant build.
Citizen Eco-Drive Chandler Field Watch (BM8180-03E)
Looking for a day-date watch that can accompany you outdoors? How about the Citizen Eco-Drive Chandler Field Watch? The Chandler is a robust and rugged timepiece designed to handle challenging terrains and environments as a field watch.
The Chandler features a 100-meter water resistance rating making it suitable for recreational marine-based activities such as swimming and snorkeling. In addition, the use of canvas straps should circumvent any comfort issues if the watch gets wet.
The dial also focuses on providing an extremely legible display, whether day or night. The luminous broad and bold Arabic numeral hour markers, accompanied by skeleton watch hands, makes reading the time quick and easy.
Underneath the tactical aesthetic lies a high-quality quartz movement that operates the three-hand analog dial and day-date display. In addition, the Chandler Field Watch also comes with the added advantage of having Citizen’s proprietary Eco-Drive technology. This particular feature allows this timepiece to recharge its batteries via natural and synthetic light – a pretty valuable capability for when you are outdoors.
Seiko 5 Sports Automatic Watch (SNZG15J1)
Another field day-date watch to make our list, this time, it’s from the famous Seiko brand. The Seiko 5 Sports Automatic features a military-inspired appearance with a sporty twist. The robust sand-finished 42mm stainless-steel case also adds to the rugged charm of this timepiece.
Over at the dial, we see a simple matte black design with both 12-hour and 24-hour markers. The day-date display is located both over at the 3 o’clock position. Also, the highly legible dial is well-protected by a Hardlex mineral crystal.
As for the heart of this strict field watch, it uses the Seiko caliber 7S36 automatic movement. Additionally, since this is a field watch, you can also expect it to have a solid water resistance rating of 100-meters.
The Seiko 5 Sports Automatic is an excellent choice for those looking for a versatile day-date watch that you can wear every day.
Timex Charles Street Watch
For those looking for a flashy day-date watch but don’t want to spend too much, might we suggest the Timex Charles Street Watch? The silver with gold-tone accent design gives this timepiece extra flourish in its aesthetic appeal.
Charles Street utilizes a black dial with gold-tone Arabic numeral hour markers and analog hands. The day and date apertures are beside the 3 o’clock hour marker, which is the standard position for this display.
Besides the rather luxurious design, the Timex Charles Street is also incredibly sleek and lightweight, thanks to the 35mm brass case. This timepiece also comes with a 30-meter water resistance rating, handling brief immersions and splashes.
Citizen Eco-Drive Strap Watch (BM8475-26E)
We have another military-inspired field watch entry from Citizen, the BM8475-26E. What separates this particular day-date field watch from the rest is its impeccable blending of classic design with a modern and eye-catching visual flair.
The Citizen Eco-Drive BM8475-26E features a black 42mm round stainless-steel case with a nifty faux-leather band. A smoky black dial incorporates luminous and bold orange-tone analog hands and Arabic numeral hour markers. While over at the 3 o’clock position are the day and date display.
Within the striking steel black ion-plated case is a Japanese quartz movement that helps keep it accurate at all times. In addition, this Citizen day-date watch provides a solid 100-meter water resistance as a field watch, making it suitable for many recreational water activities.
In addition, this timepiece also features Citizen Eco-Drive technology, which means it can recharge via natural and synthetic light.
Skagen Melbye Stainless Steel Mesh Band Watch
We have another visually stunning day-date timepiece with an exceptionally affordable price tag for you. The Skagen Melbye features that unique Danish style that incorporates a professional structure with a sleek modern minimalist aesthetic.
The Skagen Melbye also offers excellent versatility as several case options are available. We chose this steel mesh band version simply because we felt it was the coolest of the bunch. The Skagen Melbye mesh band is also versatile enough to be worn for various occasions.
The Melbye features a 40mm titanium case and steel mesh band, sleek and lightweight. In addition, it features a rugged gray dial with elegant index hour markers and slim baton analog hands. There is also a blue-accent 60-second marker located at the inner rim of the dial.
This timepiece also features a 50-meter water resistance rating, allowing it to withstand splashes of water. In addition, the Skagen Melybye features a modern build with an innovative and sophisticated minimalist aesthetic. Plus, it is pretty affordable as well.
Bulova Classic Quartz Day-Date Watch (96C125)
Bulova watches come with a sleek and refined style unique to the brand, so this is one of our favorite affordable watches in the market. The Bulova Classic Day-Date Watch delivers that classy signature design with its brushed 39mm case and stunning blue dial aesthetics.
We also love the Bulova Classic Day-Date’s attention to detail, from the gaunt tonneau-shaped case to the polished bevels. The inclusion of the stainless-steel bracelet also enhances the sporty appeal of this timepiece.
The blue sunburst finish dial also adds a nice visual flourish with its polished, almost reflective finish. In addition, Bulova included brushed metallic hour markers and luminous slender baton analog hands to complement the glossy appearance of the dial.
The day display is prominently showcased on the noon position and the Bulova name and logo, while the date window is beside the 3 o’clock position. All the complication on display utilizes a quartz movement.
The Bulova Classic Day-Date Watch only comes with a 30-meter water resistance rating, so don’t go bringing this out for a swim. But, all in all, the Bulova Classic Day-Date is another versatile watch option that will fit nicely just as well with formal attire or a casual shirt and jeans.
Citizen Eco-Drive Leather Watch (BM8240-03E)
The Citizen Eco-Drive BM8240-03E Watch is a rugged dress watch for the classy gentleman with its silver-tone case with a black dial and leather design. The Citizen Eco-Drive BM8240-03E is specifically a dress watch with its sleek 36mm stainless-steel case with a mineral window build.
The black sunray burst dial features Arabic and index hour markers and slim leaf analog hands that add a layer of refinement to its style. The day and date display can be found at the 3 o’clock position and incorporates a magnified cyclops eye for better legibility.
Within the timepiece is a Japanese quartz movement, while the exterior case design provides 30-meter water resistance. In addition, this dress day-date watch also comes equipped with the Eco-Drive solar-powered technology, which circumvents the need for battery replacement.
Orient MAKO II Japanese Automatic Diving Watch
Let us move away from dress watches for a bit and look at a more specialized day-date timepiece for this entry.
The Orient Mako II series is one of the brand’s best and most recommended dive watches in the market today. The Orient Mako II just so happens also to feature a day-date display as well/
As a dive watch, the MAKO II comes with the standard 120-click unidirectional bezel. Along with a 41mm stainless-steel case, this makes the MAKO II larger than most of the watches we have included in this list so far.
The case and steel bracelet feels robust and has that nice heft that indicates durability. Within the sturdy construction is a Japanese automatic movement that ensures precision at all times.
The blue dial incorporates bold and luminous Arabic numeral hour markers and obelisk-style analog hands. Of note, the second’s hand features a red tip for that added level of readability.
Another noteworthy aspect of the MAKO II is its 200-meter water resistance rating, which is suitable for swimming and snorkeling.
The MAKO II is an excellent day-date watch for those who love the great outdoors, specifically the ocean.
Tissot Couturier Powermatic 80 Automatic (T035.407.22.011.01)
If you are in the market for a day-date Swiss watch with a relatively reasonable price tag, then might we direct you towards the outstanding Tissot Couturier Powermatic 80 series? There are several case options in this Tissot watch line, but we decided to go with the most elegant model – the silver and gold-tone T035.407.22.011.01.
The Tissot Couturier Powermatic 80 has a relatively simple design, but it features a unique internal mechanism that will blow most of its competition out of the water. Of course, we are talking about the 23-jewel Swiss automatic 11 ½” caliber movement, which comes with a jaw-dropping 80-hour power reserve – hence the Powermatic 80 moniker.
If you are looking for an elegant Swiss day-date watch, you can’t go wrong with a Tissot timepiece. In addition, the Couturier Powermatic 80 also provides an excellent 100-meter water resistance rating making it a suitable watch for certain marine activities.
Hamilton Khaki King Stainless-Steel Automatic Watch (H64455533)
The Hamilton Khaki King certainly earns that name with its super chiseled aesthetic that instantly elevates itself from other Hamilton Khaki watches. The 40mm stainless-steel case is simple yet can handle rough terrains and conditions. The case also utilizes a sapphire crystal window for its enhanced scratch resistance.
The black dial features a textured outer rim which contains the luminous Arabic numeral 12-hour markers, and inside that is the 24-hour markers. There are also the luminous sword-style analog hands that command attention.
The incredibly robust exterior case is an automatic self-winding movement that keeps track of time with nigh-absolute precision. Unfortunately, this timepiece comes with a 50-meter water resistance rating, so we refrain from wearing it if you plan on swimming.
The day-date display is located at the top of the dial and is quite a prominent fixture on the watch—big ups for Hamilton in managing to craft an incredibly detailed and readable dial.
Tissot T-Classic Automatic III Day-Date Watch (T065.930.22.031.00)
The Tissot T-Classic Automatic III Day-Date features a subtle elegance often lost in an era that prefers loud and bombastic. That said, the more you look at the T-Classic Automatic III, the more you will appreciate all the minor design tweaks that Tissot infused into it.
The silver and gold-tone design will immediately catch your attention from the get-go. However, that is just the tip of the proverbial iceberg. The white dial features gold-tone index hour markers and sword-shaped analog hands. In addition, a concentric circle pattern adds a level of finesse and intricacy to the relatively straightforward design.
The day and date display are on opposite sides (top and bottom, respectively), evenly balanced the dial aesthetic. To cap off the beautiful design is a high-quality automatic movement that pretty much guarantees accuracy.
If you’re having a hard time comparing these last few watches, check out this comparison of Tissot vs. Hamilton.
Victorinox Fieldforce Watch (241849)
The Victorinox Fieldforce has an incredibly polished style that more than makes up for its rather rudimentary design. As with most Victorinox timepieces, the Fieldforce is about tradition, practicality, and a sharp appearance.
At 42mm in diameter, the stainless-steel case is just at the cusp of the maximum requirement for a dress watch. However, this case measurement is excellent news as the snappy design of the Fieldforce makes it an ideal watch for formal attires.
The dial of the Fieldforce is also deceptively detailed with its monobloc stamped dial, aluminum bezel, and slick day-date display. The legibility of the Fieldforce’s dial is also undeniable, thanks to the bold luminous Arabic numeral hour markers and analog dial hands that accentuate the brushed matte black background.
Hamilton Jazzmaster Sea View Swiss Quartz Dive Watch (H37551141)
Finally, we end this list with another fantastic Hamilton watch. This time, the Jazzmaster Sea View gets the spotlight, and Hamilton decided to give the Jazzmaster Sea View traditional aesthetic treatment with its silver case and blue dial design as a dive watch.
There is also a unidirectional blue bezel to help track your diving time – a mandatory fixture for dive watches. Underneath the stunning blue dial is a Swiss quartz movement that operates the luminous dauphine hands and the day-date display.
Additionally, the Jazzmaster Sea View provides up to 100-meter water resistance, which means it is suitable for swimming and snorkeling, but avoid wearing it when swimming.