Rolex Deepsea wristwatch

The Cheapest Rolex Watches You Can Buy (Psst: They're Still Wildly Expensive)

View Slideshow
Cheapism is editorially independent. We may earn a commission if you buy through links on our site.

Are You Rich Enough for a Rolex?

Owning a Rolex is synonymous with wealth, luxury, and class. So who wouldn’t want a piece of that on their wrist, right? To start, anyone who is vehemently against spending thousands of dollars on something that you wear to show that ... you can spend thousands of dollars. Or, someone who is scared of being robbed (rightfully so).  

On the other hand, if you want a classic timepiece that can be passed down from generation to generation, a Rolex may be the way to go. These watches generally retain their value, so investing in one means you’re likely to get something back. But let’s face it: Most Rolex watches are out of the general public's reach.

Still have your heart set on one? If you're wondering what the cheapest Rolex is, we've rounded up a few. Buyer beware: They still all cost thousands of dollars. 

Related: The Best American-Made Watches

Rolex Oyster Perpetual

Oyster Perpetual

$5,500 and up

Shop Now

The Oyster Perpetual line is known as the “entry-level” Rolex watch. It was first released in the 1920s — we're assuming for much less than its current price. It’s the cheapest and most basic style that the brand offers, but hey, it’s still a Rolex in name. The Oyster Perpetual was the first mass-produced water-resistant watch. This style is self-winding and features the brand’s signature waterproof Oyster case.

Related: 8 of the Most Expensive Lego Sets You Can Buy

Rolex DateJust Oyster

Datejust Oyster

$7,00 and up

Shop Now

Created in 1945, the Datejust Oyster was the "first self-winding waterproof chronometer wristwatch to feature a window displaying the date," according to Rolex. This model is waterproof to 330 feet.

Rolex Explorer

Explorer 36

$7,250 and up

Shop Now

The dial of the fairly simple Explorer sports the classic Rolex look, while the 3, 6 and 9 numerals are slightly luminescent with a long-lasting blue glow. Like other Rolex watches, it features the extremely durable "Oystersteel" frame.

For more shopping guides, please sign up for our free newsletters.

Rolex Air-King

Air-King Oyster


Shop Now

For a few hundred more you can get the Air-King, which has been in production since the 1950s. This cheaper Rolex watch has the features of the original Rolex Oyster, plus a minutes scale for navigational time readings. 

Rolex Submariner


$9,100 and up

Shop Now

It's starting to get up there in price, but the original Submariner is still relatively affordable for a Rolex at under $10,000. The style was launched in 1953 and made waves as the first diver's wristwatch that was waterproof to a depth of 330 feet, setting the standard for other diving watches. Today, the newest model is waterproof to a depth of 1,000 feet.