Looking for a rugged watch that can take most of what you throw at it, but one that still looks nice enough to wear with a dress shirt? This
Timex Expedition Rugged Field Watch nicely straddles the line between an adventure travel timepiece and something you could wear out at night.
I always seem to have a half-dozen watches on my dresser (half of them needing new batteries usually), but I don't really wear them all that much. With a cell phone always in the pocket and a clock in the car, a watch doesn't seem as necessary as it used to be.
When I travel, however, I always wear a watch. First of all, time requirements are more rigid. Your significant other may not mind too much if you're twenty minutes late for happy hour. The plane or train schedule is not so forgiving though. Second, traveling with a cell phone abroad is annoying and expensive, so most of the time I don't have the phone on me if I'm out of the country.
The Expedition line from Timex is a great place to start when looking for a travel watch that won't break the bank. This one is at the higher range of the scale ($120 list) but it feels hefty and well-made and has some nice features. It's shock resistant, has a leather strap that is treated to be water resistant, and the watch itself is water resistant to 100 meters. I haven't gone to 100 meters, but I did get it soaking wet and submerged a few times on a canoe trip and it came out fine.
If you're an exercise freak or need to time things for other reasons, there are three chronographs inside the watch face: one for minutes, one for seconds, and one for 1/20 of a second. There's also a large second hand on the main face that only comes on when you want it to and a calendar date window---handy when you've been on vacation and have lost track of the days.
As with most Expedition watches, this one has the cool Indiglo feature that allows you to check the time in the dark at the push of a button.
I've been trying this out for weeks now and have taken it on two trips. It feels great and though the Timex warranty is a skimpy one year, I get the sense that I'll still be using this Rugged Field watch a decade from now whenever I'm going hiking or biking.
Timex Expedition e-Compass Titanium
Tati Yes Watch
Subscribe to the Practical Travel Gear Blog