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Thread: Which watch for backpacking around the world?

  1. #1
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    Which watch for backpacking around the world?

    So I am going backpacking next year (for a year) and looking to pick up a watch to wear for my travels. This will be the full backpacking experience in hostels and trekking etc.

    I have bought/sold a number watches recently that just didn't fit the bill (Rolex Sub / Nomos Tangente Automatic / Junghans Max Bill Automatic).

    Criteria is:

    - Nothing too flashy (as I will be in some poor areas and don't want to attract too much attention)
    - Good timekeeping
    - Simple design with legible markers for time
    - Can be date or no date
    - Manual or automatic
    - Around 38mm case (small wrists unfortunately!)

    Possible options that I have been looking at are:

    - Seiko SKX013



    - Sinn 556i



    - Hamilton Khaki Field Mechanical



    Any preference on the above or suggested watches not listed?

    Thanks for any help....

  2. #2
    I always took a swatch backpacking.


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  3. #3
    Master
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    Get a G Shock.

  4. #4
    Master
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    Not the Hamilton - it's only 50m WR. Of those three I'd take the Seiko. The Sinn is cheaper than the other stuff you mentioned but it's still worth a grand. If you lose the Seiko you can just buy another in the next city.

  5. #5
    Grand Master seikopath's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mick P View Post
    Get a G Shock.
    Geezer stipulates manual or auto

    We love a few facts on tz


    Of those I'd go with the seiko
    ďAll truth passes through three stages: First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as self-evident.Ē

  6. #6
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    On the facts given I would say a seiko of some description.

    Based on my own experience, and having had money stolen in a hostel whilst interrailing it should be something you don't have to take off.

    Of the watches I currently own which include Seiko and Sinn - which would meet your criteria I would take...my G-Shock. Sorry.

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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mick P View Post
    Get a G Shock.
    Any particular model that could work on a skinny wrist?

  8. #8
    Grand Master seikopath's Avatar
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    I give up. I really do.
    ďAll truth passes through three stages: First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as self-evident.Ē

  9. #9
    Grand Master Saint-Just's Avatar
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    Our host has quite a few watches that would fit the bill. The PRS 29, in 36 or 39 mm would be perfect.
    My AM would probably be dismissed because of lack of lume.
    Well, everybody in Casablanca has problems. Yours may work out.

  10. #10
    Grand Master Saint-Just's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by seikopath View Post
    I give up. I really do.
    Well, everybody in Casablanca has problems. Yours may work out.

  11. #11
    I tend to think a Seiko is ideal for this sort of thing, so another vote for the SKX013 - utterly dependable, wonít attract unwelcome attention, and very disposable/replaceable (a good thing in shared accommodation).

    Also, I find an elapsed time bezel just about the most useful thing on a watch besides the time, though knowing both Date & Day would be handy whilst travelling.

    Chuck in the water resistance, lume, legibility & toughness, and itís an easy choice for me.

  12. #12
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    I am also open to criteria outside what is stated (i.e. an electronic option)

    Thanks for the recommendations so far!

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by lawler View Post
    Any particular model that could work on a skinny wrist?
    It's tough, cheap and cheerful and no one will think of nicking it. Fashion and appearance is irrelevant.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by lawler View Post
    Any particular model that could work on a skinny wrist?
    Any of the square deisgn models would suit a skinny wrist. Something like the below;

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/casio-goril...ock+5600&psc=1

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by lawler View Post
    I am also open to criteria outside what is stated (i.e. an electronic option)

    Thanks for the recommendations so far!
    Electronic????? Really. You can get a £10 Casio off amazon that would suit your purposes. Otherwise like most people these days use your phone.
    Last edited by MartynJC (UK); 5th December 2018 at 18:30.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by MartynJC (UK) View Post
    Electronic????? Really. You can get a £10 Casio off amazon that would suit your purposes. Otherwise like most people these days use your phone.
    Very true!

    I would prefer an automatic/manual if I am being honest but open to any recommendations!

    Leaning towards the Seiko....

  17. #17
    If I needed to catch planes and trains for a year then I'd worry that an automatic wouldn't be accurate enough.

    I'd go for a G-Shock and it fits the bill perfectly with its automatic time updates.

    Or a solar Seiko diver - less chance of mucking up the water resistance with a back street battery change, but still accurate.

  18. #18
    Grand Master seikopath's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lawler View Post
    open to any recommendations!

    ....
    Don't leave the house?
    ďAll truth passes through three stages: First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as self-evident.Ē

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by lawler View Post
    I am also open to criteria outside what is stated (i.e. an electronic option)

    Thanks for the recommendations so far!
    This was recommended by somone on here who went travelling [if my memory serves] its often even cheaper.
    I was wearing mine today when I went for physio imho a cracking watch.



    https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

  20. #20
    Grand Master Saint-Just's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by seikopath View Post
    Don't leave the house?
    Luminor 1950?
    Well, everybody in Casablanca has problems. Yours may work out.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by seikopath View Post
    Don't leave the house?
    Trips booked now so too late.....

  22. #22
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    This seems to be the most popular option.

  23. #23
    Craftsman jimmbob's Avatar
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    The M5610 will do everything you need for about 70 quid.

  24. #24
    Master Mr Curta's Avatar
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    I do a lot of rough and ready travel, most recently across southern Bolivia. On that occasion I took the Citizen Eco Drive 'Holiday Watch' and it was pretty much ideal and never needs a battery change. On other occasions I tend to grab either the 6B Scramble, CWC G10, Sinn 856, Omega 2254 or Omega X-33 depending on how comfortable I feel about the value and whether I need good WR or extra functions. Legibility is paramount for me.












  25. #25
    Master TKH's Avatar
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    meh

    I would go with a PP 5531 great for trekking around world and crossing timezones and if you run out of cash you can flog it and buy a nice 5 bed detached in whichever country you may be in.



    Or a Seiko Astron.
    Last edited by TKH; 5th December 2018 at 19:02.

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by lawler View Post

    - Nothing too flashy (as I will be in some poor areas and don't want to attract too much attention)
    -
    Leaving the rat race for a year?

    No watch.

    I dare you ;-)

    Is that an option?! Surely part of the appeal of a years travelling is leaving "baggage" behind. A preoccupation with the actual time; and/or the addiction to trinkets may be a part of that?

    Travel light......?!

    For getting to planes, trains and boats on time your phones time will do and free up valuable wrist space for those bits of tatt that back packers all have?!

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mick P View Post
    Get a G Shock.
    From someone who has backpacked for a couple of years (although a long time ago, year 2000-2 ahem...) absolutely spot on.

    Get a DW6900.

    Job done.
    Last edited by WillHarris2306; 6th December 2018 at 09:26.

  28. #28
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    Although this is a backpacking trip I will still be bringing tech along...i.e. laptop, mirrorless camera etc c.£5k worth.

    It might not be the most sensible thing to do but I want to document the trip and I am a keen photographer so would be a shame not to! It is backpacking but not in the wilderness - more cityscapes staying in hostels etc for the majority then Inca Trail, India excursions, camper van in Australia for a couple of months.

    I should sensibly probably go for a G Shock but I will miss a mechanical watch. Maybe I should get the Seiko and if anything happens at least it can be replaced easily enough.

  29. #29

    Which watch for backpacking around the world?

    Quote Originally Posted by MurrayMint View Post
    If I needed to catch planes and trains for a year then I'd worry that an automatic wouldn't be accurate enough.

    I'd go for a G-Shock and it fits the bill perfectly with its automatic time updates.

    Or a solar Seiko diver - less chance of mucking up the water resistance with a back street battery change, but still accurate.
    The seiko solar divers are really quite nice. first thing google found was : https://www.watchnation.com/product/...SABEgJBK_D_BwE


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    Last edited by timc; 5th December 2018 at 19:37.

  30. #30
    Quote Originally Posted by lawler View Post
    Although this is a backpacking trip I will still be bringing tech along...i.e. laptop, mirrorless camera etc c.£5k worth.

    It might not be the most sensible thing to do but I want to document the trip and I am a keen photographer so would be a shame not to! It is backpacking but not in the wilderness - more cityscapes staying in hostels etc for the majority then Inca Trail, India excursions, camper van in Australia for a couple of months.

    I should sensibly probably go for a G Shock but I will miss a mechanical watch. Maybe I should get the Seiko and if anything happens at least it can be replaced easily enough.
    Sorry, what environment are you going in to / visiting? e.g in the ME summer lots of watches canít handle the temp, some can which would limit choices.


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  31. #31
    Master sean's Avatar
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    I thought there was similar topic discussed not too long ago:

    https://forum.tz-uk.com/showthread.p...olex-SubC-Date

  32. #32
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    Destinations from July 2019 are Japan, China, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, India, Bali, Australia, New Zealand, Argentina, Brazil, Peru, Costa Rica the finish in Canada.

    One year trip as a break from the working life after saving a few years.

    Looking for a watch to bring on the adventure (yes the Rolex question was very stupid!)

    Thanks for all advice so far




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  33. #33
    Master
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    Vostock amphibia.

  34. #34
    Craftsman Geralt's Avatar
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    If it was me (not very likely) I'd want something cheap and easily replaced. If accuracy is not an issue the Seiko is ideal but it would bug me not knowing how far off it is. Otherwise, a Timex Scout with decent WR and Indiglo may fit the bill. Or both - a cheap quartz backup doesn't seem like a bad idea to me.

  35. #35
    Craftsman Jardine32's Avatar
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    I think a spot of reverse psychology could be in order. Perhaps something like the subtle piece pictured. No one would believe it was real, then you could sell it should the need arise to buy a small army, private flight etc.
    Seriously though I know auto/mech was preferred but for this a decent G Shock would be my call.
    J

  36. #36
    Having done a fair bit of random backpacking over the summer, my weapon of choice was a Seiko Landmaster. I know it isnít mechanical but itís literally the perfect watch. As I was doing some trekking too, I also took along g shock rangeman. A WIS also needs choice when backpacking....

  37. #37
    am i interpreting correctly, it is important to you to have a watch that makes you feel good, a conversation piece on the trip and when you are back with friends sharing stories about the adventure. Something discrete but not too expensive. A watch that looks visually great, both somewhere smart and a hostel?


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  38. #38
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    CWC RN Diver in quartz or auto. Tough, reliable, low key. Job done.

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by timc View Post
    am i interpreting correctly, it is important to you to have a watch that makes you feel good, a conversation piece on the trip and when you are back with friends sharing stories about the adventure. Something discrete but not too expensive. A watch that looks visually great, both somewhere smart and a hostel?


    Sent from my iPhone using TZ-UK mobile app
    Yes this is accurate.

    I want to take a watch that is up to the challenge but also one that I wonít bore of looking at (preferring the mechanical watch although they are not the most accurate).

    It would be nice to look back on the trip and remember the watch that I used the whole way round.

    One that keeps decent time so Iím not missing flights would be great but I know mechanical watches at the cheaper end arenít the most reliable (thatís where the phone helps).

    I will be doing a photo travel blog on my way round so the idea would be to also include the watch to show where it has been


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  41. #41
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    GShock GW-M5610-1ER

    Probably already be said but ✓ if it has

  42. #42
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    Why not make the watch part of the adventure and buy it on your travels? Japan first stop? Something Japan market only would be an interesting memory. China - Seagull 1963 etc...

    Not sure about laptop and other tech though if youíre really planning to stay in hostels...they will disappear.

    Sounds brilliant though - youíll love it.

  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jardine32 View Post
    I think a spot of reverse psychology could be in order. Perhaps something like the subtle piece pictured. No one would believe it was real, then you could sell it should the need arise to buy a small army, private flight etc.
    Seriously though I know auto/mech was preferred but for this a decent G Shock would be my call.
    J
    😂😂😂😂😂😂Brilliant in.more ways than one.
    Last edited by Robert189598; 5th December 2018 at 21:10.

  44. #44
    Master Onelasttime's Avatar
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    Just buy this Ö please

    https://forum.tz-uk.com/showthread.p...-1JF-*REDUCED*

    Don't be put off by the dimensions, it does wear small. All the watch you'll ever need.

  45. #45
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    Exactly twenty years ago we set off on our backpacking RTW trip. At the time of leaving I took Swatch watch. Didn't care if it got damaged or stolen (unlikely I know) but lost it in Thailand. I bought a G-Shock in Malaysia that is still going today albeit with a couple of battery changes. I'd never bin it as everytime I look at it, it reminds me of our trip.

  46. #46
    Master
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    Re-reading this. In seriousness I suggest a Rolex Explorer 1. It would be under the radar, knowing it had travelled around the world with you would add to its charm in years to come. Get it scratched a little / lived in a little. It has one of the sturdiest mechanical movements on the market and the watch can take anything you throw at it. Not your ceramic bling Rolex and design not quintessential would make it less known to theaving scrotes.

    What at do you think?

    Be daring.

  47. #47
    Quote Originally Posted by lawler View Post
    Destinations from July 2019 are Japan, China, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, India, Bali, Australia, New Zealand, Argentina, Brazil, Peru, Costa Rica the finish in Canada.

    One year trip as a break from the working life after saving a few years.

    Looking for a watch to bring on the adventure (yes the Rolex question was very stupid!)
    First, congratulations on taking time-out (excuse the pun), having such a great itinerary and I'm sure that your work or career will only be enhanced as a result of all your forthcoming experiences.

    FWIW, I've travelled twice around the world: once with a Rolex 16613 and the other time wearing a Seiko Monster: both were immaterial to the journey. So IMO, don't concern yourself with image/value, but choose whatever you feel fits comfortably on your wrist and ensure your travel insurance is comprehensive.

    Enjoy your trip.

    R
    Ignorance breeds Fear. Fear breeds Hatred. Hatred breeds Ignorance. Break the chain.

  48. #48
    Master yonsson's Avatar
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    Sounds like a GShock or digital Tuna -trip, not a mechanical trip.
    But if you must have a mechanical, then the Hamilton is packbackish.

  49. #49
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    Nomos Club or Ahoi Neomatic


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  50. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by lawler View Post
    Although this is a backpacking trip I will still be bringing tech along...i.e. laptop, mirrorless camera etc c.£5k worth.

    It might not be the most sensible thing to do but I want to document the trip and I am a keen photographer so would be a shame not to! It is backpacking but not in the wilderness - more cityscapes staying in hostels etc for the majority then Inca Trail, India excursions, camper van in Australia for a couple of months.

    I should sensibly probably go for a G Shock but I will miss a mechanical watch. Maybe I should get the Seiko and if anything happens at least it can be replaced easily enough.
    Whatever your intentions mate, what you take with you will either be lost, stolen or broken by the time you return. Trust me.

    Leave your valuables at home and travel light (including the watch).

    After a year overseas I don't think I returned with a single item that I went with (other than myself).

    Saying that you'll have a great time!

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