Police officers do tough work, which often requires lots of physical exertion. With all the risks that the police have to take to keep homes and cities safe and sound, a regular watch won't do the trick.
For police watches, tactical is the way to go. Tactical watches are durable and functional, which makes them better for the job than regular dress watches.
Read below for our pick of the best police watches for you.
Suunto Core: Best Overall
Looks, durability, and function. The Suunto Core has it all! The Suunto Core is a tactical watch that comes in a stylish all-black design.
The Suunto Core comes in a 49.1mm case and has all the basics of a tactical watch. It has great water-resistance of up to 100 feet, and it's shockproof.
- An altimeter tracks your vertical movement, a barometer tells the Trend in air pressure, and a...
- Suunto core tracks both the weather and the sun for you; Operating temperature: 20° C to +60° C /...
- A weather Trend graph and storm alarm along with preset sunrise/sunset times for over 400 locations...
It has a silicone band, which is a durable, waterproof material. It's well-made and durable.
The Suunto Core shines with its extra features. With a Suunto Core, you get an altimeter, a barometer, a compass, a sunrise/sunset indicator, and weather trackers.
These features are perfect for police work, which is hard work for all seasons.
The features of this watch are especially helpful if you work in an area with more difficult terrain. The altimeter will prove more useful than a GPS in figuring out your location in those cases.
The looks of this watch are a plus. It comes in a classy black case, which is an advantage for stealth.
It also has a very dim time display, which might be a concern to some, but we never had a problem reading the time. The dimness is even handy because of how discreet it is.
If you want a watch that's built for adventure and mobility, the Suunto Core might be the one for you. We only wish that this watch was more affordable.
- Variety of color options
- Stealthy design
Casio G-Shock Solar Atomic Sport Watch: Best Value
Their line of tactical wristwatches is so well-loved by thousands of customers worldwide. And that's no different with the Casio G-Shock Solar Atomic Sport Watch (Model GW2310-1).
- Multi-Band Atomic Timekeeping (US, UK, Germany, Japan, China), Tough Solar Power, Shock Resistant,...
- Full Auto EL Backlight with Afterglow, World Time, 31 times zones (48 cities + UTC), city code...
- 1/100 second stopwatch, Countdown Timer, Full auto-calendar (pre-programmed until the year 2099),...
Toughness is a priority with the G-Shock. It comes with shock-resistance, which protects your watch against impact, bumps, and scratches.
It also has 20-bar water resistance, so you don't have to worry about doing police work in the rain.
We love the G-Shock Solar Atomic's solar recharging system, which charges your watch with even the faintest light.
You don't even need the sun to recharge this watch, so you can use fluorescent light. This is a handy feature to have, especially during winter.
Since this G-Shock is an atomic watch, you are sure that it's going to be accurate. Unlike quartz watches, an atomic watch uses both quartz and an ensemble of atoms for better stability.
This means that the G-Shock Solar Atomic gives you more accurate time without the hassle of mechanical watches.
The other features of this G-Shock make it a truly valuable pick. It displays world time (UTC) at the same time as your local time.
This is useful if you have work that involves other countries or foreigners.
The G-Shock is perfect for wrists of all sizes, and the strap is also very comfortable. This means that your watch won't get in the way when you have to run or act fast.
The G-Shock Solar Atomic is the one to pick if you need a watch that can take a beating.
And in the rare instance that the G-Shock breaks on you, you can always buy another without breaking the bank.
- Discreet style
- Comfortable strap
- Tells accurate time
- Solar-powered charging
- Not the most stylish
Timex Ironman Classic Full-Size Watch: Best Budget
The Timex Ironman is honestly a steal for all the features it offers. At below 50 dollars, you won't find a better police watch.
The Timex comes with a durable resin case and acrylic lens. The Ironman is water-resistant to 100 meters and lights up with Timex's Indiglo technology. Indiglo lights up enough to see the watch but is discreet enough not to be distracting.
- Adjustable black 16mm resin strap fits up to 8-inch wrist circumference
- 100-hour chronograph with 30-lap memory; 24-hour countdown timer
- 3 daily, weekday or weekend alarms; 24-hour military time mode; 2 time zones; day, date & month...
We love how lightweight the Timex Ironman is. We almost forgot that we were wearing a watch when we used this.
Other highlights of the Timex Ironman include its 24-hour military time mode, a 100-hour chronograph, and a 24-hour countdown timer. While it doesn't have as many features as our other picks, the Timex Ironman is durable and won't fail you in tough situations.
In case you're in doubt, a certain US President [R] owns several of these watches and absolutely swears by them.
Overall, the Timex Ironman Classic is the watch to pick if you need a reliable, durable, and discreet watch. And because it's so affordable, it won't hurt if you lose or break this one in the line of duty.
- Comfortable strap
- Limited features
Garmin Fenix 5X Sapphire
The Garmin Fenix 5X is a good-looking, feature-rich police watch. Tactical is the name of the game with the Garmin Fenix, combining durability with useful tools for any police officer.
You might know Garmin for their GPS technology back in the '80s [R]. But these days, you wouldn't really need a map in your car anymore.
- Ultimate multisport GPS watch with full color Topo U.S. mapping, routable cycling maps and other...
- Fit for adventure with rugged design that features stainless steel bezel, buttons and rear case:...
- Built in navigation sensors include GPS and Glonass capability to track in more challenging...
Garmin is no slouch, though. It reinvented itself [R] when it entered the smartwatch business and competed really well with Apple and Fitbit.
The Garmin Fenix is the best smart watch for police officers because it's more durable than any smart watch currently in the market.
It's water-resistant to 100 meters, shock-resistant, and comes with PVD-coated stainless steel bezel and buttons. The Garmin Fenix can also take hard drops and bumps you'll encounter while on duty.
And because it's a smartwatch, the Garmin Fenix comes fitted with WiFi connectivity and health data, which really come in handy if you like to exercise.
Our favorite feature of the Garmin Fenix is its ever-reliable GPS. Garmin didn't leave its roots as the best GPS manufacturer in the market, and it's no surprise that the Fenix GPS is as reliable as their other tools.
The Garmin Fenix GPS displays full-color TOPO U.S. mapping and other navigation tools. When you're on the run while on the job, you wouldn't want to bring your bulky smartphone with you.
The Garmin Fenix GPS helps you find your way out of sticky situations without giving up stealth.
Best of all, the Garmin Fenix has great battery life. Of course, it won't compare to regular quartz-powered watches, but it offers a longer battery life than other smartwatches.
In our tests, we found that the Garmin Fenix lasted for around 20 hours while on full GPS mode. This is enough for police officers with 8 to 10-hour shifts.
If you're willing to invest a little more in a watch with extra tools, the Garmin Fenix 5X doesn't disappoint.
- Accurate and reliable GPS
- Good battery life
- Comfortable to wear
- Built like a tank
Casio G-Shock G-Steel GSTS100G-1A
The G-Steel is G-Shock's stainless steel watch line. If you're already convinced with how durable a G-Shock is but want a watch you can wear on special occasions, the G-Steel is a great pick.
The G-Steel GSTS100G-1A comes with a yellow ion-plated stainless steel case and a scratch-resistant bezel. With 200m water resistance and shock resistance, you're already covered when it comes to durability.
- Embrace a new layer of toughness with this men's Casio G-Shock G-Steel watch
- Featuring a resin band and bezel with a stainless steel yellow ion-plated case cover, this timepiece...
The watch strap is comfortable to wear. We tested wearing the G-Steel for long periods of time, and we didn't get bothered at all with it.
In case you're worried because of the black dial, the G-Steel comes with a super illuminator LED and neo-brite luminous hands. This watch also displays world time, which makes it a great pick if you enjoy traveling.
If we have one complaint, it's that this watch is a bit too flashy if you're using this work on the job. The gold plating is shiny and reflects light, which isn't a good thing if you need to be discreet.
Otherwise, the G-Steel is a great stylish watch that does the job for any police officer.
- Comfortable to wear
- Reliable Japanese Quartz movement
- Not stealthy
Since then, Luminox made watches for the US Air Force and the Austrian Military Police.
- Swiss-Quartz movement
- Case diameter: 47.6 mm
- Plastic care
In 2016, the Seals made Luminox their official licensee, which led to the Navy Seal line of watches.
Luminox used polycarbonate plastic to make its 3050 series. This might turn some people off, especially since the Luminox has a hefty price tag compared to other options.
However, Luminox's polycarbonate design doesn't look or feel cheap. It's a stylish tactical watch with a solid feel.
Because of its tough polycarbonate case, the Luminox Navy Seal is shock resistant. It's also water-resistant to 200 meters.
Unlike other durable watches, the Luminox Colormark runs on Swiss Quartz movement. You're sure of accurate time with this one.
What we really love about the Luminox Navy Seal is how stealthy it is and how comfortable it is to wear.
Stealth is king with the Luminox Navy Seal. The watch comes with an all-black strap, black dial, and black numbers, with black watch-hands.
But the Luminox Navy Seal doesn't compromise with readability. It's illuminated by Tritium in the hour and minute hands and in the thin panels above the numbers. After all, the Tritium is what the Navy Seals loved about the first Luminox watches they saw.
What surprised us about the Luminox is how lightweight it was. It definitely won't add weight when you need to run, jump, and fight.
The Luminox fits a police officer's needs. They made this watch for combat situations so that it can handle rough jobs without a problem. And because it's made for stealth, you're sure you won't get caught.
- Reliable illumination
- Made of durable polycarbonate
- 200m water resistance
- Plastic might be a turn-off
What to Look for in a Police Watch
This is what to look out for:
Law enforcement is a dangerous business. Police officers have to go through physically demanding work [R] most days.
Whether police fight, flee, or save a cat from a tree [R], there are plenty of situations where they'll need reliable tools.
So durability should be your priority when getting a police watch. When looking at watches, check the materials they're made of.
We suggest getting watches made of titanium or stainless steel if you're going for a metal watch.
Take note, though, that titanium and stainless steel are quite heavy on the wrist. If you often face combat situations, we suggest getting a watch made of plastic. When designed well, plastic watches last a long time and can even be stylish.
It's important to be stealthy if you're a cop, especially if you're chasing after suspects. Make sure you go for watches with black dials. This blends well with darker backgrounds, especially if you're on a night shift.
If you'll go for a smart watch, make sure that you can adjust the brightness settings on your watch. If the watch has a "night mode," that's even better.
We also recommend choosing watches with smaller cases, because it avoids attention.
Big, bulky, flashy watches can catch the attention of anyone you're trying to hide from. Your watch should help you and not get in the way.
Comfortable to Wear
You don't want a tool that drags you down. Your watch should be like second skin. Police watches should be lightweight and comfortable on your wrist.
Because you need a watch that's both discreet and comfortable, we suggest choosing watches made of durable plastic or resin materials.
This way, you're sure that the watch is lightweight and won't be a bother on your wrist.
The material of your strap is also important. Watch makers usually use resin or rubber materials for their more durable watches.
If your skin gets irritated with the rubber material, you can choose watches with NATO straps. Those should be comfortable enough for all-day wear.
Police watches only need to be comfortable, durable, and discreet. However, extra tools and options can help you do your job more efficiently.
Some watch tools include GPS, altimeters, barometers, weather trackers, and compasses. For police work, you'll really only need navigational tools.
You can't rely on your smartphone when you're on the move because they're too bulky and will get in the way of your work.
If you choose to go for smart watches, make sure they have a reliable GPS feature. However, GPS eats up a lot of battery, so choose a watch that has longer battery life if you think you'll use the GPS function frequently.
It's hard to be a cop. It can be dangerous and exhausting.
However, the right tools can help you do a great job more efficiently. We hope our reviews were helpful for choosing your next timepiece.
Links, prices, and images were pulled from the Amazon API. Last updated on 2021-02-10.