For the frequent traveler or the nomad on a trip around the world, the ability to tell the time in multiple time zones is very useful. And doing that on the go, with just one look to your wrist, without having to reach for your phone is quite practical as well. For these individuals, no watch is as useful as one that can display more than one time zone at the same time.
As some of the most practical timepieces around, among all the chronographs and feature-filled timepieces, the dual time or the GMT watch has garnered a large following around the world. While both of these types serve the same purpose, they’re not the same, and it’s important to get to know the differences before jumping in to buy one.
So let’s have a look at what makes dual time and GMT watches different.
- GMT vs Dual Time
- 20. Farer Lander IV Watch
- 19. Sinn 857 UTC VFR Watch
- 18. Bremont ALT1-Z Zulu Watch
- 17. Panerai Radiomir Chrono Monopulsante GMT Watch
- 16. Omega Planet GMT Automatic Watch
- 15. Citizen Promaster Navihawk A-T Eco-Drive GMT Watch
- 14. Breitling Avenger II GMT Watch
- 13. IWC Pilot Automatic GMT Watch
- 12. Patek Philippe Nautilus Automatic GMT Moonphase Watch
- 11. Sinn 105 UTC Watch
- 10. Tissot Chemin des Tourelles Powermatic 80 GMT Watch
- 9. Oris Big Crown ProPilot Worldtimer Watch
- 8. Tudor Black Bay GMT Watch
- 7. Ulysse Nardin GMT Perpetual Watch
- 6. Rolex GMT Master II Watch
- 5. Montblanc 1858 Geosphere Watch
- 4. Nomos Glashütte Zürich World Time Watch
- 3. Vacheron Constantin Overseas World Time Watch
- 2. Chopard LUC GMT One Black Watch
- 1. Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Classic Duoface Small Seconds Watch
GMT vs Dual Time
As the name specifies, the dual time watch will show time in two time zones and nothing more. They come with a 12 hour scale and it’s common to have a sub-dial that shows the time in a second time zone. You might find dual time watches with a day / night indicator or even a digital second time display, which is a little more practical, but not as stylish as an analog one.
GMT watches, on the other hand, use a 24 hour time scale and a fourth hand called the GMT hand that indicates time in a second time zone on the same dial.
An extra feature you might see on a GMT watch is the rotating bezel, through which, with a little math, you can calculate time in a third time zone if you know how far ahead or behind the new time zone is, making it even more practical than a dual time watch.
Either one you choose, you’re going to have a functional, interesting and practical timepiece to strap on your wrist during your trips.
Now that you know how to differentiate between the two, let’s take a closer look at some of the most appealing dual time and GMT watches that you can find today.
20. Farer Lander IV Watch
Inspired by watches worn by some of the greatest explorers of the past century, the Farer Lander IV is a modern and good looking GMT timepiece for those who have their eyes set on the horizon.
The 39.5mm case houses an ETA 2893-2 automatic movement, under the handsome blue dial with a mid-century inspired design. The bronze crown adds to the style, while the contrasting red GMT hand and the local time seconds hand balance the overall look of the dial.
19. Sinn 857 UTC VFR Watch
The Sinn 857 UTC VFR is a watch that can stand some of the harshest conditions on Earth with its mighty stainless steel 43mm shockproof case, built with Sinn’s “Tegiment” case hardening technology.
The watch also comes with a DIN 8330 certification for pilot watches, making it able to operate reliably at temperatures between -45 and 85 degrees Celsius, or so they say. And if that’s not enough, the case also has a water resistance rating of 200m.
18. Bremont ALT1-Z Zulu Watch
Another great GMT option is the Bremont ALT1-Z Zulu, designed with aviators and world travelers in mind. Its stark and super practical design makes the Zulu an interesting tool for those who need it.
The watch features an internal rotating bezel for the 24 hours scale, so you could calculate time in a third time zone when needed. The 43mm Trip-Tick case with a three piece construction houses the modified BE-54AE automatic chronometer movement with 25 jewels and a 42 hour power reserve.
The dial is super legible and comes in either black with white indices or the retro styled with patina indices and hands.
17. Panerai Radiomir Chrono Monopulsante GMT Watch
The Panerai Radiomir Chrono Monopulsante GMT watch offers a tough, masculine look and an elegant sophistication with its 18K white gold case and fixed bezel. It’s far from being an affordable watch, but it’s an interesting option nonetheless.
The black dial gives elegance to the piece while the rose gold toned hands and hour markers add a nice contrast to the dial under the sapphire crystal glass. The watch comes with a hand wound mechanical movement with an impressive 192 hour power reserve.
16. Omega Planet GMT Automatic Watch
The Swiss made Omega Planet GMT Automatic watch is an elegant timepiece boasting a handsome blue dial, with luminous hands and index hour markers in a contrasting silver tone.
The automatic movement with a 60 hour power reserve is extremely well protected by the titanium case with a water resistance rating of 600m. The silver bracelet and the bi-directional rotating titanium bezel, with a top ring of blue ceramic and the 24 hour markers complement the rest of the watch.
Way too complicated for the usual watch wearer with its dial cluttered with the myriad of functions and features, the Citizen Promaster Navihawk A-T Eco-Drive GMT watch makes sense for the nerdy outdoorsman.
The Eco-Drive U680 movement is powered by light alone, so it never needs a battery. The dial is both analog and digital and offers more features than you could possibly wish for. The most important one is the radio controlled synchronized time adjustment for up to 43 locations in the world.
There’s also a perpetual calendar, chronograph, compass, power reserve indicator, alarms, water resistance rating of 200m, plus various other calculator functions.
The watch is quite large at 48mm and won’t fit all arms. The case is made from black plated stainless steel and nicely paired with a black rubber strap for comfortable wearing. The luminous orange hands and index hour markers fit nicely on the black dial.
14. Breitling Avenger II GMT Watch
Coming from Breitling, you should expect the Avenger II GMT watch to blend both luxury and function. Beyond its good looks, the Avenger II is a tough piece, with a highly durable 300m water resistant stainless steel case that protects an automatic movement with 42 hours of power reserve.
Under the scratch resistant sapphire crystal glass, there’s an elegant black dial with stylish and masculine looking luminous silver-tone hands and hour markers.
The dial comes with the usual 24 hour rim of a GMT watch, with an additional bi-directional rotating bezel from stainless steel that fits in nicely with the crown on the right side and the rest of the watch.
13. IWC Pilot Automatic GMT Watch
The IWC Pilot Automatic GMT watch is durable, serious and functional, without losing style and appeal. The movement comes with a 68 hour power reserve and comes inside a stainless steel case.
As features, there’s the obvious fourth GMT hand in black with a red arrow tip for dual time zone tracking, a 12 hour display, plus a rotating outer bezel with major city names in various time zones for easier time tracking. The watch comes with a good looking black leather strap with red on the inside to match the GMT hand.
12. Patek Philippe Nautilus Automatic GMT Moonphase Watch
The Patek Philippe Nautilus Automatic GMT Moonphase Watch is a cool-looking timepiece with an interesting design, coming in a stainless steel case with crocodile leather strap.
The square shaped black dial with rounded corners presents a dual time zone and moon phase at the six o’clock position, with a date window below it. At the 12 o’clock position there’s a day and month window.
The watch is powered by an automatic movement with a 45 hour power reserve, part of which can be admired through the sapphire crystal case back.
11. Sinn 105 UTC Watch
The Sinn 105 UTC is one of the novelties of the watch market, with its launch taking place in late 2020. The 41mm watch comes complete in stainless steel and features a superb white dial that contrasts with a TEGIMENT treated dark bezel. TEGIMENT is Sinn’s proprietary technology that give excellent resistance to scratches.
On the minimalistic dial there’s a gorgeous looking GMT hand in orange and a date display at the 6 o’clock position. Besides the stainless steel bracelet, there’s a strap variant as well.
10. Tissot Chemin des Tourelles Powermatic 80 GMT Watch
Priced at around $1,300, the 42mm Tissot Chemin des Tourelles Powermatic 80 GMT is a great value for the money.
The watch features dual time zone display, with a 24 hour outer rim and GMT hand, plus a bigger 12 hour inner ring with local hour, minute and seconds hands and Roman numerals for the 12, 3, 6 and 9 o’clock positions. There’s also a date indicator and a power reserve of up to 80 hours.
9. Oris Big Crown ProPilot Worldtimer Watch
An impressive model of a dual time watch is the Oris Big Crown ProPilot Worldtimer, though it’s a tad more advanced than the usual dual time or GMT piece.
Local time is shown via the hour and minute hands on the main dial, while a sub-dial positioned at 3 o’clock displays home time. What it does different as opposed to a GMT, is that the bezel moves the hour hand on the main dial, so there’s no need to fiddle with the crown when changing time zones.
8. Tudor Black Bay GMT Watch
Boasting the popular blue and red 24 hour bezel that was first seen on a Rolex, the Tudor Black Bay GMT, also known as the “Tudor Pepsi”, brings an interesting vintage aesthetic in a 41mm case.
The movement is a self-winding Calibre MT5652, with date function and a power reserve of about 70 hours.
7. Ulysse Nardin GMT Perpetual Watch
With its practical dial design, the Ulysse Nardin GMT Perpetual watch is perfect for those always on the move.
The 18k white gold case houses an automatic movement, with date display and perpetual calendar along its 24 hour display and GMT hand. Paired with a black leather strap, the black dial with its silver toned hands simply looks gorgeous.
6. Rolex GMT Master II Watch
The Rolex GMT Master II is an obvious choice for a travel watch. It’s one of the most classical looking timepieces, especially with that “Pepsi” ceramic bezel and red GMT hand.
Powering the watch inside the 40mm case is a COSC certified Rolex 3285 automatic GMT movement which makes use of the brand’s super efficient Chronergy escapement and an improved mainspring and barrel, which boosts the watch’s power reserve from a previous 48 hours to the now improved 70 hours.
5. Montblanc 1858 Geosphere Watch
The Montblanc 1858 Geosphere is a unique timepiece, offering more than the standard features of most watches. It displays world time, with both hemispheres represented by the two globes at 12 and 6 o’clock.
The watch also boasts a rotating ceramic compass bezel, a chunky and tough looking case, plus a color scheme that makes it look more like a practical tool than a fancy, too elegant piece.
4. Nomos Glashütte Zürich World Time Watch
The simplistic design of the Nomos Glashütte Zürich World Time together with the advanced features make this watch a worthy investment.
A key highlight is the world city ring, with the city name at 12 o’clock corresponding to the time displayed on the main dial. Home time gets displayed on a ring at the 3 o’clock position, partly hidden under the main dial.
Inside the 40mm case, there’s an in-house DUW 5201 movement, with a 42 hour power reserve.
3. Vacheron Constantin Overseas World Time Watch
The Vacheron Constantin Overseas World Time is a watch that stands out in the watch world. Beautifully blending fine craftsmanship with durability, convenience and elegance, this is a good investment for those who have around $36k to spare.
This timepiece comes with a wonderful world time display with all the 37 time zones existent, even those offset by 15 or 30 minute intervals. It’s a superb watch, both in design and practicality and it’s a tough one too, with a 150 meter water resistance rating, anti-magnetic build and a super convenient quick release strap replace system.
The movement is the Vacheron Constantin 2460 WT/1 automatic, housed in a 43.5mm case.
2. Chopard LUC GMT One Black Watch
For exquisite style and refinement, look no further than the Chopard LUC GMT One Black. It’s a timepiece worthy of all attention.
Contemporary in its design, the 42mm watch features an inner rotating bezel for its second time zone, plus a GMT hand that can be adjusted with the crown at the 4 o’clock position.
But even more interesting is the Calibre 01.10-L self-winding COSC certified movement, with a decent power reserve of up to 60 hours.
1. Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Classic Duoface Small Seconds Watch
The Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Classic Duoface Small Seconds impresses with its interesting, non-standard design twist that started from a practical use case. The reverse side of the case was a solid caseback to shield the watch from being damaged, a feature useful to polo players in the past.
On this iteration, the other side is actually a secondary dial, for telling the time in another time zone, which is a nice and ingenious way to do it. It’s like having to watches in one.
With so many travelers around the world nowadays, it’s no wonder there so many dual time and GMT watch choices around. From the cheapest and more practical to the most stylish and expensive, there’s plenty to choose from.