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What's better than a real watch as a graduation gift?
What’s better than a real watch as a graduation gift?

 

A graduation is a momentous time in a young person’s life and what better way to send them out in the real world than with a real watch? A watch is practical yet meaningful, luxurious yet utilitarian. This graduation season, give a graduation gift that your son can wear every day and cherish forever. Here are some of our favorite men’s luxury watches that make great graduation gifts.

 

Breitling Colt GMT

Graduation Gift for your Son: Breitling Colt GMT
Graduation Gift for your Son: Breitling Colt GMT

A sporty watch, yet suitable enough for the office, this Breitling Colt has everything he needs for his first luxury watch. The stainless steel dial measures a very wearable 40mm and features an engraved bezel. The black dial is sleek while the oversized white numerals are perfectly legible. What’s more, since this is a GMT watch, if your son is moving to another city to start his new chapter, he can set his secondary time zone to where you live so he’ll always know what time it is “back home.”

We love the grown-up vibe of the leather strap and bonus points for the automatic movement.

 

Montblanc Sport Flyback Chronograph

Graduation Gift for your Son: Montblanc Sport Flyback Chronograph
Graduation Gift for your Son: Montblanc Sport Flyback Chronograph

For a larger and even sportier men’s watch, there’s the Montblanc Sport Flyback Chronograph that would make an awesome graduation gift. With a generous 42mm case outfitted with a rotating bezel, this men’s Montblanc has plenty of presence on the wrist. The black dial is a sharp contrast to the steel construction of the watch, as is the trio of white subdials sitting on the dark background.

Functionality-wise, your son can take advantage of the oversized date window at 12 o’clock, the chronograph stopwatch function, and the 200-meter water resistance—all thanks to an automatic movement tucked beneath the steel caseback.

 

IWC Pilot’s Watch Mark XV

Graduation Gift for your Son: IWC Pilot's Watch Mark XV
Graduation Gift for your Son: IWC Pilot’s Watch Mark XV

An absolute classic in the aviation-inspired watches, the IWC Pilot’s Watch Mark XV is ideal for a graduating son that has a wrist that’s on the smaller side or for one that just likes smaller men’s watches. The 38mm steel case houses the familiar IWC Pilot’s Watch dial with the triangle at 12 o’clock, a smattering of Arabic numerals encircling the dial, central luminous hands, and discreet date window at 3 o’clock. The light color face of the watch is an elegant choice and so is the classic black leather strap. Of course, since we’re recommending watches that would be solid options as your son’s first real watch, the IWC Pilot’s Watch Mark XV runs on an automatic movement.

 

Omega Planet Ocean 600M

Graduation Gift for your Son: Omega Planet Ocean 600M
Graduation Gift for your Son: Omega Planet Ocean 600M

While a serious watch in terms of capability and brand legacy, the Omega Planet Ocean is still youthful thanks to its bright orange details and sporty appeal. If your son is the active type that enjoys diving, traveling, and being outdoors, then the Omega Planet Ocean 600M may be right up his alley. But take note, the robust 46mm stainless steel case of the PO watch is large, to say the least!

On the case, we see a vibrant orange diver’s bezel along with matching orange 6/9/12 numerals on the black dial. There are also the highly luminescent broad arrow center hands and date window at 3 o’clock. Water resistant to an incredible 600m, this luxury sports watch can handle any type of diving–whether it be scuba diving or desk diving.

 

 

Cartier Santos 100

Graduation Gift for your Son: Cartier Santos 100
Graduation Gift for your Son: Cartier Santos 100

If you’re considering gifting your son a Cartier as a graduation present, then we’re in serious first-real-watch territory here. The Santos is one of Cartier’s (and the watch world’s) most iconic timepieces as it was, in fact, the first watch made specifically for a pilot back in 1904. Fast-forward to over a century later, Cartier has reissued the legendary timepiece countless times including this very modern Cartier Santos 100 sporting a steel 38mm square case, square bezel with exposed screws, bold black Roman numerals on the dial, luminescent center hands, and handsome black leather strap.

With this beauty on his wrist, your son’s style will soar right into adulthood!

Rolex Datejust

Graduation Gift for your Son: Cartier Santos 100
Graduation Gift for your Son: Rolex Datejust 36

The Rolex Datejust may be the smallest of the bunch, but it’s the one that says the most! If you want to pull out all the stops and give your son a superb watch as his graduation gift, then look no further than Rolex. And a stainless steel Rolex Datejust 36 is about as perfect as it gets for a first real watch.

Sporting a steel 36mm Oyster case fitted with a matching steel Oyster bracelet and housing a minimal black dial with simple luminescent stick hour markers and the famous date window at 3 o’clock, this isn’t a flashy Rolex by any stretch of the imagination but rather, a daily luxury watch that’ll last him forever. Plus, thanks to the ultra-dependable and reliable Rolex automatic movement powering the watch, it’ll keep running as long as he wears it. Who knows, maybe one day your son will give it to his future son too!

 

There really isn’t a better graduation gift than a fine timepiece. Everytime your son catches a glimpse of his new watch, he’ll be reminded of just how proud his parents are.

 

Written by

Celine Simon

Celine is a freelance luxury watch writer who has enjoyed working in the horology industry for over ten years. Like many of the high-end timepieces she writes about, she comes from Switzerland—the heart of fine watchmaking. From Singapore to Montreal to Geneva to Dubai, Celine has lived all over the world but now calls Southern California home.