Rolexes are expensive no matter where you are on the planet.. But with Great Britain’s economy not looking so great and some recent helpful policy changes, now might be the perfect time to plan a holiday to the UK to go buy some watches.
As you might have noticed, the pound is absolutely tanking right now. In September, the pound slumped to a record low against the US dollar (getting almost as low as 1:1) after new Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng’s controversial tax cuts rattled investors. It’s since rebounded – but not by much.
That’s already got plenty of people booking British holidays but it gets even better (or worse, depending on your perspective). On top of the weak pound, the UK goverment has reintroduced instant Value Added Tax (VAT) rebates on goods bought in the UK by overseas visitors.
Those two factors combined mean that tourists can get some serious savings on Rolex watches – as well as all sorts of luxury goods more broadly. It’s not a discount per se but rather very favourable conditions.
WatchPro reports that American tourists can save up to as much as 31% on some popular Rolex models like the GMT-Master II ‘Batman’ or the Submariner ‘No Date’, for example. Indeed, the savings you’d make on a white gold Cosmograph Daytona would be in excess of US$10,000 – so you could fly business class and still end up saving money.
As Bloomberg reports, Rolex raised their prices in the UK by an average of about 5% earlier this month in hopes of heading off price arbitrage moves by buyers taking advantage of the weak pound – but the pound’s continued decline to levels not seen in decades has made that adjustment “almost irrelevant”.
Other brands that have raised their UK prices over the last few months include heavy hitters like Audemars Piguet, OMEGA and Patek Philippe.
Of course, just because Rolex retail prices are comparatively lower in the UK right now doesn’t make it any easier to actually purchase one at retail. According to watch fans online, there’s almost no Rolex stock in the UK right now; the country is just as badly affected by the current stock shortage as everywhere else.
Any excuse for a holiday we suppose.