3 best sports watches on a budget

First published: 19-06-2017

3 best sports watches on a budget

Man looking at watch on wrist

Sports watches can represent a hefty investment, but some of the more affordable sports watches incorporate the most popular features of those at the top end of the market.

If you're looking for a durable, water resistant sports watch with features such as a countdown timer, a backlight, or even radio controlled atomic timekeeping, you can take your pick from a wide selection without having to ransack your savings. Some of the latest fitness and activity tracker watches are available at prices that might surprise you.

Our collection features some of the best low-cost sports watches on the market and we've picked out a few that demonstrate just how much bang you really can get for your buck.

Casio Men's World Time Alarm Chronograph Watch Casio Men's World Time Alarm Chronograph Watch

One of the wonderful things about buying sports watches is that classic style doesn't necessarily mean premium prices - a fact exemplified by the Casio World Time watch.

This legendary sports watch screams `90s style, and comes steeped in nostalgia for anyone who was a teenager during that time and had a Casio as their first timepiece. It's far from just a throwback to simpler times though, and comes packed with features that make it just as practical today as it was 20 years ago.

As you'd expect from any Casio sports watch, there is a durable rubber strap, a tough casing made of plastic and resin, and the classic Casio LCD screen. A Japanese chronograph quartz movement and 10-year battery life provide reassurance that you're buying a watch that will last.

On top of all this, the Casio World Time watch allows you to scroll through and check the time in various locations around the world and set up to nine stopwatch timers, making it ideal for interval training.

Throw in a date function, alarm and a backlight, and you've got one of the best budget sports watches available for under ₤30.

Polar A300 Bluetooth Activity Tracker Polar A300 Bluetooth Activity Tracker

Fitness and activity tracker watches tend not to occupy the lower end of the sports watch market, but you don't have to breach the ₤100 barrier to get a fantastic smartwatch on your wrist.

The Polar A300 offers a brilliant introduction to fitness tracker watches, incorporating all the features you need to get feedback on your daily activities and achievements from your watch. It measures how many calories you've burned, how many steps you've taken, and the total distance you have travelled, and even offers helpful reminders to let you know when you should exercise and when you've been sedentary for too long.

When used with the Polar Flow mobile app and web service, the watch becomes the hub of your fitness regime and you can set goals, receive feedback in real-time and get advice about how to structure your workouts.

The A300 is a sophisticated, practical sports watch that comes with a two-year guarantee and is available in blue, pink, yellow, black, white or silver. It sounds like a watch you'd need a big chunk of your savings to purchase, but thankfully that's not the case.

Casio Ladies Baby-G Alarm Chronograph Casio Ladies Baby-G Alarm Chronograph

Another classic from the house of Casio, the Baby-G watch has become something of a style icon since it captured the spirit of the late-1990s with its transparent casing and futuristic looks. However, like the Casio World Time watch, this is a timepiece that combines a timeless aesthetic with outstanding performance - and doesn't cost a lot.

With a hard, mineral crystal lens and a durable resin case, the Baby-G can withstand more than a few bumps if you're out on the trail, and it is water resistant to 200 metres - so you needn't worry about getting caught in a deluge. As you would expect with any budget sports watch from Casio, it comes with an alarm, a stopwatch, a backlight and multiple time zone functionality.

The Casio Baby-G is the watch of choice for anyone who wants an accessory that they don't need to take off between the gym and the nightclub. Worn by everyone from the Spice Girls to Lady Gaga over the last two decades, the Baby-G is here to stay.


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