Best Survival Watches

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G-Shock Rangeman GW-9400

97.9/100our score
G-Shock Rangeman GW-9400 Survival Watch
Why is it better?
  • 200 meter water resistance
  • Temperature resistance to -10 C./14F degrees
  • Digital compass
  • Solar battery is rechargeable
  • 40 second memory capacity

What is a piece of survival gear you can wear every single day?

The answer is a survival watch. You cannot say the same thing in regards to other survival gear you may have. You are forbidden to take that survival knife with you when you enter the cabin of an airplane. The same goes for that survival lighter you just purchased at a remarkable sale price. However, you can wear your survival watch wherever you go and no one is going to feel threatened by it.

Do you know how to find the best survival watch? This review is about the 8 best survival watches we have found on the market currently available. We hope that this review will assist you in finding the one that meets all your survival needs.

In our opinion the 8 Best Survival Watches in 2020 are:

  1. G-Shock Rangeman GW-9400 Survival Watch
  2. Citizen Watches Eco-Drive Nighthawk Watch
  3. Casio Men's Mudman G-Shock Survival
  4. Casio Pathfinder Solar Powered Survival Watch
  5. Casio Men's Pro Trek Quartz
  6. Citizen Eco-Drive Promaster
  7. Garmin Fenix 5X Sapphire
  8. vikano Survival Paracord Bracelet Watch
Table Of Contents

Survival Watch Comparison

RANK
Picture
Name
Rating
#1

G-Shock Rangeman GW-9400

G-Shock Rangeman GW-9400 Survival Watch

Watch Dial: 98
Design: 97.5
Shock Resistance: 98
Water Resistance: 98
Durability: 98
Average: 97.9

#2

Citizen Watches BJ7000-52E Eco-Drive Nighthawk Stainless Steel Watch

Citizen Watches Eco-Drive Nighthawk Watch

Watch Dial: 97
Design: 96
Shock Resistance: 96.5
Water Resistance: 96
Durability: 96.5
Average: 96.5

#3

Casio Men's G9300 Mudman G-Shock Shock

Casio Men's Mudman G-Shock Survival

Watch Dial: 96
Design: 95.5
Shock Resistance: 96
Water Resistance: 96
Durability: 95.5
Average: 95.8

#4

Casio Pathfinder PAG240 Solar Powered Watch

Casio Pathfinder Solar Powered Survival Watch

Watch Dial: 95
Design: 94.5
Shock Resistance: 95
Water Resistance: 94.5
Durability: 94.5
Average: 94.7

#5

Casio Men's Pro Trek Quartz Watch

Casio Men's Pro Trek Quartz

Watch Dial: 94
Design: 93.5
Shock Resistance: 93
Weather resistance: 93
Durability: 94
Average: 93.5

#6

Citizen Eco-Drive Promaster Watch

Citizen Eco-Drive Promaster

Watch Dial: 93
Design: 92.5
Shock Resistance: 92
Water Resistance: 92
Durability: 93.5
Average: 92.6

#7

Garmin Fenix 5X Sapphire Watch

Garmin Fenix 5X Sapphire

Watch Dial: 92
Design: 91.5
Shock Resistance: 91
Water Resistance: 91.5
Durability: 91
Average: 91.4

#8

vikano Survival Paracord Bracelet Watch

vikano Survival Paracord Bracelet Watch

Watch Dial: 91
Design: 90.5
Shock Resistance: 90
Water Resistance: 89
Durability: 90
Average: 90.1

Survival Watch Reviews

1 G-Shock Rangeman GW-9400 Survival Watch

G-Shock Rangeman GW-9400

Watch Dial 98%
Design 97.5%
Shock Resistance 98%
Water Resistance 98%
Durability 98%
Average 97.9%

The G-Shock Rangeman GW-9400 survival watch takes time to a new level. The case and buttons are all sealed and resistant to shock.

Atomic Timekeeping 

Some of these atomic timekeeping features include time-calibrating radio signals for precision. There are a few main functions that are received for manual and automatic usage.

Water Resistance 

This survival watch has a water resistance level of 200 meters. It also has a temperature resistance of -10 degrees celsius and/or 14 feet. It has an altimeter measurement of -700 to 1000 meters. There are memory measurements that go up to 40 manual records.

Cost & Value 

The value of a survival watch goes much further than its cost. What gives it the most value are the features it has to aid you when in the wild or in an emergency situation.  This has so many remarkable features, it is difficult to pinpoint which one gives it the most value.

These are a few of those remarkable features: a compass, 5 alarms, LED backlight, and a barometer with a range of display from 260 to 1100 hPa. This barometer has a pressure graph for the measurement of atmospheric conditions.

Pros:
  • 200 meter water resistance
  • Temperature resistance to -10 C./14F degrees
  • Digital compass
  • Solar battery is rechargeable
  • 40 second memory capacity
Cons:
  • Display is a little dim
  • Watch band may irritate the wrist

2 Citizen Watches Eco-Drive Nighthawk Watch

Citizen Watches BJ7000-52E Eco-Drive Nighthawk Stainless Steel Watch

Watch Dial 97%
Design 96%
Shock Resistance 96.5%
Water Resistance 96%
Durability 96.5%
Average 96.5%

The Citizen BJ7000-52E Eco-Drive is a stainless steel watch with a round face and analog display. This is from the Nighthawk Collection, featuring the advanced technology of Eco-Drive which is the best watch making.

Stainless Steel Material 

A Stainless steel band that is 8 inches in length and the width is 22 millimeters. The color of the band is silver and the dials are black. It also has a clasp that folds over with a closure that is a push button.

Markers are Easy to Read 

The luminous markers are large for ease in readability. There is also a date and day display with non-reflective crystals.

Cost & Value 

This Citizens watch will prove to be a real value from the instant you put it on. There is a Pilot’s slide rule that operates by the crown in the 8 o’clock position. The stainless steel bracelet and case is made for the comfort of the wearer.

Pros:
  • 5-Year Citizens Warranty
  • Day and Date display
  • Large, readable markers
  • Crystal is non-reflective
  • Citizen Eco-drive
Cons:
  • 2nd hand does not always align with markers
  • No instructions included

3 Casio Men's Mudman G-Shock Survival

Casio Men's G9300 Mudman G-Shock Shock

Watch Dial 96%
Design 95.5%
Shock Resistance 96%
Water Resistance 96%
Durability 95.5%
Average 95.8%

The Casio Men’s G9300 Mudman G-Shock sport watch is another of the remarkable watches that was created to be a “watch that never breaks.” Casio has been keeping this promise in the watches they create for over 30 years.

Resistance to Forces of Impact 

The Casio engineer has created a product that is resistant to impact, centrifugal forces, this includes the high pressure of water. G-Shock is known for pushing the limits and creating independence.

G-Shock Durability 

Casio G-Shock men’s watches are built to be the most durable of all analog and digital watches. This is worn and trusted by the outdoorsman, law enforcement, military, and even surfers world wide.

Cost & Value

The value of the Casio G-Shock watch will be apparent once you put it on. This is continuously praised as being an excellent fashion statement that icons the world wide wear.

Pros:
  • Centrifugal and impact resistant
  • Excellent fashion statement
  • One of the most durable of all watches
  • There’s one to duplicate style and fashion
  • Trusted by military, law enforcement and outdoor enthusiasts
Cons:
  • May not be completely water-proof
  • Didn’t last long after original battery died

4 Casio Pathfinder Solar Powered Survival Watch

Casio Pathfinder PAG240 Solar Powered Watch

Watch Dial 95%
Design 94.5%
Shock Resistance 95%
Water Resistance 94.5%
Durability 94.5%
Average 94.7%

The Casio Men’s Pathfinder sport watch has multiple functions; among these is a full-automatic LED backlight. This provides illumination to the digital display, allowing for easy viewing at night or during times with low lighting.

Multi-Alarm and StopWatch 

This Casio features 5 daily alarms as well as a stopwatch with a 1/100 capacity for seconds. The stopwatch can measure time in split and elapsed modes–recording the first and second place times.

Authentic Outdoor Gear 

Authentic gear for the outdoor enthusiast, this has 100 meter water resistance in this PAG- 240 series of Casio watches. There are markings for taking measurements on the bezel that have been imprinted.

Cost & Value 

The value of this Casio is much more than monetary; even though its price is not as much as some of the other sports watches. You will get a 1-year Casio warranty when you purchase this. Adding to the value of this, you get a barometer, altimeter, thermometer and a compass that is all digital.

Pros:
  • 100 meter water resistance
  • 31 time zones
  • 1/100 second stopwatch
  • Bezel imprinted with directional markings
  • Solar powered rechargeable battery
Cons:
  • Need to hold the mode button till it changes
  • Display is difficult to read

5 Casio Men's Pro Trek Quartz

Casio Men's Pro Trek Quartz Watch

Watch Dial 94%
Design 93.5%
Shock Resistance 93%
Weather resistance 93%
Durability 94%
Average 93.5%

The Casio Men’s Pro Trek Quartz Watch has a round shape and an analog/digital display. It has Arabic numeral markers for the hours on the analog display and bezels are bold, stainless steel.

High Contrast Dial Format 

This high contrast dial format and slim style is what makes it the ideal for daily usage and outdoor wear.

Augmented Readability 

The STN LCD augments the readability of this. The PRG600Y Duro-soft band and adjustable lug elements create a fit that is comfortable.

Cost & Value

Casio has been making quality products since November of 1974. Known as the company with technology that is cutting edge for calculators. Casio is secure in the knowledge that their production of watches will be just as successful. The one-year warranty provided by Casio also gives this product additional value.

Pros:
  • 1 year Casio warranty
  • Dura-soft band
  • Adjustable lug elements
  • One-touch button for measurements
  • Quality watchmaking since 1974
  • Extreme fit and comfort
Cons:
  • Light was not as expected
  • No quick start guide

6 Citizen Eco-Drive Promaster

Citizen Eco-Drive Promaster Watch

Watch Dial 93%
Design 92.5%
Shock Resistance 92%
Water Resistance 92%
Durability 93.5%
Average 92.6%

Citizen makes this BN5058-07E Eco-Drive Promaster for men with a round face and analog display. It has a rubber band type that is black and 22 millimeters in width. The band and dial colors of the watch are both black and the case has a 46 millimeter diameter.

Reinvented Promaster Altichron 

Citizen enables you to soar to new levels in this newly invented Promaster Altichron sporty, yet sleek time telling device. Any man from a business professional to an outdoor enthusiast is going to love wearing this Citizen timepiece.

Black-Ion Steel Case 

This Citizens timepiece is introduced in a black-ion steel case. It has a dial that is black and red accents. Complete with a compass and altimeter that gauges measurements from 1000 to 32000 feet. This time telling unit is complete with it black strap made of polyurethane.

Cost & Value

You will love the bold way this fits comfortably on your wrist. It is truly a multifunctional device. With the technology of Eco-drive, your new watch will be able to recharge no matter what the lighting is, making a battery something of the past. A little more pricier than some other watches of its class; but very much worth it.

Pros:
  • Black-ion steel case 44 millimeters in size
  • Mineral crystal that is anti-reflective
  • 200 meter resistance in water
  • 5-year limited manufacturer’s warranty
  • Altimeter, compass, power-reserve indicator, & date window
Cons:
  • Buttons on side creates some discomfort
  • Quality control could be better

7 Garmin Fenix 5X Sapphire

Garmin Fenix 5X Sapphire Watch

Watch Dial 92%
Design 91.5%
Shock Resistance 91%
Water Resistance 91.5%
Durability 91%
Average 91.4%

The Garmin Fenix is the paramount tool for outdoor activities. This slate gray watch has some exquisite GPS features. It is capable of mapping out routes for cycling throughout the US in addition to many other navigational abilities.

Rugged, Adventurous Design 

The rugged designed is made with adventure in mind. It has a bezel, buttons, and a case that is made of stainless steel.

Physical measurements are 5.1 x 5.1 x 1.8 centimeters.  The silicone band weighs a mere 98 grams and the metal band is 196 grams.

Navigation System Built-in Sensors 

These navigational sensors are comprised of GPS and Glonass capabilities. This allows for easier pursuit during even the most contesting of atmospheres than will GPS alone. There is also a 3-axis compass, a barometric altimeter, and gyroscope.

Cost & Value 

You are going to find incredible value in this time keeping device made by Garmin Fenix. With its running profiles that are preloaded for treadmill, trail, and basic running.

This timekeeper will put all your stats at the tips of your fingers. It gives your load, training, and other statistical performance information.

Pros:
  • Navigation sensors built-in
  • Puts key stats at the tips of your fingers
  • Run profiles are preloaded
  • US mapping in full Topo color
  • Smart feature notifications
Cons:
  • Heart rate sensor not accurate
  • A little too busy and heavy for some

8 vikano Survival Paracord Bracelet Watch

vikano Survival Paracord Bracelet Watch

Watch Dial 91%
Design 90.5%
Shock Resistance 90%
Water Resistance 89%
Durability 90%
Average 90.1%

This survival bracelet watch made by Vikano is for both men and women. This is a six in one pack of outdoor survival gear.

6 in 1 Multifunctional Unit 

Vikano makes this survival bracelet with six multifunctional outdoor survival items. This includes a digital watch, whistle, compass, a paracord, a fire starter scraper, and a magic sticker strap.

Use the whistle to alert others you need assistance. The knife and scraper will aid in starting a fire, and the compass and watch ensures you don’t get lost.

Wrist Strap is 2-in-1 

There is a magic sticker within the sports band that you can adjust to fit the length of your wrist. This strap is made from a parachute cord for extreme durability; it can be unraveled and used as a 1.6 meter rope for emergency rescues.

Cost & Value

This survival watch is ideal for climbing, hunting, fishing, first aid, traveling, backpacking, mountaineering, hiking, and other outdoor adventures. The cost of this survival watch is very minimal which also gives it extreme value.

Pros:
  • 6-in-1 survival tool
  • Wrist strap doubles for emergency rescue rope
  • Dual display shows simultaneous pointers
  • Wrist band made of paracord and alloy
  • Unique design for multiple functions
Cons:
  • Details on clock’s face not clear
  • Straps to large for a ladies wrist

Criteria Used for Evaluation

Watch Face

The face of a survival watch (or display) is an extremely important feature. We want a survival watch that has a bold dial, with the number display that lights up and is simple to read.  We want to be sure of the exact time (for documentation purpose) when an emergency occurs. Particularly if we are in the wilderness or in the middle of the emergency situation.

Design

The design of a survival watch always rules over its function. However, aesthetics and how it looks and wears is also very imperative. If it does not look good or right for you when you wear it, you will have no desire to wear it.

It should not be too tight on your wrist and should also be lightweight.

Shock Resistance

The way your survival functions is how well it resists shock. A survival watch should be able to survive anything. It should be able to handle the impact of an accidental fall by the wearer and endure much more than the average dress watch does.

You are going to want a survival watch that can withstand electrical shock or any other natural disaster that you come to face.

Water Resistance

When out in the wilderness or in the middle a disaster/emergency, you never know what you will come across. Therefore, you want a survival watch that is going to go the extra mile. That means being completely prepared to take an unplanned swim to get to dry land. The one you buy should have a water resistance/submersion ability of from 150 to 660 feet water resistance.

Durability

The feature is probably the most important for a survival watch. Do not be fooled because it is the last on the list. The durability of one is based on several features; as well as the four we have already mentioned.

How long the battery will run is the first factor in the durability feature. Every second counts in an emergency and you want yours to keep ticking. The runtime varies with the different survival watches on the market. Therefore, it’s a good idea to ensure the one you buy is a brand that is well supplied with it.

Certain features of a survival watch also determine its durability. Having a barometer feature is a good one, for example; you want to be able to detect pressure. In addition, if you want one equipped with a compass, this will aid in finding your direction should you become displaced. However, as a warning, do not have so many features that the power supply of your watch is compromised.

Other Factors

Advanced Features

When you are shopping for a survival watch, there are many features to look for. This is primarily because the product you eventually purchase may be the tool that actually saves you in a situation that is life or death.

There are certain advanced features you need to make sure the survival watch you buy possesses. Some important features include 5 daily alarms, 1/10 second stopwatch, world time, a countdown timer, and a working compass to show you the way.

When seeking a survival watch it is important to ensure it is durable. The most durable survival watches have a core that is 46 millimeter stainless steel and a bezel that is well-built. It typically has water resistance up to 100 meters or 330 feet. It also has a resin-band structure, which ensures the overall durability.

Battery Life

The battery life of a survival watch is an important feature. Some survival watches have batteries that are solar powered and can recharge with or without sunlight. This is an important feature should you be in an emergency situation without any power.

Some of the best survival watches have a battery that lasts for 7 months without needing a recharge. However, ensure to keep it out of direct sunlight exposure as this can affect the power of the battery.

Comfort

The comfort of a survival watch may at first appear like something that is trivial; however, it is important.  You don’t want anything poking or pinching your wrist and causing any discomfort. The survival watch you buy should fit snugly on your wrist without slipping or twisting out of place.

Expert Tips/Advice

 

The Importance of GPS Functions on Survival Watches

Have you ever been in the back woods and lost your bearings? Even if you are an expert navigator there is still the chance you can take one wrong turn and quickly become lost. Thankfully, technology has had many advancements in the field of navigation and there are now a plentitude of tools available.

There are GPS satellite messengers available that are capable of delivering S.O.S. signals to pinpoint your exact location. The survival watch you purchase is most likely equipped with this type of feature. One of these tools is topographically colored maps as well as orienteering features that overlay the map’s compass.

When you are in an emergency situation, you need a survival tool that will be durable and flexible for the long haul. Capable of providing you with all the navigational assistance you need to keep from getting lost.

A survival watch is much more useful in an emergency situation than a fancy dress or diving watch. The one you need is one that endures the elements–water, heat, sand, moisture, cold, shock and even years of extreme use.

The Different Types of Survival Watches

The first type of survival watch we will cover is the Navigation Watch. This kind is much more than just a time telling device. There are certain characteristics of a survival watch that are meant to aid in your survival when in an emergency situation.

These characteristics consist of the following elements: date, time, temperature gauges, altimeter, barometer, and a chronograph. In addition, there are also these characteristics: moon phase, tide graph, a perpetual calendar, rotating bezel, GMT indicator, and the element which equates time.

The next type of survival watch is the G-shock. This is a military favored timepiece. The great thing about this is it has all the navigational characteristics listed above, but is also built to be rugged and tough.

Then there is the survival watch kit also known as a paracord watch. This has a band that is made from a paracord and it also includes a miniature kit for survival. Some of the tools in this miniature survival kit include a fire starter, compass, and a whistle.

Now that you are aware of the three main survival watches you need to figure out which one is right for your needs. The way to determine which is right for you is to purchase a g-shock and place it on one wrist and a survival bracelet to be on the other wrist. This ensures that all areas of survival are covered. You will have a barometer to detect the weather, a compass to keep direction, and a paracord for starting a fire, if needed.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is a triple-sensor watch?

A: A watch that is known as a triple-sensor, is one that has three extremely small layered sensors. These sensors are normally accommodated on the smallest of boards. This is a technology that is important to the functioning of the watch.

Q: What is the use of the triple-sensor in G-Shock?

A: Watches that have the Triple-Sensor, Version 3 have a lower usage of power as well as advanced battery effectiveness. They also have sensors that measure the barometer and altimeter pressure levels. The ABC Watch is also known as the Triple Sensor G-Shock. To this date, there are 8 G-Shock watches that have the feature of a compass.

Q: Is G-Shock a good make?

A: The G-Shock watch works well because of its shockproof construction. Even if it is one of the least expensive models, a G-Shock will always work well. This is rugged, durable and is trusted to behave in a consistent manner that upholds its quality reputation.

Q: What survivalwatches do the Navy SEALs wear?

A: It is common knowledge that the Navy SEALS wear G-Shock, Suunto, and Casio Pathfinder (AKA Pro Trek) brands of survival watches. However, there is no real standard brand that can be branded as a Navy SEAL survival watch. As a matter of fact, it is typically a matter of preference for the individual which one a Navy SEAL actually wears.

Q: Why are G-Shocks so popular?

A: The main reason G-Shocks are so popular is that they have characteristics that are efficient. Another reason is they are resistant to shock; meaning the wearer is safe from getting shocked. In addition, these survival watches typically are low costs, making them easier to acquire among all the financial classes.

Q: Are G-Shocks worth the money?

A: What gives a G-Shock the most value is they are durable and you can beat them up without feeling remorseful for it. There are some really nice Casio G-Shocks that are low-cost and durable as well. So, the answer to this question is “yes”, a G-Shock is well worth its cost.

Sources

  • 1

    Carraway, Daniel; Best Survival Watch: Choosing a Timekeeping Tool for Wilderness Survival

  • 2

    Pickens, Rhoda Jane; Best Survival Watches: Top 5 Picks for 2020

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G-Shock Rangeman GW-9400

G-Shock Rangeman GW-9400 Survival Watch

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