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Negotiating Watches at Retail/Boutique Stores

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by exchange239, Jul 12, 2010.

  1. exchange239

    exchange239 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
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    Oct 22, 2009
    Location:
    Northeast
    Just thought I'd ask to see if how people have faired in negotiating watch prices at boutique stores (other than Rolex, which I hear often is a slim, if not nil, discount).

    I've had fair luck at the Omega boutique store in CA and at Tourneau (as a repeat customer) simply by asking about what retail price would be versus what the sales rep would be willing to negotitate to.

    Anyone else have any other success stories/advice at boutique shops?
     
  2. ismelllikepoop

    ismelllikepoop Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    143
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    Feb 6, 2010
    right now it's really not hard at all. shops with panerai's which were hard to get any discount now say no problem to offering fair discounts. i actually found tourneau most resistant, they would just offer me financing. i understand they want to appear like what they have is selling well, but i find it insulting them telling me they dont need to discount a breitling. give me a break
     
  3. rajesh06

    rajesh06 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    365
    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2004
    Just thought I'd ask to see if how people have faired in negotiating watch prices at boutique stores (other than Rolex, which I hear often is a slim, if not nil, discount).

    I've had fair luck at the Omega boutique store in CA and at Tourneau (as a repeat customer) simply by asking about what retail price would be versus what the sales rep would be willing to negotitate to.

    Anyone else have any other success stories/advice at boutique shops?


    The AD I bought my JLC from offered me a fair discount right away. I consider fair to be within 5% of the internet grey market.
     
  4. scurvyfreedman

    scurvyfreedman Well-Known Member

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    May 5, 2010
    Location:
    Rockville, MD
    In my experience most retailers will go to 25% off retail price for most high end watches. Tourneau is usually the one that won't. And, none in Las Vegas will discount.

    That said, Rolex and Patek Philippe have a distributor that will pull authorized dealers for going much below list. Rolex generally (at least as of a few years ago) would go 5% on steel, 10% on two-tone, and 15% on gold/platinum. Patek was generally no more than 10% on any model.

    I bought my IWC Ingenieur in 1999 for 35% off, from an out of state authorized dealer, but paid half of the credit card holdback charge. I bought my IWC Mark XII EF for 45% off retail from a former authorized dealer who had one NOS in his case 4 years after it came out in a limited run of 100 watches.

    Audemars tries to price enforce, but you can find them grey market for 35-40% off pretty readily. The dealers unload large quantities for 51-5% of retail to bulk grey market dealers. Breguet and Blancpain also can be had grey market very well below retail. I don't know about A.Lange.

    Most of these watches are double keystone items. The dealer price is 1/2 the retail list price. That's why discounts are so readily available and why grey market exists.

    Any of the brands normally sold in most malls (Omega, etc.) can be had for 25% off from authorized dealers and more from grey market.
     
  5. edmorel

    edmorel Well-Known Member

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    Mar 10, 2006
    Location:
    NYC
    Two guys at my job (much higher ups) both recently purchased watches, one a Patek and the other an Audemars pink gold RO. Mr. Patek got 15% off and Mr. audemars got 20% off, both without even asking, at authorized dealers (AP was at Cellini). I would not have thought you could easily get such discounts, particularly on the PP.
     
  6. JG000

    JG000 Well-Known Member

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    May 14, 2010
    Two guys at my job (much higher ups) both recently purchased watches, one a Patek and the other an Audemars pink gold RO. Mr. Patek got 15% off and Mr. audemars got 20% off, both without even asking, at authorized dealers (AP was at Cellini). I would not have thought you could easily get such discounts, particularly on the PP.

    I'm sure their last names had something to do with it.

    (Just kidding)
     
  7. edmorel

    edmorel Well-Known Member

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    Mar 10, 2006
    Location:
    NYC
    I'm sure their last names had something to do with it.

    (Just kidding)


    actually, the first guy's real name is Mr. Muckity Muck and the second one is a big wheel, I think his first name is Ferris.
     
  8. Prince of Paisley

    Prince of Paisley Well-Known Member

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    Jan 28, 2009
    Location:
    Sydney
    My father was offered a 20% discount on a Vacheron Constantine by an SA he had previously purchased watches from at a boutique here in Sydney, but when he went back with his cheque book the SA was not there and the shop refused to honour the discount - which tells me stores can be very flexible when they want to be, even on the premium watch brands.

    Another anecdote, a friend who is an avid watch collector once advised me to never pay more than 50% of the RRP on a new watch. Given my experience since I probably agree with him on the size of markups stores make on Swiss watches...
     
  9. Big T

    Big T Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    235
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    Jul 6, 2010
    Location:
    Rural Penna.
    I was at Tourneau this past Saturday, at the King of Prussia Mall near Philly. I've been shopping for a watch for several weeks and since I was in Philly for a wedding, decided to visit Tourneau. They had models of Oris and Longines I've been looking at and I could have pulled the trigger had the clerk given me something, but he said the price is the price!

    Incidentally, this is my first post and I apologize if it sounds like a rant. Anyhow, hello to everyone!

    T.
     
  10. JayJay

    JayJay Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    24,364
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    Jun 25, 2007
    I was at Tourneau this past Saturday, at the King of Prussia Mall near Philly. I've been shopping for a watch for several weeks and since I was in Philly for a wedding, decided to visit Tourneau. They had models of Oris and Longines I've been looking at and I could have pulled the trigger had the clerk given me something, but he said the price is the price! Incidentally, this is my first post and I apologize if it sounds like a rant. Anyhow, hello to everyone! T.
    30% off on a PP from the local AD, but it was during an annual sale, and only on select models. I stopped by Tourneau on 57th in NYC during my trip last week, but my experience was unpleasant. I've had terrific experiences at Tourneau in Chicago every time I've been there, so the NYC treatment was particularly disappointing.
     
  11. Grammaton Cleric

    Grammaton Cleric Well-Known Member

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    Location:
    Hong Kong / Darien
    I've gotten 25% of most watches from ADs with very little effort.
     
  12. westinghouse

    westinghouse Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,329
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    Jan 17, 2010
    Location:
    NYC
    The Tourneau salesman offered me a 15% discount off of an 18k Submariner, but I decided to go pre-owned instead and saved 42%. Plus I did not have to pay 8.75% NYC tax.
    [​IMG]
     
  13. ismelllikepoop

    ismelllikepoop Well-Known Member

    Messages:
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    Feb 6, 2010
    just curious what kind of discounts ppl are getting on panerais. im getting the itch and the used market seems stronger than what my local AD is discounting.
     
  14. gazman70k

    gazman70k Well-Known Member

    Messages:
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    Mar 21, 2008
    Location:
    Beijing | Hong Kong | Manila | Shanghai | Singapor
    It is useless to make these broad sweeping generalisation on discounts. So perhaps a discussion on what factors drive discounting is more relevant.

    Brand - branding support is critical, since if a brand is not well supported, AD's are likely to dump (i.e. reduce their mark-up to move and let me tell you that those mark-ups are huge!)

    Models - all brands have a portfolio of models, some that do well and other less so. ADs discount slower moving models but retain a portfolio margin by not discounting the iconic ones.

    Materials - precious metal and steel models have different price points and margins. ADs tend to discount two tone models more readily since they are like the bastard child, neither here nor there but priced high. Also the margins on the precious metal models are higher, and hence more prevelant to discounting if the AD needs to move stock.

    Timing - Most ADs actually buy an annual stock of models, which means that if a certain piece is not moving by the time new stock is expected to arrive, then discounting will occur. Also, there is a timing on the exchange rates used by the AD on when he bought the stock and versus when he is selling it since he is able to arbitrage on the exchange rate to give a customer a better deal if its to his favour.

    In summary, it is possible to find discounts from ADs on Pateks and AP but without knowing the above four information, it is useless to say that ALL ADs ARE DISCOUNTING PATEKS AND APs AT XX%. Also for certain brands, they will crack down hard on an AD that discounts too much. I know several ADs that have loss Patek concessions due to "over aggressive" pricing behaviours.
     
  15. Captain Winky

    Captain Winky Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    871
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    Feb 21, 2010
    I hate Tourneau, arrogant, idiotic, pushy sales people who know nothing about watches.

    I've had pretty good luck, got 15% off on my Patek Aquanaut in '05, 25% off on my IWC MK XVI about two years ago and 20% off on my Rolex Explorer II last year. All were purchased from ADs. The PP was a walk-in, the others referrals. Other brands readily discounted:

    JLC
    Omega
    Tag
    Baum Mercier

    Hard to negotiate on:

    Panerai (so I've heard)
    Cartier

    In general, I've found the worst place to negotiate is a brand's own boutique (just try it on "Richemont Row" (along Brighton in Beverly Hills), followed by large chain stores like Tourneau. Independent ADs of various brands are always your best bet, as is going in with a referral.
     
  16. JayJay

    JayJay Well-Known Member

    Messages:
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    ^^^My best deals have been with independent ADs, too.
     
  17. Blake686

    Blake686 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
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    Sep 29, 2009
    Just curious, what are the tactics to get the best discount? It's kind of difficult to know everything about the pricing and how bad the dealr wants to move it. Any thoughts?
     
  18. Captain Winky

    Captain Winky Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    871
    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2010
    Just curious, what are the tactics to get the best discount? It's kind of difficult to know everything about the pricing and how bad the dealr wants to move it. Any thoughts?

    Here's what you want to do before you go in:

    1. Have a referral. This helps a lot.
    2. Research what the watch goes for in the grey market, you probably won't get 5% more than that off.
    3. Decide what you're willing to pay in advance and stick to it.

    Once inside:

    1. Feel out the sales person, your instinct will tell you if they're up for haggling.
    2. Tell them that you rarely buy the first time you try, you have to think about it, and they might want to give you a # to think about.
    3. Just come out and ask if the price on the tag is the actual price, and if not, what that price is.
    4. When they give you a bad offer, tell them you already have an offer for xx% off, but you've heard good things about this shop, like to buy local, etc.
    5. Ask how much more off for paying cash, if you want to pay cash.
     
  19. Xiaogou

    Xiaogou Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,793
    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2008
    The AD I bought my JLC from offered me a fair discount right away. I consider fair to be within 5% of the internet grey market.

    Once a year at the Diamond Cellar in December (1st Saturday), you can get 25% off JLC, Tag, RW, Cartier, and 3 other Swiss brands. PM me if you want more details.
     
  20. Blake686

    Blake686 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    206
    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2009
    Here's what you want to do before you go in:

    1. Have a referral. This helps a lot.
    2. Research what the watch goes for in the grey market, you probably won't get 5% more than that off.
    3. Decide what you're willing to pay in advance and stick to it.

    Once inside:

    1. Feel out the sales person, your instinct will tell you if they're up for haggling.
    2. Tell them that you rarely buy the first time you try, you have to think about it, and they might want to give you a # to think about.
    3. Just come out and ask if the price on the tag is the actual price, and if not, what that price is.
    4. When they give you a bad offer, tell them you already have an offer for xx% off, but you've heard good things about this shop, like to buy local, etc.
    5. Ask how much more off for paying cash, if you want to pay cash.


    Thanks, much appreciated!
     

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