Online shopping has become a real trend, sometimes overpowering brick and mortar stores. Once in a while, I’ll be on the hunt for a new watch and I’ll come across a brand which piques my interest. Such was the case of finding out about Tufina Watches, an independent German brand which sells hand-made watches. After scrolling down their website I immediately set my eyes on two of their timepieces, which of course I had to purchase. Now, for those of you who may be wondering whether this brand is legit and worth your money (spoiler alert: it definitely is), I’m writing this review and describing my whole experience. Read on for some tips and tricks at the end that will help you spot decent brands online in the future!
Tufina’s collections are real and thriving
A typical scam in the watch business is trying to sell watches that you don’t really make. This is often the case with online stores which set up fake photographs and fool customers into making a purchase. In the case of Tufina, their collections are nicely displayed on several official websites. Each product is listed with their reference numbers, specs and accompanying pictures.
Tufina has been featured in many media with articles on New York Weekly, Good Men Project, LA Wire etc. Their official website is a trust marked website by many security companies, assuring customers of their reliability with an almost 100% score. Tufina’s website operates on a secure SSL/TLS certificate and has been verified under a trusted domain. On their contact page, you will find comprehensive information including their phone number, address, email, and working hours. Navigating through the site, you will discover a rich amount of well-structured content. The brand’s history is elaborately described, accompanied by captivating product videos showcasing the watches and their manufacturing process.
Nevertheless, I decided to talk to the Tufina family on my own. After receiving my watches, I contacted them to personally thank them for their excellent service and ask them about their manufacturing process in more detail (explained below).
Tufina watches are authentic and hand-assembled
Enis Tufina, the owner of Tufina Watches, was a passionate young football player who had to give up his sports career after sustaining a knee injury. And as is often the case, when an old door closes, another one opens! After seeking political asylum in Germany in 1990, he decided to work towards launching two watch brands – Theorema and Pionier. Now, you may be wondering “How did he even end up in the watch industry?”. Simple: Enis runs from a family of master watchmakers with a two-century long history.
His grandfather Bahri Tufina was one of the most prominent members of the Tufina family, known for running a watchmaking school and for creating the first made-in-Albania table clock. The Tufina did dominate the watchmaking South-European scene, especially in the 1900s, but the communist establishment persecuted them greatly. The Tufina’s passed down their knowledge and watchmaking practices generation after generation, which explains the brand’s strong bond with tradition.
Determined to keep this tradition alive, Enis preserved these practices and implemented them in the brand’s German manufacturing process. Tufina watches are all hand-assembled and made in small batches near Munich, Germany. This almost artisanal process brings us back to the old days, when a meticulous amount of time and attention was invested in the making of every single watch. Steering away from mass production, they manage to deliver high-quality timepieces at reasonable prices.
My personal experience and product review
I got two watches, Kingston from Theorema and Florida Diamonds from Pionier. The watches came in their branded packaging. The box was solid in a leather material and came with another protective box on top. I was not expecting that. Upon opening the box, I found a greeting card (a nice touch that establishes a personal connection with the client), an introductory booklet which contains the watch specs, information on maintenance, usage and the warranty. Inside the Florida Diamonds box I also found the proof of diamond certification.
Taking a closer look at the watches, the first thing I noticed was the nice finishing. The polished surfaces were sleek and shiny, with no bumps or uneven edges. Both watches have countdown timer bezels and multi-patterned dials. There is an open heart display which allows me to see the working movement inside. This single detail is what got me hooked on their watches. I am a sucker for open heart timepieces, so I couldn’t wait to get them running.
The back of the case is open on both watches. I immediately noticed the Geneva stripes and blue screws, a typical characteristic of German watches. The leather bands are really comfortable and nicely stitched with symmetrical hems. They are quite light-mid-weight watches, so I know I will have no trouble wearing them for extended periods of time.
Last but not least, the clasps had the Theorema and Pionier logo printed on them. Although not mandatory, this goes to show how much care is put into making the timepieces. Extra points for exclusivity!
What to look for when shopping for a watch online?
Look for real descriptions, images, and videos
Product descriptions need to be precise and accurate to ensure customers are getting what they expect. If a seller makes an obvious mistake in the product description, it could indicate a lack of knowledge or care. In such cases, it’s best to avoid making a purchase.
Since buying watches online means you won’t get to see the product in person, it’s essential to have access to clear photographs and videos. You want to inspect the watch from every possible angle. Besides pictures, it’s nice to be able to see videos of the watch in action.
In the case of Tufina, not only did the website have plenty of pictures, but you could also find tons of real customer photos and reviews online. Moreover, they have videos online showcasing the watches and their manufacturing process, which is always a plus.
Proven history and prominent online presence
When considering buying a watch, it is important to do your due diligence and check the brand’s accounts. A reputable brand will typically have invested time and resources into building a professional online presence, such as a website and social media accounts. By examining the content they produce on these platforms, you can get an idea of the type of business they run. On the other hand, a lack of online activity should raise a red flag and prompt you to search for another seller.
Tufina checks all of these boxes. Their official websites are nicely designed, user-friendly and completely functional. And of course, they have official social media accounts and plenty of positive reviews online from both watch collectors and normal clients.
Be mindful of after-sales details
Before making a purchase, it’s crucial to have a clear understanding of all the after-sales details. This includes checking if the brand offers a warranty, a simple return policy, and an authenticity guarantee. By being aware of these details beforehand, you can avoid potential problems in the future. Tufina has all these factors completely covered. They provide a 2 year warranty, an international guarantee and they state their return policy clearly on their website in case there is a problem with the watch.
Now, let me tell you about my experience. After placing my order, I started receiving informative emails that kept me updated throughout the shipping process. Initially, I received an email confirming my order, followed by another email containing the tracking number for my package. Additionally, I was notified when the package left the Tufina manufacturing facility. On the day of arrival, I received another email notifying me of the imminent delivery. I did not sign-up for texts/sms updates, but it was an option.
Once I received my package, Tufina’s team even reached out via email to ensure everything was satisfactory with my order. Moreover, there is an option to sign up for SMS/text updates for every order, and the company can be contacted through email, telephone, and even WhatsApp. Overall, Tufina’s customer support was clear and efficient, ensuring a smooth purchasing experience. I would give their customer service a perfect rating of 10/10.
Transparent and clear communication is a must
It is common to expect excellent service when making a considerable purchase. Trustworthy brands prioritize their clients’ satisfaction and strive to provide exceptional service. During the inquiry stage, the seller’s communication should be prompt and responsive. Needless to say, Tufina’s communication skills are commendable, with timely and transparent customer service. Their website provides comprehensive information, making it easy to understand. Overall, I am extremely satisfied with this brand and I am looking forward to purchasing another one of their watches in the near future. You can also check Tufina Watch Reviews in Trustpilot.