Tempers flared and voices were raised early on Saturday (March 26), after customers camped for hours outside Swatch stores at Ion Orchard and Marina Bay Sands (MBS).
They were hoping to be one of the first to get their hands on the collaborative collection by watchmakers Omega and Swatch. Some customers were believed to have arrived as early as 5.30am.
Videos on TikTok and Instagram showed disgruntled customers in shouting matches with Swatch staff as well as police who were called in to manage the chaotic scene.
One man at Ion Orchard who seemed to be unhappy over being cut out of the queue was filmed shouting at police officers.
“We co-operate with the b**** brand manager. He asked us to move back that’s why we moved back, that’s why we are behind, and then you cut us behind.”
He continued: “Then you all doing what? [In Mandarin] Take your gun and shoot me lor!” at which bystanders attempted to calm him down.
The MoonSwatch collection comprises 11 designs priced at $372 each and is inspired by the Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch, which retails for upwards of $9,000.
In updates to their Facebook page on Saturday morning, Swatch emphasized that the watches are not limited edition and more “opportunities to purchase” them would be available in the coming weeks. It added that a purchase limit of one watch per person will be imposed “until further notice”.
However, that hasn’t stopped users on resale marketplace Carousell from jacking up the price of the watches.
A quick search threw up several results, with one seller listing each MoonSwatch at $2,888, and another selling the “Venus” design for $1,200. Other Carousell users offered to buy the watches at their original price but with an additional fee “for queuing”.