Are Expensive Pens Worth It?

Whether you’re a pen lover, a pen collector, or just someone looking for a quality writing implement, you may find yourself wondering if an expensive pen is worth the investment.

Expensive pens save money in the long run, are known to improve your handwriting, are eco-friendly alternatives, are made from better, more durable materials, and serve as a great sentimental family heirloom, making them well worth their price to the right people. 

Wondering why you should invest in a quality pen? The rest of this article will explain why expensive pens are worth it and what you should consider before buying one. 

Table of Contents

Are Expensive Pens Worth It?

The Best Pen Under $500 - Aurora Optima
Aurora Optima By John Morgan via Flickr.

Although the answer to this question is largely dependent on what a consumer values, many factors prove that expensive pens are generally well worth the price, often being passed down for generations. 

So, what makes an expensive pen worth the money? Well, let’s get into it. 

Sense of Authenticity and Purpose

This is an example of a factor that isn’t going to be relatable for everyone, and that’s okay! For some, having a designer, luxury, or simply expensive item gives them a sense of authenticity and purpose. 

A CEO who signs a lot of important documents may have a lucky pen they spent a lot of their hard-earned money on for those important events, making that moment so much sweeter for them. 

Although expensive pens are, well, pens, they can give people a sense of purpose when they know that they worked hard for it, especially when what they do for a living, or what they bought that pen to do, is something they are proud of and have worked hard at. 

Most people own pens that are just discarded when they’re done with them, and that’s okay! But sometimes owning a pen that isn’t thrown away invokes a special feeling in someone that fuels their pride. 

While some think that turning to luxury goods may be due to a lack of self-esteem, that’s not necessarily the case. Many enjoy owning expensive pens because they worked hard for something that will last a long time, and it gives them a sense of purpose and style. 

May Improve Handwriting 

More expensive pens generally have a more refined writing experience, and will therefore make the writing process smoother and neater for those who use them. Although different types of pens will work better for certain users, when you find the best type of pen for you, you’ll likely find that it makes your handwriting much neater. 

Looking for a pen to write wedding invites with, or to write thank you notes? Getting a pen that will last you a lifetime and ensure your handwriting is neat after hours of writing can be important to many. 


Although you may think that buying an expensive pen is a waste of money, and has no use whatsoever, you’d actually be wrong. In fact, buying expensive pens may be a great eco-conscience choice

Expensive pens are made with better quality materials and last much longer. How many plastic pens do you think you’ve thrown out in your lifetime? 

Imagine investing in a pen made from precious metals. A pen that you can use your whole life! You just have to refill the ink sometimes. 

Yeah… that’s a lot of pens you’re saving. 

On top of that, more expensive pens make great gifts and amazing heirlooms that can be used for generations, so that’s even better for the environment! 

Try replacing those single-use pens that end up in landfills with long-lasting, durable pens that will last a long time. 

It’s also important to consider that those single-use plastic pens are largely non-biodegradable, which only hurts the environment further. 

Sentimental Family Heirlooms

Montegrappa Pens
Montegrappa Dragon Pen – Source: Montegrappa

Expensive or luxury pens have been used as family heirlooms for generations, being passed down from family member to family member. Want a beautiful pen your grandchildren will eventually have? Get a long-lasting, quality pen that will stand the test of time. 

We’ve all gone through a life event that requires a lot of writing. Filling out envelopes for wedding invitations, thank you notes for a college grad, all of it is memorable. Get a quality luxury pen that you’ll keep remembering those moments and those successes for the rest of your life. 

What could be sweeter than using your favorite pen to fill out your wedding invites, and passing it down to your daughter as she fills out hers? 

Expensive pens last much longer and can be used to make beautiful memories to be adored for years to come. 

Functional Gift

Ever have trouble finding a gift for someone, because it seems like anything you think of is just… not functional? Flowers, alcohol, chocolates… they have no permanence in the lives of our loved ones, so why spend money on them? Instead, think about spending your money on something that they’ll use for a long time. 

If you’re wondering if expensive pens are worth the price, or if they’re special enough, the answer is yes. If you’re close to someone, it’s likely that any time they use the pen you give them, they’ll think of you.

Not only that, but they’ll have that pen for a long time, and could still pass it down to their children. You could be part of their lives forever, and help them make additional cherished memories. 

Save Money 

If you’re a human being on planet earth, there’s a large chance that you’ve likely had to go out and spend money on buying pens every couple of months- if not every month, depending on how many pens you purchase. 

How much money do you think you’ve spent on pens in your lifetime? It’s probably much more than you think. 

Although an initial investment, expensive pens are used for much longer than your usual single-use plastic pens, and won’t have to be replaced… well, ever. 

You may have to replace a part here and there depending on the type of pen you buy, such as the nibs for a fountain pen

You’ll also certainly have to replace the ink after a while, but if you look at how much you are spending on pens every year, and the amount of money you’ll spend for one pen that can last you the rest of your life, that’s a lot of money you can save. 

Made With High-Quality Materials

Why do I keep buying notebooks?
By Umepat – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,

Expensive pens are usually made with much better, high-quality materials that will stand the test of time.

Truly, the materials are usually what makes the price of a pen skyrocket.

While some pens use plastic for their base, many expensive pen brands use metals. This means that the pen is less likely to break, and it will last a whole lot longer than your usual plastic pen.

Additionally, the different parts of the pen are likely made much better.

Take fountain pens for example. The nibs of a cheap fountain pen are likely made from steel and probably aren’t coated with an alloy. This makes for a rougher writing experience and a material that will wear down eventually.

Expensive or luxury fountain pen nibs are usually made from gold or other expensive metals, and coated with an alloy that will make them last for long periods, along with simply writing smoother.

Additionally, small parts of a more expensive pen will be better made, such as the clip! Because we’ve all had those moments of trying to clip our pens to something and just having them… simply snap off, right?

It’s never fun.

Expensive pens offer the user a much better writing experience and a pen that will genuinely last a lifetime, making the price well worth it.

What Expensive Pens Are Worth It?

Are tactile turn pens good

Now let’s take a look at the different types of pens and determine if they are worth the expense.

Are Expensive Gel Pens Worth It?

Gel pens are one of the least expensive types of pens on the market, and an example of a pen that honestly, probably isn’t worth investing much money into.

Although the worth of a pen is completely up to the personal experience and perception of the individual, gel pens can go from $1-$5 a pen. For such a little expense, gel pens aren’t necessarily something you should run out and spend a fortune on.

Are Expensive Rollerball Pens Worth It?

Holding a Waterman Expert Rollerball Pen
Holding a Waterman Expert Rollerball Pen

An expensive rollerball pen is completely dependent on the refill. Most manufacturers who make a $200 pen will use the same refills for that pen as their cheaper, $20 version.

When investing in an expensive rollerball pen, you’re investing the money into the brand name and the materials for the outside of the pen, which may be worth it to you!

If you’re looking for a sleeve for a pen that will likely be made of great quality materials and won’t break on you, you should consider investing in a quality rollerball pen. Just know that the refill will likely be the same refill you’ll get if you buy a cheap $20 pen from the same company.

Are Expensive Ballpoint Pens Worth It?

Ballpoint pens have the same problem as rollerball pens, where they are only really as good as the refill is. The brand you buy your ballpoint pen from will likely use the same refills for your expensive pen as they use for their cheaper pens.

That being said, you can certainly spend a couple of dollars on a better-quality refill, but whether it is offered or worth the money is a completely different story.

Are Expensive Fountain Pens Worth It?

Fountain pens are one of those pens that are absolutely worth every cent invested into them.

Not only are quality, expensive fountain pens made of much better material that actually really has an impact on how you write, but quality fountain pens stand the test of time, and are great gifts that people love to hang onto.

The biggest thing to look at when looking to invest in a fountain pen and considering if it is worth it is the nib. This is the piece you’ll be writing, and it’s a game-changer.

Cheap fountain pens will likely use steel for the nib, and they may not be coated with any type of alloy. Expensive fountain pens, on the other hand, are usually made with precious metal. This could be 14K or 18K gold, or even titanium. They’re then coated with a hard-wearing alloy, so you’ll be able to write smoother and the material won’t wear out as fast.

Fountain pens are beautiful, make great gifts, and are a favorite among pen collectors.

Things To Consider Before Buying An Expensive Pen

As with any high-priced item, there are a couple of things you should consider before spending your hard-earned money on an expensive pen. Let’s go over a couple of them.

What Are You Paying For, and Why?

Before you drop the big bucks on an expensive pen, you’re going to want to ask yourself what you’re paying for and why. These should be the first two questions you ask yourself whenever you spend a sizable chunk of money on something, but especially a pen.

Why? Because sometimes we like to spend money for the sake of spending money. Expensive pens are worth it, as long as they’re quality and something you’re going to use.

Take a moment to look at the pen in front of you and ask yourself what exactly you’re spending money on, and why. What type of pen is it? What is it made of? Is it a good price for that? Is it worth it? Are you going to get good use out of it? What are the reasons you’re buying it for?

Is The Limited Edition Actually Unique?

We’ve seen an increase in manufacturers releasing limited edition pens, but are they actually as unique as they want you to think? Take a look at the pen you’re looking to buy and compare it to other pens, and ask yourself is it really worth the price?

Another trick I use is to look up how brands do on eBay. You can see what pens have sold over the last 9 months. Check if the brand you’re considering’s limited edition pens are selling for more than when they were for sale. For example, I love Tactile Turn’s seasonal releases. They usually go on sale for $150 for only a three-month window. But if you look on eBay, past seasonal releases sell for around $250!

How Badly Do You Want The Pen?

Sometimes you simply want the pen, and that’s okay, too. Evaluate how much you want the pen and how much use you’ll get out of it so that you don’t feel bad about buying that expensive pen after the purchase is complete.

Final Thoughts 

Expensive pens are a great investment that saves money in the long run, improves handwriting, makes great family heirlooms, and is eco-friendly. They’re truly an investment that you’ll have for a long time, and you’ll be able to pass down to your children. 

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