TOP 5 Things to know BEFORE buying A Drone

TOP 5 Things Buying Drone

Holiday season is upon us again, the days are getting longer, weather is better and the choice of Drone/UAV is getting Larger. Here are the TOP 5 Things Buying Drone.

The advent of influential cinematic vloggers like Casey Neistat have increased the awareness of what can be achieved with a Drone/UAV technology, sprawling a legion of imitators.

But wait, make sure you check-out the 5 things you MUST know, before you buy a drone.

TOP 5 Things Buying Drone:

Number 1 of TOP 5 Things Buying Drone:

Drones/UAV‘s are generally seen as toys, sold as toys, marketed as toys, dreamed of as toys!

Lets stop that term right now. Unmanned air vehicles (UAV’s) are NOT toys. To be frank (not my name), but to be FRANK, there are few products available in the open market today that are MORE dangerous than a drone, quadcopter, UAV or what ever you want to call them. They will cut, damage and possibly kill, and you do not need a licence, insurance or be mentally competent to buy one! You just need to be able to pay.

Don’t get me wrong, I think they are one of the single greatest products on our green earth, whose long term benefits have yet to be thought of, but to class them as TOYS is the height of stupidity. If you do not agree, then don’t buy one, you’ll only spoil it for the rest of us.

Check out what happens when a banana meets a Drone Blade!!!

Number 2 of TOP 5 Things Buying Drone:

Value for money. Mmmmm, thats a moveable feast, my value for money, is going to be different to your perception of value for money.

In short all drones are not equal! Before you buy, think about what you want from a drone. How often are you going to use it? Then my friends, GO BIG!! Spend as much as you can afford, then stretch a little further. Painful experience has taught me that you need to buy a drone that you, as an individual can grow into. Within 10 hours of flight time, I promise you will be a flight master, a cinematic hero, and you will want to do more with your prized DJI/Phantom/Inspire/Parot/etc. If you went cheap to begin with, you will need to upgrade, then you really will be spending a load more money.

The danger then is that you have to wait to upgrade because you dont have the money, and the drone ends up under the bed, next to the bread-maker, and the abbs buster! If you worrying about the cost, then Don’t BUY! There is NOTHING worse than a case of buyers remorse! Yes, its expensive, yes there is the outside danger you will at some point crash, Yes, your partner or loved ones will berate you over the cost (jealousy), just a quick glance on Ebay,  you will see lots of used drones for sale, for exactly this reason.

At the other end of the spectrum, dont go too big. The aerialtronics commercial unit may be a bit much for your first foray into the world of drones. If you want something accessible, and throw up and down like a yoyo, then you want to stick to something like this DJI Phantom 3 which is affordable, but not going to be blown away on the first autumn breeze.

Number 3 of TOP 5 Things Buying Drone:

So, you spend the money, get that nice, new shinny box complete with that strange new smell, a bit like this unboxing (play here). Time to Fly right! Errr, no. Fact is that for a lot of new drone owners, the first flight is usually the last, or at best a lengthy & expensive trip to the repair shop. The way to protect your investment, yourself and those around you? Get to know your kit, how to set up, preflight, where you can fly, where you can’t fly, & learn the rules YES, there are RULES. To make things really confusing, each country, flight administration have particular nuances. For Example, the UK, the use of UAV’s are set out by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), you are not allowed to go higher than 400ft (120m), must always keep line of sight (500m), not be with in 50m of people/property that you have no control over & not fly over a congested area (1000+ people). Apart from that, you can do what you want, but break the rules, and you could be in line for a HUGE fine. Stay safe and follow these RULES, remember, you are legally responsible for your drone wether playing or working. Finally, it’s boring, but get Insured, it could be the best waste of money you ever spend.

Legislation is always changing. The next threat to Drone ownership in the UK is coming from European directive which you can read here. Its called the The commission regulation on Unmanned aircraft regulation. Its in the early stages and during October 2016 they are asking for feed back. EASE Link.

Number 4 of TOP 5 Things Buying Drone:

Buying a drone is only the start of your cost journey. Wake up and smell the roses, you going to have other ongoing costs, and thats assuming you haven’t done damage. You’re going to buying blades, batteries, camera accessories, bags, cases, cameras, lenses, sunshades, stands, travel boxes and eventually, a new drone. You going to need to charge your batteries which means power, store them safely, which means space. Oh, and if you are that stupid person, that like to live life on the edge, not follow the rules, like this guy (UAV hits Plane) then start to budget for that heavy fine, in the UK that would be £5000.00.

Number 5 of TOP 5 Things Buying Drone:

Remember to to have fun. Yes, UAV/drones/quadcopters are regulated, and it will only get tighter and more wide-spread. As long as you’re not contravening regulations, or snooping on someone privacy, then the skies are the limit, or at least 400ft!

Thinking of buying a DJI Inspire 1? check out our head to review for the Inspire 1 & Inspire 1 PRO

 

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ikopta are Independent professional UAV/Drone operators in the UK. www.ikopta.co.uk