Deciding to get your kid their first drone is a big step. Especially with the responsibility that comes with owning a drone. However, the amount of fun that comes with flying is well worth the journey.
Learn the Rules
It cannot be stressed the importance of learning how and where you can fly your drone. Many of the rules are common sense but you are dealing with aircraft that can possibly interfere with manned aircraft, and people’s lives. If you live near an airport there are even stricter rules to follow. There is a great online resource, Know Before Your Fly. You will quickly be able to see all of the rules. Some drones that weigh over .55 pounds also require registration. But they talk about that as well on their website.
Learn Your Drone
Some of the happiest people who bought drones are those that took the time to learn how to fly their drone well before taking it outside and letting it rip. There are several videos and manuals online you can use to get to know your drone. You should also practice taking off and landing until you get bored with it. Taking off and landing is where many accidents can happen. You will also want to really pay attention to the battery life and range. This will help prevent unnecessary accidents.
Features To Consider
We just mentioned the battery. The battery life will determine how long your drone can fly before needing to land. Most of toy drones batteries will last from 5-8 minutes, while some higher end drones will have low battery alarms. We recommend using a stopwatch or timer to have a ‘second set of eyes’ on the battery. This way you can bring your drone down safely when it gets low.
The range is another important feature to pay attention to. Many toy drones will range from 50-100 meters. You will want to stay within this range so the drone does not lose contact with the remote transmitter. If this happens you risk the drone flying off on its own until the battery runs out and either not being able to find it or not being able to repair it.
Finally, you should consider the flying features. They will include more as you spend more but a few that are worth considering are headless mode and return home features. Headless mode allows you to fly the drone based on the direction of the remote joysticks, regardless of what direction the drone is facing. This really shortens the learning curve for new pilots. The return home feature is great for obvious reasons. Just make sure you don’t move around too much after take off. The drones usually lock into a GPS location and not the actual remote.
Take a look at the infographic below to learn about more features to look for when buying your kid their first drone. There are even a few recommendations to check out as well.