Beginners Guide: 5 Essential Tips for Using a Drone

Using a Drone

As of August 2021, there were almost 1 million drone registrations in the United States.

Their ability to take amazing pictures and videos from the air is making them more and more popular for recreational and commercial use. Whether taking photos for real estate or trying out a new form of photography from above, using a drone is the new way to go.

But if you choose to get one, how do you make sure you don’t crash your expensive drone? What are some of the tips for first-time users? Are there laws surrounding the use of drones?

Keep reading to learn about the best tips for using a drone and things you need to know before flying for the first time!

1. Apply for a License Before Purchasing the Drone

The first thing you need to do before even getting the drone is to apply for a license. The Federal Aviation Administration requires drone users to register their drone and pay a $5 fee. If you do not register it with the FAA, you will potentially face fines.

Some states and areas also require you to take a safety test by law to ensure you are ready to fly the drone safely.

While applying for a license, you should also look into the rules and regulations of the area you plan to fly the drone. Some areas require permits for aerial photography, like national parks and most bigger cities. 

Depending on the area, the cost for the permit will differ.

Another thing to note is the specific laws for flying drones in each state. For instance, to fly a drone in Miami, Florida, you cannot fly a drone within 25 feet of a sporting event.

2. Read the Manual Before Flying

Before flying the drone you bought, you definitely want to take time and read the directions for the specific drone. As all drones differ, the way you handle them and take care of them may also be different.

This is an essential step if you want to prevent crashing your drone and having to pay for a new one all over again.

After you read the manual, you will want to practice flying the drone in an open area that does not have any obstacles. This way, if you do crash your drone, you don’t have to worry about it breaking from tree limbs or something else sharp.

In the manual, it will most likely note that there will be software updates. Pay attention to these because updating regularly will help optimize your drone’s flight patterns and performance. On top of software updates, the manual also probably mentions when to have your drone serviced.

3. Keep Your Drone in View During Flight

Especially as a beginner, you do not want your drone to fly out of your view! If you let it fly out of view, you may not know how to get it back to you.

One way to prevent losing the drone is by setting up the return to home setting. This means that when you send your drone on the flight, you have input an altitude for your drone and after it is done taking pictures, it will return to where it took off. This also helps with avoiding obstacles since it will go the same way home as it did out.

4. Always Go Through a Pre-Flight Checklist Before Taking Off

Flying a drone is not as simple as throwing up your device and letting it go with the hopes that it comes back in one piece. There are many things you should pay attention to before starting a flight.

To ensure that you are keeping yourself, others, and your drone safe, follow this checklist:

  • No precipitation or chance of precipitation for the duration of the flight
  • Winds less than 20mph
  • Visibility is at least 3 miles
  • Know where obstacles and challenges will come into play
  • Remove the lens cap and clean
  • Check that all parts are in the right position and intact 
  • Attach the propellers, add in the battery, and insert the SD card
  • Ensure that your battery has enough fuel

Once you go through this checklist, your drone should be in great flying condition! You shouldn’t have to worry about anything happening to it as long as you’ve read the manual and practiced flying it.

5. Understand All of the Controls

When you are practicing how to use a drone, you need to make sure you understand all of the controls on the drone. There are four main ones to pay attention to the most.

  • Roll: how to turn the drone left or right
  • Pitch: moves the drone front or backward
  • Yaw: helps change directions when flying
  • Throttle: speed of the drone

Make sure to familiarize yourself with the specific features of your drone on top of these main controls. For instance, the DrDrone has many different features to learn.

Useful Tips for Using a Drone 

Using a drone can be extremely fun and rewarding when you see the land from above or look at the pictures after your flight. But knowing how to use a drone is crucial before taking your first flight.

By following these five drone tips, you are ensuring that you are flying legally and safely. You will also feel much more confident when you take off for the first time after going through these tips for using a drone.

Did you enjoy learning about how to use a drone? Check out more fun tips on our blog!

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