Are Drones A Waste Of Money?


Are Drones A Waste Of Money?

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Are you planning on buying a drone but one of your family members or friends said it was a gigantic waste of money? Maybe you saw a video or article online detailing why you shouldn’t get in on the drone craze because they weren’t worth their cost. 

No matter what you have heard we will try and answer whether drones are a giant waste of money in this article. 

How you plan on using a drone really determines whether it is a waste of money for you or not. If it will just sit in your garage unused then of course it is a waste. However, if you plan on using it regularly then as long as you don’t spend a fortune on a drone then it could be a great purchase! 

A few years ago drone prices were incredibly expensive and if you wanted a good camera for pictures or videos then you needed to spend far north of $1,000 for a DJI drone. In recent years that has changed a lot and you can now find drones (such as this one) for prices that virtually anyone can afford. 

Some DJI drones are still quite expensive so buying one of those more expensive drones could be a waste if you plan on using it for recreational use or to just take some pictures and videos with. If you plan on using it for a business or something like that then that can certainly have an effect on whether buying a drone is a waste or not. 

Many people choose to buy a drone with the excuse that they will use it to be a better photographer or to get into photography. We will discuss whether that is a good idea or not next. 

Buying a drone just to be a photographer

If you are just trying to be a photographer, I don’t think that buying a drone would be your best option. Being a drone pilot is not as easy as riding a bike or controlling a remote-controlled car so it certainly takes some practice and if you don’t learn properly you can easily destroy your drone.  

If you want to be a photographer then why not start with just capturing photos using your phone. There are a ton of phones that offer good quality photos just like an iPhone, Samsung, Google Pixel, and more . If you already tried capturing photos using your phone and you are pretty good with that  then how about trying a DSLR camera? 

There are cheap DSLR that you buy from the market. You can try the Nikon D3500 (sold here) for considerably cheaper than a DJI drone. 

How about Canon EOS Rebel t7? It can be found here and has hundreds of reviews that you can browse through to learn about its pros and cons. 

These are cheap but a good quality camera for beginners. So before buying a drone, maybe you could buy one of these. Try using these first and master their functions so it will not be a waste of money in buying a drone. Afterall, far more people need pictures of their family or event with a normal camera than they do with a drone! 

Spending time in learning proper photography first, then editing using Adobe Photoshop. 

I am not trying to discourage you from using a drone. However, if you haven’t mastered the basic principles of photography how are you supposed to handle photography using drones? How are you going to adjust the shutter speed, ISO and aperture? If you don’t understand the basic principles of photography then adding the element of piloting a drone would be a great headache for you. 

Once you have started to get the hang of photography and are starting to get regular clients then buying a drone to take your business to the next level might be a good step for you but buying a drone when starting out probably isn’t your best option. 

Do not buy a drone for video if you don’t know how to edit them

This is almost the same with photography but this time we will discuss videography. Flying drones and taking photos/videos using it is not the end of all the work. Honestly it is only the beginning. 

Most of the work in videography starts after the drone has landed. From importing videos you took while in the air to editing them it can take an extremely long time to go from the raw footage to the finished product. 

Some people buy drones and record videos but do not use those videos in any way besides posting them on social media. That would make using a drone in this way a great waste of time, effort and money. When you do videography using drones, you better know the basics of editing videos so your videos will not simply go to waste.

There is a variety of software that is good for editing videos. For example, Blender is available for Windows, Mac, and Linux. This is free video editing software that you can practice on. It can design 3D animation as well. Others like Lightworks are also great for editing video and they are free. 

What I am saying is that you should start mastering the essentials of video capturing and editing first before buying a drone as the technology continues to advance very quickly so even if you wait a year or so before getting a drone you will find that the drone you can get will be much better. 

After mastering the editing process then buying a drone to capture the footage will not be a waste at all. 

Thinking that owning a drone will make you cool

Drones certainly are cool and owning one can be quite fun. It is one of the most spectacular products and the different abilities of a drone makes using them a unique experience. However, if you think that buying a product will make you cool you are unfortunately mistaken. 

A drone may look cool for a while but not forever. Why? Buying it just to look cool without actually using it according to its purpose is like sweeping the floor in front of a fan. It’s useless.

If you just fly your drone a couple of times to look cool for your friends or family and then just put it in the closet then that is a total waste of money. You are just letting your cash sit in the closet and the value of the drone will go down over time as technology continues to advance. 

Using a drone is an awesome experience and being able to view your house, property or even your entire neighborhood is extremely cool but only using it a couple of times would mean that a drone is certainly a waste of money. 

Danger of drones

Owning and flying a drone is a big responsibility and not something that should be taken lightly. It may look easy and not dangerous but let me tell you something, there is danger in flying drones if you don’t know what you are doing or are not careful. 

Just look at what happened at London’s Gatwick Airport in December 2018. It was reported that the airport was stopped for an entire day because of drones flying over the airfield. It affected 140,000 passengers and more than a hundred flights were canceled. 

Another incident happened in 2017 when there was an aerial drone filming the Golden State Race Series in Rancho Cordova, California. It happened when the drone accidentally crashed into a tree and the drone fell onto the track. It was destroyed however the bad news doesn’t stop there. 

Some fragments from the destroyed drone were caught in front of a cyclist. You can just imagine what happened. It was chaos. Luckily, the cyclist did not have any serious injuries and the owner of the drone promised the cyclist a new wheel and helmet. 

Drones can certainly be dangerous to many people around where you are flying if you do not follow the rules and laws as well as use common sense safety measures.

Conclusion

Flying a drone can be a ton of fun no matter your age and ultimately if you have fun when you are using the drone then it is not a waste of money. However, don’t fool yourself into thinking that buying a drone that costs thousands of dollars is worth it because you are going to start a photo or video business. 

If you really intend to start a business using your drone then you are much better off to begin with an actual camera and then move to drone photos or footage later on once you have an established business. 

Whether a drone is a waste of money or not is really a personal opinion but if you buy a cheaper drone (like this one) that doesn’t cost a fortune then you are likely to appreciate your purchase rather than regret it. 

Matt Robbs

I love to spend time with my wife and 3 kids. There is no better way to get them off the couch and outside than for us to grab the RC cars or boat and enjoy the sunshine!

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