A lot goes into flying a drone like a pro, that’s why we’ve collated 11 expert drone-flying tips that will have you mastering the art of drone flying in no time!
1. Take a crash course
This is one of the fastest ways to get yourself up to speed. If you’re a complete novice and want to advance your skills as quickly as possible, getting an experienced pilot to teach you the tricks of the trade is probably the best way to do this. As drones can be so complex, it’s not that easy to pick up yourself, especially when the smallest error could result in permanent damage.
Not everyone has the luxury of having a pro-drone pilot in their address book, but there are plenty of courses available all over the country. So, get ready to learn!
2. Watch how-to videos
If you’d rather get clued-in on drone know-how from the comfort of your own home, there are plenty of instructional videos on YouTube to get you started. Having visual aids alongside the advice is a lot more helpful than just reading an article.
Here are a few we liked to get you started:
3. Use a drone landing pad
Landing your drone is one of the trickier aspects of drone-piloting – it doesn’t take a genius to work out what could happen if it goes wrong. Which is why the next of our drone-flying tips is to use landing targets while you practise the crucial descent.
Landing pads help improve your landing precision by having something to aim for. Find an open space, place the markers on the ground and practise flying from one marker to another and landing on each one. Do this enough times and you’ll be flawlessly landing on each one in no time!
4. Be wary of the wind
Most drone crashes that happen are a result of wind. If you check the forecast and notice that strong winds are set to hit, we recommend shelving your drone for that day and watching those tutorial videos instead!
That said, wind isn’t always forecast and can catch you off-guard on what you thought was going to be a clear day. If this happens, try and fight the wind by pushing against it. However, this is challenging even for the most experienced pilot, so if in doubt land your drone as soon as it’s safe to do so.
5. Don’t run before you can walk
First things first: master the basics by keeping the controls simple. Up, down, left and right is (obviously) where you want to start. Trying to do advanced tricks or techniques before you perfect these has “drone crash” written all over it!
6. If your drone has GPS mode, use it!
Drones that are at the more expensive end of the spectrum usually come with a GPS mode. This does one of two things: the first is that it will pinpoint exactly where your drone is – ideal if you’ve taken a picture or video and want to pinpoint on a map where it was taken.
The second is that if you take your hands off the controller, the copter will balance itself. This is perfect if you’re mastering your drone-flying skills – if you’re practising something and it goes wrong, GPS mode can counteract this. Obviously, there’s a limit to how much is can correct…
7. Persevere with hovering
Surprisingly, one of the trickiest parts to flying a drone is just keeping it still in the air – especially if there’s a breeze. Once you master this key skill, not only will you have better control over your copter, but you’ll also be able to take better videos and pictures. Such a simple skill can really achieve a lot!
8. Learn how to crash (hear us out…)
Crashing your drone is an unfortunate reality of being a drone pilot. So, it’s definitely a good idea to learn what to do when your drone crashes to cause as little damage as possible.
When your drone does have a collision, turn off the throttle as quickly as possible. This stops the rotors from spinning, and there’ll be less of a chance of the blades getting damaged in the process.
9. Practise makes perfect
You hear this phrase time and time again – but that’s only because of how true it is! Just like any other skill, honing your drone-piloting takes a lot of time and persistence.
Start a flight log to track your flights and set up different days and times each week that are dedicated to building, and perfecting, your skills. Before you know it, you’ll be flying like a pro and your perseverance will have paid off!
10. Keep spares on hand
As we mentioned earlier, crashes happen to even the most veteran of pilots. When things start to go south, your drone’s propellers are usually the first to suffer the consequences. If your rotors do take a beating, having spares means you don’t have to call it a day and miss out on that perfect sunset shot!
11. Always check and obey the law
You could be the best drone pilot in the world, but if you don’t obey the law you could end up in a lot of trouble – you don’t want to be the person who’s in the news for flying into a plane’s flight path! So, put aside some extra time to familiarise yourself with the airspace regulations of the UK.
Do you have any pro flying tips you’d like to share? We’d love to hear them in the comments below!