Since you’re a beginner, it’s important to know that when searching for a new drone you probably will run into a lot of unreliable products in your search. The products listed below have been thoroughly researched by our staff and we only include the most trusted brands and high-quality products in our lists.
Table of Contents
- #1 Editor’s Choice – Beginner Drone with GPS Options
- Best Drone for Young Pilots – Easy-to-Fly Beginner Drone
When looking for a new drone, we recommend brands like DJI or if you’re looking for something on a budget, Altair Aerial. Altair is a Trusted, US-Based Drone Retailer that provides high-quality products and excellent customer service!
Beginner Drone Reviews
The following drones have been selected for their durability, feature set, and other factors described in each individual review. Take a look around and see if you can find the best drone for beginners that suits your needs!
#1. AA300 Drone – Editor’s Choice!! Best Beginner GPS Drone
The AA300 Beginner GPS Drone is our #1 pick for this summer! This drone is a solid beginner drone because of its GPS features that help pilots have controlled and stable flights.
GPS mode unlocks features like automatic return-to-home which will bring the drone back to where it took off if the battery is low or it loses signal. That way beginners don’t have to stress about losing their drone in a tree.
There’s also a 1080p built-in camera that can be used for photography or FPV flying. FPV is immersive and fun for new pilots to experience.
We have to mention the customer service you receive from Altair when you buy the AA300. They will answer any of your questions throughout the whole buying process.
#2. Altair Falcon with AHP – Easy to Fly Drone
The Altair Falcon is one of Altair’s latest releases and is the most beginner-friendly drone to date.
It comes with an Autonomous Hovering & Positioning System (AHP) which makes it easy for new pilots to get in the air and control their drone. It holds the drone’s altitude no matter what, even if your hands come off the controller.
There is also a long battery life of 30 minutes to give beginners all the practice time they need to perfect their flight skills.
Cameras are fun to test out on drones too and it’s exciting for beginners to take aerial photos and videos and see the world from the sky.
Altair is a trusted American brand with great customer service and they will help anyone who’s just starting to feel confident getting into the air and flying.
Check out this video of the Altair Falcon:
#3. 818 Hornet Plus – 2nd Easiest to Fly
Another great beginner drone is the 818 Hornet. It’s easy to fly and great for kids too.
It helps new pilots stay in the air with its flight features such as altitude hold and one-touch takeoff and landing. Beginners can stay in control and not have to worry about the tough part of landing a drone.
It comes with an attachable 720p camera as well. When a new pilot is ready to try drone photography, they can attach the camera to take photos and videos.
Plus, it’s long battery life will allow any new user to fly and explore as long as they need to for up to 30 minutes at a time.
And if you run into any questions as you’re getting started, Altair’s trusted customer service will be there to help you.
#4. Altair Outlaw SE – Best Mid-Range Beginner Drone
The Outlaw SE is a great beginner drone that comes with professional-like features. If you’re wanting a drone that you can grow with and challenge yourself, this is definitely for you.
It comes with GPS features that allow for automatic return-to-home and follow-me mode. Follow-Me mode is a fun way to fly and watch the drone follow you.
There is a long battery life of 20 minutes which gives you a lot of time to practice perfecting your flight skills. Also, the flight range is 600 meters which may seem far as you’re starting out, but you’ll love exploring once you get the hang of flying.
If you have any questions about your Outlaw SE, Altair’s trusted customer service will help you with whatever you need.
#5. AA108 Beginner Drone
The AA108 is a great indoor option for beginner pilots.
It’s small making it less intimidating than a larger drone and comes with beginner-friendly flight features like altitude hold and one-key takeoff and landing.
This drone has three skill levels too so beginners are able to start off slow and easy and then they can move to the more advanced modes as they improve on their flight skills.
Plus, beginners will have fun trying out the AA108’s 720p camera for taking live video and photos. It’s fun for new pilots to experience drone photography for the first time.
When you buy from a trusted company like Altair, you can guarantee you’ll be taken care of throughout the whole buying experience.
#6. Holy Stone HS170 Predator
At less than $40 USD you’re getting a good range and performance as well as three flight modes that are specifically designed to help train new pilots. Plus, it has a very unique and stylish design that kids and adults will love!
#7. Syma X5C-1 Explorers
You read that right – this drone is called the “Explorers”, not the “Explorer.” If your number 1 concern with buying a new drone is durability, this is the choice for you. Don’t be fooled by the smaller prop guards – every piece of this drone is made with a tough, anti-collision design that can really take a beating under most conditions. It’s a shame the other features aren’t quite as impressive as the design itself, but for only $70 this is still a good drone.
#8. DJI Spark
So, here’s the thing about the DJI Spark. This is a good rc drone for beginners if two things are true about you: 1) you have a lot of money to spare and 2) you don’t actually want to learn to fly. With advanced Gesture Mode features and other automated flight modes, this drone truly flies itself and takes great photos and video while it does so. But it may not be the best choice for pilots who actually want to learn to fly for themselves.
#9. Parrot Bebop 2
The Parrot Bebop 2 is an advanced consumer quadcopter designed for FPV photography and videography, but it’s easy enough for any beginner pilot to pick up and fly without much difficulty. Its intelligent flight assistance means that, to a certain extent, the drone flies itself and doesn’t require much input from the user. If you want to start your drone journey with one of the best mid-range rc drones for beginners on the market, look no further!
#10. Parrot Anafi – Best High-End Beginner Drone
If you’re looking to get into the world of professional drone photography, or simply have the money to spend on the highest end of the prosumer market, this quadcopter is for you. Though the Parrot Anafi is a somewhat easy drone to fly, we do not recommend it for all beginners, particularly those who feel they might regret the hefty price tag after the fact.
Still, this is a great beginner drones for adults, as opposed to the less costly options which (other than the Altair models) are generally designed to work as beginner drones for kids.
When looking for high-end drones, there really is no better choice than the 2018 Parrot Anafi. This great drone comes with everything you could want from a professional camera drone at a relatively inexpensive price of $700 USD, and it’s extremely easy to fly (especially since they patched the software bugs that were present at launch.) Plus, for our money, the Anafi still has the best HDR features on the market.
Read our full review of the Parrot Anafi here!
#11. DJI Mavic Pro
You may have already heard of the DJI Mavic 2, widely considered the best flying camera on the consumer market. But if the Mavic 2 is such a remarkable piece of hardware (and it is), why are we recommending the older DJI Mavic Pro 1?
Well, the Mavic 2 is designed for truly advanced fliers, overwhelming users with dozens of settings and features to choose from. The Mavic Pro is a simpler, more elegant design that was actually created (in part) to appeal to beginners, and is overall much easier to fly.
This is the best choice for beginner drone pilots who are looking for the best high-end model available!
#12. Yuneec Typhoon H Pro
Most high-end new pilot drones tend to be of the portable, foldable variety we’ve shown you above. But if you’re looking for something bigger, consider the Yuneec Typhoon H, a Phantom competitor (and in many ways, superior) that’s carried through the air by 8 powerful propellers. Yuneec’s emphasis on usability and 8 autonomous flight modes make the Typhoon H extremely easy for anyone to fly, including those looking for a good beginner drone.
Finding a starter or entry level drone can be a big project because there’s so many drones out there. Let’s take a look at some of the pros and cons of beginner drones.
Beginner Drone Pros & Cons
Beginner drones have a lot to offer, but they aren’t the best choice for everyone. Obviously if you have some experience flying you may want to upgrade to a higher quality or longer flying product.
These are the benefits to starting with a beginner drone:
1. Enjoyment without worrying about a crash. When you spend less money on an entry level drone rather than paying up for a high quality drone right away, you have less stress when flying and can enjoy it a little more. Most of these drones are built to survive a crash because they are “beginner” level. This makes for an all around better learning esperience. You don’t want to start flying with a $1000 drone, it’s going to be crazy stressful!
2. Give yourself an edge when it comes to control. Expensive drones make it seem like it’s super easy to fly a quadcopter. It’s better to start out with a low cost drone that is a bit harder to fly properly due to the low cost nature of it’s development. This means you HAVE to learn how to FLY BETTER. Later on, when you upgrade, you’ll be grateful you started out with a low cost drone that’s a little bit harder to fly.
3. You do get to practice your photography skills, although the photos are lower quality. For the price, these beginner drones at least give you a chance to get up in the air and take some photos and video. I wouldn’t suggest dropping big money on a drone because you “think” you like taking pics in the air, you should test it out first.
4. These drones are the perfect STEM introduction for kids. Science, Technology, Engineering and Math or STEM is all the rage in education these days. Sometimes it can be hard though to get your kids up off the couch and outdoors. With drones, you almost HAVE to fly outside so it’s a super simple way to get your kids 1. interested in STEM and 2. outside!
5. Low Cost – This is a no brainer. Most beginner drones are going to be low cost. Although cost is relative, you’re still going to spend between $75 and $200 on a beginner drone, which may not be your idea of “low cost”.
6. Flying Indoors – Most expensive professional level drones are meant to be flown outdoors. This can be a problem in the winter when you don’t want to go fly outside in the cold. There are a couple drones on our beginner list that are meant to be flown indoors and fly better indoors. This gives you the option to fly your drone no matter what the weather is doing outside
Here are some of the drawbacks of beginner drones, because they aren’t always all smiles. Sometimes you’re going to have a problem with the manufacturing or the quality of the product. In these cases you better hope you purchased from a reputable american based seller so you can get some customer service.
1. You are going to get what you pay for. If you spend 30$ on a drone, don’t expect it to last long or fly well. Even the lowest cost beginner drones start around $75 for anything with any sort of solid quality.
2. Find an AMERICAN brand, I can’t get behind this point enough. When shopping for a beginner drone make sure you look at the amazon listing and see if you can tell if the product is being sold by a Chinese company. If you can, avoid these companies because they provide virtually no after sale service. I have had Chinese companies call me at home using the phone number they got from my amazon purchase in order to demand that I leave a positive review on their product. I’ve never had that problem when purchasing from an American seller on Amazon.
3. Repairs are another problem. Most beginner drones don’t have a lot of support for repairing or replacing broken parts. The injection molded plastic parts don’t typically come apart very easily and if you crash and break something you may not be able to fix it.
4. Wind & Weather are a problem for most beginner style quadcopters. You’re going to struggle to get these drones to respond well in any type of weather. Beginner drones and wind or rain do NOT get along. These drones are built to be low cost, introductory models so they can get as many people into flying as possible. They’re not built to withstand much wind though, so be careful when flying that your drone doesn’t get caught in the wind and carried away.
5. Low quality photography is another issue with these types of quads. If you’re seeking a drone that’s going to take high quality, non blurry video, then beginner drones might not be your best bet. You can take “good” video and photography with beginner drones, but it’s not going to look like a photo you take with your smartphone. It’s going to have a bit of a grainy quality too it and the video FPS is limited as well. This is a trade off you’re going to have to make if you don’t want to spend upwards of $1000 on a drone.
6. Starter drones also have long battery charging time. You’ll have to leave your drone batteries charging much longer than you would on an expensive drone. Some charging times are up to 5 hours. However this is the trade off you make in order to save money on your drone purchase.
Altogether we believe entry level drones cover a good segment of the market. Some people want to get a chance to fly a drone but they don’t want to break the bank when making a drone purchase. Let’s take a look at some questions that we have found that might interest people who are looking for their first drone.
How do you fly a drone? Frequently Asked Questions for Beginner Drone Pilots
The number one question beginners ask us is how to fly drones. The good news is that many of the drones on this list will practically fly themselves thanks to a number of automatic stabilization modes like heading and altitude hold. All you have to worry about is the analog sticks.
If you’ve ever played a videogame using a controller, you’ll feel right at home with a drone. In a similar fashion, the left stick generally lets you turn in the air and move up and down, while the right stick is what you actually use to move horizontally. Any drone will come with a manual telling you how to use it, and if you have an open field to practice in you’ll be able to figure out the basics fairly quickly without having to worry about crashes.
The best beginner drones also come with ease-of-use features that let you only have to worry about a few aspects of flying at a time, such as Headless mode.
How high can a drone fly?
The maximum legal height to fly a drone in the United States (and most other countries that have regulations in place) is 400 feet. Most drones fly somewhere between 100 to 400 feet in the air in compliance with this rule.
How long can a drone fly?
Because of the weight requirements for the battery, most drones can only fly for 8 to 25 minutes. Many beginner drone pilots are surprised at the fact that most drones don’t fly very long. This is why most of us seasoned drone enthusiasts buy extra batteries whenever we pick up a new drone!
How far can a drone go?
Most drones have an effective flight range of 100 to 4000 meters. High-end drones can have a much farther range – the Yuneec Typhoon H Pro, for example, boasts a 10 kilometer flight range!
Do drones have cameras?
The best starter drones – now come with cameras as a standard feature. This camera is usually controlled with a seperate app on a mobile device, but some drones (like the Altair Aerial Outlaw) let you take pictures and video with a button on the controller itself.
What is an FPV camera?
“FPV” stands for “first person view” or “first-person video.” This means that a camera on a drone is mounted in such a way that it can stream live video footage that makes it look like you’re seeing from the drone’s perspective. This stream is usually viewed on a seperate mobile device and makes it much easier to line up photography and videography shots.
What is a good drone for beginners?
When buying an intro drone, you want to look for the following specifications:
High durability. As a beginner, YOU ARE GOING TO CRASH. This is a natural and normal part of the learning process – we’d be lying if we said there was a single member of our team that didn’t crash their first drone dozens of times. With that in mind, you need a drone that can withstand those first few crashes and last long enough for you to figure out how to fly properly.
User-friendly controls. Features like altitude hold mode, heading hold, and slower flight speeds will make the drone easier to control and therefore better for learning. The best drones for beginners let you turn these features off, one by one, so that you can work your way up to more advanced piloting techniques.
Safety features. A good beginner drone will land itself when the battery’s running out, for example.
Price. This one is obvious. Don’t spend thousands of dollars on a drone you might not be able to fly properly!
Battery life and range. These are good things to look for with any drone. Remember that the battery life is probably going to be shorter than you’d expect – 15 minutes is considered very good for a beginner drone, while 20+ minutes is all but unheard-of.
Where can I find entry level drones for sale?
Most people either buy drones on Amazon or directly from the manufacturer. Sometimes entry level drone manufacturers’ websites will offer special benefits for buying through them – Altair Aerial, for example, offers free shipping. Some of the best beginner drones can also be found at physical storefronts that sell consumer electronics.
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How much does a decent drone cost? How much is a drone with a camera?
In the modern age, you can find good drones at reasonable prices – sometimes as low as $40 to $60. But these drones may have limited functionality and are often made of cheaper parts. A good, long-lasting beginner drone typically costs between $100-$300. Mid-range drones can go up to $600, while high-end consumer drones will often cost $1000 or more.
Cameras are now standard on almost all beginner drones, so you don’t have to worry about paying extra for that feature.
Do you need a license to fly a drone?
Typically, you will not need a license to fly a beginner drone. In America, you usually only need to register a drone if you’re using it for a commercial purpose or if it weighs over 55 pounds. However, laws vary by state and even more by country, so we strongly recommend you look up the laws in your area to see if you need a license to fly a drone.
What are the best starter drones for photography?
The AA818 Hornet is probably the best entry level drone for photography on the market, but you can’t go wrong with basically anything that has a 720p HD camera or better.
Can I find beginner drones with an HD camera?
As a matter of fact, most rc drones now come with HD cameras – even those designed to be beginner drones for kids! Every vehicle we’ve mentioned on this list has an HD camera of at least 720p resolution, and the high-end models now come with 4K video and 12 Megapixel still image capability as standard.
Are there good beginner drones with GPS?
Actually, yes! It didn’t quite make our final top 5, but the Outlaw is a great new drone that’s really easy for beginners to fly and which has advanced GPS features. It lacks the durability of some of the other drones on this list and has to be calibrated each time you fly, but if what you really want in your first drone is some innovative GPS-based functionality it’s an excellent choice.
What’s the best drone for children who haven’t flown before?
Kids will probably get the most out of one of the inexpensive models listed in the first section of the article – an Altair Falcon or AA818 Hornet would be best, or possibly the Holy Stone Predator. Note that even the easiest to fly drones for kids are generally not recommended for those under the age of 14.
What’s the best entry level drone for adults?
If you’re looking for a budget option, the best introductory drone for adults is most likely the Altair Aerial Tomahawk, which is easy to fly but still comes with many high-quality features, especially if you choose to upgrade the HD camera.
For the VERY best beginner drones for adults, of course, you’ll have to look to the high-end models like the Parrot Anafi or the Yuneec Typhoon. These come with many high-tech features, but are often too expensive for even adult beginners to justify buying.
Finding The Best Drones For Beginners – Which Drone Is Best?
We hope this article has helped you find some of the best drones for beginners 2019. If you have a question about one of our reviews, or think you know of a best beginner drone that we missed, be sure to let us know in the comments! Your feedback helps us to keep our articles regularly updated with the best and most accurate information we can.