Maldives - Long Beach at Sunrise - wide drone view
Tips & Tricks

5 serious reasons not to buy a drone

So you were thinking of buying a new drone, right? Well, the purpose of this article is not to discourage you from buying a drone, but rather to compare the pros and cons. A drone is a great tool for photographers, which gives you the opportunity to take truly unique pictures. And from a perspective that no one has captured yet. These are huge benefits. And with this vision, I bought a Mavic Air Combo about 2 years ago. At first, I was excited, but I sobered up relatively quickly. I found out that shooting with a drone is not for everyone. And unfortunately (or fortunately?) I belong to this group. And because buying a decent drone is not a negligible amount of money, I want to share my impressions with you. If you agree with the following reasons, you really should consider saving money on something more necessary. 

5 serious reasons not to buy a drone – contents:

Incredible Drone shot of Maldives beach during sunset
Kuredu Island - Maldives

Flying a drone is often stressful

Why? Most drones are very loud. In the field, this means that people can hear you from a great distance. And since the sound of a drone might often be annoying, they can easily turn their anger on you. But even if you are alone somewhere in nature, it disturbs the beautiful silence.

Since the battery does not last long and the signal often drops out (do not trust the seller that the range is as declared), even if the drone is only a few hundred meters away from you, it is an unpleasant combination. Not to mention that the drone is dangerous for the birds! I have my own experience when there was not even a bird in the sky, and as soon as I took off with the drone into the air to a height of about 100m, a flock of birds flew by the drone and started attacking it. You can actually injure or even kill a bird with a drone.

It is also necessary to update the software for flying with a drone frequently. And if you forget, you may have a problem in the mountains. And maybe, in the end, you won’t even take off. I have a lot of friends with drones, and they have similar troubles as me.

Strict restrictions for flying drones

Drone flying is discussed in the media all the time. In the beginning, there were very few restrictions, but at the moment drone flying is forbidden in many places, and mostly in the interesting ones (at least in Europe). Speaking of my homeland, the Czech Republic, flying a drone is a problem almost everywhere. You cannot fly in national parks, over private property and land, over people and you must not lose sight of the drone.

At the same time, from 1 January 2021, every drone over 250 grams (which is every decent drone) must register and pass the online test. Otherwise, you can get an astronomically high fine (applies to the whole EU). And everything is more complicated if you want to use the drone for commercial purposes. Of course, the situation varies from continent to continent and country to country. In any case, I recommend studying this information in advance. Take a look at European regulations.

Maldives - Long Beach at Sunrise
Maldives Sunrise

Drone is a noticeable extra weight for hikes

It doesn’t seem like that, but if you go on longer hikes in the mountains, the drone with spare batteries and remote control is about 1 – 2 kg extra weight. When you also take a camera with accessories with you (and you certainly will), it’s quite heavy together. Even 5 kg. And I didn’t even mention the tripod. Then it can be about 8 kg. I don’t think I’m in bad physical shape. But when you’re on your feet for 10 hours a day for more days in a row, it’s not … Great 🙂

Decision making and less concentration with drone

This is probably the worst of all. Imagine that you arrive somewhere during sunset or sunrise. There is simply no time for you to photograph the scene with a camera and a drone at the same time. You have to choose, and if you go for both – the drone and a camera, you will be in a rush and concentrate less. Just more stress again. You set something wrong on the camera, forget the filter, and so on. None of those photos may be as you imagined then. And that can upset one. Hike often takes you longer than you planned and you can’t keep up.

You can easily destroy or lose the drone

Yes, today’s drones are equipped with sensors so that they do not run into obstacles. They should also return to where they took off if they run out of batteries. Does that mean everything is safe? I’ll tell you a story. A year and a few months back I was on a trip to a quarry when I wanted to take a picture of it from above. I reached the quarry and released the drone into the air. I took the photo, but my battery ran out and the drone wanted to return to me, but he couldn’t. Why? Thanks to these sensors – I was hidden among the tall trees. And because the sun was shining brightly, I didn’t see it. I couldn’t help it with the navigation. The battery ran out and the drone began to descend into the quarry, where there was a pond at the bottom. Fortunately, I noticed that there is also a small island. I managed to direct the drone to land right there. But then I had to get off the rock and cross the lake to get to the drone and save it… Yep, it was a great adventure! 😅

I’m still going for the drone– which drone is best to buy?

You can create amazing content with a drone, there is no doubt about that (Thank God I took it with me to the Maldives …). I just wanted to point out things that may not be clear to everyone at first. Because then you can end up as in my case – you will quickly stop using the drone. Or you fly into the air twice a year. And then it doesn’t have to be worth it. But if you are sure that this is not your case, I will definitely recommend the latest DJI Mavic Air 2. If you are more demanding and really want a professional machine, choose DJI Mavic Pro 2. Get the Combo variant with 3 batteries and other accessories. Saving those few dollars is not worth it. Even those 3 batteries are often not enough … 😃

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