5 Drones Under $400
If you’re like me, you’re finalizing your holiday shopping list. Given the popularity of drones, there’s probably someone on your list who has a a drone at the top of their wish list. Before selecting a drone there are a few things you and your lucky gift recipient should know before the drone is air born for the first time.
- The FAA requires registration of all drones over .55 pounds and under 55 pounds. The process to register a drone is easy. It costs $5.00 per drone and takes only a few minutes. Simply go to the FAA website to complete the registration process. Registration must be completed by the owner within 30 days.
- Make sure your gift recipient understands the safety guidelines for recreational drone users. Having a safety mindset is of the utmost importance when operating a drone. Take a few minutes to review the Know Before You Fly website for important information and share the information with the person who will be receiving the drone.
- Download the B4UFLY App. Encourage your recipient to download the FAA B4UFLY app to their smartphone. The app is available in both the Google Play Store and iOS App Store. The app helps the drone operator determine whether there are any restrictions in effect at the location where they want to fly.
As you review the list of drone suggestions, you may want to consider adding a few accessories and safety items in the gift package. The following items are on the top of my list:
- Extra propellers. Propellers are critical to the operation of a drone. Trust me, a new user will appreciate having an extra set of propellers available after the first crash.
- Propeller guards. The simple explanation is safety, safety, safety.
- Extra battery. The small, less expensive drones tend to have a short battery life, as little at 5 minutes. Including extra batteries is a smart buy.
- Carry case. More than likely, flights will take place at a location other than the back yard. Having a carry case makes it easy to transport and minimizes the risk of damage to the drone.
Below are the Women and Drones team top picks for beginner drone enthusiasts. All are drones listed are under $400.
Retails for about $399
What we like about the Yuneec Breeze:
- It’s compact
- Lightweight – weighs under 1 pound
- Has a stunning 4K Ultra High Definition camera
- Safe for indoor flying
- Easy to capture photos and videos and post to social media
Hubsan X4 Brushless FPV Quad
Retails for about $299
What we like about this Hubsan Quad:
- The 6-axis flight control system keeps the unit stable in flight
- Has a built in “follow me” function
- Great video quality
UDI U818A Quadcopter
Retails for about $59
What we like about the UDI Quadcopter:
- Low price makes it a great starter drone
- Does flips at the push of one button
- Ready to fly right out of the box
Hover Shot FPV Camera Drone
Retails for about $99
What we like about the Hover Shot FPV:
- Altitude hold. It takes the guess work out of exact positioning
- It’s compact
- Easy to fly
- 720FPV camera
Sky Viper Video Drone
Retails for about $89
What we like about the Sky Viper:
- Upgraded 120-Degree Wide Angle Camera Lens
- Stream 720p at 20 FPS (frames per second
- Light weight
- Auto hover function