The tech world has been bitten by the drone bug and we want to have our own drones too and no less than the best drones for kids and beginners because we also want to enjoy flying drones with our kids. We know that whatever the grownups play with, the kids want to have their own too. And because kids want to have their own drones, parents want to learn more about this product before buying any drone for their kids.
Drones were first used in the military but today they are gaining popularity not only for recreation but also for various commercial uses. The term “drone” was originally applied to pilotless airplanes used in in the military. Today, the term has become synonymous with any remote-controlled aerial vehicle.
Demand for drones or technically referred to as Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) had soared dramatically that sales of commercial/civilian drones during the holiday season alone in the United States last 2015 was estimated to be 1 million drones.The trend is increasing. BI Intelligence report estimated that the market for commercial/civilian drones will have a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 19% between 2015 and 2020, compared with 5% growth on the military side.
Best Drones for Kids and Beginners 2017
The popularity of drones will help surge sales this 2016 as more people would want to learn this technology. More drones for kids and beginners will be bought as parents will also want to learn to fly their own drones with their kids. The availability of drones below $100 will make it easier for parents to acquire. Below are some of the best drones for kids and beginners you can buy this 2016.
Top Selling Drone for Kids: Syma X5C
We chose Syma X5C as the best drone for kids and beginners because at it’s price of less than $50, it has some decent features that kids and beginners will surely love. Syma X5C is the top selling quadcopter on Amazon with 61% of reviewers giving it 5 stars. At its price point, the Syma X5C is perfect for those who are just starting out with drone flying. This drone has a flight time of 7 minutes with recharging time of 100 minutes. It also comes with a 1280 x 720 pixels camera and a MicroSD slot for storage and a control range of 50 meters.
Most Durable Drone for Kids: UDI U818A
The UDI U818A is one of the most durable quadcopter for beginners in the market. It has bumpers for each rotor which protects the propellers. This quadcopter is likewise easy to repair because of its modular design. The UDI U818A has a flight time of 9 minutes and charging of 120 minutes. This drone comes with a 1280 x 720 pixels camera and a MicroSD slot for storage and a control range of 91 meters.
Best Drone for Kids for Indoor Flying: Hubsan X4 H107C
The Hubsan X4 H107C is one of the smallest and cheapest among the best drones for kids available in the market. Because of its size, this is the best drone for kids to fly indoors especially in tight spaces. Despite its size, the Hubsan X4 is ruggedly built so it can take a beating. The camera isn’t great but kids won’t mind so much because drone flying is already a treat for them. The Hubsan X4 can be charged in 40 minutes for a flight time of 7 minutes.
Best Drone for Young Kids: Cheerson CX-10 Mini Quadcopter
This tiny drone is just about the size of an Oreo cookie and can fit in the palm of your hand. Unlike the previous drones which are recommended for 14-year old kids, the Cheerson X-10 Mini can be flown by kids as young as 8 years old. But of course, you can best assess your kid’s readiness to play with the drone. It also comes in four different colors of orange, blue, green and pink. The Cheerson CX-10 has a charging time of 30 minutes and flying time of 4 minutes at the controlling distance of 20m. This tiny drone packs a few trick under its wings. It has three flight modes and can do flips.
Best Drone for Beginners & Parents: DJI Phantom 3
If you are seriously considering drone flying as a hobby, the DJI Phantom 3 is the best drone for beginners. You may also start with the other drones for kids but you don’t want to compete with kids because you will never win. We always give in, right? The DJI Phantom 3 is more expensive n to the other drones for kids. This drone has a charging time of about 60 minutes, flying time of 25 minutes and controlling range of 1000m. The DJI Phantom 3 is great for beginners who want to take good aerial photos and videos.
Because of the popularity of drones, the Federal Aviation Administrationis trying to regulate its use in order to protect the public. Effective December 21, 2015, the Federal Aviation Administration required anyone who owns a small unmanned aircraft which weigh more than 0.55 lbs. (250 g) and less than 55 lbs. (25 kg) to register online and those weighing more than 55 lbs. must register using the Aircraft Registry process before they fly outdoors.
Hobby drones weighing less than 250g are not required to register with FAA. Most drones for kids fall in this category. However, remember that we are sharing the airspace with other hobbyists including commercial and private passenger aircraft, follow these guidelines suggested by FAA in order to avoid accidents.:
- Fly below 400 feet and remain clear of surrounding obstacles
- Keep the aircraft within visual line of sight at all times
- Remain well clear of and do not interfere with manned aircraft operations
- Don’t fly within 5 miles of an airport unless you contact the airport and control tower before flying
- Avoid flying near people or stadiums
- Don’t be careless or reckless with your unmanned aircraft – you could be fined for endangering people or other aircraft
Different Types of Hobby Drones
You can classify drones as to their use. Drones are used in the military, commercial and as a hobby. Our focus here are hobby drones and drones for kids which are weighing less than 250g . Drones are either single rotor or multi-rotor. A quadcopter is a multirotor with four rotors, a hexacopter is a multi-rotor in six rotors, an octacopter is a multi-rotors with eight rotors, etc.
As a drone buyer, there are things we should remember when buying drones. Not knowing this might cost you money for additional parts.
- Ready-To-Fly (RTF) Drones. As the name suggests, these type of drones are ready to fly off the shelf. They no longer require assembly except perhaps for simple installations such as charging of battery, installation of propellers, connecting the drone with the controller. Most drones for kids and beginners are ready-to-fly drones.
- Bind-And-Fly (BNF) Drones. As your drone piloting skills improve, you might want more challenging drones. Bind-And-Fly drones are usually completely assembled but without a controller. With BNF models, you’ll have to use a separate controller. You may use an old controller but you have to test their compatibility first.
- Almost-Ready-to-Fly (ARF) Drones. ARF drones are referred to as Do-It-Yourself (DIY) Drone Kits. ARF drone kit usually don’t come with a transmitter or receiver and might require partial assembly. An ARF drone kit might also leave out components like motors, flight controller and battery. Read the description thoroughly to make sure what components are not included.
Drones Safety for Kids
Just like anything that we let our kids handle, we must first ensure the safety of drones for kids. Always read the package for the suggested age of kids who can play with the drone. Toy drones have small moving parts such as the blades which can be dangerous if handled by young kids. These can be a choking hazard or can cause injury.
As parents, the safety of our kids is our utmost responsibility so we should make sure that whatever toys that we let them play with should be age appropriate. Not to mention that we should closely supervise them when playing with drones.
If flying outdoors, it is our responsibility to make sure the kids are flying their drones at suitable areas and following the safety guidelines of FAA. Whiever drone you decide to buy, make safety of kids and everyone else your top priority.
How Kids & Parents Can Enjoy Flying Drones
Kids can play with drones indoor or outdoor and flying drones can be a nice way to encourage kids to play outdoors. Consider it what flying kites was like for us. It can be a fun learning experience for kids but always make sure to supervise your kids’ drone flying activities especially outdoors.
If you are confident with your piloting skills, you can buy a DIY drone kit to assemble with your kid. Drones are like flying robots so it’s a good way to introduce coding and robotics to kids.
Flying also involves some basic knowledge of the weather and parameters like wind speed and direction so it’s a good way to teach kids on basic meteorology.
Most drones even those for kids and beginners come with built-in cameras. Flying drones can be a great way for kids to learn aerial photography and videography skills.
Things to Consider Before Buying a Drone for Kids
As parents, we are the crash test dummies for our kids. If it didn’t pass our screening, no kid of ours will have it. Drones are rather expensive toys so we also have to get the best value for our money.
As parents who is planning to buy a drone for kids and beginners, here are the factors we considered before buying our first drone.
The flight time of a drone is the time stays in the air on a single battery charge. Most drones for kids and beginners have flying time between 5-10minutes. More expensive drones have longer flight time. Charging time varies from 45 – 90 minutes.
It is advisable to buy extra batteries so that you can enjoy flyinig your drone longer. If you are flying indoors this isn’t much of a concern since you can easily charge your drone. However, if you want to fly outdoors and take awesome aerial footages, then extra batteries is a must.
Flying drones can be fun without the camera but having one with a camera doubles the fun. A camera would really add excitement to the kids so they can experience taking aerial footages. Quadcopters used for cinematography can have interchangeable camera so you can use the best action camera you have. However, drones for beginners often comes with its own camera which may not be high definition. If it’s used by kids, I’m sure they won’t complain so much.
Controlling distance is the range of your control over your drone. The greater the control range distance, the farther you can fly your drone.
If you are just starting out, you should choose a drone designed for kids or beginners. These drones are usually cheaper so you don’t waste so much money while learning to fly a drone. Work your way up to more sophisticated drones as your skills improve.
If you want to buy drones for kids or beginners, you should be concerned with the price because you don’t want to waste precious money everytime you crash your drone. It’s better to start with the inexpensive drones first and there are a lot of choices with some below $50.
The popularity of drones will make it one of the top holiday gifts for kids and hobbyists. Flying drones can be a good way to encourage kids to spend time outdoors. Parents should always supervise their kids to make sure they comply with government regulations. Drone technology is changing so fast and there are new drones with new features every year.