Drones produce some of the most stunning photography and videography out there. As hobbyists express an increased interest in flying their own drones, these airborne machines have become much more accessible in recent years. While there are certainly drones on the market with four-figure price tags, it’s also possible to buy a drone with solid specs for under $300. And with Amazon Prime Day deals available right now, you’ll be able to score savings on whichever drone you have your eye on at this very moment. Head below for a collection of the best Prime Day drone deals available plus buying advice that will especially come in handy for rookie pilots.
For more outdoor sales this Amazon Prime Day, have a look at the best Prime Day fishing deals and the best Prime Day camping deals. If you’re seeking a high-tech way to get around on the ground, we also have some of the best Prime Day electric bike deals for you to browse.
If you want a new drone to bring along on your summer adventures, it’s worth taking advantage of today’s Prime Day drone sales. Drones, like most other tech items and gadgets, see significant markdowns on major shopping holidays like Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and yes, Prime Day. Last year’s Prime Day drone deals were dominated by DJI, which is a market leader in the space. That’s shaping up to be the case this year, as well, although you’ll also find offers for brands like Snaptain and Holy Stone.
Prime Day deals are for Amazon Prime members only. If you don’t have a Prime subscription, you’re shut out from these offers — but not entirely. Since the first Prime Day in 2015, major retailers like Best Buy and Walmart have led a wave of competing sales to give Amazon a run for its money. Unlike Amazon’s Prime Day deals, these concurrent sales are open to the general public. Of course, buying from Best Buy or Walmart means there’s more competition for the items you want, so you’ll have to act quickly.
For drone hobbyists, there’s no need to apply for a license. However, you will have to register your unmanned aerial vehicle with the FAA and be aware of the current flying rules.
When it comes to choosing the right drone, there are several factors to consider. First, your experience — is this your first time piloting a drone, or have you been doing this for years? This also influences the next factor: cost. Rookie pilots, especially, should not expect to shell out thousands of dollars for an expert or commercial-grade drone. In fact, most casual drone pilots can find something suitable in the $150 to $700 range. To break that down even further, it’s entirely possible to purchase a full-featured craft for less than $300. If you’re on a slim budget and don’t need anything too complicated or sophisticated, you can find a well-built drone with decent features for under $100.
Speaking of features, you’ll want to pay close attention to camera quality. For most drone pilots, a camera with a 60 fps refresh rate and 1080p resolution will be sufficient for video and photo capture. Drones with 4K cameras will undoubtedly produce breathtaking visuals; fortunately, there are 4K drones out there that won’t totally bleed your wallet dry. Other features to consider include speed and range (if you intend to race your drone), operating time (if you want to fly your drone during a hike or bike ride), and accessories (like spare parts in case of a crash).
For beginners, the Snaptain SP600 is a great choice. It’s super easy to fly with an operating time of up to 30 minutes. Sure, it lacks the bells and whistles of more expensive models, and it only has a 720p camera. However, the Snaptain SP600 still has plenty of tricks up its sleeve: gesture/voice control, three speeds, a six-axis gyroscope for mid-air stability, and one key return.
Intermediate pilots (and beginners with more money to spend) will want to check out the DJI Mini 2. Weighing as much as a smartphone, this ultra-light aircraft snaps 12-megapixel photos, records 4K video, and has a 4x digital zoom so it can capture everything you want clearly from high above. As an added bonus, the DJI Mini 2 doesn’t need to be registered with the United States or the Canadian government.
Pro-level fliers would be well-suited for the DJI Phantom 4 Pro V2.0. It carries a heavy price tag and is quite bulky, but it’s absolutely feature-loaded. With a three-axis motorized gimbal, 1-inch 20-megapixel CMOS sensor, and 4K video, this premium DJI drone will allow you to capture the most stunning aerial imagery. The Phantom 4 Pro V2.0 also has a smartphone holder, a max speed of 45 mph, and Draw mode, which enables you to control your flight path with a fixed altitude by creating a route on the screen.
These are just some of our top recommendations. Browse today’s Prime Day drone sales while keeping your budget and level of experience in mind. You’re bound to find a fantastic deal on a drone that’s right for you.