Things Nobody Tells You About Being a Drone Pilot

Whether you’re flying for fun or working for clients, every day as a drone pilot is different from the last. This industry is full of surprises. Here a few things that nobody tells you before you get started.

Aerial photography is only the beginning

Plenty of photography enthusiasts get into flying because it’s a logical step. Once you’ve mastered capturing images and videos from the ground, why not take it to the skies?

But aerial photography is only the beginning; few new pilots realize how many applications for drone technology there are. Beyond the creative industries, markets are evolving for commercial drone services in real estate, infrastructure inspection, construction, agriculture and more.

You’re hooked for the long-term

For the majority of pilots, flying isn’t something you try once and forget about. New drone pilots are at the start of a long journey in what’s an emerging technology space.

That means you’ll always be on the lookout for useful accessories, software and, of course, all of the latest drone releases.

You might be driven by the search for that perfect shot, you might just want to work at the cutting edge. Either way, once you’re in, you’re in for the long haul.

The stigma

Part of working with cutting-edge technology is that there are more people out there who don’t understand it than do. That explains why there are plenty of misconceptions about drones and their pilots.

Whether you’re flying for fun or for a client, you should always be ready to talk to the public about what you’re doing and why you’re doing it. Most people are simply curious, but some will always be uncomfortable with the idea of you flying an eye in the sky.

Your best bet is to educate people where possible, and make sure you know where you stand with regards to the legality of your flight at all times.

Which brings us to…

There are rules

It shouldn’t really come as a surprise that there are evolving regulations that govern pilots working in the drone industry.

There are rules in place that cover speed, altitude, where and when you can fly, just to name a few of the parameters. Whatever the reason for your flight, make sure you are familiar with the FAA’s latest regulations.

Commercial pilots need to comply with the Part 107 ruling, and it behooves them to stay up-to-date with the newest changes, such as LAANC integrations, BVLOS changes, and more.

Flying is getting easier

One of the most exciting aspects of working in the drone industry is that every year new advancements are brought to the table. Innovation is relentless, from DJI’s nonstop new hardware to our own progress in the field of augmented reality.

The biggest impact these advances have had is to lower the bar of entry for pilots. Today’s drones are increasingly sophisticated. Many can sense and avoid obstacles, hover with incredible precision and perform complicated maneuvres with the touch of a button. So it’s easier than ever for companies to adopt the technology and discover how drones can be harnessed to help their business.

Think you’ve got what it takes to take your hobby to the next level? Sign up as a DroneBase pilot today and earn while you fly.

Malek Murison

Malek Murison is a freelance tech journalist working closely with clients in the drone industry.

One thought on “Things Nobody Tells You About Being a Drone Pilot

  1. I signed up for Drone Base and also took the course for the Eagleview inspections. I got a message that I would get instructions for a test mission before getting my badge. I am a part 107 pilot with the necessary equipment. I have not heard anything.


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