When it comes to flying drones, there can be a lot of confusion and an overwhelming feeling for beginners. After all, with so much to learn and experience, how can one even really get started? Beyond the first glance, however, there are a lot of simple tips and pieces of advice that can help a beginner get situated in the world of drones. These tips can be extremely helpful in both the short term and long term and many experienced drone advocates still find them useful. Here are a few things that should help you get your feet on the ground with drone flying!
Register Your Drone
This is the simplest, easiest, and yet somehow most frequently ignored piece of advice for beginner drone enthusiasts. Always register your drone with the FAA!
Registration can be done entirely online and costs a small fee of $5. Don’t worry about your personal information, as the FAA will only publicly keep track of very basic information like your city, state, and ZIP code.
This may seem like a hassle, but the sooner you get your drone registered, the sooner you can be out flying!
Read the Manual
This is another common error that many beginners make. Don’t assume that you can figure everything out without reading the manual!
The manual for your drone will have a whole range of helpful information such as different settings, modes, controls, and configurations. It’s also helpful to know how your drone might differ from others so that you don’t make assumptions about any of these features. This can prevent mistakes such as assuming that a certain button or name for a setting means the same thing on your drone that it does on your friend’s drone.
Look through the manual carefully: It won’t take long and you won’t regret it!
Know Where to Fly
While we all probably wish this was the case, flying drones is not a matter of just going where you want! There many different areas that are restricted or off limits. If you don’t learn which places you can fly and the ones you can’t, you could be looking at a hefty fine or even worse.
The National Park Service has a blanket ban on drones, so don’t try to fly anywhere that is managed by the NPS. Additionally, many public events and large gatherings also ban drone flight. Make sure to check before you jump right into flying!
Learn the Laws
Finally, it’s extremely important to know the drone laws, especially local laws as these tend to vary and can be a little more complicated.
The FAA has the highest authority when it comes to enforcing drones, but your state might have its own set of rules that you need to follow. There are over 30 states that currently have drone laws in place, so this is no small matter!
But don’t worry too much: As long as you do your research and cooperate with your local authorities and law enforcement, the odds of anything particularly bad happening to you or your drone are very minimal.