Tips For Becoming A Commercial Drone Pilot
Some years ago, it wasn’t easy to think that a person without formal aviation training would be called an airman. Today, drone pilots like Omar Kaddouha are considered airmen. Hence, flying drone isn’t just for fun, but it also gives a sense of prestige and pride.
If you’re a commercial drone pilot, your drone is the most important tool of trade you have. You can use it for terror photography, aerial filming, or property inspections. Alternatively, you can use it in other enjoyable ways in various places to earn a living. However, technical difficulties may occur during your flight, or your drone may be impounded because you don’t have the right permit.
Here are some tips that’ll help you fly your drone without problems:
- Practice With An Easy-To-Learn Drone First
If you’re a beginner pilot, it’s advisable not to buy a high-end drone that costs thousands of dollars for practice. That’s because you may end up feeling bad when it crashes or find it difficult to control. After all, most of these drones aren’t created for beginners. In fact, they have features that aren’t beginner and learner-friendly.
You want to start with a drone that’s cheap – probably $100 because they’re easy to drive. Besides, they’re also lightweight and compact, making them survive few crashes before they’re damaged. Most learning models have either a beginner or headless mode.
The headless mode makes the drone to orient itself relative to the remote controller’s position. This makes it easier for you to know which way is right, left, forward, or back. On the other hand, the beginner mode has a speed that allows you to drive the drone without losing control easily. It also has a “geofence” that prevents the drone from flying some feet away from you.
- Register Your Drone
After buying a drone, whether it’s for practicing or professional work, the first thing you should do is to weigh it. If it’s more than 0.55 pounds, register with the FAA before flying it. Though micro-drones will fly below the required threshold, all other camera drones should be registered.
Fortunately, drone registration isn’t expensive and can be performed quickly. You only need to sign up for an FAA account and give your personal and drone details. The registration fee is usually $5, though if you want to use your drone for commercial purposes, you may pay more.
If your registration is successful, you’ll receive an email notifying you of the registration. After receiving the number, ensure you visibly mark it on the drone. You can do that with a permanent marker or sticker. The most important thing is that the drone number should be visible when it’s visually inspected.
- Insure Your Drone
Whether you’re a commercial or recreational pilot, you want to insure your drone. That’s because they may collide with buildings or any other objects or get damaged. When that happens, you may end up losing your drone. But if you have an insurance policy, it’ll cover you just like other policies.
All commercial pilots are required by law to insure their drones. These policies differ depending on insurance companies and what’s covered. It would be best to go for a policy you can afford to pay.
The Bottom Line
Though it isn’t difficult to become a drone pilot, if you intend to use your drone for commercial purposes, you need to equip yourself with the rules and know the safety practices.