“What are the best drones to buy for kids?“
I was pondering the above question as I watched my 7-year old nephew operate my new drone. Incredibly, he was able to pick up the remote controller, turn the drone on, and fly much better than I initially could. Talk about feeling old! 🙂
Because of his enthusiasm and interest towards my drone, I am considering buying him one for his upcoming birthday, which I think would make me his favorite uncle around! (Spoiler alert: I am his ONLY uncle!)
Most Expensive Drones For Kids: 3 options (Over $150 AND they all include a camera!)
Mid-Priced Drones For Kids: 4 options (Between $50 – $150)
Cheapest Drones for Kids: 5 options (Under $50)
As I was researching the best drones for kids, I came across a wide range of features, styles, and of course, prices! Interestingly, there was a lot of correlation between the best drones for kids and the best drones for beginners!
Since there are literally hundreds of different models available, I think the BEST way to narrow down your list of available kids drones is to determine how much money you want to spend. Once you know your price range, you can skip to that specific section.
Before you leave, make sure you scroll to the bottom to check out some “Frequently Asked Questions” about drones and kids. This section is especially important if this is your first time buying a drone.
Most Expensive Drones For Kids (Over $150)
As you can imagine, the more money that you spend on a drone, the more features that you can expect. Here is what is commonly found on drones that cost a few hundred dollars:
High-quality camera for video and pictures.
Return to home features.
The ability of your drone to track moving subjects.
Longer flight times.
Larger dimensions and weight.
Larger flight range.
Make sure to check the features and specifications of any drone you are considering to see what is included on that specific product.
The three drones in this section are incredible machines, but they certainly aren’t toys, and I only recommend them for responsible teenagers and children. Most of the manufacturers give a guideline that kids should be 14 or older to operate, so use your best judgment with your child before purchasing.
1. DJI Spark
Due to its price, the DJI Spark is a great drone for older, responsible children and teenagers. I love that it’s easy to get off the ground and fun to fly. Kids will like that the Spark is portable and small enough to take off and land from the palm of their hand!
DJI packs as much incredible technology for the price as possible! One of the features that kids will like best is gesture control, which is the ability to use your hands and arms to maneuver the drone to take photos. Your child will think they have turned into Luke Skywalker!
The Spark is much more expensive than any other drone on this list, so it should only be considered for a kid who is serious about drones and learning how to fly. This drone is not a toy, and if you’re not sure if your child is going to enjoy flying, I would recommend a cheaper drone.
Outstanding Drone Camera Features:
If your kid is interested in drone photography, then they will be happy with the Spark’s excellent camera system.
- Includes a 2-axis gimbal-stabilized camera that can capture up to 12MP still photos and record 1080p/30 Full HD video.
- Check out this fantastic video footage taken from the Spark –> Watch here YouTube.
- View actual photographs that were taken by this drone –> View on Flickr
Flight Control System:
The Spark is relatively easy to fly, and most older children and teenagers should have no problem figuring out the controls.
- Includes an incredible GPS navigation system, collision avoidance, and sport mode which lets you fly at speeds up to 31MPH.
- The Spark will return to the spot it took off from when the battery gets low, the controller loses signal, or you press the Return To Home (RTH) button on the app or controller.
- You can fly with either a remote controller or the DJI Go mobile app.
Finally, watch this helpful beginner’s video about the DJI Spark above!
The Hubsan H501S X4 gets my vote for the best looking drone on this list! I love the appearance of the black and gold quadcopter as it flies through the sky.
But on top of looking great, the H501S has many features that make it a great drone for kids, along with being affordably priced. It makes a great Christmas or birthday gift!
You should know that the flight controller has integrated GPS, which is incredible at this price and enables some pretty cool features, such as:
- Follow Me Mode: The H501S can lock onto the position of the transmitter and then track it! This feature is incredible to use to get some great shots of your kids riding their bike, running, etc.
- Automatic Return: The drone remembers it’s take-off point, so if the connection is lost with the transmitter, then it will automatically return “home.” There is also a switch on the transmitter that you can press to make the drone return quickly.
Here are some other things you should know about the Hubsan H501S:
- Your kids will have a blast recording with the included 1080p camera! Check out raw video footage shot from the drone on YouTube HERE.
- The max altitude is 820 feet (250 meters)! And the pictures you can take at this height look incredible! View pictures from the H501S on Flickr HERE.
- The transmitter has a 4.3″ LCD screen that lets you watch real-time video from the FPV (first person view) camera and even displays telemetry data of the drone in flight! Recording the trip is easy by inserting a microSD card (not included) into the transmitter.
From unboxing to flying, this review of the H501S will help you decide if this is the best drone for your children!
The Altair 818 Hornet is a fun drone for both kids and beginner adult pilots. I should know since it’s the drone that I bought for myself. 🙂
First, I like that it provides THREE different flight modes depending on your skill level. The first level is perfect for beginner kid pilots, the second level is designed for those with some experience, and the third level is for experts that have mastered the first two levels. My 7-year old nephew had no problems getting the 818 Hornet in the air right out of the box, and honestly, he was a better pilot than me at first!
The Hornet has a relatively long flight time of 15 minutes, so your kids should get a fair amount of fun and flying time before having to switch batteries.
Are you worried about your child crashing and ruining the drone? Well, check out the guards around the propellers! This drone can handle the inevitable crash while you are learning to fly.
The drone includes a 120° wide-angle 720p High Definition Camera that can take amazing aerial photos and videos. You can line up your shot using a phone or tablet from up to 60 meters away (full flight range of 150 meters.)
- View actual video footage taken from the Altair 818 Hornet –> Watch on YouTube.
Flight Control System and Stability Features Perfect For Kids!
- One-touch Takeoff and Landing: press a single button for takeoff and landing!
- Includes Headless Mode, which is beneficial because you don’t have to worry about the orientation of the drone in the air while controlling.
- Altitude Hold: This feature allows you to take pictures and video without worrying about maintaining altitude with the joystick.
- Automatic Emergency Landings: The drone lands itself before the battery dies. It does not come “home” like the DJI Mavic Pro or Spark above because the Hornet does not have GPS.
- You can fly with either a remote controller or mobile app, whichever makes you feel most comfortable.
Mid-Priced Drones For Kids: (Between $50 – $150)
As we move into less expensive drones, you can expect a few features to disappear. For example, drones that cost less than $150 are not going to include GPS and all the features that come along with it, like “Return To Home.”
Most drones in this price range still have a camera, but it’s of lower quality and typically doesn’t have image stabilization, so you can expect the video to be a bit shaky.
You will also observe that the flight range and battery life is reduced.
But these drones are still incredible products and perfect for kids!
If you liked the Altair 818 Hornet above (Drone #3), but want something a bit less expensive and you don’t think your kid will mind the decreased flight time (8-10 minutes per battery), then the AA108 made by Altair could be a perfect fit.
The drone is designed for kids (and adult beginners!) and is incredibly easy to fly. The included camera is decent, and it’s a great drone to practice filming and taking photographs from the air.
I like that the AA108 has THREE flight modes. Level 1 allows your kids to get off the ground quickly and have fun flying instantly. And switching the mode to Level 2 or 3 allows for room to grow in their flying skills.
And the drone is made of durable plastic and has propeller guards, so it should be able to stand up to the abuse your kids dish out!
*You can only stream video from 164 feet / 50 meters.
- Includes a built-in 120° wide-angle 720p HD camera that takes decent photos and videos right from your phone or mobile device.
- View actual video footage taken from the Altair AA108 –> Watch on YouTube.
Easy To Fly For Kids!
- Headless Mode – If you turn this feature ON, kids won’t have to worry about the orientation of the drone while flying.
- Low Battery Alarm – As the drone is running low on a charge, an alarm starts to beep, so you know it’s time to bring the drone home.
- Altitude Hold – This feature ensures that the AA108 stays hovering in place while in the air without your input.
- You can fly with a controller or the Flyingsee app on your phone.
This small drone is incredibly fun, and one of the best drones for kids to fly!
The Tello is controlled from a smartphone or a compatible Bluetooth controller. Kids will love how easy it is to take off as you literally throw the drone into the air! And once you’ve mastered some basic maneuvers, you can even try FPV (first-person view) flying using a VR-headset.
I think most kids will love the fact that the Tello is small enough also to be flown inside. And when you do take it outside, make sure it’s not very windy, or you risk the drone blowing away!
It’s hard to beat the Tello at this low of a price point, and I can almost guarantee it will be the most fun your kids have for around $100 this year! And I didn’t even mention that the Tello is backed by DJI, who is arguably the world leader when it comes to everything drones.
*Flys over WiFi on your phone.
Includes a Camera!
- At the front of the drone, there is a camera that can stream 720pm video to your phone, along with taking 5-megapixel photos.
- View actual video footage taken in BALI from the Ryze Tech Tello –> Watch on YouTube.
Helpful Safety Features For Kids!
- Auto Takeoff/Landing: Lift off or land with a single tap.
- Low Battery Protection: Alerts go off when your battery gets low.
- Failsafe Protection: Land safely, even if you lose connection.
- Extremely durable, light-weight, and includes guards around the propellers.
To learn more about the Tello, including how to get started flying, try watching the detailed video review above!
The Holy Stone F181C is a fun little drone for kids that is incredibly affordable!
Even at its low price point, Holy Stone includes a 720p camera, which will provide a lot of fun for your kids to mess around with. The video quality is not great compared to other higher end drones, but it’s better than not having a camera! And most kids don’t care that much about the video quality anyways, especially on their first drone.
The F181C has some great features to quickly start flying right away, such as:
- Altitude Hold: When the throttle stick is released, the F181C stops and hovers at its current height, which is great for both kids and beginners! In case the pilot gets in trouble, they just have to let go, and the drone stops! Altitude Hold is also helpful for taking video or pictures with the camera.
- Headless Mode: On this setting, the pilot doesn’t need to distinguish the front of the drone. Whichever way they press on the controls, the drone will fly that direction.
- 4 Speed Modes: Beginners can start on the 1st mode and then slowly work their way up as they gain more flying experience. Before you know it, your kids are going to be doing flips and rolls with the F181C through the entire house!
**The F181C is flown by using the included remote controller.
It’s hard to think of better toy drones to buy for your kids than these battle drones from Holy Stone.
This package comes as a set of two, and the point of battle drones are to play against each other and shoot infrared beams at your opponent! Once you hit the other drone four times, it will slowly come to a landing.
Seriously, these drones look like incredible fun for kids of any age. And I think they look like a blast for adults to play too! I’m already debating getting these for my nephews next Christmas, and also for my kids once they get a bit older. How awesome would it be to complete a 360-degree roll straight into a shot that wins the game against your child!
*You will want MANY extra batteries for these drones! Buy HERE on Amazon.
The HS177 battle drones are also reasonably easy to fly with features such as altitude hold, headless mode, emergency stops, and three different speed modes.
Check out the battle drones in action above!!!
Cheapest Drones for Kids: (Under $50)
If you have a child that wants a drone and you don’t want to spend much money, then this is going to be the section for you!
I have included FIVE incredible options that all cost below $50 (at the time of this writing)! The crazy part about drone technology is that even though the price is low, the drones are a TON of fun to fly and each one should provide hours of entertainment for your kids and family.
The drones below are all relatively small in terms of size and weight, and most will fit in the palm of your hand. The maximum flight times and ranges are also short, so make sure to buy extra batteries for whichever drone you choose!
Lastly, it is rare to find a camera on a drone this cheap. The only one below that offers this feature is the Syma X5C (#10).
The Blade Nano QX is a fun, small, inexpensive drone for kids.
First, this drone is TINY and only weighs .6 ounces. Unless there is no wind, it should be flown inside. But because of it’s small frame and weight, your kids can take the Nano QX almost anywhere to show off to their friends.
If your kids are new to flying, they will enjoy the SAFE (Sensor Assisted Flight Envelope) technology built into the drone. This technology is great for first-time flyers!
Here’s how SAFE technology works:
The Nano QX has two modes. “Stability” mode is for beginners. While in “Stability” mode, if you let go of the joysticks, the drone will come back to a stable hover all by itself, so it’s hard to crash the drone or get yourself in trouble. Once you mastered the “Stability” mode, you can switch to “Agility” mode for faster flying and tricks.
Here are a few other things you NEED to know:
- If you purchase the BNF (Bind-N-Fly) version, then you must buy a separate transmitter to fly the Nano QX. View Transmitter HERE
- The RTF (Ready-To-Fly) Nano QX comes with a controller, but it’s not that great. My advice is to purchase the BNF Nano QX along with the controller recommended above.
- Because of the small size, there is no camera on the Nano QX.
- Durable with propeller guards. The Nano QX bounces off most walls and can handle a crash!
Check out the Nano QX in flight in the video above, along with an entire review of its features. I love watching how the drone performs!
Let me start by saying this is not a joke!
And you want to know the best part?
You can connect up to TWELVE Propel Star Wars drones together via Bluetooth and have them all battle together in a fun game! X-Wings work with Tie Fighters which work with Speeder Bikes. You can have any combination of Star Wars drones you wish.
*Buy extra batteries for the X-Wing HERE. Highly recommended to enjoy the battle drones to their fullest.
Seriously, how much fun would it be if your kids and all their friends had these battle drones? They would have hours upon hours of fun battling each other. I know I’d be tempted to join myself. (For the record, I’m definitely an X-Wing type of guy)
The above video is great to watch to see how these Star Wars battle drones operate. The first part shows how to set up a battle with multiple drones. The second half of the video shows the drones fighting each other!
If you’re looking for an affordable drone for kids that is fun, easy to fly, AND includes a camera; then the Syma X5C is a perfect match.
Compared to the some of the micro-drones on this list (#8, #11, & #12), the Syma X5C is quite large, which makes me think of it less like a toy and more like a drone that is perfect for an older child to fly outside.
*I’d recommend buying extra batteries.
**The X5C will fly a maximum of 164 feet / 50 meters away with the included 2.4GhZ remote controller.
The X5C comes with a remote controller and propeller guards (not pictured above). The prop guards are great for protecting the drone when it crashes into something.
More Information About the Syma X5C CAMERA:
- Remember that this drone is cheap and doesn’t have stabilization for the camera, so don’t expect incredible images. But for the inexpensive price, the camera quality is not that bad!
- For an example of the video camera, check out this footage shot from the X5C (It’s amazing what a bit of music and editing can do for a video!): Watch on YouTube HERE!
- There are also a few pictures on Flickr that demonstrate the X5C’s camera: View pictures on Flickr.
Watch this helpful video about the Syma X5C that demonstrates how the drone flies and handles both inside AND outside, and what’s included in the box.
The Holy Stone HS170 Predator is a popular choice for kids or anyone looking for a fun toy. And it’s easy to see why.
First, the price is fantastic, and you can almost always buy this drone for under $50. Because of the low cost, you don’t have to grimace every time the drone crashes!
**The HS170 Predator is tiny and should be flown inside UNLESS there is no wind.
The HS170 Predator was designed with beginners in mind:
- Three-speed modes: Make sure your kids start with the low default gear and then work their way up to high-speed flight!
- LED color light: The drones flight status can be determined by looking at the indicator light. Your kids will also enjoy how the lights look while flying at night.
- Headless Mode: When the HS170 Predator is flying in headless mode, the orientation of the front of the drone can be ignored as you fly. When you press a direction on your controller, that is the way the drone will move.
Watch the HS170 Predator in flight! This video review shows everything you need to know about this drone, from unboxing to crashing to the maneuvers you can pull off while flying!
12. Hubsan X4 H107L
Are you worried that your kids are going to break the drone you buy? Or maybe play with it for a week then lose interest?
Depending on the age of your child and their responsibility levels, these are valid questions! I’m sure you may be wondering how can you purchase a drone that makes your kid happy but doesn’t cost very much.
The Hubsan H107L might be the drone you are seeking!
First, it’s incredibly fun to fly with easy controls. Because of its tiny size, you are going to want to operate it inside, unless there is no wind. The H107L is small enough to pack anywhere, and it’s easy to take to a friends house, vacation, or wherever your kids imagine.
The best part is that this toy drone usually costs less than $35. Yes, you heard that correctly! The H107L is a great first drone for your kids to see if they like flying. And if they don’t take care of the drone or never fly it, then you don’t have to stress about all the money you just spent.
Don’t let the small size fool you. While the H107L is a great drone for kids and beginners, it can also perform some neat tricks (barrels, rolls, banked turns) because of it’s lightweight and responsive controls. You can get off the ground and flying quickly and easily, but there is plenty of room for growth and improvement.
Frequently Asked Questions About Kids Drones:
Do I need to register my drone?
If you plan on flying outside in the United States, you should register your drone with the FAA. It’s only $5 and is valid for three years.
The stipulation is that you must be over 13 years old to register, so if your kid is under 13, then you will need to do this for them.
It’s also a good idea to become familiar with the places you CAN NOT fly a drone! The most important rules you need to know are don’t fly over people, near an airport, and always maintain a visual line of sight.
What are the best features to have when buying a kids drone?
This question is almost impossible to answer! There are so many variables, and if you ask 100 people you will get extremely different answers!
With that being said, here are some features and specification you should at least review before buying a drone for your children:
- Camera: A beginner drone may include a camera. If it does, the quality varies significantly by drone model. More expensive drones include stabilization systems for the camera, which helps provide smooth and clear photos and video.
- Weight and Dimensions: Light drones tend not to break when they crash; they sort of bounce instead! But unfortunately, light drones are more susceptible to the wind! (Although learning to deal with wind can improve your flying skills.)
- Battery Life: The kids drones on this list have battery lives that range from 20 minutes down to only 6 minutes. Make sure to buy extra batteries and have them charged before any flight sessions.
- Range: Cheap drones typically have a pretty small range! The more money you spend, the farther the drone can fly away from your controller!
- GPS: Most drones under $200 will not include GPS, which is a nice feature to have for multiple reasons, including the popular “Return To Home” function.
- Headless Mode: When a drone is flying in headless mode, the orientation of the front of the drone can be ignored as you fly. When you press a direction on your controller, that is the way the drone moves.
- Different speed modes: Most drones have different modes, depending on the pilot’s level of skill. This feature is excellent for beginners to use and work their way up as they gain additional experience.
- Altitude Hold: When the throttle stick is released, the drone stops and hovers at its current height, which is great for kids just in case they get in trouble. All they have to do is let go, and the drone stops!
When you are purchasing a drone, the most important thing to remember is…
The more money you spend, the better features and higher quality product you can expect!
What else should I know about kids and drones?
Please remember that drones are NOT toys. If you decide to purchase your kid a drone, you will need to take some responsibility and help them learn how to fly safely.
Remember that drones have propellers that spin extremely fast. The last thing you want is those propellers hurt someone or even a pet as your kid chases the dog with their new drone.
Drones also crash a lot, especially as someone is learning how to fly them. Make sure drones are operated in areas where they can’t break anything valuable.
Basically, be responsible and don’t be a lazy parent. You could have a lot of fun learning how to fly with your son or daughter!
At a minimum, here are the rules for flying recreational drones:
A. Follow the safety guidelines of a community-based organization.
B. Fly your drone at or below 400 feet when in uncontrolled or “Class G” airspace. This is airspace where the FAA is not controlling manned air traffic. To determine what type of airspace you are in, refer to the mobile application that operates your drone (if so equipped) and/or use other drone-related mobile applications. Knowing your location and what airspace you’re in will also help you avoid interfering with other aircraft.
C. Do NOT fly in controlled airspace (around and above many airports):
D. Keep your drone within your line of sight, or within the visual line-of-sight of a visual observer who is co-located and in direct communication with you.
E. Do NOT fly in airspace where flight is prohibited. Airspace restrictions can be found on our interactive map, and temporary flight restrictions can be found here. Drone operators are responsible for ensuring they comply with all airspace restrictions.
F. Never fly near other aircraft, especially near airports.
G. Never fly over groups of people, public events, or stadiums full of people.
H. Never fly near emergencies such as any type of accident response, law enforcement activities, firefighting, or hurricane recovery efforts.
I. Never fly under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
So what did you think?
Were you able to find the perfect drone for your kid or teenager?
If so, I’d love to hear what you bought?
Or if you went with an option that is not on this list, please share in the comments below!
Thanks for reading!