5 Tips For Taking Awesome Drone Vacation Photos
Updated: Dec 30, 2022
Drones have come a long way, giving the average person an opportunity to use them at home, and better yet, on vacation. I recently brought my drone on vacation to Greece which took my travel photography to new heights (pun intended).
I am honored my photo (below) was awarded 3rd place by TravelAge West in their 2022 Reader Photo Contest! Here are six tips to help you decide if you should bring a drone on your next vacation.
Tip #1 - Do your homework.
Not all drones are made the same but they do have similarities in how they operate. You need to find a drone that works for you, your budget, and most importantly, your aptitude. I’m lucky in that my family could help me understand some of the functionality and operate the drone (in this case), too. Keep in mind that you don’t have to spend a lot of money to get a drone that works easily and produces exceptional footage. My drone was less than $400USD.
Tip #2 - Practice. A lot.
Become as familiar as possible with your drone before you pack it up for a trip. There are many conditions and obstacles that make it dangerous for you to fly and land a drone. Drones have powerful propellers that can hurt someone and damage property. It’s essential you operate it with competency and caution.
"It's important to stay focused on drone maintenance, safety risks, and piloting skills in order to avoid serious consequences." – familyeducation.com
Tip #3 - Say it with me, "R-E-S-P-E-C-T" .
One tip that goes without saying is to be respectful. Not everyone wants to be filmed. Not every moment should be captured. Drones make us interlopers to those in the footage. There’s a fine line between capturing candid shots and invading someone’s privacy. Never fly your drone in crowded areas, near airports and aircraft, or any area where you may capture private moments.
Tip #4 - Understand the mechanics.
Pay attention to weather conditions, avoid power lines and trees to ensure smooth sailing. Want to use a drone on a boat? That is a very challenging undertaking for an amateur. Boats are constantly moving even when not underway, which makes launching and landing somewhat difficult. The masts, sails, ropes, uneven surfaces and people onboard are all obstacles. If the boat is underway, I do not recommend using a drone unless you are an extremely proficient operator as the challenges of launching and landing are magnified considerably.
Tip #5 - Know the rules.
If you want to bring a drone on a trip (or fly it at home for that matter), research what laws and regulations are applicable in the specific area you are visiting. This is an important step each time you travel with a drone. Know the rules and follow the guidelines.
3 - 2 - 1 Lift off.
Once your drone is packed and ready to go, make a list of the shots you wish to capture. However, embrace the spontaneous and keep everything. You never know what you might capture, like my award-winning photo of a swim in the Aegean Sea. When you are ready for your next adventure, let me know. I'd love to help you 'go there'.