- Learning a new skill. Perhaps you have plenty of RC model flying experience. Perhaps you have none at all. Either way, flying a Phantom or some other quadcopter well takes a little practice, and flying a hexacopter or octocopter takes lots of practice to become skilled and safe. All this learning is marked by milestones and as you reach each one you can be sure of a boost to your self esteem and confidence. Enjoy the experience of learning not only how to fly them but also how to use all the software written especially for them.
- Gaining new friends and acquaintances. Once you being flying your drone anywhere you will probably attract the attention of curious bystanders and passers-by who want to know more about the aircraft, how high & fast it goes, and how much it costs. These strangers may become acquaintances and later on, friends with whom you fly or mix with socially. Then there are online forums and groups in social media where new connections can be made.
- Fresh air and exercise. As your flying progresses you’ll start to look for more locations. You’ll want to not only compare the differences in flying, for example, next to the sea with that of flying in open pasture or on a hill. All this means you’ll have to get off the sofa, get out of car and walk, and you’ll probably be carrying a rucksack containing not only your quadcopter but also your lunch and perhaps other essentials like sun cream and a fold-up chair. The physical effort of reaching some locations and seeing the view is an advantage in itself.
- Appreciation of nature and the four seasons. Following on from No.3 you’ll find that you might return to the same locations at different times of the year to take more pictures and video footage. See the changing seasons unfold, note the way the landscape, the flora and the fauna change as the months pass. Try arriving at different times of the day and in varying weather. Some great shots can be achieved from the top of the hill soon after dawn when there is still mist clinging to the rivers and fields in the valleys below.
- Become an expert in a new technology. New gadgets often create a buzz and spark interest, but the world of unmanned aviation is large and growing rapidly. It’s hard to predict where things will be in two, five, or ten years time. It may be that the drone age has just been born and that in decades to come they will be as commonplace as the internet and mobile phones are now. You can become one of the pioneers in this field.
- Increase your employment prospects. The rapid growth in the world of UAS is creating new jobs in many areas. There are opportunities opening up in research, development, design, and software. There is an increasing demand for drone pilots in many businesses; agriculture, archeology, surveying etc – just about anything that can benefit from data capture from the air, and of course there is aerial photography and filming. If you have ambitions in any of these areas the first step is to acquire an RPQ-s or BNUC-s licence. The path to each of these will teach you the basics of Air Law, risk assessment, flight planning, and general skills for the the safe and legal use of UAV in the commercial world.
These are just a few of the many and growing advantages of the hobby and commercial use of drones. If you can think of any others, let me know by posting a comment below or in on of this site’s social media accounts (the links are in the footer).