how to make money with a drone

There are multiple ways one can make money with drone. Making money is not so easy, but with little patience and effort, anyone can make money out of their passion.

Flying drones is a hobby for many, and recreational drone pilots can figure out the most suitable way for them to turn this hobby into their income source.

This post explains about various ways on how to make money with a drone.

As the uses of drones are rising and various industries are yet to figure out ways of using drones to ease industrial tasks, you can say the future for drone pilots are a bright.

So what is stopping a recreational pilot from making money?

To make money using drones, a hobbyist or a recreational drone pilot must get his/her drone pilot’s license.

How to get a drone pilot’s license?

Drone pilot’s license, in reality, is a certification for drone pilots that allow them to make money using their drones.

Without a drone pilot’s license, it is illegal for one to make money. So it is a must to have a drone pilot license.

You have to take the knowledge test and then apply for your license.

Drone pilot license is also called the Remote pilot airman certificate. Once FAA issues a remote pilot airman certificate y, you can now fly your drone for commercial uses.

The cost of getting a drone pilot license will not cost you more than 150 USD in the United States.

RELATED: How to get a drone pilot’s license?

How much do you have to invest before you can make some decent amount of money?

Commonly hobbyist use their drone for photography and videography. So it is understandable that you will use your photographs and videos to make money.

Thus it would help if you had a drone that produces exceptional quality of aerial photographs and videos.

Depending on the industry you want to work for, you may need a different kind of drone, as well as several additional gears.

For example, if you are working for inspection companies, you need a drone with a thermal camera.

Nevertheless, you will not have to spend more than 2000 USD for a drone that takes exceptional quality photographs.

If you have a lesser budget, you can buy a drone that is under 1000 USD. There are drones with exceptional quality pictures, and the price is below 1000 USD.

You will spend a few hundred dollars for additional gears. But for a beginner, I do not suggest to buy equipments until you think it is essential.

People get caught up in the process of buying and choosing stuff and not doing the real work to make money.

Assuming you already have an idea of how much money you need, I recommend buying a drone to get a license and start taking beautiful photos.

Finally, now let’s get to the central part of the article.

How to make money with a drone? Is it possible to make money with a drone and such investment?

Ways to make money with your drone:

I know two thousand dollars is not big money, but for a hobbyist, it may sound a lot of investment.

Trust me with some effort and patience. You will make more than that I a couple of months.

Did anyone ever tell you making money is secure?

It is easy if you put effort and do it consistently. As many industries need aerial footages to determine and ease several tasks, you can say that you will see a return on your investment very quickly.

Drones can perform many tasks efficiently, hence new industries ae looking for ways to use drones to make complicated jobs more straightforward.

And flying drone is your hobby, after all. So 2000 USD should not sound a lot.

But when you are starting, you have to focus on industries or ways to make money that is already existent. So what are the industries already needs professional drone pilots?

Real Estate.

Buying and selling properties is an industry where most hobbyist drone pilot starts making money using their drone.

Real estate companies job is to present a house or a mansion or any property in the best possible way. The regular pictures are not always distinguished using traditional cameras.

Real estate agencies are ready to hire professionals to get outstanding images of the property that they can show to their customers.

Aerial footages or pictures of a property is outstanding for marketing. It enables real estate companies to give a better view of the property to their customers.

In the past real estate companies had to rent helicopters and pay a significant fee just for those aerial footages.

Today, this expensive cost has become inexpensive due to the use of drones. Drone pilots have found opportunities in the real estate industry, and real estate companies have seen a cheap way of taking those extraordinary footages.

Thus a hobbyist drone pilot with a remote pilot certificate can take footages for real estate companies and receive compensation for that.

But before doing so, you have to practice and get better. You can take pictures of properties in your neighborhood and figure which angle gives the best view of a property.

If you already have habits of flying a drone and taking amazing pictures, mastering the techniques for aerial footages for real estate company will not take long for you.

Now that you have enough skills to take better pictures using your drones, you can contact real estate companies in your area and ask them if they require a drone pilot or not.

You can start by contacting someone from your friend’s list or any relative who is working in the real estate business.

Tell them you can take aerial footages of properties that will help boost their sales and do not expect a very high compensation. Take what they offer you, but don’t take less than the industry standard.


Similar to real estate companies, wedding ceremonies also prefer having aerial footages in their collection.

Unlike real estate companies, you can not merely take aerial footages. For wedding ceremonies, pictures have various fields of view.

So unless you are a skilled photographer or working with one, you cannot possibly make money using drones.

My suggestion is you can contact the wedding photographers in your area and ask them if they want a drone pilot. Tell them you can take aerial photographs and videos for the wedding photographer that will make the photographers work exceptional.

The photographer includes the drone footages in their package, and you can get paid for that.


People are relying more and more on online content these days. Video streaming sites like Youtube are more popular than ever before. And the number of youtube users is still rising and will continue to grow in the future.

Content creators make videos and publish online to make money.

Videos online serve different purposes and have a good following. You can take part in the industry by creating outstanding video using your drone.

Take your drone and create footages of your surroundings and publish it online. Wait for a while and see viewers coming in.

You will not make a fortune overnight. But with consistency, you can gain popularity.

In time you will see money rolling in fro your online vlogging platform.

You can take online courses to become better at making footages and use some video editing software to produce quality content.

Making wedding videography is a common way for drone pilots to make money flying drones.

Vloggers use their contents and affiliate links to make good money, and in time, as the viewers will rise, you will see higher income.

Make money by licensing your footage.

If you are not vlogging, then you can use your drone images or footages to sell online.

There are numerous sites where online users look to buy drone footages or aerial images of outstanding locations.

They buy the aerial footage and images to use for their contents.

So licensing your footages and photographs is an excellent way of monetizing. Pricing your aerial footages so that others can buy if they think your drone footage is precisely the one they are looking for will help them and enable you to make money.

Like vlogging, you can improve in taking better images using your drone to attract more people to buy. You can take a course online.

If you can’t find how to price your footages, you can search online on websites and price is similar to your competition. Pricing it too less is not profitable and too high you will lose buyers.


Making money with a drone is not so difficult. Any hobbyist can make money using their drone.

Flying drones is a hobby for many pilots, and using this passion for making money is more comfortable than before.

First, you need to follow some steps, though from someone who is already doing it.

RELATED: How to get a drone pilot’s license?

Following the steps I described in this article and worked consistently to improve your skills can aid you in making money with your drone.