Ever since corporations started using them to inspect pipelines and spray pesticides on farms in 2006, drones have only risen in popularity. Today, drones are widely preferred and used in the fields of journalism, filming, aerial photography, logistics, disaster management, healthcare, geographic mapping, structural safety inspections, precision agriculture, wildlife monitoring, border patrol, construction, storm tracking, forecast, and the list goes on and on.
If you are planning to travel with your drone for one of these reasons, you need to be mindful of two primary considerations:
- Taking care of your drone device and
- Ensuring that it remains in the best working condition
To ensure that these considerations are met, we’ve compiled a list of things to pack before you set off. While this list isn’t comprehensive, it contains your must-haves for any travel plans that involve your drone. Don’t say we didn’t warn you if you miss carrying them and find yourself in a fix!
Batteries are like the souls of drones; drones can’t function without their batteries. Thus, the first thing on your checklist to travel with a drone is to carry enough batteries. Not only enough batteries but also fully-charged batteries.
Be very careful with batteries. Consider these things before you get started:
- Most batteries give an average flight time of 18-25 minutes, which means you’ll need several batteries to avoid losing flight time.
- Know all the batteries well before packing them. Drones out of battery will literally drop from the sky. So familiarize yourself with each battery’s limit.
- If you have LiPo drone batteries, don’t leave your batteries fully charged for longer than 2-3 days to prevent them from getting damaged. Discharge the battery down a bit.
- Never discharge your LiPo batteries below 3.0V per cell as anything lower than that can result in permanent battery damage.
- When travelling in cold or hot temperatures, store the batteries in an insulated cover or case.
A drone landing pad or drone helipad is the next essential you need to pack before you get started with your trip. You don’t want your drone to land abruptly and damage itself, after all. A lot of people, especially beginners, do not realize the importance of this tool. Every drone pilot, beginner or professional, sooner or later experiences a hard landing or loss of control during landing. This common mistake that most pilots make can severely damage the drone. This is when a helipad can be useful. Even if you are a pro, using a helipad is a good idea to keep your device scratch-free. So invest in a quality helipad and decide its size based on your drone’s dimensions. Buy one that can be easily folded so that you can carry it in your drone case, backpack, or even pocket.
You own a drone so you already know how highly fragile these devices are. The first thing that gets damaged when your drone falls down or dashes into a solid surface are the propellers. These plastic bits are more delicate than the rest of the drone’s body. Thus, you must always travel with at least three spare pairs of propellers. Don’t assume that you will be able to survive with just one pair or with damaged propellers. Cracked or broken propellers can make your device even more prone to damages. Buying a pair of propellers is always a better idea than getting your drone repaired or discarding them altogether due to faulty propellers.
When you buy a drone, even the basic model, it will come with spare propellers. This is basically a huge clue that propellers are the parts of your drone most likely to get damaged. So carry these extra pairs with you. If you don’t have these complimentary propellers with you, buy official propellers for your drone. The best part is that these plastic bits don’t even cost too much.
The next crucial thing that you must pack is an SOS or drone maintenance toolkit. You never know what may happen to your drone even after taking all the precautions. Unavoidable damages can occur due to rough landings or dead batteries. Apart from extra batteries, this SOS toolkit should be at the rescue of your device. This toolkit lowers the chances of accidents, saves you repair and replacement money, reduces the risk of liability for your team, and also avoids interruptions in your schedule.
Your SOS or maintenance toolkit must include:
- A soldering iron
- A solder
- A brush
- A desoldering vacuum pump
- A full-size stand
- Assorted bits
- Right-sized screws
- A helipad
A protective drone carrying case is another must-have when travelling with a drone. These sturdy cases help you carry your drone safely without worrying about damages. An ideal drone case should be one that is well padded on the inside and has enough dividers to keep drone accessories from coming in contact with the device. They should be able to hold the additional accessories and never compromise with the safety of your equipment. The case should also be waterproof and lightweight if you are travelling to an adventurous place.
To purchase the Peli Phantom Case or Storm 2975 DJI Inspire One, visit our website www.highperformancecases.com or contact us at:
Phone: +43 (0)664 73149608 (International)
Phone: +43 (0)664 1662843 (Austria)
Phone: +49 (0)1522 4076878 (Germany and Switzerland)
Apart from these, do your research and understand the laws around drone usage in the city you are travelling to. This will prevent you from breaking any laws or offending anyone in a foreign city.