Drones are one of the hottest toys on the market right now. Anything that can be remote controlled is universally loved by kids. Flying drones are fun to pilot, many of them have cameras, have LED lights that can be flipped on at night, and some have one button controls that make them do cool tricks like flips and barrel rolls. When it comes to purchasing one for your kids, there are a lot of choices out there. Check out our list of the best drones for kids and find one that is right for your family in our section below.
The 5 Best Drones for Kids of 2018
Here you’ll find a quick rundown of the features, why they are great for kids, and specifications which will give you a great overview of which model may best serve your the needs of your family. Without further ado, here are the best rated drones for kids.
The Syma X5SC Explorer 2 easily made our list of the best drones for kids. This model is the new and improved version of the Explorers Drone. It comes in a black, orange, or white color option. It is one of the more expensive drones for kids out there, but quality wise it is hard to beat. As you can see, this quadcopter is protected by four plastic bumpers, creating a protective circle around this drone.
This beauty has everything a kid could dream of to keep them busy for hours of enjoyment. It comes with a HD 2MP camera and a 4GB memory card and considering the price, that’s one of the best offers you can come across in the drone department and makes it our pick for the best drone with camera for kids. Kids really get a kick out of the 360 degree eversion and 360 barrel rolls this drone can pull off with just the touch of a button. It has about a 120 minute charge time and 6 minutes of flight time.
Another key features: this unit is super stable with its 6-axis gyro stabilization system and Syma’s Intelligent Orientation Control. Another plus is that it comes in the box in just 6 pieces so no annoying drawn out assembly time for parents to endure. With a size of just 12.4 x 12.4 x 4.1 inches and weighing in at 3.4 ounces, it’s big enough to be sturdy and small enough not to instantly drain the battery. All these features combine to make this the best drone for 8 year olds and older.
The RC Stunt Drone Quadcopter comes with lots of extras including spare parts, a landing pad, 2 USB chargers and an extra battery. That’s a big win in our book, the fact that Wonder Chopper has gone through the trouble and extra cost to include lots of spare parts. That means when the inevitable crash does happen, you can fix this drone and your kid will be as happy as a clam. The durable build propelled this unit to our best quadcopter for kids list.
The manufacturer calls this one crash-proof and we think that’s fair. Unless you take a nosedive into the driveway at high speed, it is a pretty durable unit. Each propeller is reinforced with screws and they are 3 blade instead of the commonly found 2 blade props. The two batteries give 6 minutes of flight time each and they recharge in just 60 minutes. This is a relatively lightweight unit weighing in at just 1 pound and measuring only 7.5 x 1.5 x 7.5 inches.
Kids enjoy the LED lights when flying it around at night and of course they love the 360 degree flips this stunt drone is capable of. It does not require FAA registration and is a perfect starter unit for kids as young as 10. It is the ideal drone for practicing flying around the house with. The one big downside on this one is that there is no camera. But, on the plus side, that is one less thing to break in the event of a high impact collision.
Akaso makes this 6-axis red and white beauty and it does come fully assembled and ready for takeoff. It is our pick for the best drone for 10 year olds. This kids drone can also handle their 360 flip ambitions with just the press of a key. A really great feature of this unit is the high quality plastic frame (much like that of Syma’s Explorers 2 Drone) that protect the blades making them less likely to be damaged in the event of a crash. The blade guards are easily removable, so once the pilot gains the experience they need to avoid the worst of crashes, you can remove them to increase the agility of this drone.
For the price, we are surprised AKASO managed to fit a HD camera into this build, it is under $40 after all. Kids will be able to capture their friends and family from aerial view shots, which is something that will keep them busy for a long time. Another neat feature with this drone is the ability to switch it from slow to high speed mode. Low speed mode is perfect for kids who are just starting out.
The Akaso X5C also sports built in LED lights that flash, which is really fun to use around the house as it starts getting darker outside. The 2.4 GHz transmitter makes this gem interference free. That means if your kid has friends who own drones, they can all use their quadcopters simultaneously without interference. The Akaso X5C measures up at a compact size of just 11.8 x 11.8 x 5.5 inches and a weight of only 2.9 ounces.
The UDI U818A is one of the best selling drones of all time. This quadcopter makes a strong showing and easily places among the top of the pack in the drones for kids category. It includes a HD camera, 4 channel function controls, and 30m control distance. That 30m offers plenty of remote control freedom and space between the pilot and their craft. This equates to less running behind the drone and more focusing on flying fun.
The battery will fly the unit for about 9 minutes and requires 120 minutes of charge time. That’s not bad when many drones are coming in at a stock 6 or 7 battery life time at this price point. The unit features a modular design which makes repairs easy. It weighs in at 4.9 ounces and measures 13 x 2.2 x 13.3 inches.
Ultimately, we this this is the best camera drone for beginner pilots. The UDI 818A Camera shoots a 640×480 pixel resolution and can take both pictures and videos. In addition to the camera and drone itself, the box contains a battery charger, Li-Po battery, 2GB memory card, 2.4GHz remote control, 4 spare propellers, and even a spare screwdriver.
The Holy Stone HS170 Training Drone is the last on this list, but that shouldn’t make it the last on your list. It is a great trainer unit since the headless security system meaning the quadcopter’s flight is always oriented to the controller instead of the drone’s head. Essentially that makes it easier to fly and a great choice for beginners and kids. In addition, the HS170 has three different speed modes, so kids can move up in speed as they gain experience. Just don’t let them switch to the highest speed straight out of the box!
The 350mAh puts out enough juice to sustain a 6-8 minutes of flight time on a standard 60-80 minute charge which isn’t shabby considering it is one of the heaviest drones on our list. The downside is that it doesn’t have a camera but it makes up for it in flight performance. Whereas some kids drones are indoor only, this drone is heavy enough and has a powerful enough motor to fly outdoors and adjust to windy conditions.
This one also offers 2.4GHz and a 6 axis gyro stabilization system. It is one of the smallest units dimensions wise on the list at 5.3 x 1.6 x 5.3 inches but not the lightest weighing in at 14.4 ounces. Although the Holy Stone HS170 is great for all skill levels, it is recommended for pilots 14 and up.
General Thoughts on Buying a Drone for Your Kid(s)
Drones are one of the coolest toys out there for kids right now and you really can’t go wrong with one. Unless you are willing to drop money on a dirt bike or ATV, it is definitely one of the best options. It may even get them outdoors for longer than 15 minutes, too! As far as the enjoyment to cost ratio goes, there’s nothing out there like them. You can get a decent drone for around $40 and some of them at that price point even include a camera. Whether you’re looking for the best drone for 7 year olds or the best drone for 12 year olds, there’s a little something for everyone on the market today.
We caution buyers to stay out of the sub $20 price range for the most part. There are maybe 2 or 3 good models at that price, but most of them are complete junk. You don’t want a one crash and it’s trash unit. That’s not fun for anyone and it doesn’t provide much value. Then at that point you’ll have to spend another $20 on another unit and there you are at $40 already. You may as well skip the wild goose chase and get something that is built to last and maybe even upgrade it down the road if your kid(s) really enjoy flying it.
Another thing to keep an eye on is whether the drone comes with a remote or wants you to hook it up to a smart phone app. We suggest looking for a quality remote like the one from Holy Stone below. That means only one electronic is at the risk of breaking (instead of your smartphone) and it is the less expensive one. Furthermore, we’ve found kids have a much easier time learning to fly with a remote and if they’ve played any console like Xbox, PlayStation, and Wii, they will pick it up in no time flat.
Benefits of Buying a Drone for Kids
There are a number of benefits you’ll reap when purchasing one of the best drones for children. Check out our list of the top benefits below.
- Fun. Drones provide kids with hours of enjoyment and if they take good care of their drone, it will be one of their favorite toys. Who knows, they may get into the RC hobby big time and start upgrading and building their own drones.
- Sense of Ownership. Next, drones teach kids to be responsible and careful. It is something they own, like how Mom and Dad have their own vehicles. They learn to share it with others and not hog it to themselves.
- Outdoor Flying. Another perk to introducing kids to the world of drones is that it gets them out of the house. Kids already spend enough time watching videos and playing video games. With the addition of a drone into their lives, they will be asking to go to their favorite flight destinations and it’s fun for the whole family.
- Photography and Videography. As they get older, you may want to consider purchasing them a drone with a built in camera. We’ve found kids usually heartily embrace the tech side of the experience. By getting aerial shots they will have lots of great videos images to edit into a truly unique expression of how they gained the capability of seeing the world from above. This initial experience could lead into all sorts of fun and exciting career fields such as robotics and automation, including a professional drone pilot. Yes, that’s a real job. Super cool right? Just wait until they get drone racing and drone battling on TV!
- Mechanical Skill Building. In addition to photography, drones may turn your little one into a Mr. or Mrs. fixit. Most drones are made up of component parts that are fairly simple to assemble, disassemble, build, replace, and rebuild. Knowing how to track down the issue and fix it themselves will give kids a sense of accomplishment few other activities can compare with. Extra confidence and self teaching skills is something all kids need, so to get it in such a fun way is a big win.