How to Make Money with a Drone | 10 Proven Ways

You have probably seen photographers, real estate brokers or video producers acquire a drone. And, you are wondering how they could make money off this purchase.

In recent times, drones have gone beyond being just military equipment to becoming a device for videography, weather monitoring, and firefighting alongside other civilian roles.

Securing a drone now can increase your income over time. Though it may be expensive to purchase, in no distant time, you are likely to recover your investment.

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This article compiles a list of 10 possible ways to make money with a drone. So, if you are considering buying a drone or you have a drone already, this piece on how to make money with a drone will be quite beneficial to you.

It is pertinent we answer some questions related to the use of drones in recent times before venturing into ways to make money with it. The table of contents below shows a series of questions duly answered in this article.

What is a Drone?

In technological terms, drones are unmanned aircrafts. Often times called unmanned aerial vehicles, this flying robot were associated with the military in recent past.

Drones in simple terms are flying robots that can be remotely controlled. They can also fly autonomously through software-controlled flight plans in their systems that works in conjunction with onboard sensors and GPS.

Prior to recent trends, drones were used for anti-aircraft target practice, intelligence gathering and as weapons platforms. Now, drones are beneficial to civilians for search and resuce purposes. Other importance of drones in recent times include traffic monitoring, weather monitoring and firefighting.

Drones are also beneficial to businesses like videography, agriculture and even delivery services.

What are the features and components of a drone?

Drones take instructions from its controller. This controller can communicate with the drone using radio waves including wi-fi.

This communication is made possible due to the technological features and components of drones. Below are some features of a drone:

  • Flight Controller
  • GPS module
  • Battery
  • Antenna
  • Receiver
  • Cameras
  • Sensors
  • Accelerometer
  • Electronic Speed Controllers
  • Altimeter

Navigational System

The GPS module of most drones are found in the nose of a drone. This navigation system tells the controller the exact location of a drone.


Altimeters informs the controller of the drones altitude. Basically, the controller can keep the drone as a specific altitude if the drone has an onboard altimeter.


Depending on the role of the drone, it could have series of sensors. For instance, drones for surveillance and security may integrate thermal sensors; while hyperspectral sensors are best for drones for crop health, water quality and surface composition.

On the other hand, ultrasonic sensors and visual positioning systems are best for such drones used for landing purposes. Other sensors for your drones inlude time of flight sensors, chemical sensors, RGB and multispectral sensors.

Which Drone Should I Buy?

Well, a major determinant of what drone to buy will start with your ability to pinpoint why you need to buy a drone.

Basically, you can get a drone for either personal or commercial use. This will also determine the technological features to look out for.

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In recent times, individuals now convert their personal drones to commercial drones for more profit-making. However, in choosing what drone to buy; it is highly advisable to opt for strong capable drones for commercial purposes.

For instance, Insitu-ScanEagle a drone from a Boeing company that has a 10-foot wingspan and weighs 35 pounds is best for very complex actions. You should also consider its sensor, altimeter accelerometer in relation to the roles of the drone.

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Types of Drone

Generally, drone platforms are of two types- rotor (single rotor or multi-rotor) or fixed wing.

Rotor drone platforms encompass tricopters, quadcopters , hexacopters and octcoptors while fixed wing incorporates hybrid vertical take off and landing drones. These set of drone platforms do not require runways to take off or land.

Also, drones can be classified into ScanEagles and Tethered Drones. While ScanEagles function as ariplanes would, Tethered drones are limited to a base station.

Some manufacturers of these types of drones will include:

  • DJI
  • Hubsan
  • 3D Robitics
  • Insitu
  • PrecisionHawk

How Does Drones Work?

Drones can assume any function assigned to it. Unlike decades ago when drones were for military purposes, these days drones can be used for recreational, photography, commercial and personal activities.

Majorly, drones basic functions are flight or navigation. Irrespective of where they are being used, drones are either flying or navigating for specific purposes.

For flight purposes, drones have a power source, rotors, propellers and a frame that helps it fly. The power source could be a battery or fuel.

Most drones frame are of light weigh, composite materials that aids to reduce weight. This in turn increases maneuverability during flight.

For the effective use of a drone, an operator is important. The operator uses the controller remotely to launch, navigate, and land a drone.

 In clear terms, drones work as all the features of a drone come in pairs. Specifically, for flight purposes, the rotor pushes down on the air while the air pushes up on the rotor.

Do I need a license to make money with a drone?

Yes, you need a license to fly a drone in most parts of the US. Flying a drone requires some level of expertise. Except you wish to fly a drone for fun, you need to get the necessary certification to fly a drone for money.

How much can I make flying Drones?

Depending on where you fly your drone for money and your years of experience, you may earn as much as $50, 000 a year.

According to the pilot institute, a Drone Pilot with less than a year of experience earn $20.70 per hour while Drone pilots with more than five years of experience earn $24.49 per hour.

How to make money with a drone

Either for agricultural, videography, fire-fighting or surveillance purposes, you can make money with a drone in the following ways.

#10. Sell Photos and Footages shot with a Drone

If you have a drone and wondering how to make money with it, selling aerial photos and footages is a great deal.

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With your drone, take the aerial pictures and videos of important places and sell the pictures. There are quite a number of websites who are willing to pay for your nice shots.

To achieve this feat, you must equip your drone with a gimbal and quality camera. For good quality outdoor and indoor footages, your drone should be equipped with nothing less than a GoPro camera and a 4K Ultra HD videos.

#9. Launch a YouTube Channel

Youtube channels with a good number of subscribers earn good money monthly. So, if you have a drone, you can launch a channel on Youtube to make money. Basically, there are wide range of topics surrounding drones that could generate traffic.

For instance, you can capture beautiful sights and events with your drone, upload them on your YouTube channel, and talk about it. If your content is good, enticing, and interesting, you will get a number of audiences that may convert to money.

To achieve making money with a drone on YouTube, you must find your target audience and serve them entertaining and informative contents.

#8. Resell Drones

If you love buying and selling, you can make money off your drones during business. You can use your drones to teach people about the different parts, features and components of drones.

Then, you can advise your listeners on the best drone model for specific purposes. Interestingly, you don’t need to break a bank to start up this business. Simply dropship for top drone suppliers or sell for online stores using your affiliate link.

Either ways, you are bound to make money selling drones with your online store.

#7. Advertise with your drone

Covering a product, event or place with a drone gives a more appealing look. Drones tend to get the aerial view that normal cameras would not get on a norm.

So, you can take shots and videos for companies and organizations. These clips could be used for advertisement. You may choose to become part-time employees of real estate moguls, resorts, hotels and even event centers.

This avails you the opportunity to attend to other life issues while making money with your drone.

#6. Surveillance and Private Investigation Jobs

In affliation with security agencies, you can use your drone for video monitoring. Large companies usually hire drone pilots for air survillance.

For security endangered places, drones come in handy to cover the security situations in such places. Drones are at less risk because they are less noticeable. So, you can make money with your drone if you take up surveillance jobs for firms and companies.

#5. Precision Agriculture

This is an unharnessed opportunity to make money with a drone. Many crops may get destroyed by farmers while inspecting their crops.

This can be averted with the help of a drone in precision agriculture. You can make money with your drone if you use it for crop survellaince. Also, drones can be used to spray chemicals on crops.

Drones in precision agriculture reduce the cost and time spent during these jobs on a large farm. So, you can earn huge amount of money yearly working with a drone on a farm.

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#4. Search and Rescue Jobs

Unlike helicopters and traditional mode of searching for missing people, drones tend to do a better job. Basically, drones have the ability to motice missing people or things from the air with ease.

So, during rescue mission or relief responses, you can make money with your drone by rendering video services. This is a more exciting and interesting way to make money with a drone because it involves helping people.

#3. Inspection Jobs

With your drone, you can take up inspection jobs for money. Drone inspection for construction and insurance companies is taken a leap recently. You can harness this opportunity to earn make money with your drone. Service you may render include covering the aerial view of regular check ups and

#2. Delivery Services

Running delivery for malls, shops and industries is becoming major souce of income in recent times.

Drones make it faster and safer. Hence, drone delivery is an innovative way to make money with your drone in 2020.

To get started, you can sign up with companies and organizations that need drone delivery services. Then, deliver items to places that may be unreachable by road. To succeed in this venture, you may need to acquire larger drones as smaller ones cannot deliver heavy loads.

#1. Aerial Wedding Videography and Photography

The aerial view of pictures and places are not just beautiful, they are also outstanding. Aerial wedding videography and photography have become a profitable business.

This is because demand is higher than drones aerial coverage demands.

So, if you have a drone, this is an easy way to make money with your drone in 2020. To succeed in this feat, you need to sharpen your photography and video editing skills.

Obviously, people love to get outstanding photos of their wedding as this is the only reminder of their great day. So, if you can satisfy their pleasure; then, they are willing to pay large sums of money.


Acquiring a drone is not a waste of financial resources; rather, an investment worth making.

It is not enough to acquire a drone anyways, it is important to understand the functionality of its features. This will help you know what to equip your drone with and how to efficiently make money off it.

This article sheds light on what a drone is, its components, and 10 lucrative ways to make money with your drone in 2020.

Thewealthcircle has compiled this list not just for your reading pleasure, but also to encourage you to take action immediately. You are bound to find one or two ways suitable for you to make money with your drone.


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