Parents! Please read the following before buying a drone for your child:
Most drones come in two categories:
Ones that weigh less than seven ounces (200 grams) and ones that are heavier (up to 55 lbs).
The ones that weigh less than seven ounces (200 grams) can be flown by anyone who is able to buy one.
There are no age restrictions or specific flying regulations for these toys, except for the basic privacy and security laws that cover all drones.
For children first starting out with drones, it is a good idea to buy a small toy drone, which is easy to fly. They usually cost under $100.
Note: It is highly recommended that no matter what drone your child is flying, they are supervised by a parent or guardian. Drones can be dangerous if not flown under the right safety precautions.
With that in mind, let’s learn more about flying drones for kids (big and small).
Table of the Best Kids Drones
5MP / 720p
12MP / 1080p
Potensic Mini Drone
Best Under $30
Force1 UFO 3000
Holy Stone HS210
Best Battery Package
Fly Responsibly: If you live in the U.S., the Federal Aviation Administration requires many drones to be registered. This includes hobby and professional drones. Visit the FAA's drone registration page for more information.
Best Drones for Kids - Reviews
1. Best Overall - Tello
For a drone that costs around a hundred bucks this baby is outstanding. It has nice features, records video, and performs like a much higher-priced drone.
Even though it is priced like a toy, it does not seem like one. If you haven’t already done this, check out the video footage of a Bali vacation shot by a newbie drone user to see what I mean.
This drone has a five-megapixel camera to take photos and record 720p resolution MP4 video to share with friends on social media. It flies up to 30 feet high with a range of about 300 feet.
The flight time is up to 13 minutes on a single battery charge. The Tello drone is controllable by using a smartphone with a free app, or you can choose to buy the optional controller.
Tello has virtual reality (VR) headset capability, meaning you can buy an optional VR headset and fly this drone with first-person view (FPV).
- Automatic take off and landing.
- Five-megapixel camera.
- VR capability
- Programmable using your own custom code.
- Flight time can reduce when recording video, so extra batteries are recommended.
2. Best Safety - Force1 Scoot
The Force1 Scoot is the most kid-friendly drone in this group. It does not require a controller.
It works by proximity sensing and is controllable using your hands. It has a hard-shell protective enclosure that protects it from damage if it hits something. This also protects any children from being harmed by the propellers.
It is suitable for ages four and up with adult supervision and ages 14 and up without supervision.
This drone has sensors for obstacle detection and avoidance. It is designed for use by children and for flying indoors. Beginners can easily fly this drone ,because it flies itself!
Steering is accomplished by putting your hand up near the drone to make it change direction. A battery recharge takes only one hour. The battery charges by plugging it into a USB port.
Flight time is up to 8 minutes on a battery charge. The Force1 Scoot weighs four ounces.
- Extremely easy to fly, just toss it in the air.
- Flies automatically around a room.
- Has fun LED lights.
- Not for outdoor use because it can fly away if it does not sense an obstacle.
3. Best Technology - DJI Spark
The DJI Spark is really popular. DJI makes a bunch of hobby drones. The Spark model is an entry-level hobby drone.
It costs about $300 to $400, which is about three to four times the price of the highest-priced toy drone I've reviewed. However, if you want to step up to the hobby level of drone flying this is a good choice.
Spark weighs over the limit for toy drones, which means you must register it with the FAA at the FAA Drone Zone.
This drone has the DJI Go 4 app for a smartphone that helps make videos with many special features such as: 1) PalmControl to use hand gestures to control the drone’s movement; 2) ActiveTrack to automatically follow a person or an object while shooting video, and ; 3) TapFly to automatically fly to a point tapped on the image on your smartphone screen.
It takes photos with a 12-megapixel camera that has a wide-angle lens. It shoots video at the resolution of 1080p. It transmits live-streaming video with a range of up to 1.2 miles on a WIFI connection.
The drone comes with FaceAware that recognizes the owner. Just toss the drone in the air and it automatically hovers in front of the person it recognizes and takes selfies by recognizing hand gestures that frame the face.
The DJI Spark has collision avoidance sensors to prevent crashes. In sports mode, with collision avoidance turned off, it flies fast, up to 31 mph. Finally, its flight time is up to a whopping 16 minutes.
- FPV capable with optional VR headset.
- High-end professional features at a low cost.
- Easy to fly.
- It's recommended to double-check the battery connections before each flight.
4. Best Durability - Potensic Mini Drone
This is one of the cutest toy drones because it is so tiny. It fits easily in the palm of your hand and is designed for children ages eight and up.
This Potensic Mini Drone is very easy to use. It has one-button automatic takeoff and landing. It has a hold-altitude feature and a directional lock to continue flying in one direction.
It has an alarm to indicate it is about to go out of range and needs to be flown back towards the controller. Another alarm sound indicates a low battery, which calls for an immediate landing to prevent a crash.
This drone can fly at high or low speed by using a switch on the controller. Its flight time is up to six minutes. It does not require FAA registration.
- Low cost.
- Easy for children or beginners to fly.
- Can be flown outside.
- No collision-avoidance sensors.
5. Best Under $30 - Snaptain H823H
This Snaptain drone is made for teens age 14 and up. Younger children can easily fly it as well with adult supervision. It does interesting stunt flying with the push of a button. It does not require FAA registration.
This drone is decorated with LED lights so it can be flown in the dark. It can be flown very easily and uses headless flying to orient the drone’s flight control responses according to the location of the person using the controller.
An automatic altitude-hold feature helps beginners fly more easily. It flies slowly as the default for training purposes and it can fly at two higher speeds when desired. The flight time is up to ten minutes.
- One-button take-off, landing, and automatic return home.
- Performs automatic 3D stunts.
- Three speeds.
- No collision-avoidance sensors.
6. Best Lights - Force1 UFO 3000
The Force1 UFO quadcopter has beautiful colorful LED lights and looks like a UFO when flying at night. It does not require FAA registration.
This drone for children has high and low speeds. A 360-degree flip is a stunt it does at the touch of a button.
It can be flown both indoors and outside. It comes with extra batteries so it has a flight time of up to 18 minutes.
- LED lights are bright and have glow-in-the-dark green and blue colors.
- Comes with a set of four replacement propellers.
- Long flight time.
- No camera.
7. Best Battery Package - Holy Stone HS210
This is one of the lowest cost drones in this category. Nevertheless, it has some nice features. It is easy to fly. It weighs about one ounce, which does not require registration with the FAA.
The Holy Stone HS210 comes with three batteries that allow it to fly for up to seven minutes each for a total flight time of over 20 minutes. One-button landing and take off makes it easy to fly.
When the battery is low, it gives a signal by flashing an LED and then automatically lands. It can hover and hold altitude at the touch of a button. It does four types of flip stunts automatically.
- Very low cost.
- Tiny and lightweight.
- Comes with extra batteries for longer flight time.
- Range is limited to about 150 feet.
How do I know if a drone is kid-friendly?
Some toy drones are designed specifically for children.
They have easy-to-handle controllers and may be able to do fun things like automatic stunts with the push of a button. Some have colorful lights.
I noted these design elements in the review section when they have these features.
What age should my child be before flying a drone?
With adult supervision, even very young children can play with a drone as long as the adult helps them with the controls.
Some drones control themselves and operate with hand signals. They have automatic sensors that prevent collisions.
Even toddlers have fun with these because as they reach for them the automatic sensors make the drone fly away to stay at a safe distance.
Most manufacturers recommend that children be at least six years old to operate drone controls by themselves, under the watchful eye of an adult.
When a child is old enough to ride a bicycle on their own that is the same age that is appropriate for them to fly drones unsupervised in a safe area like the backyard.
Do these drones come with or without cameras?
The toy drones do not usually have a camera. However, I found one around $100 that does have a camera. I included in the review section.
Usually, the more you pay for a drone the better quality images and video it can capture. Hobby drones in the price range of $300 to $500 have good cameras.
I included one of these also in the reviews.
Specifications and features of toy drones for kids
The one specification for these toy drones that is important to note is whether or not a drone exceeds the weight limit of seven ounces (200 grams) because that puts the drone into the category of drones that the FAA requires to be registered.
In the group that I reviewed, there is only one hobby drone that exceeds this weight limit. It is identified in its review as a drone that needs FAA registration.
When reviewing the toy drones, I noted whether the drone has a camera and, if so, what image quality it can capture. I investigated the flight modes, including any flight-assistance capabilities.
I noted the estimated flight times and the flying range for each drone. I selected the different drones for review because each one has a unique feature that the others do not have.
See Also: Best Drones Under $200
How to choose a drone for kids
You cannot go wrong with any of my choices of drones for kids. The main considerations are price, type of flying, safety, camera, ease-of-use, flight time, and accessories.
All the drones that I reviewed sell for under $100 except for one that sells for around $300. The cheapest ones are around $20 to $30.
Type of Flying
One important thing to consider is whether you will fly the drone indoors or outside. Some of these drones do not do very well outside and have trouble flying in the wind. Others are not as safe to fly indoors because they lack collision-avoidance sensors.
Safety considerations include considering the risk of accidents and potential injuries to children when a drone is not flown properly.
If the drone comes with a camera, the specifications of the image quality and recording capability are noted.
Some of these drones have an autonomous flying mode that can take off or land the drone at the push of a button. Others have warning tones that sound when the drone is nearing the end of the range of connectivity. This lets the pilot know to fly the drone back towards home in order to avoid losing it. Some of these drones are very simple and do not need a controller. They fly automatically and can be controlled by using the hands.
Toy drones usually can fly seven to 20 minutes per battery charge. It is a good idea to have a few extra batteries that are already charged in order to be able to fly for longer sessions.
The most popular accessories to buy for a drone are extra batteries and spare propeller blades.
Here is a checklist to use for all the important considerations:
- Type of Flying
- Flying Time
These toy drones are so cheap you should not labor over the idea of which one is the best to purchase. Just buy a bunch of them and start your own backyard drone races!
Who are these drones best for?
This category of drones is suitable for beginners, children, and those that want to have some fun with inexpensive electronic toys.
They make good gifts for your techie friends who do not already have a drone. Some of these drones are so easy to fly that even a grandma can do it.
What types of kids benefit most from these drones?
Pretty much, all kids benefit from this hobby and enjoy flying drones.
If a child is still at the stage of a toddler that likes to break things, it is better to wait a bit until they get a little older. Anyone about 8 years old or older quickly can get addicted to this sport. It is really fun to fly drones.
I discovered that kids with physical challenges, which prevent them from participating in other outdoor activities, enjoy flying drones very much.
If they use a motorized wheelchair, the drone controls will feel similar to those controls and they will quickly become accustomed to using them. It is very empowering for them to feel the freedom of flight with something that they control.
Here are examples of my favorite videos. Once is a beginner’s guide and the other two show toy drones in use: