When it comes to big drone names, none are more synonymous with quality than DJI. Then…
The time has come for you to buy a drone. You have a realistic idea of how much you’ll pay, and you’re ready to put that money down. The question now becomes where should I buy a drone from?
When buying a drone, you have the following options:
- Electronics stores like Best Buy
- General retailers like Walmart
- Online retailers like Amazon
- Drone manufacturers like DJI
In this helpful article, we’ll talk in more depth about your myriad of choices when it comes to buying a drone. Whether you decide to visit a big box retailer in person or you stick with online shopping, you’ll be able to narrow down your options by the time you’re done reading.
Let’s get started.
Where to Buy a Drone
Your quest to purchase a drone might have you starting at an electronics store. If there’s new tech to sell, then you’d find it here. Since these stores specialize in electronics, you should have your pick of drones.
One of the top electronics stores is undoubtedly Best Buy. From music and televisions, computers, phones, and everything in between, you could also potentially track down your next drone at a Best Buy store. They carry drones from brands like Yuneec and DJI as well as useful accessories for drone piloting. These include lens filters, propellers, goggles and headsets, and drone carrying cases.
If your local Sears store has a consumer electronics section, then head on over there to get shopping for your drone. Like Best Buy, Sears sells video games, televisions, portable audio, and computers. You can browse toy drones and real-deal models like those from DJI. Should you feel like getting crafty, you can even buy DIY drone kits at Sears. Now you can customize your drone so it’s everything you want it to be.
While the name might not suggest it, you can also buy drones at Office Depot. Some of the drone brands we saw when perusing their website include DJI, Hubsan, and AAE. Their DJI drones especially seem to sell out fast online, so always call ahead to your nearby Office Depot to ensure they have what you want.
Besides electronics stores, you can also shop your favorite general retail stores in your neighborhood to get a drone. These stores all have electronics sections, but they’re likely not as sizable as the ones from Best Buy, Office Depot, Sears, and the like. Thus, you might not have as big a selection of drones to choose from.
The exception to that would be Walmart, as the store has seemingly everything. Take, for instance, their impressive stock of drones. While it would vary from store to store, you can buy pricy drones with cameras and even toy drones here. Some of their stock includes such big-name models as the DJI Mavic Pro quadcopter, the DJI Mavic 2 Pro, and even the DJI Spark drone. Walmart also stocks Vivitar and Xiro drones. You have plenty to pick from.
Maybe you like Target more than Walmart or you don’t have a Walmart near you. You’re far from being without any options. Target, like many of today’s retailers, has hopped aboard the drone train. They organize their selection by starter drones, 4K drones, and video drones. If you like Sky Viper or DJI drones, pop into a Target by you. You should be able to get what you need.
Are you surprised to see home improvement retailer Home Depot on this list? That’s fair, but they too don’t want to miss out on the revenue stream a retailer can earn by selling drones. Through their website, Home Depot sells drones by CONTIXO and DJI. We can’t promise you’ll have a wealth of choices at your local Home Depot store, but the only way to find out is to stop by and see.
Should your search for a drone turn up fruitless to this point, you can always go online. This convenient way of shopping has become the norm for millions of people. You merely search for the exact drone model you want, add it to your cart, pay, and you’re all done. The worst part is waiting for your shipment to arrive on your doorstep, but even that’s not so long nowadays.
Arguably the biggest online retailer out there today is Amazon. If there’s a drone in existence, then Amazon should carry it. You can get a drone for as cheap as $40 or browse those that cost $500, even $1,000 and up (like DJI drones). Fun fact: Amazon themselves have used drones to deliver packages to its huge shopper base.
Tech lovers also quite like NewEgg.com. A trusted site for all things electronics for decades, NewEgg has all your favorite drones, such as the Holy Stone HS700D FPV GPS, the DJI Spark Palm Launch quadcopter, the Yuneec YUNFCAUS Breeze Compact smartdrone, and the DJI Trello 720p video recording drone.
Another very recognizable name in online retail is eBay. While millions of happy shoppers have gotten great items from eBay, you do want to shop smart when looking for a drone here. Make sure you’re getting a new drone, not a used one. Avoid drones that seem very cheap, as they could be a scam. Also, check out the seller’s satisfaction percentage. eBay lets you see the most recent reviews, good and bad. Use these as your guide.
Direct from the Manufacturer
While so many retail stores sell big-name drones, you can always skip the middleman and buy directly from the drone manufacturer themselves. Sometimes you can get a better deal this way. At the very least, there’s no question of authenticity when shopping direct from the manufacturer.
We’ve already mentioned DJI drones a dozen times in this article. That’s because the brand is the gold standard when it comes to high-quality drones. Whether you want a mini drone for practicing in your backyard, one with filming capabilities perfect for a budding videographer, or something in between, you can’t go wrong with DJI. Their drones are some of the most expensive on the market, but they’re worth it for the serious enthusiast.
Another much beloved drone brand is Yuneec. They sell the H520 hexacopter and all the drones in the Typhoon line, including the Typhoon H3 and the Typhoon H Plus. If you want the Mantis Q or the Mantis G, then you’ve gotta shop Yuneec. You can even pick up accessories through their website, including FPV goggles, transmitters, flight simulator tools, and cameras.
Hubsan is a third big name in the world of drone manufacturing. Their collection of colorful, unique drones includes the H107D X4 FPV, H109S Pro Professional, H502S X4 Desire FPV, H501M X4 Waypints FPV, the ZINO, and the F22 standard edition. With their drones all costing three figures (and low three figures, at that), they’re a great, affordable alternative to DJI.
How to Choose Where to Buy Your Drone
You have so many great retailers from this list alone, so how do you pick one? Here are some of our tips for selecting a retailer to buy your drone from, be it online or offline:
- Don’t discount name recognition. If you know of a store because you’ve shopped there before or you know someone who has, that might be enough to convince you to try that retailer over another one.
- What kind of selection do they have? If you’re looking for a drone that’s not as popular as the DJI Mavic 2 Pro or something similar, then you don’t always get so much of a choice as to where you’ll shop. You’ll go to whichever retailer has the drone you’re looking for.
- Does the retailer offer any kind of discounts? Drone prices are pretty much the same from one retailer to another, unless of course that store specializes in selling items for less than the competition. Even still, always do your due diligence to ensure you’re not getting scammed.
- Do they have any kind of warranty on their goods? You know as well as anyone that drones can be expensive. If you can get protection on your investment, that will instill you with more peace of mind.
- What’s their return policy like? Although it won’t happen often if you do your research, sometimes you get a drone you’re not entirely happy with. You don’t want to be stuck with said drone, so look at a retailer’s return policy before you shop.
When asking yourself where to buy a drone, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. There are so many retailers today, especially online, that you might not know where to start. We’re here to make your life a bit easier. One thing not to overlook are accessories such as a camera cleaning kit, drone lights for at night, sun hood for drone, propellers, drone bags, DJI drone bag or micro SD card.
While online retailers offer convenience that can’t be beat, sometimes it’s worth driving out to your local electronics store or big-name retailer like a Walmart or Target. This way, you can see the drone in person and maybe even test it out. Also, don’t forget that if you’re looking for a very specific model, you can always shop directly through the manufacturer. Good luck!