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How much does Drone Photography Cost?



What is Aerial & Drone Photography?

Have you ever watched a film or TV show, and wondered how they managed to capture stunning landscapes that are shot from above? In the old days, it was probably captured from a helicopter. Though this would cost thousands, and be reserved for only the biggest Hollywood budgets. These days, anyone can reproduce such shots when they hire a professional London Drone Works operator.


Our Drone photography can be used for a variety of purposes. This includes advertising, weddings, film/TV, journalism, estate agent listings, construction, engineering, agricultural surveys, events and more. It can take the form of a static image, a video, or a combination of both.


While it’s possible to buy your own drone, London Drone Work's professional drone pilots have not only the expertise required, but the right licenses and insurance to operate a drone. For London Drone Works, this includes flying at extreme heights, at night and even over high-risk areas of the UK. All of which is only available with the right certification and training, before you even consider the quality of the shot. Therefore, our professional drone operators are in high demand.


How much does Drone Photography cost?

Drone photography costs between £50 and £200 per hour on average. As you may have noticed, there is quite a sizable price difference, and that’s because it depends on what the drone photography is for.

For example, there’s a huge difference between someone wanting to inspect their roof tiles, versus a film company requiring an image that needs to be shot from a considerable height.


Average cost of Drone Photography


Minimum cost (per hour) £200

Maximum cost (per hour) £400


London Drone Works may charge by the hour, but most commonly they will give you a fixed fee. The total fee will take into account the time needed, the drone model you select and also any post-production that’s required.


What changes the price of Drone photography?

The cost of hiring a drone varies depending on several factors, including:

  • Job type

  • Drone model

  • Permission level

  • Personnel required

  • Image quality

  • Post-processing

  • Time

  • Experience

  • Location

Job type

The common denominator with all drone jobs is that we will be shooting footage or images from a height. But the job that you request will either be straightforward or require more specialist equipment, not to mention manpower to complete.


For basic jobs, expect to pay anywhere between £200 and £400. Such jobs may only take a couple of hours of work, and usually only require 1 pilot.


Moving into the more specialist drone work can set you back anywhere between £1,500and £4,000. Such work includes any job which takes a significant amount of time, experience or personnel to complete. Specialist jobs will also use more expensive drone models.


Aerial photography involves sending an aircraft to capture images. This service starts at £200, though can run into several thousands, especially for TV work or similar larger projects.


Average cost of Drone photography based on the type of job

Type of drone job Highest average price Lowest average price

Drone hire (standard) £500 £150

Drone hire (specialist) £4,000 £1,500

Aerial photography £200 £800


Permission level

Official drone licenses cost £1,000 to obtain in the UK, which must be renewed every 12 months. Within this, different permission levels are available ranging from a CAA PfCO (Permission for Commercial Operation), or CAA Operational Authorisation through to non-standard permission, which is for jobs which have a greater operational risk.

The most high-risk jobs (such as flying above central London) require London Drone Works to possess public liability insurance to the value of at least £1,000,000. Although the job itself obviously won’t be nearly as expensive as this, such expertise will cost more than a novice drone operator just starting out, who doesn’t have such a permission level.


Personnel required

London Drone Works sometimes requires several pilots, runners, monitor operators etc. The more complex your job, the more expensive it will be.


Image quality

The image quality you require is going to depend on the purpose. At the time of writing, the most common image quality levels vary between HD, 4K, 6K and 8K.

The higher the image quality you need, the more the project will cost, owing to the shooting capabilities of each particular drone model. Keep in mind that not all devices have the ability to stream 8K quality (or above), so speak to London Drone Works for further advice.

Post-processing

Depending on the type of footage or images you wish to capture, you may want to have it post-processed by the London Drone Works. This could include video stitching, colour grading, voiceovers, adding music or other cool special effects.

London Drone Works edit our own drone footage too, so it all depends on your requirements

Video edits may cost anywhere from £100 to £400 per minute of finished footage for services and Images will usually be far cheaper to edit than video.


Time

London Drone Works typically charge by the hour, half-day or full-day.

Some drone shots can be captured in a matter of minutes, others will take all day if not a few days to complete. The time also factors in the travel time for our operators, especially if you are hiring from outside of our local area.


Location

The cost of hiring a drone may also depend on where you live. The cheapest area to hire a drone in the UK is typically the South East, averaging at £200. The most expensive area is London at £400.


The price difference is due to varying operational costs. Plus, our drone pilots in London will most certainly require the top level of permission and insurance, due to the higher risk of flying over the capital versus rural areas.


Average cost of Drone Photography based on the location

Location Average drone hire cost

South East £200

Midlands £350

London £400

South West £350


Is it worth getting Drone photography?

The advantage of a drone is that it can scale huge heights in a matter of seconds. So whether you want to create an impressive showreel or ascertain the condition of a building, there’s nothing else that can compare.


The images or video captured will look absolutely stunning, especially when used for promotional purposes. Therefore, drone photography is well worth the investment, especially when you hire a London Drone Works licensed drone pilot who will give the best possible results.

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