Aerial drone footage of Temecula, CA

With the explosion of drone videography, capturing stunning aerial footage of your wedding is more readily available than ever. However, as drone videography is an emerging field, there is a lot to consider when it comes to choosing a drone videographer. Before deciding to include aerial footage in your wedding videography package, here is what you need to know about having a drone at your wedding.

Does the Drone Need to Be Operated By a Professional?

Some people have a family member or friend who is a drone enthusiast who is adamant that they can operate the drone recordings for your wedding. “Don’t pay for a drone! I’ll take care of it,” they say, coaxing you into letting them bring their drone to the wedding. While this might be tempting to save on cost, it comes with a lot of potential problems. For starters, amateur drone videos will not match the tone and feel of the professional videographers on the ground causing a noticeable change from the rest of the filming. Also, if something goes wrong and an accident happens, your family or friend is liable.

Are the Videographers Experienced With Drones?

Drones are mini-helicopters with cameras, so if the drone operator isn't a properly trained professional, you risk having any number of accidents on your hands, which can put a serious damper on your wedding day. Having a videographer experienced with drones can make a big difference in mitigating risks while capturing incredible aerial shots. Since there are no redoes on your wedding day, setup, filming, and troubleshooting, which is a necessity with drone videography, are best handled by a professional.

Wedding videography drone footage at the Pelican Hill Resort.

Does Your Venue Restrict the Use of Drones?

Drones are pretty resilient, but they're still electronic devices. They often won’t work in very hot or icy conditions, due to the battery overheating or over-cooling. They also cannot fly in heavy rain or high winds over 25 miles per hour. On top of these considerations, there can be zoning restrictions. The FAA has strict rules about the locations where drones are permitted, as well the height at which they can fly. While almost all wedding venues will permit some drone usage, many have strict rules regarding their operation. Hotels and public venues can be more restrictive about the use of drone photography and videography on their property. Also, be aware that drones can’t fly within 5 miles of an airport. 

Do Your Videographers Have the Proper Licenses?

It’s true that anybody can buy and fly a drone, however, commercial drone operators (such as wedding videographers and photographers) must be licensed. The FAA recently created a new test specifically for drone operators, that states they must be re-tested every two years. Also, drones must be registered with the FAA before flying.

Is the Drone Fee Included?

This is a critical question to ask your videographer as the cost of drone services may not be included in the videography package. If they mention that they can include a drone for the day, make sure to verify whether or not it is included in the total cost. Specifically ask ‘is there an additional fee for the drone?’ before you agree, otherwise you might be surprised when the bill arrives.

Do You Have Videographers on The Ground?

Despite the grand sweeping shots they can produce, a drone cannot record audio or close-ups. You also can’t fly over or near guests due to FAA regulations. On top of this, drones can be loud and intrusive. For this reason, drone footage isn’t enough by itself to capture your wedding day. You need videographers on the ground to capture the up-close moments that make for lasting memories. Consider the drone footage as supplemental, but never a replacement for wedding videography.

Additional Questions?

Our team of experienced drone operators and videographers, licensed by the FAA and insured for your protection, are always available to answer any specific questions about your wedding day. Feel free to reach out and learn how our team utilizes all the best modern technology and videography techniques to create stunning wedding videos you will fall in love with! 

Contact us for more information on how we can tell your love story. We would love to walk you through our amazing packages, wedding albums, canvases, and other print photography products. We look forward to providing you with more information on our Wedding Videography and Wedding Photography and the opportunity to introduce you to our team!