Take a flight over Victoria Falls, Zambia with a DJI Phantom Pro IV drone

MightyTravels 2017-03-25 at 8.48.19 AM

Last month I had the chance to explore Victoria Falls on both the Zambian and Zimbabwe side.

During my visit me and my travel companion also several drone flights with a DJI Phantom Pro 4. In the above video you can see the best shots we took from several flights.

I have been thinking of using a drone more often for my travel photography – some of the aerial shots can be mesmerizing.

But I have faced several issues:

– many countries and cities are paranoid about drones and it’s often not easy to find out if you can fly, some countries even restrict the import of drones

– most drones are cumbersome and heavy – I also tested the new, more portable DJI Maverick during my last visit to Yakutsk but was not happy with the range and battery life

– crashes happen and they are expensive – if a drone goes out of range you can expect a complete loss (unless you can find it by sheer luck) and without a crash warranty (that can be bought as an extra) you will need to buy a complete new drone at $999++

– while range is often advertised as several miles most locations are windy and have obstacles reducing it to one mile or less

– battery life is often advertised at 30+ minutes but in reality 20 minutes is already pushing the envelope, extra batteries are expensive

– I struggle with the fixed lens cameras that produce too low contrast pictures (albeit at an enormous resolution of 4k)

So I’d love to use drones regularly for my travel photography but I feel the technology is simply not ready yet.