Ultimate Guide to the Best Travel Drones: Top Picks for Epic Journeys

A drone transforms a great adventure into an epic one. But not just any drone will do when you’re on the move. You need something that’s as ready to explore as you are. That’s where travel drones come in – compact, lightweight, yet packed with all the features to capture your journey in stunning detail.

Last Updated: 14:44, 14 November 2023
author icon Written By: Benjamin Wilson
  • Best Overall Travel Drone

    QuadRanger Drone

    drone QuadRanger Drone list item image
    Up to 50% discount available
    Price: $99 $149
    • Weight: 4.2 oz (with battery)
    • Dimensions (unfolded): 10.6 x 7.7 x 2 inches
    • Dimensions (folded): 4.92 x 2.95 x 1.97 inches
    • Controller: Yes
    • Camera: 720p HD video
    • Battery life: 12 minutes
    • Max range: 265 feet
    • Max speed: 13 mph
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  • DJI Mini 3 Pro

    drone DJI Mini 3 Pro list item image
    Price: $803.25
    • Weight: 8.8 oz
    • Dimensions (unfolded): 14.3 x 2.8 x 9.9 inches
    • Dimensions (folded): 3.5 x 2.4 x 5.7 inches
    • Controller: Yes
    • Camera: 4K/60fps video
    • Battery life: 34 minutes
    • Max range: 7.5 miles
    • Max speed: 36 mph
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  • Nano+ by Autel

    drone Nano+ by Autel list item image
    Price: $859
    • Weight: 8.8 oz
    • Dimensions (unfolded): 10.24 × 12.80 × 2.17 inches
    • Dimensions (folded): 3.70 × 2.17 inches
    • Controller: Yes
    • Camera: 4K
    • Effective pixels: 48M
    • Battery life: 28 minutes
    • Max range: 6.2 miles
    • Max speed: 33.5 mph
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  • DJI Mavic 3 Classic

    drone DJI Mavic 3 Classic list item image
    Price: $1.749
    • Weight: 31.6 oz (1.98 lb)
    • Dimensions (folded): 8.7 x 3.8 x 3.6 inches
    • Dimensions (unfolded): 13.7 x 11.1 x 4.2 inches
    • Controller: Yes
    • Camera: 5.1K
    • Effective Pixels: 20 MP
    • Battery life: 46 minutes (in our tests: ~30 minutes)
    • Max range: 9.3 miles
    • Max speed: ~47 mph
    Shop Now
  • DJI Phantom 4 Pro Plus V2.0

    drone DJI Phantom 4 Pro Plus V2.0 list item image
    Price: $2.899
    • Weight: 16,5 oz
    • Dimensions: 1ft (Diagonal Size)
    • Controller: Standard RC
    • Camera: 4K/60Fps video
    • Battery life: 30 minutes
    • Max range: 11 miles
    • Max speed: 45 mph
    Shop Now

In this article, we're diving into the world of the best travel drones out there. Whether you're a seasoned flyer or just starting, I've got you covered with top picks that are sure to elevate your travel experiences. So, buckle up and let's find that perfect aerial companion for your next adventure!

For some amazing travel photography tips, check out this article from National Geographic

What Makes a Drone Ideal for Travel?

When it comes to picking the perfect travel drone, there are a few key features you'll want to keep an eye out for. Let's break it down:

    First things first, if you're traveling, you need a drone that's as mobile as you are. Look for drones that are lightweight and compact. The best travel drones can easily fit in your backpack or carry-on, making them perfect for on-the-go adventures.

    Your travel drone is going to see a lot of action, so it needs to be tough. Drones built with sturdy materials that can withstand a bit of rough handling are a must. After all, you don't want a minor mishap to end your aerial photography dreams.

    Camera Quality:
    What's a travel drone without an excellent camera? Look for drones with high-quality cameras that can capture crisp, clear photos and videos. Features like 4K video, image stabilization, and a decent sensor size make a huge difference in the quality of your footage.

    Battery Life:
    There's nothing worse than setting up for the perfect shot only to have your drone's battery die. Opt for drones with longer flight times – the more minutes you get in the air, the better.

    User-Friendly Features:
    Especially if you're new to drones, you'll want something that's easy to control. Features like GPS tracking, automatic return-to-home, and obstacle avoidance aren't just convenient; they're game-changers for hassle-free flying.

Remember, the best travel drone is the one that fits your specific needs and style. So, consider these factors carefully, and you'll be well on your way to capturing breathtaking views from above!

Top 5 Travel Drones

Here is a description and summary of each drone in our list of the best travel drones.
No matter if you're going on an adventure across the globe or enjouying youself with you family on the beach, we've made sure that you'll find a drone thats right for your needs and budget.

QuadRanger Drone

A dark grey QuadRanger drone with a camera lens and two LED headlights standing on a blue table
QuadRanger drone
Price: $99 (Up to 70% off!)

The QuadRanger Drone tops our list for a multitude of reasons. It's the epitome of what a travel drone should be – versatile, robust, and equipped with top-notch tech.

This drone is a favorite among travelers for its exceptional balance of portability and performance. It's designed to be user-friendly, making it a great choice for both beginners and seasoned pilots.

First and foremost, the drone is portable, durable, and compact, so it will barely take up any space in your bag. While the drone boasts a great camera for recording videos and taking photos, it isn't expensive. This is important, as I've noticed people are often uncomfortable flying expensive drones when they're on holiday or traveling in new environments.

A more affordable drone like this, which still features a superb camera, ensures that you'll use the drone to capture those incredible memories.

Lastly, the drone comes with some great features that make it suitable for beginners, meaning the whole family can enjoy using the drone.

Key Features:

  • High-resolution camera for stunning photos and videos.
  • Impressive flight time, keeping you in the air longer.
  • Extended control range for exploring vast landscapes.

Pros ✅

  • Durable and portable build.
  • Beginner-friendly features
  • FPV compatible with 3D headsets.
  • Extended battery life for prolonged flights.
  • Excellent camera quality.

Cons ❌

  • Might lack some advanced features present in high-end models.
  • 3D-Headset not included.
  • Sensitive to strong winds.

  • Dimensions: (folded): 4.92 x 2.95 x 1.97 inches.
  • Controller: Intuitive, included in the package.
  • Camera: 720p HD video.
  • Flight Time: 12 minutes.
  • Max Speed: 13 mph.

Buy it here

DJI Mini 3 Pro

A light grey DJI Mini 3 Pro drone placed on a wooden table with a gyro-stabilized camera at the front
DJI mini 3 Pro on a table
Price: $803.25

The DJI Mini 3 Pro is a marvel in the world of travel drones, combining portability with powerful features.

Known for its ultra-lightweight design, this drone is perfect for travelers who prioritize ease of transport without compromising on capabilities. It's a DJI drone so you know you're getting a high tier drone, but that also comes with a hefty price tag. I'd recommend getting a decent insurance.

Key Features:

  • Exceptional camera quality, rivaling larger drones.
  • Extended flight time for longer sessions.
  • Advanced control features for precise maneuvering.

Pros ✅

  • Ultra-portable.
  • Superior image and video quality.
  • User-friendly controls.

Cons ❌

  • Price may be a consideration for some.
  • Limited weight may affect stability in strong winds.

  • Price: Affordable for its class.
  • Dimensions: Extremely compact.
  • Controller: Ergonomic and included.
  • Camera: Professional-grade quality.
  • Flight Time: Sufficient for thorough exploration.
  • Max Speed: Agile and responsive.

Buy it here

Autel EVO Nano / Nano Plus

A red Nano+ drone is flying against a blue sky in bright sunlight
Nano+ by Autel
Price: $759

The Autel EVO Nano / Nano Plus stands out for its unique blend of size and power, making it a top pick for travel enthusiasts.

This drone is a testament to how small sizes can still pack a punch. It's perfect for capturing high-quality footage in a variety of settings.
The drone stands out with a brilliant RYYB color filter for anyone who is really passionate about grading.

Key Features:

  • Superior camera capabilities for its size.
  • Long-lasting battery for extended use.
  • Compact design for easy transport.

Pros ✅

  • Exceptional image quality.
  • Durable and reliable.
  • Very portable.

Cons ❌

  • Slightly higher learning curve for beginners.
  • Accessories can add to the cost.

  • Price: Competitive.
  • Dimensions: Small and efficient.
  • Controller: User-friendly, included.
  • Camera: High-quality, even in low light.
  • Flight Time: Above average.
  • Max Speed: Fast, with good stability.

Buy it here

DJI Mavic 3

A hand holding a dark grey DJI Mavic 3 Classic in a dark room
DJI Mavic 3 Classic
Price: $1,749

The DJI Mavic 3 is a favorite among professional photographers and videographers, known for its exceptional capabilities.

This drone is a powerhouse, offering unparalleled image and video quality, making it ideal for those looking to capture professional-grade footage.

Key Features:

  • Advanced camera system for cinematic shots.
  • Extended battery life for longer flights.
  • Robust build quality for durability.

Pros ✅

  • Industry-leading camera performance.
  • Long flight time.
  • Strong and reliable.

Cons ❌

  • Premium price point.
  • May be more drone than casual users need.

  • Specs:
    • Price: High-end.
    • Dimensions: Compact for its capabilities.
    • Controller: Advanced, included.
    • Camera: Top-of-the-line.
    • Flight Time: Extensive.
    • Max Speed: Impressive, suitable for professionals.

  • Buy it here

    DJI Phantom 4 Pro Plus V2.0

    A Phantom 4 Pro Plus V2.0 drone without propellers, displayed alongside its remote controller on a wooden table.
    DJI Phantom 4 Pro Plus V2.0
    Price: $2,899

    Rounding out our top 5 is the DJI Phantom 4 Pro Plus V2.0, a drone that stands out as a professional-grade drone, offering an unmatched blend of advanced features and robustness. It's a top choice for serious photographers and videographers who travel.

    This model is renowned for its reliability and high-quality output. It's a go-to choice for both hobbyists and professionals who demand excellence in their aerial footage.
    Features like ActiveTrack, TapFly, and Draw mode make it user-friendly, allowing even amateur pilots to capture professional-grade footage. however the drone needs a carrying case to be safely transported as it's more than pricy!

    Key Features:

    • Professional-grade camera for exceptional image and video quality.
    • Enhanced flight time, allowing for extensive aerial exploration.
    • Robust design with advanced obstacle sensing for safer flights.

    Pros ✅

    • Superior camera resolution and capabilities.
    • Long battery life for extended use.
    • Durable and reliable build.

    Cons ❌

    • Higher price point compared to other models.
    • Bulkier design, less portable than smaller drones.

  • Specs:
    • Price: Premium, reflecting its advanced features.
    • Dimensions: Larger, but with purposeful design.
    • Controller: High-end, included, with built-in screen.
    • Camera: 4K for professional-level photography and videography.
    • Flight Time: Lengthy, ideal for complex shoots.
    • Max Speed: Fast, yet stable and responsive.

  • Buy it here

    Buying Guide: What to Look for in a Travel Drone

    When it comes to choosing the perfect travel drone, it's not just about picking the most popular model. It's about finding the one that fits your specific needs. Here's a quick guide to help you make an informed decision:

      Size and Weight:
      The best travel drones are lightweight and compact. You want a drone that's easy to pack and won't weigh you down on your travels.

      Camera Quality:
      If you're using your drone for photography or videography, camera quality is key. Look for drones with high-resolution cameras and features like image stabilization.

      Flight Time:
      Longer flight times mean more opportunities to capture that perfect shot. Consider drones with extended battery life for uninterrupted flying.

      Ease of Use:
      Especially if you're a beginner, you'll want a drone that's user-friendly. Features like automatic takeoff, landing, and GPS tracking can make your flying experience much smoother.

      Travel can be tough on gear, so a durable drone is a must. Look for models built to withstand a bit of wear and tear.

    Traveling with Your Drone: Tips and Regulations

    Traveling with a drone can be incredibly rewarding, but it's important to do it right. Here are some tips to keep in mind:

      Invest in a good quality drone case. It should be sturdy, yet lightweight, and able to protect your drone from any bumps along the way.

      Carry your drone batteries in your carry-on luggage. Most airlines have specific regulations about batteries in checked baggage.

      Before you fly, familiarize yourself with the drone regulations of your destination. The FAA's website is a great resource for U.S. regulations.

      Respect Privacy:
      Always be mindful of people's privacy when flying your drone. Avoid flying over private property or crowded areas.

      Before heading out on your trip, spend some time practicing with your drone. This will help you feel more confident when flying in new environments.


    Choosing the right travel drone can elevate your adventures to new heights. Whether you're capturing memories or exploring new landscapes, a good drone becomes an essential travel companion. Happy flying, and may your skies be clear and your footage stunning!

    Further Reading

    Looking for more affordable options? Check out our guide on the best cheap drones.

    If you're shopping for younger enthusiasts, our list of the best drones for kids is a must-read.

    For those interested in photography, explore our recommendations on the best drones with camera.

    To learn about drones with exceptional endurance, our article on drones with the best battery life is quite informative.

    And if you're just starting out, don't miss our guide to the best beginner drones.


    Q: Can I take a drone on a plane?

    Q: Where can I legally fly my drone?

    Q: How high can I legally fly my drone?

    Q: What are the best tips for traveling with a drone?

    Meet the tester

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    Benjamin Wilson
    Benjamin, with a background in naval architecture, is passionate about RC boats. From sailboats to speedboats, he's sailed them all. Based in Florida, he's our anchor when it comes to all things aquatic in the RC world.
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