Flying Drones is Fun, But is There a Career Connected to This Skillset?

For many years, people have been using drones as a fun hobby, but drones have now become an essential tool in many industries. But is there a career in flying drones? The answer is yes! Piloting drones is an up-and-coming career that is lucrative in many cases. Let’s take a look at what careers use drones.

Careers in flying drones

The drone industry is booming, and there are many opportunities for those pursuing drone pilot work. From freelance to commercial jobs, opportunities are endless for those that are professional drone operators. Here are some careers that have a high demand for drone pilots.

Photography and Filmmaking

There are dozens of ways to become involved in photography when you fly drones. Photography is one of the biggest and easiest ways to enter the drone industry. There are great opportunities for freelance work when you specialize in drone photography.

Some common photography jobs for drone photographers include:

  • Special event photography/film
  • Print advertising
  • Commercial production

If you already have experience in photography, adding a drone to your professional tools will only boost your resume and help you get more opportunities.

Real Estate

Real estate is a competitive business and is an area where drone photography and film can help make a huge difference in home sales. Aerial photos and video make properties stand out from their competition and may even help a house sell in record time.

Real estate companies may even use drone pilots to help film virtual tours of extensive properties. This helps buyers from out of state make a better decision when it comes to choosing a property.

Drones also help make 3D maps of real estate properties which helps potential buyers envision the property and/or house.

Real estate photography is perfect for a freelance drone pilot. You can set your own rates and work when and how often you choose.

Search and Rescue

Drone technology has made a world of difference in the search and rescue industry. Law enforcement can use drones to help cover ground quickly when searching for a lost person. Drones can be fitted with a thermal heat camera which helps look for missing persons at night.

Those going into law enforcement would benefit significantly from having experience as commercial drone pilots. Many times law enforcement agencies like to have a drone operator on staff so that they can be relied on when time is of the essence.

Drones are also important for finding people after natural disasters such as earthquakes, tornados, and hurricanes.


Surveying a construction site from the ground is difficult, and many project elements may be missed without an aerial view. This is where drones make a huge difference in construction projects. Surveying projects with a drone allow for easily finding problems on the construction site as well as tracking progress on the project.


Drones are an excellent way to collect all kinds of data. This is an inexpensive way for many different professionals to make regular inspections. Areas that a drone pilot can help make inspections include the following:

  • Railway tracks
  • Rooftops
  • Powerlines
  • Forest fire detection
  • Pollution monitoring
  • Disaster monitoring

Using drones in these situations keeps people safe while allowing them to get their job done.

How to get started in a career flying drones

While amateur drone pilots can get work, most jobs look for pilots with certification in drone piloting. Preparation for this certification can begin as early as high school. Starting this early helps students get a head start in their careers.

21stCentEd has made this possible by creating an excellent Drone Piloting Certification Prep.

This helps students prepare for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) exam.

This course is a way for students to prepare for each of the test’s topics which include:

  • Regulations
  • Airspace
  • Weather
  • Loading
  • Performance
  • Operations

The course will also give students a more in-depth look at career opportunities available to them when they have a drone certification.

21stCentEd provides courses for middle and high school students that help advance them in STEM subjects. As our world advances into the technology age, these subjects are more important than ever. These courses help prepare students for a future in the twenty-first century.

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About 21stCentEd

At 21stCentEd, a strong tomorrow is what we’re all about. We’ve been deeply invested in creating interactive STEM tools for kids for many years.