Wedding Video Drones – What You Need to Know

January 14, 2016

What is it? A bird? A plane? Superman?

No it’s a drone, and my goodness, they are EVERYWHERE. Offering a new perspective on your special day, these devices are irresistible, and extremely accessible, even for the most novice of wedding videographers. However, there are a few things to consider before allowing your wedding video to take flight.


1. Certifications: First of all, your wedding videographer must have FAA certification to fly any sort of drone for commercial use. Most videographers get by without this exemption because they are considered “hobbyists.” For example, if your Uncle Larry wants to fly the drone at your wedding for a good meal, that’s fine. However, as soon as you pay your videographer, they are now considered commercial, and in order to fly commercially the FAA or Federal Aviation Authority requires them to have a section 333 exemption, which proves that the drone pilot or the company in question has met all of the requirements to legally fly their drone.

What if my videographer says he doesn’t need a 333 exemption to fly, what should I do?

This exemption is a legal requirement, meaning if you hire someone who is not licensed to fly a drone at your wedding and something happens to cause injury or damage, it will not be covered by insurance, and you could be help liable to for any costs.


2. Experience: Ask to see a reel of their drone work. If they don’t have a specific reel for their drone flights, or their reel lacks variety, it could mean that they don’t have much experience with flying their drones; and an inexperienced drone pilot could prove to be a dark storm cloud on your special day.


3. Quality: Even though drones are new to the consumer market, the market is saturated with many different kinds of drones. Some shoot with a GoPro, which produces a bubble-shaped, fisheye shot. Others shoot high quality resolution, which usually matches the cameras on the ground better. This allows for seamlesstransitions from ground shots to aerial shots.


Also keep in mind, just because a videographer may be excellent shooters on the ground, it does not always mean that they are excellent in the sky. Just be sure to do your homework and rely on your expertise to choose the right videographer to capture your special day. After all, this is your day, and with this information, you know what to look for.


Ethan Moews of Spark Media