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Best Battery Life Drones Under $100

The old adage that “you get what you pay for” might apply most of the time, but not always. For instance, some drones have a battery life that will impress you, and they cost less than $100.

What are these mystical drones?

Here are the top drones with a great battery life that cost under $100:

  • Ryze Tello
  • UDI U818A
  • Cheerwing Syma X5SW-V3
  • Holy Stone HS430
  • GoolRC SG900
  • Holy Stone HS110D
  • Chubory Super Endurance Foldable Quadcopter
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Each of these drones can linger in the air for longer than five minutes, making it fun to fly and cost-effective. Keep reading for pros and cons, specs, and reviews so you can find your favorite!

1. Ryze Tello

Ryze Tello
$99.00 $87.22

What you get: RyzeTech Tello powered by DJI, 4x Propellers (Pair), Propeller Guards (Set), Battery, Micro USB Cable, Propeller Removal Tool.

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03/07/2024 04:36 pm GMT

Dimensions: 98 x 92.5 x 41 mm
Weight: 80 g
Max Range: 100 m
Max Altitude: 30 m
Max Speed: 8 m/s
Max Flying Time: 13 mins
Video Resolution: HD 720p

✅ Pros

  • Solid flight time for its cost
  • Very lightweight – no need to register it
  • Super beginner-friendly
  • Automated flight modes let you enjoy your drone more
  • Good photo and video quality

❌ Cons

  • Sometimes has connection issues

Okay, so technically the Tello squeaks by since it costs $99, but it technically meets the criteria, so I knew it had to be on this list.

The Tello is designed for those venturing into flying drones for the first time who need all the help they can get.

The drone has a lot of remarkable features on its own that are only augmented by the use of the free Tello app.

Powered by DJI and equipped with that manufacturer’s flight tech, the Tello will fly in the air for almost 15 minutes.

It maintains a good frequency because its two antennae will switch between frequencies to find the most stable one.

Single-button takeoffs and landings will save you time finagling with your drone. You can instantly get the UAV in the sky, then land it seamlessly so you look like an expert in front of your pals.

How about automatic features?

The Tello has plenty. It can take EZ Shots, bounce in your hand, or do crazy flips. Its camera isn’t too shabby, as it shoots in 5 MP quality and is supported by electronic image stabilization.

The Tello is lightweight at 80 grams and has so many safety features you won’t stress about damaging it.

The drone has propeller guards, low-battery warnings, collision detection, and auto landing if you lose a signal.

Some of the more advanced features are a built-in video positioning system and VR headset compatibility. 

2. UDI U818A

UDI U818A

HD 2.4GHz 4 CH 6 Axis Headless RC Quadcopter w/ HD Camera, Extra Battery.

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Dimensions: 375 x 365 x 100 mm 
Weight: 14.4 oz
Max Range: 100 m
Max Altitude: 100 m
Max Speed: N/A
Max Flying Time: 9 mins
Video Resolution: HD

✅ Pros

  • Bright and colorful
  • Good flight time for the price
  • Boasts an HD camera
  • Lightweight, so you don’t have to register it

❌ Cons

  • Made of plastic and won’t survive a crash

How about a drone for less than half of what you want to spend? The UDI U818A is an ultra-affordable drone that can fly for up almost 10 minutes at a time before requiring a recharge!

At its cost, you might not expect a camera.

Well, prepare to be pleasantly surprised, as the U818A includes an HD camera that shoots 1MP HD video at 30 frames per second, with a resolution of 1280×720.

If you want to see rolls, the U818A has got ‘em. This zippy drone can roll 360 degrees continuously. It also features 3D locking and Headless Mode.

The six-axis gyro enables stability in the drone when taking video. You won’t have the greatest video quality ever, but for this drone’s cost, the resolution is above-average.

Plastic propeller guards offer some degree of protection from wear and tear.

3. Cheerwing Syma X5SW-V3

Cheerwing Syma X5SW-V3
$59.98 $44.98

WiFi FPV Drone 2.4Ghz 4CH 6-Axis Gyro RC Quadcopter Drone with Camera, White.

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03/07/2024 10:01 pm GMT

Dimensions: 31.5 x 31.5 x 10.5 cm
Weight: 119 g
Max Range: 50 m
Max Altitude: N/A
Max Speed: N/A
Max Flying Time: 7 mins
Video Resolution: 720p HD

✅ Pros

  • Offers two speeds
  • Has a good enough flight time for the cost
  • Features automated flight modes
  • Lets you draw a flight plan through the app
  • Uses a 720p HD camera

❌ Cons

  • Not terribly durable
  • Only okay camera

Equally as inexpensive as the UDI U818A is my next pick, the Cheerwing Syma X5SW-V3.

This edition is a new and improved version packed with more great features to make this a memorable first (or second) drone.

First, let’s talk about flight time, as I know that’s what you’re concerned about. The Syma has an average flight time of seven to nine minutes, which is standard for a drone in its price range.

As a sub-250-gram drone, you don’t have to think twice about registering it.

You can also likely fly the Syma with more relaxed drone laws. However, I recommend reading up on the laws in your country before your flight.

The 720p HD camera is where the bulk of the upgrades went for the latest edition of the Syma. The Wi-Fi camera offers higher-resolution videos and photos and includes FPV transmission capability in real-time.

You will need to download the Cheerwing app.

The ABS plastic that comprises this drone isn’t ultra-durable but should hold up for a while. Included propeller guards are a nice feature.

Select from two speeds, low or high. Beginners should start with the lower speed and graduate to the faster one with time and practice.

If you download the Cheerwing app, you can use your finger to draw a flight plan for the Syma, which it will follow perfectly.

An included Gravity Sensor enables app-free, hands-free flights, while the drone can also utilize other automated modes like 3D flips and Altitude Hold.

Single-key takeoffs and landings make it fun and enjoyable to fly this drone.

4. Holy Stone HS430

Holy Stone HS430
$79.99 $59.99

Holy Stone Drone with Camera for Adults, HS430 FPV HD 1080P Video Aircraft for Beginner, Foldable Hobby RC Quadcopter, Toys Gifts with Circle Fly, Throw to Go, 3 Batteries 39 Mins Long Flight Time.

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03/07/2024 10:01 pm GMT

Dimensions: 187 x 135 x 43 mm unfolded
Weight: 75 g
Max Range: 30 m
Max Altitude: 40 m
Max Speed: N/A
Max Flying Time: 13 mins
Video Resolution: 1080p FHD

✅ Pros

  • Very good flight time for a drone under $75
  • Many automated features to keep you entertained
  • Good camera for taking beginner’s photos and videos
  • Low power alarm and other safety features

❌ Cons

  • Has no wind protection, so you can only fly it on clear days

The first of two Holy Stone drones we’ll look at today is the HS430. This drone costs well under $100, so it’s right in your wheelhouse.

Let’s not waste any time. The HS430 can fly for 13 minutes, which ties it with the Tello for the best flight time on the list so far.

There’s a lot to love about this low-cost little drone. It’s a great weight for beginners, and you won’t have to take the time or incur the expense to register it. Woohoo!

Launching this drone is as easy as throwing it into the air. Once it’s up there, you can initiate a slew of automatic aerial stunts, from 3D flips to circular flights around a waypoint and high-speed rotations.

Downloading the free Holy Stone app opens up a whole world of enchanting possibilities.

You can now use gesture control to take photos or videos in a matter of seconds. You can also automate your drone through your voice, commanding what it does next. 

With Gravity Control, you can tilt a connected smartphone and determine how the 1080p FHD camera moves.

You can also use Trajectory Flight within the app. This mode lets you draw out the flight path for the HS430.

This foldable drone features low-power alerts and propeller guards to make it safer to fly and increase its longevity.

5. GoolRC SG900

GoolRC SG900

Drone with Camera 4K 22mins Flight Time RC Quadcopter Optical Flow Positioning Gesture Photo Video Image Follow Altitude Hold Drone 2 Battery Handbag.

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Dimensions: 26.5 x 22 x 12 cm
Weight: 1.97 lbs
Max Range: 100 m
Max Altitude: N/A
Max Speed: N/A
Max Flying Time: 22 mins
Video Resolution: 4K

✅ Pros

  • Amazingly long flight time that rivals drones that cost hundreds more
  • Has a good camera with an adjustable lens
  • Offers speed control for beginners
  • Has some solid automated features

❌ Cons

  • Hard to come by
  • Not overly durable
  • Heavier than you’d expect

How do over 20 minutes of flight time sound? That’s right, from a drone that costs less than $100!

The GoolRC SG900 can fly freely for 20 minutes at a clip, which is double anything else I’ve discussed on this list (at least so far!).

That’s not the only feature that will have you questioning how in the world this drone can cost what it does.

The SG900 is equipped with a wide-angle camera that can produce 4K video in 1280x720p. It can transmit video footage up to 100 meters.

I’ll admit that isn’t far, but it’s not shabby for a low-cost drone like this one.

The lens angle is 120 degrees, but you can adjust it up to 60 degrees, just like what you see in higher-cost drones.

Built from plastic, the SG900 is one of the hardier drones we’ve looked at. However, that durability comes at a price: it’s over the 250-gram threshold, so you will have to register it.

Also, it’s durable for its price point but will not hold up better than a more expensive drone.

Select from several speeds so you can fly comfortably as a beginner. When you learn the ropes, you can increase the speed so you don’t get bored.

Toggle between automated modes like gesture control or follow-me.

6. Holy Stone HS110D

Holy Stone HS110D
$89.99

A perfect drone for beginners, kids, starters, or newbies to have an easy and stable flight experience.

Pros:
  • Included Remote Controller
  • 2 Batteries Included
  • SD Card slot
Cons:
  • Cannot charge batteries independently of the drone
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03/06/2024 08:56 pm GMT

Dimensions: 322 x 322 x 91 mm
Weight: 149 g
Max Range: 100 m
Max Altitude: 120 m
Max Speed: N/A
Max Flying Time: 10 m
Video Resolution: 1080p

✅ Pros

  • Has an average flight time for its price range, with the option to increase it
  • Includes a wide-lens camera
  • Has Headless Mode and gesture control

❌ Cons

  • Can increase the flight time at the risk of making the drone heavier

The second Holy Stone drone on the list is the HS110D. This one has a slightly lower flight time–10 minutes versus 13 minutes–than the HS430, but the HS110D is an FPV drone.

» MORE: Holy Stone HS110D Review

The HS110D can fly for up to 20 minutes if you add a second battery. However, the drone with one battery is just under 250 grams, which means you don’t have to register it.

Tacking on a second battery changes that. More so, you won’t get to fly with looser drone restrictions.

Finding affordable, beginner-friendly FPV drones is no easy task, but this one holds up especially well.

It takes videos and images in 1080p HD quality and can transmit footage in real time. The 120-degree FOV wide lens will capture more of the world around you.

Do you want to map out where your drone will fly? Open the Holy Stone app, draw a route, and the HS110D will do the rest.

The drone responds to gestures. Do the scissors motion if you want it to take some photos or the paper motion for videos. You can also use your phone as the drone’s remote in Gravity Sensor Mode.

Prop guards will prevent you from getting cut as you handle your drone, which is especially a great feature for beginners.

7. Chubory Drone F89

Chubory Drone F89

Super Endurance Foldable Quadcopter Drone for Beginners – 40+ mins Flight Time, Wi-Fi FPV Drone with 120°Wide-Angle 1080P HD Camera, Optical Flow Positioning, Follow me, Dual Cameras Switch (2 Batteries).

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Dimensions: 9.21 x 7.09 x 2.91 in
Weight: 115.7 g
Max Range: N/A
Max Altitude: N/A
Max Speed: N/A
Max Flying Time: 40+ mins
Video Resolution: FHD 1080p

✅ Pros

  • Has the best flight time of all the drones on this list
  • Weighs less than 250 grams so you don’t have to register it
  • Features dual cameras for more varied drone photography and videography
  • Foldable and portable

❌ Cons

  • Requires a battery upgrade where the flight time

I decided to save the best for last, which is the Chubory Super Endurance foldable quadcopter.

What makes it the best? It has the longest flight time out of every drone on this list. In fact, its flight time rivals that of some DJI drones.

However, to enjoy that flight time requires you to upgrade from the original batteries.

The composite material used to construct this drone lends it great durability and longevity, and its protective features like propeller guards make it sure to last more than a few flights.

It’s still not the most durable drone ever, but for its price, it does well in the sky.

The Chubory drone has many automatic modes for hours of fun, from trajectory flights to follow-me, one-key flips and rolls, altitude hold, and first-person views.

It launches with a single button and lands just as easily.

The camera promises 1080p videos and photos shot with a 120-degree wide-angle lens. Transmit your videos live with the Chubory app.

That front camera is part of a dual-camera system. A bottom camera and the front-facing camera both utilize optical flow positioning.

When you’re done using it, you can fold up the Chubory drone and take it home.

Best Drone Courses for Beginners (Part 107 & More)

To help, we’ve identified and reviewed the best drone courses for beginners and professionals.

See Course List Editor's Choice
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

Low-cost drones traditionally don’t have the best battery life, but as these seven drones prove, that’s not exclusively the case.

You can fly for over 10 minutes with many of these drones and not spend more than $100. If you’re searching for your first drone, you can’t go wrong with one on this list!