Drones with the Longest Flight Time


Drone technology has come a huge way in the last couple of decades, but one of the biggest limitations is that many drones still have relatively short flying times. This means you will probably want to seek out the drone with the longest flight time, but finding the best one for your budget and needs isn’t always straightforward.

That’s where we come in.

We’ve searched far and wide to find the drones with the longest flight times and have reviewed them here in this guide.

We’ll cover long battery drones for beginners, professionals and businesses, so you’ll have all the information you need to make an informed purchase.

How Long Can a Drone Fly?

Drone battery life varies greatly from drone to drone and depends on many factors, including the batteries used, the design and weight of the drone, its maximum speed, and so on.

Here’s a rough breakdown of how long different priced drones can fly:

  • Cheap toy drones: typically under 10 minutes.
  • Mid-range drones ($300+): typically average 16 to 20 minutes. 
  • Most premium camera drones ($1,000+): 25 to 30 minutes. 

Drones are limited to these short flying times due to the large amounts of power it takes to power the motors used to keep the drone in the air. Manufacturers need to invest in more powerful batteries and efficient designs to offer long flight times, which is why the longest flying drones are the most expensive.

Having a longer flight time benefits every drone flier, whether you’re a beginner flying for fun, a drone racer, or a photographer. For example, having more flight time gives photographers and videographers more time to capture that perfect shot.

Drones with long battery life can also be beneficial to people working in all types of different industries, from surveillance and construction to real estate, roof inspections, surveying and so on. The more flying time, the more time you have to complete the job at hand.

This is especially important for jobs like agriculture management or mapping and surveying, as using a long range drone with long battery life allows you to efficiently cover large areas.

The World’s Longest Flight Time Drone

It’s important to distinguish between long flying consumer drones and commercial drones with long flight times.

The longest flying consumer drone is the DJI Mavic 3 with 46 minutes of battery life; if you’re looking for a drone with one hour flight time or above, there are long flying commercial drones available, but these are very expensive – upwards of $10,000.

The Drones with the Longest Flight Time – Top Picks for Consumers 

Now let’s take a look at the longest flying consumer drones, starting with the most affordable.

DJI Mini SE – Cheapest Drone with the Longest Flight Time

DJI Mini SE drone with long flight time

DJI is the world’s leading maker of consumer drones, and they offer considerably longer flight times than most competitors. 

If you’re looking for an affordable option, the DJI Mini SE is the best budget drone with the longest flight time. Considering most other drones under $300 typically offer around 16 minutes of flight per battery, the 30 minute flying time of the Mini SE is seriously impressive. 

This is also the best mini drone with the longest flight time and is built for maximum convenience and portability. It’s small enough to fit in your hand and weighs just 249g, so not only is it easy to carry around, but you can also fly it without needing to register it with the FAA if you’re in the US or Canada.

While it may be tiny, this drone still packs a punch both in terms of camera and flying capabilities. It supports 12MP photos and 2.7k HD video, while the 3 axis motorized gimbal ensures the camera stays steady while flying. You can transmit video within a 4km range, which again is a really good range for a drone in this price range, allowing you to fly high and wide to capture stunning landscape shots. 

The Mini SE makes it super easy to capture cinematic footage thanks to DJI’s intelligent flight features, such as QuickShots. These see the drone perform preset motions while recording, so you can record unique videos from a variety of perspectives. And thanks to the long battery life of this drone with 30 min flight time, you have plenty of time to work on getting the perfect shot. 

While this is a great long flying mini drone, it doesn’t offer 4k video. If you’re looking for one that does, check out the models below.

DJI Mavic Air 2 – Excellent Mid-Range Camera Drone with Long Battery Life

Mavic Air 2S

The Mavic Air 2 is another relatively affordable drone that offers a really long flight time. In fact, its 34 minutes of battery life means it beats out most more expensive camera drones in this regard.

It’s also a stunning drone camera, offering 48MP images and 4k video at 60fps. You can also record 8k hyperlapse video, which gives your footage a real cinematic feel without the need for complicated post-processing. 

That’s not to say this drone isn’t suitable for post-processing, though. The D-Cinelike flat color profile retains a large amount of imaging information and preserves the dynamic range, making it a great tool for both beginner and advanced photographers. 

Another highlight is just how much of a pleasure the Mavic Air 2 is to fly. You can control it using the incredibly intuitive DJI GO app which offers a variety of smart features. For example, the ActiveTrack feature makes the drone lock-on to a subject and record it while flying, which is great for recording action sports, cars and so on.

This drone uses DJI’s OcuSync 2.0 transmission system, which allows you to stream reliable video feeds within a 6.2 mile range, and the long battery life gives you the chance to make full use of this.

DJI Mavic 3 – The Consumer Drone with the Longest Flight Time

DJI Mavic 3

Taking the number one spot is the DJI Mavic 3, offering an unrivaled and simply incredible flight time of 46 minutes, making this the consumer drone with the longest flight time.

This blows the competition out of the water in terms of consumer drones, offering around 15 minutes longer flying than most other premium camera drones. When you consider that it’s also competitively priced, then it really does offer great value for money.

A long battery life is far from the only impressive feature of the Mavic 3, though; this is one of the best camera drones we’ve ever come across. This isn’t a surprise, considering it’s the latest drone in DJI’s famous Mavic series. 

This long flying drone is a 4/3 CMOS Hasselblad camera, which results in stunning 20MP stills and 5.4k video. The 12.8-stop dynamic range helps the camera capture more light in shadows and highlights, so you can capture great footage even in unideal lighting conditions. 

Not only is this the longest flying drone for consumers, but it’s also one of the best long range drones. This is because it has a huge 9.3 mile transmission range, while DJI’s OcuSync 3.0 transmission system ensures video feeds are super stable. The long battery life, range and 47mph mean you can efficiently cover serious distances, so it’s ideal for videoing landscapes. 

Like all DJI drones, the Mavic 3 offers some fantastic intelligent features to make the flying experience as smooth as possible. It also boasts the company’s most advanced obstacle sensing technology yet, able to detect objects from all directions and angles, in addition to its most developed return to home functionality. 

Autel Evo 2 – 8K Camera Drone with up to 40 Minutes Battery Life

Autel Evo 2

The Autel Evo 2 is the drone that really gives DJI’s top models a run for their money in terms of flight time. It has a maximum drone flight time of 40 minutes while hovering and 35 minutes while flying forwards, so while it doesn’t quite match the Mavic 3, it’s the next best thing. 

It does have some advantages over its DJI competitor, though, the most notable being the ability to record 8k video and 48MP stills. This is almost unrivaled in the consumer drone market, allowing you to capture truly incredible footage that you can then punch in, scale, and display on large monitors without losing quality. 

This long flying drone is also great if you want to take photos or videos in low light conditions, as the fixed f1.8 aperture means it takes in lots of light to retain fine details. 

The Autel Evo 2 is one of the most intelligent drones on the market, with 12 vision sensors and two sonar sensors that offer fully omnidirectional obstacle avoidance. This means you can make full use of the drone’s “follow me” mode and other intelligent flight features.

You can use this drone within a transmission range of 5.59 miles, which is one of the longest ranges of all non-DJI drones, although it doesn’t match the likes of the Mavic 3. We also think that the range of intuitive flying features available on the DJI GO app are better overall than those available for the Evo 2.

Longest Fly Time Commercial Drones for Businesses

Looking for the commercial drone with the longest flight time? These are the longest flying drones for businesses and other large organizations.

DJI Matrice 300 RTK – Extremely Powerful & Durable Long Flying Drone

  • Price: $15,000
  • Max flight time: 55 minutes
DJI Matrice 300 drone with long flight time

DJI is best known for its consumer camera drones, but it also offers a range of commercial drones built for longer, more powerful flying. The Matrice 300 RTK is the one with the longest flight time, an incredible 55 minutes.

This drone is all about power and performance. It’s one of the toughest, most durable drones out there, able to operate in temperatures ranging from -20 to 50°C, so it can withstand the most challenging of environments.

The 9.3-mile range alongside the 51.4mph top speed and 33 miles wind resistance allows you to cover vast distances within the 55 minute flight time, while the omnidirectional sensors allow it to detect obstacles from up to 40m away.

This is a highly intelligent drone that offers advanced and flexible live mission recording, the ability to create up to 65,535 waypoints, track moving subjects, and immediately calculate the coordinates of pinpoints. It even uses AI technology to recognize subjects of interest and automatically identify them in subsequent missions for consistent framing.

These features make this long duration drone suitable for a wide range of different applications, both industrial and commercial. These include inspections, surveillance, reconnaissance, fire fighting, and disaster and severe weather management, among others.

SenseFly eBee X – the Drone with the Overall Longest Flight Time 

  • Price: $18,900
  • Max flight time: 90 minutes
Sensefly eBee X drone with long flight time

SenseFly is a company that specializes in professional drone and aerial camera solutions for a variety of industries, including surveying and mapping, construction, mining, agriculture and environmental monitoring. 

The eBee X is built to suit all these industries and holds the accolade of the drone with longest flight time on the market, being able to fly for an hour and a half at a time! 

This makes it perfect for covering large areas. In fact, this long flying drone is able map 1,235 acres while flying at a height of 400ft, so this can be a huge advantage to professionals working in the aforementioned industries. It’s also approved for BVLOS (beyond visual line of sight) operations in Brazil, Canada and other countries, meaning you can use it to cover areas that were previously prohibited.

You can use seven different compatible cameras with this drone, including five developed by SenseFly, one by MicaSense and one by Parrot. These are all designed for specific applications; for example, the SenseFly Duet T is for creating geo-accurate thermal maps, while the Parrot Sequoia+ allows you to capture precise georeferenced results with automatic radiometric calibration. 

This longest flying drone allows you to capture all this data with high levels of accuracy, with the RTK/PPK offering up to 1.5cm precision, without the need for ground control points.

The eBee X is different from the other drones on our list as it’s a fixed wing drone rather than a quadcopter. This is partly why it offers such long battery life, as it uses fewer propellers than a quadcopter and therefore less power. While this makes it ideal for covering large areas, it does mean it can’t hover in place as a quadcopter can.

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Alan is an experienced writer who has been covering drones for several years, writing on everything from mini drones and racing drones to real estate drones.

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