Can you REALLY make £65,000 as a Drone Pilot? | Mr MPW

Can you REALLY make £65,000 as a Drone Pilot? | Mr MPW

There are lots of Drone Training Companies in the industry; particularly in the UK who it seems are ‘Selling the Dream’ of becoming a VERY well paid commercial drone operator… But, is it possible to earn the kind of amounts which some of these Drone Training Schools are telling people or is it just a lot of hot air?

In today’s video, we dive on in and take a look…

Links to useful videos and documents below:
🖤The CAA & EASA 1:1 ( One to One ) Rule:
🖤Discussion about the 249g MTOM of the Mavic Mini:
🖤Link to downloadable Open Category GUIDE:
🖤Link to EASA / CAA A2 Self Certification Requirements:

Please feel free to rate the video and leave any comments or questions below…

There are more videos and reviews coming all the time so be sure to check back regularly or subscribe to stay up to date!

Blue skies,


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  1. Nafiz Haq on May 5, 2022 at 6:28 pm

    Understand that technology has become ever more democratise, what it would have required a full team to do a media or creative work, today your high end mobile phone can do with the help of AI. So its not as easy as It sound !

  2. AndyMast666 on May 5, 2022 at 6:28 pm

    Did you go to the Showmans Show at Newbury with an Apache, late 90’s.

  3. Davy Mac on May 5, 2022 at 6:28 pm

    Makes me appreciate my job as an aircraft engineer pulling in 37k if I’m honest but I’m actually interested in getting into this industry as something I can do alongside my current job.

  4. andrew maudsley on May 5, 2022 at 6:35 pm

    Wonder how much people make dropping drugs in prisons, plus you know they be registered, need to be registered lol

  5. Nick Lewis on May 5, 2022 at 6:35 pm

    To follow up. I think it will be good to take one of the courses and get a qualification not for the sake of income but to better myself as an aerial photographer. The qualification will allow me more scope to fly with more confidence, share my productions online build an audience. You can only start a business if you are comfortable you can walk the walk. Fly the fly instead perhaps!!

  6. IRT Surveys Ltd. on May 5, 2022 at 6:35 pm

    Nice video Matt. You are dead right. We see exactly the same thing with thermal imaging. Buying the kit does not make a successful business.

    The truth to any business, if it’s to survive and thrive, is that you need hard graft and years of metronomic dedication from the founders.

    We sell drone surveys and sub-contract the work to 3-4 trusted partners. £65K for a start up in a crowded, emerging sector, start up is fantasy land. You will burn £4K of fuel and depreciate your car and drone by a similar amount every year. Add in hotels, food, tax, rent rates, heat, light, accountant, legal fees, RAMS, insurance… you will soon see the truth emerge.

    Earning a true £65K – doing anything – means turning over much more. Maybe, £100K as a one person business without additional staff to pay. No matter how good the kit you buy, no matter how good a pilot you are and no matter where you are in the country – you have to be brutally honest with yourself and ask two questions. 1. Can you sell? and 2. Are you prepared to work 60 hours a week for no money for months to get your business off the ground?

  7. Gary 6511 on May 5, 2022 at 6:36 pm

    Refreshing to hear the reality of the industry👍

  8. Table 7 Films on May 5, 2022 at 6:37 pm

    Great video again bud! Glad your feeling ok!

  9. Old Fart with a Gopro on May 5, 2022 at 6:37 pm

    knowledge is important too. You need to be an expert in photography and editing, not just having good gear.

  10. Jim Hoova on May 5, 2022 at 6:38 pm

    Really enjoyed the points you raised. I think this has opened alot of People’s eyes. Like any new Business It takes hard work and dedication. Be prepared for absolutely anything and everything going wrong. I think also one needs a lot of luck too. But sound advice. Don’t give up your Job for It as a Newby. My latest pfco training price is just under £700. For the two day course.

  11. Andyxeno on May 5, 2022 at 6:39 pm

    Great video, as someone with no drone experience & considering venturing into using drones to make a living i appreciate your candor (subscribed 😉 )

  12. TetleyK on May 5, 2022 at 6:39 pm

    Thanks Matt. Topical as usual, looking forward to the A2 CofC videos.

  13. Phantom and the Drone on May 5, 2022 at 6:40 pm

    Train driver…67 grand pa for a 4 day week!! That leaves 3 days for flying drones…🤫
    As for just being a drone pilot?? I guess if you worked inside a company like network rail or the national grid that have their own drones and pilots, then you would be on between 45/65 grand a year. If you want to go it alone then the amount of work you have to put in is huge!! Its a big step, and it doesn’t just come overnight.
    Good to see your back Matt! 👍👏

  14. F G on May 5, 2022 at 6:44 pm

    Moving to the UK in the next months and would love to continue doing assignments with my drone. I am mainly into drone photography and built a portfolio of the place I currently live which is Malta. A good composition and editing is crucial but these days everybody with a camera thinks he is a photographer. Will follow this channel to learn more about the laws in the UK and how to get the right license and find people to work with in the future.

  15. Terrestrial Reconnaissance on May 5, 2022 at 6:44 pm

    Welcome back Matt. Sound advice, as usual, there is lots of sound advice that you have already produced many useful YouTube presentations. Building a new business is very hard work and in my personal experience, is all about networking – on top of investment in training, qualifications, and equipment. Rgds William.

  16. LeoFPV on May 5, 2022 at 6:46 pm

    Welcome back mate!

  17. Simon Leach on May 5, 2022 at 6:46 pm

    Welcome back. I am glad you are feeling better. Thank you to you and your team for supporting us all as we move forward

  18. Stan Williams on May 5, 2022 at 6:48 pm

    I like the open/honest to you express here….thanks

  19. Robin FPV on May 5, 2022 at 6:48 pm

    I can’t believe I’ve already wasted for years studying to become a psychologist when I could have just done a PFCO and got a Mavic 2

  20. Peter Davies on May 5, 2022 at 6:48 pm

    Great Video thanks!

  21. Matrix on May 5, 2022 at 6:50 pm

    Yes, that’s what it is all about which killed the hobbyist off… £$£$£$

  22. Alex the Brewmage on May 5, 2022 at 6:50 pm

    Good to have you back!
    The job availablity here in the UK is definitely pushing me to get better and learn as much as I can drone wise. I thought I could have a day job and do this on the side but there just aren’t any jobs around currently so I put all my energy into getting better at flying and taking pictures.

  23. Phil Gilligan on May 5, 2022 at 6:51 pm

    Voice wobbled there a bit ho ho :)….. I am interestrd in getting a drone that provides better video quality whilst moving, I have an air 2s right now to learn on, it would be for arts based film productions as a hobby hoping to create fab movies for youtube

  24. Alex Moczek on May 5, 2022 at 6:53 pm

    A lot does your confidence with communication with clients. You should also teach that too. Have a fantastic day

  25. Paul Reynolds on May 5, 2022 at 6:53 pm

    Good points raised Matt. More sensible to treat as a hobby before relying on this as your main income.

  26. MD IMAM HOSSAIN Majumder on May 5, 2022 at 6:55 pm

    I am interested for studying more about Drone and its business, what should I do to start and how much money will it take ?

  27. Echo Alfa Ltd on May 5, 2022 at 6:56 pm

    He speaks! Glad you’ve got your voice back! Does this mean you’ll be back on the beers for next week? Good to see another video telling it like it is, no doubt this will irk some of your competition 😆

  28. Eric Watt on May 5, 2022 at 6:58 pm

    Great to see you back i can only dream up here in Fraserburgh might get £65 a year

  29. Ian Davie on May 5, 2022 at 7:00 pm

    I’m currently studying for my PFCO and am under no illusions that I’m going to be making anywhere near these figures. At the moment it’s a hobby for me and if I can make some money here and there then for me that’s going to be a bonus. Keep up the good vids ✌🏽

  30. PHowarthPhotography on May 5, 2022 at 7:01 pm

    Wow…Fantastic reality check!!! Impressed!

  31. Darren Seward on May 5, 2022 at 7:04 pm

    Absolutely love your honesty in this video Matt!

  32. revb0 on May 5, 2022 at 7:10 pm

    Hi Matt, I can earn Sixty five K easily! Trouble is they want to pay me in the Venezuelan Bolivar.
    Nice to see you back.

  33. David Owens on May 5, 2022 at 7:10 pm

    Good to have you back!

  34. Keith's Phone on May 5, 2022 at 7:11 pm

    Drones are not just for photography filming etc, surveying is a bit more specialised and not for everyone as the investment is more and a lot more precessional indemnity. But the rewards can be higher. However you really needs to to know surveying, so not for everyone and hard to break into as a business.

  35. Ioan Said on May 5, 2022 at 7:11 pm

    For me it’s an add on to my photography business. I am turning up to your course with a Mavic (a clearly much loathed Mavic Air 2 from what I can see on various videos) but I’m approaching it, I think, in a professional way. I’m currently spending as much time I can flying. (I’ve flown every 2 days since I’ve bought it). Same empty field, just practicing my flying technique, adjusting my touch on the controls. I’ve also bought things which will help identify me to the public when I’m working as a professional drone operator. And today, I spent half of the day (the half I wasn’t flying) contacting old photography clients asking them for an online review, directing them to a page that now mentions drones! Which opens conversations about future work..

    Then my plan is to master flying the basics and then move to bigger, better drones and we’ll see where it takes me!

  36. Molnar Zsolt on May 5, 2022 at 7:15 pm

    What is a decent qualification level on the pilot field? Could you people name it please? Also an editing course here in Uk and a good drone to start with?

  37. Nick Lewis on May 5, 2022 at 7:17 pm

    This is great advice and I hadn’t heard the £65k thing. Since learning of the new courses and options open to people, it has piqued my interest to investigate how I get from A to Z if I were to seriously consider drones as a business idea. Many people say I should but I look at my Mavic and doubt I’d cut the mustard with that alone. I run a web business at the moment and know how tough it can be. I can do just as well financially some years.

  38. Lewis Steeper on May 5, 2022 at 7:19 pm

    One of the reasons I stopped teaching the PFCO courses with an NQE was seeing folks coming through the courses with Mavics, even sparks with a vision of dominating the drone industry and sadly get their qualifications and then struggle to earn a single penny and some had quit full time jobs to do this. You are absolutely correct, in finding a niche, the smaller "common" markets are flooded with newly qualified operators, who compete against each other for a race to the lowest price just for "any work".

    I started a UAV business 5 years ago, on my own, whilst still in full time employment (55k). Two years ago, I went full time drone and now have 3 pilots doing fairly well income wise (self employed) but it all boils down, as said above and by yourself, finding a niche.

    A word of advice to anyone looking to join the drone industry, please please do not quit full time jobs to follow the dream, its something to build up slowly, gain client respect and confidence in your operations and it will come to you.

    Keep up the good work Matt.

  39. James Moore on May 5, 2022 at 7:20 pm

    people watching to many "i make £2k a day with my drone". I brought a p4 pro v2 a year ago and has sat in box for 8 months due to working. Will learn more soon and a course. Would be happy to cover rent or mortgage a month. As im SIA badged for cctv ect more looking to do photos of houses for sale or events, as well as security patrols etc and maybe later search and rescue. Got a lot of links for doing photos and videos of building sites as well

  40. Simonida Kadic on May 5, 2022 at 7:21 pm

    Before or after tax?

  41. Obliviatora on May 5, 2022 at 7:21 pm

    Thank you for the honest reality check, very helpful! I have a question: You explained that you actually made good money with drone flying. May I ask why you moved away from it? Do I understand correctly that drone training allows you to make even better money and provide more consistent income?

  42. Mike Nash on May 5, 2022 at 7:22 pm

    Great dose of realism!

  43. Wild Raven Drone Services on May 5, 2022 at 7:22 pm

    How do you decide on what to charge? I have almost two years experience as an operator for someone else, and am toying with the idea of going solo. What to charge is my stumbling block, oh and understanding what I need from the CAA as 2021 begins.

  44. DTM S on May 5, 2022 at 7:23 pm


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