Become a drone flight master with Sekido

By George Lloyd, grape Japan

It's no exaggeration to say that drones have changed the way we view the world. Shots that used to require a camera crew and a crane can now be achieved at the touch of an ‘auto take-off’ button. Difficult and expensive movie-making techniques that were once the preserve of professional camera crews are now within the reach of everyone.

While there is a dizzying array of drones on the market, the old adage still applies: if you pay peanuts, you get monkeys. Cheaper drones might be fun, but they will never fly as well or deliver the quality video and photos that more expensive models give you. The world's largest drone company is DJI. Their Mavic range of drones start from about $400, rising to $1,730.

At a mere 249 grams, it's easy to take DJI’s cheapest model, the Mavic Mini, with you anywhere. Popular consumer drones are also compact: some of them pack up smaller than many smartphones. And they stay in the air for upwards of about 20 minutes, so you can get great long takes.

Anyone new to the world of drones would do well to get some advice before going airborne. Aside from the technical know-how required to make sense of your new drone’s instruction manual, there are lots of rules and regulations governing where you can and cannot fly a drone.

Sekido is a leading company in drone sales in Japan with a track record of supplying and advising over 30,000 companies and government agencies. Sekido was the first company in Japan to sell DJI drones. Their Toranomon store is DJI-certified and they also offer courses in how to fly drones at their two facilities, the first in Toranomon and the second in Yokohama.

Sekido has held more than 1,300 seminars and events nationwide to date, with more than 15,000 customers participating. To fly a UAV (Unmanned Air Vehicle, as they’re officially called) you need a drone flight license from the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (a condition stipulated by the Civil Aeronautics Act). Sekido can give good advice on how to apply for a license. They can also provide flight information and show you how to register your flight plan with the appropriate authorities.

Photo: PR Times

Sekido also offers web seminars that you can take from your home. You learn about the license application process through online screen sharing, so you can apply for a license immediately after the course. Whether you’re considering buying a drone to use professionally or just as a hobby, a web seminar is a great way to prepare for take-off when the coronavirus ‘state of emergency’ is lifted. Seminars last three hours and cost 13,200 yen (tax included)

For more details, take a look at the Sekido website. Alternatively, or call Sekido’s store in Toranomon on 03-5843-7838.

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© grape Japan

©2020 GPlusMedia Inc.

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After reading that, somehow I now feel that I know LESS about drones than before... For example: are flight plans required for all flights? If a flight license is mandatory for a hobbyist to operate a 249-gram drone "smaller than a smartphone" in his own garden, then it might be overkill...

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Correction: DJI's Mavic MINI is 199g.

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Probably BS seminar. They will go over the laws that you can read online. Then they'll go over basic controls. (yawn) and then they'll have a course to fly from point A to point B and then they'll give you a certificate.

No thanks. I'd rather just make my own certificate and show it when somebody asks for it. Wait. Nobody's going to ask for it because I fly where it's legal and follow the rules.

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To fly a UAV (Unmanned Air Vehicle, as they’re officially called) you need a drone flight license from the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (a condition stipulated by the Civil Aeronautics Act).

Since when?? As far as I'm aware (and according to the Civil Aviation Bureau's website) no such license is needed, although permission from MLIT to fly in prohibited areas is required as it has been for several years. This article is confusing 'license' and 'permission' I feel.

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Since when??

Was thinking the same thing.

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