How Much Does A Drone Light Show Cost?

October 15, 2020
Chances are, you may not have heard of drones being used purely for aesthetic purposes in the form of drone light shows, and even if you did, it would have only been very recently.

You probably heard of drones aiding in search and rescue operations, delivering food and essentials to inaccessible locations, carrying blood and medical supplies to rural hospitals, inspecting bridges and dams for structural defects, etc. However, you might not have heard of drones being used purely for aesthetic purposes in the form of drone light shows, and even if you did, it would have only been very recently.

Drone light shows are pre-programmed choreographies performed by drone swarms that have been fitted with LEDs.

“Every so often a video of one of our drone shows goes viral, and we receive tons of questions on how we perform our shows — from the technology to the artistry. However, the most asked question, and by a fair margin is ‘How much does it cost?’.”— Jean-Dominique Lauwereins, Co-Founder & CTO, Dronisos.

Dronisos is one of the few drone show providers that specialise in both indoor and outdoor shows. Their indoor drone shows can cost anywhere between €7,500 and €75,000, while their outdoor shows start at €40,000 and can go up to €250,000 and higher. They also have an option for permanent/recurring drone shows for theme parks, circuses, etc. These are tailor-made shows and the price will depend on the requirements.

Like with all new technologies, the cost of drone light shows will find its equilibrium as the technology matures in the coming years. Although the prices have dropped considerably over the past few years, they are still relatively expensive. So if you’re planning on painting the sky with a marriage proposal, that might have to wait a few more years :).

There are no fixed price brackets for drone light shows as every show is tailor-made specifically for a particular event. Many factors like the country hosting the show, whether the show is indoors or outdoors, and the overall budget are all taken into consideration when designing a show.

If you are wondering what is included in the price; here is what Dronisos provides:

  • choreography creation by top international artists
  • up to 15 minutes of drone flight time (usually 10 to 12 minutes are visible)
  • 3D simulations of the show and an interactive 3D viewer to view the show from all angles
  • multiple iterations with the client
  • a full rehearsal on their private airfield in France
  • a full rehearsal of the final show on location
  • the final show!

Of course, the usual additional costs like the team’s travel and accommodation, the shipping and logistics of the drones and the on-site infrastructure at the show location will have to be taken into consideration as well. Generally, between 100 and 500 square meters of secured land space is required to take off and land the drones depending on the size of the drone fleet.

Dronisos typically recommends 1 to 3 months of lead time to plan a show.

How many drones do you need?

The main factor driving the cost of a show up, is the number of drones involved. However, as each drone is, in essence, a pixel in the sky, the more drones you have, the more detail and higher resolution you can achieve.

The drones and the colours can b choreographed to offer unlimited creative possibilities in the sky

Finding the right balance between an increased number of drones to cater to artistic demands and keeping the show within budget is a tightrope walk. At Dronisos we have a team of experts on hand to guide you through this process.

For a full simulation watch the video here:

Where would you like to see the next drone light show performed? Do you have an event in mind? Is there a particular choreography you would like to see the drones perform? Please share your thoughts in the comments. It would be interesting to hear your views on the subject.

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