DJI Raises Prices 13% Due to U.S. Tariffs on Chinese Imports | Amazon Still Has Original Lower Prices—for Now
BY Zacc Dukowitz12 September 2019
DJI has raised its prices by about 13% for sales in the U.S. as a result of U.S. tariffs currently in place for Chinese goods.
What does this price increase look like in application? While the Mavic 2 Pro sold for $1,499, it’s now selling for $1,729 on the DJI website. And while the Inspire 2 used to sell for $2,799, it’s now selling for $3,499—ouch.
Due to the recent increase in tariffs, DJI has updated pricing for its products in the United States.
– DJI Spokesperson
But don’t worry—if you’re on the market for a DJI drone, Amazon still has them for sale at their original prices. You can shop DJI drones on Amazon for their original lower prices right now.
Here are some quick links:
Amazon seems to have anticipated DJI’s price hike announcement and held back many of the Mavic 2 models until after they shared the news. These drones were out of stock for several weeks leading up to DJI’s announcement, and suddenly in stock once DJI shared its price-increase publicly.
That being said, we would guess that Amazon’s current supply of DJI products won’t last. Eventually, if the tariffs aren’t dropped, U.S. customers will be stuck paying an increased amount for DJI drones.
[Want to see a list of the top drones on the market? Check out our free guide here.]
In addition to announcing the overall price increase on its products recently, DJI has removed some products from its online store. The Phantom 4 and the Spark are both currently out of stock on the DJI website for those living in the U.S.
Right now it’s unclear if these changes regarding which DJI products are available in the U.S. are related to the tariffs or not.
How Other Companies Have Been Dealing with Tariffs
DJI isn’t the only drone company that has passed off tariff costs to its customers.
In a statement, NewBeeDrone explained that the tariffs had increased costs on items from China by 25%. Their subsequent price increase of 2.9% was put in place on all their products in order to spread out the 25% cost increase on items from China, so that those buying only those items would not have to shoulder the full burden of the increased cost.
NewBeeDrone also said they would be covering 5% of the increased costs themselves.
According to the same statement, the 2.9% price increase followed “industry response,” indicating that other drone companies may also be increasing prices across all products they sell to account for increased costs on items imported from China. Common drone-related goods imported from China include ESCs (Electronic Speed Controllers), receivers, motors, batteries, and antennas.
Of course, tariffs have had an impact on costs in several industries in the U.S., not just the drone industry.
Over 60% of consumer goods imported to the U.S. from China currently have tariffs imposed on them, and these tariffs are steep—about 21%, on average. These increased costs are being paid by U.S. customers, companies, and employees, and have contributed to a decline in U.S. manufacturing over the last three years according to a recent report by the New York Times.
DJI’s choice to increase prices so significantly is certainly risky and might not have been taken by a company that owned a smaller share of the market.
But there are alternatives to DJI out there, and now may be an opportunity for smaller drone companies to shine.
If you’re looking for good drone companies that aren’t DJI, here are some options to consider.
Value: Solid recreational drones for a lower cost
The Force1 Ghost Drone
Because they make solid, inexpensive drones and have been doing so for several years. If you’re looking for a drone for recreational flying or for fairly basic prosumer work, Force 1 has some options worth checking out.
Here are some Force 1 drones to check out:
Value: Solid prosumer drones for a lower cost
The Parrot ANAFI Drone
Parrot is one of the older commercial drone companies out there.
A few years back they made a bold entry into the prosumer space with the launch of the Bebop-Pro Thermal, made specifically for firefighters and the Bluegrass, made specifically for farmers.
The ANAFI has been compared favorably to DJI’s Mavic Air, and could be a good replacement if you want to save some money. At $649, it comes in at a considerably lower price point than the new, tariff-increased price of $919 for the Mavic Air.
Value: Top selfie drone on the market—not cheaper, but higher quality than the Spark
The Skydio R1 Drone
Skydio is a U.S. company famous for its R1 selfie drone.
The Skydio 2 should be released any day now—here’s some footage of it flying backward at full speed:
However, it’s important to note that cost is a downside with the Skydio drone.
While DJI’s selfie drone the Spark would run around $550 with the price increase, the Skydio drone sells for about $2K. That being said, Skydio’s drone is much more robust than the Spark, and could be used for prosumer-related action shots.
Want to find more information on other drone options out there? Check out our free guides:
What do you think—is it fair for companies to pass on tariff costs to customers or should they absorb those costs themselves? Chime in on this thread in the UAV Coach community forum to share your thoughts.