It was only a matter of time before the U.S. – China trade war affected consumers, and it seems it is upon us with recent DJI price increases. The company has raised prices on its official store by around 15%, which is the current tariff the Trump administration has slapped on goods imported from China.
In addition to the price increase, the official DJI store is offering limited availability with ship times slipping to around a week after payment confirmation. Yeah, that’s not fun. Hopefully, cooler heads prevail in the trade spat, and we can get down to the business of seeing new drones as we approach 2020.
This isn’t a debate on the merits of the trade war. Instead, it’s about how to buy your next camera drone for the lowest price and fastest shipping time.
How to Avoid DJI Price Increases
Luckily for us in the United States, we have plenty of options in terms of online retailers. We have the behemoth that is Amazon and an assortment of high-end, specialty camera stores like B&H and Adorama.
DJI Mavic 2 Pro. The DJI flagship camera drone saw its price jump from $1499 to $1729 on the official store. Adding the Fly More Kit and the price hits $2168. That’s a big-time ouch when it comes to your bank account.
DJI Mavic 2 Zoom. The Mavic 2 Zoom is completely out of stock on the DJI website, so the price increase to $1439 isn’t as relevant as the Mavic 2 Pro. Adding the Fly More Kit on DJI’s storefront nearly has the Zoom hitting $2000.
Your option for the lowest price is B&H at $1240, followed by Amazon at $1249. Adorama lists the Mavic 2 Zoom as backordered. The combo deal including the Fly More Kit is priced at $1589 at B&H and $1699 on Amazon (includes extras like ND filters, landing gear, etc.).
DJI Mavic Air. The standalone drone is completely out of stock at DJI, but you can get the Arctic White Fly More Combo for $1,149. The cheapest option for the standalone Mavic Air is around $745. B&H has all three colors available, while Amazon and Adorama have the Arctic White and Flame Red.
On the Fly More Combo side, B&H only has Onyx Black. Adorama has Onyx Black and Arctic White, while Amazon has all three available.
DJI Batteries and Accessories at the Cheapest Prices
The camera drones aren’t the only item getting hit with tariff-related price increases. Batteries have also been slapped with price increases across the board. For the Mavic 2 line, Amazon and Adorama are your two in-stock options at $139 versus $159 at DJI. Mavic Air batteries can be had at Amazon, Adorama, and B&H for $79 versus $95.
If you’ve been looking at grabbing the DJI Smart Controller, it’s flashing the out-of-stock notice on the company’s website. All three of the retailers mentioned here have it at $749 (Amazon / B&H / Adorama).
One add-on that we have to eat the price increase on no matter where we buy it from is the DJI Care Refresh. Its price ticked up from $129 to $159.
So, when will prices stabilize? That’s the big unknown and why DJI is starting to shift production out of China. The Trump Administration isn’t known for its steady hand during trade talks as the talks have and will continue to get blown up via a tweet based on whatever the President sees on TV.
Until then, the options to save cash boil down to shopping around. Hopefully, the next DJI camera drone launch is in an environment where the trade war is over, or the company has moved enough of its manufacturing out of China to avoid the tariffs.