Choosing a RC plane can be hard because there are a lot of choices out there. Some can be hard to fly, while others can be expensive. We have written this guide to help you find the best RC airplane for you whatever your budget. We have a beginners guide below that you should read over to become familiar with your options.

Budget
Best-budget-RC-Airplanes
Transport aircraft RC Plane Kit
4.9/5.0
28 oz.
Transport
Easy to fly at the beginner level and Crash-resistant EPP foam.
Check Amazon
Best Value
Best-value-RC-Airplanes
ZETA FX-79 Buffalo FPV Airplane
4.8/5.0
42 oz.
Fixed-wing RC airplane
Long range FPV capability and large storage capacity.
Check Amazon
Top Pick
Top-value-RC-Airplanes
X-UAV Clouds
4.7/5.0
92 oz.
FPV RC airplane kit
Huge & lightweight and long transmission range potential.
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About These Reviews

These reviews will make more sense to beginners if you’ve read this introduction. They are short and to the point and highlight the key features and functions of each craft. You will also find the main specs along with any pros and cons for each aircraft.

The table below shows the RC airplanes as they appear in this guide. I have ordered them by price starting with the cheaper models at the top.

Best RC Airplanes Comparison Table

Make and ModelTypeThe CraftPrice
2.4Ghz Transport Aircraft RC Plane KitRTFAirplaneCheck Price
Costzon 757-4 RC Model PlanePNPAirplaneCheck Price
E-flite UMX PT-17 PlaneBNFBiplaneCheck Price
Volantex RC Glider PlanePNPSailplaneCheck Price
Hobbyzone Sport Cub S RTF RC AirplaneRTFAirplaneCheck Price
ZETA FX-79 Buffalo FPV RC AirplaneKitAirplaneCheck Price
X-UAV Clouds EPO FPV RC AirplaneKitAirplaneCheck Price

1. 2.4Ghz RC Transport AircraftRC Kit

2.4Ghz RC Transport AircraftRC KitView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.9/5

My first pick is also the cheapest in this guide and it comes with a 2.4GHz remote controller (mode2). It’s a great craft for kids and anyone else who wants to dip their toe into flying RC planes.

  • Best feature 1: Easy to fly at beginner level
  • Best feature 2: Crash resistant EPP foam
  • Plus points: 2 takeoff options, powerful motors, fast charging time, cost
  • Minus points: Average control range, fairly short flight time, not truly RTF

This transport style aircraft looks the part. It’s also easy to fly which makes it a great gift for kids under supervision and newbie pilots. The material used in its construction is EPP foam, which is quite common in these models. EPP is durable and can stand up to a few moderate crashes and collisions without breaking. The 3-axis Gyro helps to keep flights stable and the plane easier to handle.

There are two options for talking off. One is to simply hand-launch (throw) the craft into the air. The other is to take off from the ground using the two powerful motors.

In the Air with the RC 2.4Ghz RC Plane

The RC 2.4Ghz RC Plane RTF RC has a transmission range of around 80 meters. That’s usually far enough for newbie pilots as it keeps the craft close by and in the line of sight (LOS). The maximum flight time is around eight minutes in ideal conditions. It doesn’t sound much but it’s typical for an RC toy plane in its class. The good news is that the battery recharges in just 40 minutes and that’s fast.

I’ve seen this product advertised as RTF (ready-to-fly) but that’s a bit misleading. There is some initial assembly to do so it’s closer to ARF (almost-ready-to-fly).

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Tech Specs
Type of RC craft: Transport
Product Weight: 28 oz.
Material: EPP Foam
Wingspan: 373mm (14.6 inches)
Propellers: 2
Maximum flight time: 8 minutes
Charging time: 40 minutes
Transmission range: 80m (262 feet)
The Pros
Well-built, nice design RC airplane
Affordable price
Easy to fly at the beginner level
Crash-resistant EPP foam
Two take-off options
Fast battery charging time
The Cons
Average control range
Max flight time quite short
Not RTF as advertised. Some initial assembly required.

2. Costzon 757-4 RC FPV Model Airplane

Costzon 757-4 RC FPV Model AirplaneView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.7/5

Next up is the Costzon 757-4 RC Model Airplane. This is a handsome craft, a real eye-catcher, and another easy to fly product. You probably won’t find much better in this price range.

  • Best feature 1: Lightweight and durable
  • Best feature 2: Easy to fly RC airplane at the beginner level
  • Plus points: Fast assembly, durable EPO+PP material, crash-resistant, FPV capable
  • Minus points: Doesn’t like grass takeoffs, slow flier

Radio System, Battery &Battery Charger

This is a PNP (plug-n-play) model so it doesn’t come with all the essentials parts. You’ll have to buy the transmitter, receiver, battery, and battery charger separately. Assembly should only take around 20 minutes. Allow plenty of space, though, as this puppy has a wingspan of 1380mm (54″). The EPO + PP foam construction is not only light but fairly crash resistant too. That’s great news for newbies.

There’s no messy glue required to put it together. All you need’s a little patience and this bird will be ready to fly in no time. The design lets you easily mount an HD camera and take to the air in FPV or First Person View. That means you can see from the ground what the camera sees from the sky. You can also increase the flight time by using a bigger battery in the large battery compartment.

How Far For How Long

You get to choose your own transmitter, receiver, and battery, as this is a PNP model. How far and for how long you can fly on a single charge is down to your choice of equipment. To say the sky’s the limit is an exaggeration but your options are exciting and far-reaching nonetheless.

The only negatives I’ve come across relate to grass surfaces and flight speed. The plane doesn’t like grass take-offs and left alone it may fall onto its nose. Reviewers say they have to push it along to get it moving. It’s not a fast flyer either, and there are associated drawbacks to that.

Overall, though, and for the money, it’s a terrific product.

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Tech Specs
Type of RC craft: Ranger 757-4 RC
Product Weight: 34 oz.
Material: EPO+PP
Wingspan: 1380 mm (54 inches)
Propellers: 1
Maximum flight time: Depends on battery
Charging time: Depends on battery
Transmission range: Depends on RC
The Pros
Beautiful Lightweight design
Durable crash resistant materials
Easy to fly with a little practice
Great value PNP RC airplane
FPV capable
Long-range capable
The Cons
Not good at taking off from grass surfaces
Slow flyer

3. E-flite UMX PT-17 BNFAirplane

E-flite UMX PT-17 BNFAirplaneView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.6/5

If you’ve never heard of Pat Hartness you soon will. That’s if you buy the E-flite UMX PT-17, the RC airplane modeled after his full-scale PT-17. It’s certainly a historian’s plane.

  • Best feature 1: Classic design and a real eye-catcher
  • Best feature 2: Ultra-lightweight airframe
  • Plus points: Easy assembly, EPO foam construction, beautiful flyer
  • Minus points: Thin lower wing, hard to handle in the wind

This is a BNF (bind-n-fly) RC airplane. If you read the introduction then you’ll know this means it comes with everything but the transmitter. To complete the setup you’ll need a 4+-channel transmitter w/ Spektrum DSM2®/DSMX 2.4 GHz technology.

If you’ve always wanted to fly a bi-plane now’s your chance. There’s a bit of assembly to do out of the box but not much. Wing assembly is just a couple of screws and a simple bracket. The airplane may even come pre-assembled depending on where you buy it. It’s no big deal either way. The quality EPO foam and attractive fuselage give it an authentic look that adds further to the appeal.

In the Air with the E-flite UMX PT-17

The flight time is an unimpressive eight minutes. Still, if you’re enjoying acrobatic stunts you’re probably ready for a break by the time the battery gets low. The E-flite UMX PT-17 really is a smooth flyer. The transmission range with the standard setup is about 1/8mi or 660 ft. This is not a big craft and any further than this and you’d surely lose sight of it.

There are very few complaints with this lovable little model. Some point out that the lower wing is too thin and breaks easily. This is true but if you do break it, it’s also easy to repair. The other negative observation is that it’s difficult to control in blustery conditions.

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Tech Specs
Type of RC craft: Biplane airplane
Product Weight: Xxx oz
Material: EPO foam
Wingspan: 1120mm (44.0 inches)
Propellers: 1
Maximum flight time: 8-minutes
Charging time: Not specified
Transmission range: 660 feet
The Pros
Easy assembly (if required)
Beautiful looking classic biplane
Smooth flyer, easy to handle
Ultra-lightweight EPO foam airframe
The Cons
Thin lower wing
Not easy to handle in winds
Average max flight time

4. Volantex RC Glider Airplane

Volantex RC Glider AirplaneView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.9/5

The ASW28 is a PNP RC Glider. That means you have to buy the transmitter, receiver, and battery separately. If you want a glider then this one will most likely make your shortlist.

  • Best feature 1: Ultra-durable blow molded fuselage
  • Best feature 2: 2540mm wingspan
  • Plus points: Huge sailplane, flies beautifully, brushless 850KV motor
  • Minus points: Fiddly to assemble, not easy to maneuver, spare parts not easy to come by

Sometimes big is beautiful and that’s certainly the case with the ASW28. It has an ultra-durable blow molded plastic guild fuselage. The massive 2.5m wing is foam and uses aluminum rods for the spars. The result is a sailplane that has high flexibility and provides excellent recovery. It’s a good-looking plane but its size can be daunting so it’s not really an ideal craft at the entry-level.

You will often see the ASW28 RC Glider advertised as something for kids to enjoy. I would agree with this but only under supervision and not as a first sailplane. They also advertise it as being quick and easy to assemble. Again, I agree but only for those with prior experience. It’s a popular sailplane among glider enthusiasts so let’s see how she performs in the air.

Flying the Volantex RC Glider Airplane

Whoever you are, whatever your level, you’re going to have a few crashes. The good news for the more crash prone among you is that this plane can withstand quite a bit of unintentional abuse. The brushless 850KV motor provides plenty of power too. The glider soars like a bird and has impressive stability once in the air. Watching her fly is as enjoyable as the piloting.

You can expect a control range of 1,968 ft. (600m) on a good day under calm skies. Both the range and the actual flight time will depend on the battery, transmitter, and the receiver you settle for. The recommended battery is 11.1V 1500 mAh 20C Li-Po. And look to a 2.4G 6-Channel digital proportional controller for the radio system.

There are a few minor gripes with this RC sailplane aside from the fiddly assembly. Some pilots— especially newbies—may find it difficult to maneuver the craft in the air. And some spare parts can be hard to come by if you happen to break something.

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Tech Specs
Type of RC craft: Glider/Sailplane
Product Weight: 37 oz. (1050g)
Material: premium EPO and PP (plastic fuselage, foam wings)
Wingspan: 100.6″ (2555 mm)
Propellers: 1
Maximum flight time: Depends on battery
Charging time: Depends on battery
Transmission range: potential for 1,968 ft. (600m)
The Pros
Ultra-durable blow molded fuselage
Lightweight and crash resistant
Huge wingspan
Beautiful flyer
Fairly powerful brushless 850KV motor
The Cons
Fiddly assembly
Takes some practice to fly well
Spares not easy to come by

5. Hobbyzone Sport Cub S RTF RC Airplane

Hobbyzone Sport Cub S RTF RC AirplaneView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.5/5

The Hobbyzone Sport Cub S is a ready-to-fly (RTF) RC Airplane with SAFE Technology. It’s an incredibly popular model and easy to control both in the air and on the ground.

  • Best feature 1: Award-winning RC airplane
  • Best feature 2: SAFE (Sensor Assisted Flight Envelope) technology
  • Plus points: RTF, beginner friendly, steerable tail wheel, fast charging
  • Minus points: Delicate motor, not good in the wind

Most RC planes don’t win awards so when one does it’s time to sit up and take note. This one got the first prize for the 2015 Nurnberg International Toy Award for the teens & family category. The HobbyZone Sport Cub S has a lot going for it. It looks great; it’s beginner-friendly, and it’s fun to fly.

The SAFE (Sensor Assisted Flight Envelope) technology is certainly worth a mention. SAFE is a smart electronic flight protection system that even lets newbie pilots take to the sky with confidence.

Here are the three SAFE features in brief:

  1. Multiple flight modes: help pilots progress from beginner to advance levels
  2. Helps to steady the plane in blustery conditions
  3. Panic Recovery mode; regains flight stability with the simple pull of a trigger

Ready to Fly Ready for Fun

The HobbyZone Sport Cub S comes as a ready-to-fly (RTF) model. That means everything you need to get started is right there in the box. Once you’ve charged the battery you’re good to go. The even better news is the battery only takes around 30 minutes to charge. That makes the short 8-minute flight time more bearable. And you can always carry a spare battery or two to keep the fun going.

The transmission range is around 300 ft. (91m). That’s plenty, and most pilots will want to keep it even closer so they don’t lose sight of it. Ground control is also easy thanks to the steerable tail wheel.

The Gripes

There are a couple of gripes with this model and the biggest is the fragile motor. Hopefully, the maker will introduce a superior brushless option in a future update. Until then, I suggest letting the engine cool down for at least 10 minutes between flights.

The other complaint is that it’s not good in the wind. The SAFE feature makes it ‘steadier’ but it still doesn’t like windy conditions so take heed.

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Tech Specs
Type of RC craft: Cub Crafters Sport Cub aircraft replica airplane
Product Weight: 2 oz. (57g)
Material: Foam
Wingspan: 24″ (610mm)
Propellers: 1
Maximum flight time: 8+ minutes
Charging time: 30+ minutes
Transmission range: 300 ft. (91m)
The Pros
Award-winning RC airplane
SAFE (Sensor Assisted Flight Envelope) technology
Lightweight, nice flier
Beginner-friendly craft
Ready-To-Fly (RTF)
Steerable tail wheel for better ground control
Fast charging
The Cons
Weak motor (let it cool down between flights)
Doesn’t handle too well in winds

6. ZETA FX-79 Buffalo FPV RC Airplane

ZETA FX-79 Buffalo FPV RC AirplaneView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.8/5

The ZETA FX-79 Buffalo FPV Flying Wing is a macho beast with a 2000mm wingspan. It’s also an RC Airplane Kit. That means the user has to assemble the parts before they can fly.

  • Best feature 1: Long range FPV capability
  • Best feature 2: Huge wingspan
  • Plus points: Easy setup, huge storage capacity, hand launch, easy to fly, smooth performance
  • Minus points: Large size, have to invest in extras, hand launches

Keep reading if you want a sexy looking RC airplane with a huge 2m wingspan. This is an aerodynamic beast with lots of curves in all the right places. The plane has lots of potential for enthusiasts, especially long range First Person View (FPV) flying.

Customizable Potential

Customizable potential means you can choose your own transmitter, receiver, and flight batteries. You can have whatever compatible Ground Station you want for a fully immersive FPV experience. People who buy the ZETA FX-79 Buffalo add their own long-range FPV system and test their limits. That means speed and distance as well as flight performance and handling.

The plane arrives in three main parts and is a breeze to assemble. It’s just as easy to disassemble which makes it transportable and storable as well. There’s a huge fuselage storage capacity to put all the electronics you need—plus some.

Flying the ZETA FX-79 Buffalo Flying Wing

It’s big and gorgeous but it’s also incredibly light. That’s just as well seeing as you’re going to launch it by hand. You’re in for a real treat once the plane’s in the air and your FPV goggles are on. It’s also a fun plane to fly without the FPV setup. It’s incredibly smooth and stable in the air and maneuvers as gracefully as a bird. It can glide beautifully too in the right conditions.

The Conclusion

There’s so much happening with the ZETA FX-79 Buffalo Flying Wing it deserves a page of its own. This mini-review should give you enough detail to know whether you want to explore its finer details. Even those who thought they wouldn’t like this craft soon fall in love with it.

The size will be too big for some people. It’s certainly intimidating for smaller pilots and the hand launching can be tricky for tiny hands. You also need to buy extras to get the full experience. It’s an enthusiast’s kit plan and it won’t let you down if you’re passionate enough about it.

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Tech Specs
Type of RC craft: Fixed-wing RC airplane
Product Weight: 42 oz. (1200g)
Material: EPO construction
Wingspan: 79″ (2000mm)
Propellers: 1
Maximum flight time: Depends on battery used
Charging time: Depends on battery and battery charger used
Transmission range: Depends on transmitter and receiver used
The Pros
Great value amazing fun craft
Easy to set up out of the box
Long range FPV capability
Huge wingspan for better gliding
Easy to fly
Smooth performer
Large storage capacity
The Cons
The big size will intimidate some
Have to invest in electronics
Hand launching not easy with smaller hands

7. X-UAV Clouds EPO FPV RC Airplane

X-UAV Clouds EPO FPV RC AirplaneView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.7/5

The X-UAV Clouds is a big EPO FPV RC Airplane kit. You’ll want to know what you’re doing before you buy this puppy. It’s not overly complicated but it is an airplane for the more experienced enthusiast.

  • Best feature 1: Huge RC airplane
  • Best feature 2: Massive fuselage storage area
  • Plus points: High-quality EPO foam, easy assembly, hand-launch, speed, range
  • Minus points: Need plenty of space to assemble, some parts pre-glued

The fuselage storage area is massive and that’s always a good thing. It’s better to have too much space for electronics than not enough. It’s probably around 14-inches long by 4-inches wide and 4-inches deep. There’s even a smaller secondary storage compartment behind the main space.

The lightweight foam construction is resistant to crashes yet easy to break by accident. I’ll explain what I mean by that. You WILL NEED SPACE to assemble this thing. There’s a definite risk of falling over or onto the parts if you try to piece it together in a small area. My advice is to prepare your workspace before you even unbox the plane.

The assembly is not complicated for anyone with experience. You could probably build it and have it airborne in less than a day if you had all the parts ready and didn’t run into any blips.

Flying the X-UAV Clouds EPO FPV RC Airplane

This is a First person View (FPV) capable airplane. That means you can hook it up to your favorite FPV setup and enjoy a truly immersive experience. It’s launched by hand (throw ejected) and can reach a maximum cruising speed of 50 to 80 km/h. The cruise times can be anywhere from 90 minutes to 3-hours with a decent battery and the proper setup.

There are many practical uses for this craft aside from pleasure flying. Mapping is a good example.

The Negatives

Any experienced enthusiast will talk about how easy this kit is to set up and get flying. And it is—for an experienced enthusiast. I wouldn’t recommend it for the total novice, though, unless there’s someone more knowledgeable close by to lend a hand. You need lots of space to unbox and assemble this beast too. Most parts of the kit arrive separate but a few may be pre-glued. That will bother some users who like to use and only trust their own glues and gluing.

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Tech Specs
Type of RC craft: FPV RC airplane kit
Product Weight: 92 oz. (2600g)
Material: EPO foam
Wingspan: 74 inches (1880mm)
Propellers: 2
Maximum flight time: Depends on final setup but a 2-hour average is definitely doable
Charging time: Depends on battery used
Transmission range: Depends on transmitter and receiver used
The Pros
Huge and lightweight
Easy to assemble for experienced pilots
Large fuselage storage area
Quality EPO foam construction
Easy to hand launch
Stable flyer
Fast flier
Long transmission range potential
The Cons
Needs lots of room to unbox and assemble parts
Some parts pre-glued
Hand launches may prove difficult for smaller hands