RC Airplanes for Beginners in 2020 (Updated 2022)

Are you looking for the best RC airplanes for beginners? If so, you’ve come to the right spot. We have all the information you need to know to get started with RC airplanes. If you’re new to the RC airplane world I would suggest that you start with one of these trainer RC airplanes designed for beginners.

Flying an electric RC airplane is a good way to get started in the hobby, however flying is not as easy as it may look, therefore I recommend starting with a plane that is slow, includes electronic stabilization, sized properly for your needs, includes everything you need to get started and made with foam for easy repairs. Each airplane flies a bit differently because of how the airplane is designed.

I have outlined a few electric RC airplanes that I would recommend to get you started. All of these planes come in the RTF (Ready-To-Fly) kit so you will not have to purchase anything else to get started. All these airplanes can be flown as a beginner without any flying instruction but if you are interested in something larger in size, I would recommend finding an instructor in your area. 

Here are some links to help you find an instructor, however it is not required as I learned to fly RC airplanes on my own but I did join a fly club and find an instructor as I progressed in my flying journey. RC flying instructors can be a really big help when it comes to advancing in this hobby.

Two Small RC Airplanes for Beginners

The Duet RTF is a popular trainer airplane because of its ease of use. This RC airplane will get you flying in no time with its built-in Virtual Instructor technology which will help to make minor adjustments and corrections while you are learning the basics of flying. This airplane is fun for all ages and with a great price for under $80.00 it includes everything you need to get started.

The Sport Cub S 2 is based on the most popular trainer airplane of all time – the Sport Cub S. This ultra-micro electic RC airplane is a great way to learn how to fly if you live close to an area with a small park, tennis court, basketball court or football field and can be flown successfully by new pilots of all ages. 

This trainer includes SAFE (Sensor Assisted Flight Envelope) technology which helps the pilot with safely flying the airplane by preventing over controlling the movement of the airplane. The SAFE technology includes three flight modes from Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced. Each mode will help a pilot advance in their skills while learning how to fly. Check out this article on the different SAFE modes and how they function.

Three Medium RC Airplanes for Beginners

The Mini Apprentice S 1.2m airplane is a little smaller to the E-flite Apprentice S 15e and STS but with many of the same features. The Mini Apprentice S was designed with the beginner in mind with the built-in features of SAFE (Sensor Assisted Flight Envelope) technology so that this airplane could be flown in larger outdoor areas like larger parks, football or soccer fields. The airplane comes with a Spektrum DXS controller and a 11.1 volt 3S LiPo battery for longer flight times.

The Carbon Cub S 2 is one of the most well-known standard types of trainer airplanes (based on the Carbon Cub by Cub Crafters as it is the most versatile, capable and easiest to fly on the market. The Carbon Cub S 2 is equiped with SAFE (Sensor Assisted Flight Envelope) Plus GPS-drone technology with advanced features including AutoLand, Holding Pattern and Virtual Fence making almost anyone’s first flight a success. The airplane also includes extra large tundra tires to handle grassy, gravel or dirt runways as well as a spring suspension to assist with rough landings.

The Apprentice STS 1.5m RTF Smart airplane is based on the very best airframe ever designed for learning how to remote controlled airplanes. This airplane has a 1.5 meter (59 inch) wingspan which allows this airplane to handle more wind and turburlance making this airplane easy to fly in large open areas like RC airports and fields while continuing to learn the basics. 

The Apprentice STS includes SAFE (Sensor Assisted Flight Envelope) technology making this big RC plane very stable and easy to fly. It has become the official training airplane at many RC flying clubs and the Official Trainer of the Academy of Model Aeronautics (AMA). This is a great airplane to start with before moving up into other more advanced models.

Check out my review of this RC airplane.

And The Best RC Airplane For Beginners is...

Small RC Airplane for Beginners Winner: HobbyZone Sport Cub S 2
Medium RC Airplane for Beginners Winner: E-flite Apprentice STS 1.5m

This was a tough choice to choose the BEST RC airplane for a beginners since they are all similar yet all unique in there own way.

Both of these RC airplanes are great for different reasons but the biggest reason in my opinion is how much wind each plane can handle.  The HobbyZone Sport Cub S 2 is great for small areas and with wind speeds under 10 mph.  Due to its small size this RC airplane was designed for small parks, sporting areas or indoor sport courts but does not perform well with winds over 10 mph.  This RC airplane does not require you to be registered with the FAA so anyone can fly this without any other special memberships or licenses.

On the other hand the E-flite Apprentice STS 1.5m will easily handle 10 mph wind speeds and can be safely flown with wind gusts up to 20 mph.  However, the E-flite Apprentice airplane requires a large outdoor area to fly including large long areas for landing and taking off.  This airplane would fly well at a softball, baseball or football fields and those areas would offer plenty of areas for landing.  One thing to keep in mind, any RC airplane or drone over 250 grams requires FAA registration and the Apprentice STS falls into that category.  The FAA registration for recreational flying is really easy, requires no test or certification, requires a small annual fee and the pilot must understand the rules of flying in the airspace.

As you can see there are many options on the market but these that I have highlighted are the best RC airplanes for beginners.  I personally have flown many of these listed above and currently own the E-flite Apprentice STS 1.5 airplane.  I would recommend either the HobbyZone Sport Cub S 2 or the Apprentice STS to anyone that is willing to learn and has access to a safe flying area.

Thanks for reading and please comment or ask questions below.  Happy Flying!


5 thoughts on “RC Airplanes for Beginners in 2020 (Updated 2022)”

  1. They should include the Cessna 182 skytrainer by fms. It’s also a rtf out of the box, light weight, fully functional, including flaps, led lights for flying in low light and see threw windows.


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