On the Move

Beijing by Illegal Drone

One of the great things about being a foreigner, or a tourist, is that you can talk your way out of almost anything in another country (serious crimes excluded, obviously). In my 20+ years as an expat, I have talked or haggled my way out of almost everything—speeding tickets, drunken disorderliness, wrecked rental motorcycles, hotel policies, and practically everything in between. I’ve seen the inside of police cars and stations in almost every country I’ve traveled, and (for better or worse) it’s something I consider a badge of pride.


Trey Ratcliff

Through these years of gallivanting and globetrotting, however, I have never had to talk my way out of filming something I wasn’t supposed to, something deemed culturally or government sensitive. Not yet at least.

So stumbling across this video of Beijing by drone, I just had to share. Leave it to a “naïve” foreigner to pull something like this off—or almost.

The pilot is Trey Ratcliff from Stuck in Customs. Anyone into photography might know Trey from his great site and informative Youtube page.

Click here to read about Trey’s misadventures grabbing this footage. He also reviews the DJI Phantom he used while filming.