While the definition of affordable varies from person to person, it is possible to begin flying radio-controlled airplanes for as little as $200 dollars, as reported by radio-controlled airplane enthusiast site Flite Test. Both inexpensive pre-built kit planes and do-it-yourself options are viable for those looking to keep costs down.
When starting out with radio-controlled airplanes, Flite Test recommends investing in inexpensive planes and hardware due to the high likelihood of an inexperienced pilot damaging planes. Inexpensive planes are often easier to learn to fly for beginners than high-end models. For those with technical inclinations or previous experience with radio-controlled planes, it is also possible to construct scratch-built planes from parts to keep costs affordable.