Flying a Drone in Thailand



If you do buy a camera drone in Thailand or bring one into the country, you should be aware that there are strict regulations applying to flying drones here. The 250-gram weight allowance that exists in many western countries, which establishes a Mavic Mini's weight at 249 grams, doesn't apply here. Like many regulations, the enforcement is probably ad hoc, but there's no excuse for claiming ignorance if you do get 'caught' by an overenthusiastic bureaucrat. Registration is described as:


The National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) announced that all drones in Thailand need to be registered. If not done, a drone’s owner could face a five-year jail term or a fine of up to 100,000 Baht.

Now, if flying locally in a rural setting as I do at the farm, I doubt there are any problems. If however, you want to start flying in populated areas, at temples or street parties, then the risk goes up.


I spoke to a Thai drone owner, and he just got permission from the local police and that cost nothing. That's fine if just flying the area covered by that police jurisdiction, but once outside that, then once again the risk goes up.

My thoughts are that if you are out in the sticks and are just covering local non-public scenes, then you should be fine. Check with the local cops. If you plan to use your drone in more public areas, then maybe consider registering.


I bought my drone through the official DJI site on Lazada, and they sent me all the (many) forms required. It is a pain, but then all forms are. You are required to have 1,00,000 baht insurance as well as register. The total cost for registration and the insurance is around 1,000 baht, so no big deal. I have attached copies of the forms required for anyone interested.


They can be downloaded here: https://uav.caat.or.th/download.php


There are flying restrictions that include:

  1. You have to keep a distance of 9 kilometres to airports.

  2. You can’t get closer than 50 meters to people, vehicles and buildings.

  3. You must not fly near crowds of people. Flying over cities and villages is not allowed. Also, avoid government buildings and hospitals.

  4. You must always obtain permission from the property owner to take off and land. In practice, we usually solve this by asking the guards for permission or by asking at the information desk.

  5. Your drone must always be kept within the visual line of sight.

  6. Drone flights are only allowed in daylight in Thailand, i.e. between sunrise and sunset.

More information here and heaps more online: https://drone-traveller.com/drone-laws-thailand/


I will only be flying locally until I get my licence, but maybe clearing things with the police just in case. For your situation - up to you!





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