Ministry sets rules to use drones for recreational purposes in UAE - GulfToday

Ministry sets rules to use drones for recreational purposes in UAE


Photo used for illustrative purpose.

Aya El Deeb, Staff Reporter

The Ministry of Interior has set conditions for the use of drones for recreational purposes in the UAE, stressing that licencing drones for amateur use does not include commercial or other uses.

Drone operators, companies and authorities must ensure that the drones they use are licenced by the UAE General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA).

These conditions state that users and UAS/drone shall be registered with the GCAA before flying and all UAS/drones weighing 5kgs or less shall only be allowed to fly in the approved flying zone indicated in my drone hub mobile application (i.e the green zone). Camera usage is only allowed in the flying zones.

Drone users must not violate relevant UAE laws while using the camera. No UAS/drones shall be equipped with a drop or release devices.

The MoI also stressed that UAS/drones flying range shall be within line-of-sight and not more than 400 feet above ground level, and that UAS/drones shall fly only during daytime and in good weather conditions. UAS/drones shall be used for fun and not for commercial purposes, the MoI noted, adding that users shall be responsible to ensure the UAS/drones is used in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions and it is inspected before the commencement of flight.

No user shall fly the UAS/drones near public and/or private property. No user shall fly the UAS/drones within 5 km of UAE airports outer fence, Heliports, Helicopter landing Sites, and airfields or in controlled zones; Direct radio control link shall be maintained between the user and the UAS/drones.

Frequency Band Restrictions (29.7-47.0 MHz max power 10 mW, or 2400-2500 MHz max power 100 mW) shall be maintained. UAS/drones user shall take into consideration the effects on radio communication, interference of the frequency used.

Users shall also avoid collisions with people, objects, other manned and unmanned aircraft.

In addition, users shall not harass or endanger people or threaten to damage property. Drones’ owners shall be responsible to inform the GCAA through the GCAA website when he/she intends to resell the UAS/drones. In case a UAS/drones accident or UAS/drones loss of control has occurred, user shall immediately report the incident/accident to the GCAA on hotline (+971506414667 and E-mail:

All UAS/drones weighing above 5kgs and/or equipped with gas engine shall only operate within the GCAA approved flying clubs. The minimum age to fly UAS/drones weighing more than 25Kgs is 21 years;

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