Drone Photography in Thailand – Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Drone photography has become increasingly popular in Thailand, with many tourists and photographers using drones to capture stunning aerial shots of the country’s scenic landscapes. However, drone use in Thailand is regulated by the Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand (CAAT) and comes with certain restrictions and requirements. This FAQ provides information on the legality and regulations of drone photography in Thailand, including how to register your drone

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Q: Is drone photography legal in Thailand?

A: Yes, drone photography is legal in Thailand, but with certain restrictions and regulations. Drones must be registered with the Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand (CAAT), the National National Broadcasting Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) and operators must have a permit.

Q: Do you need a permit to fly a drone in Thailand

Yes, all drones regardless of size that are fitted with a camera must be registered with the CAAT and the NBTC before you can fly. Depending on the location, you might also need permission from the local councils.

Q: What are the regulations for drone use in Thailand?

A: Drone operators in Thailand must comply with CAAT and NBTC regulations, which include restrictions on flying in prohibited airspace, near airports and military bases, temples, palaces, and government buildings, and above certain altitudes. Operators must also have liability insurance of at least 1m Baht coverage.

Q: What are some key dos and don’ts when flying a drone in Thailand?

  • Do get permission of the owner of the land to fly (this includes National Parks)
  • Do fly in line of sight at all times
  • Do respect the privacy rights of others

  • Don’t fly higher than 90 metres
  • Don’t fly close to manned aircraft
  • Don’t fly close to people, vehicles or buildings (the drone should always be a minimum of 30 metres away)
  • Don’t fly within city limits
  • Don’t fly over any areas where people are gathered
  • Don’t fly in or near restricted areas e.g. government offices, state buildings, hospitals etc.
  • Don’t fly within 9 km (or 5 nautical miles) of any airport or temporary airfield
  • Don’t allow any person under 18 to fly the drone

Q: What are the penalties for breaking drone regulations in Thailand?

A: Penalties for breaking drone regulations in Thailand can include a 40,000 to 100,000 Baht fine and/or a 1-5 year prison sentence. On-the-spot fines can also be issued for flying without a permit, flying dangerously or in restricted areas.

Q: Do I need insurance to fly a drone in Thailand

A: Yes, you will need third-party liability insurance (with a minimum of coverage of 1m Baht) in order to register and fly your drone in Thailand. The certificate of insurance must be in English and needs to show your full name and drone serial number.

Q: Is it necessary to have a pilot's license to operate a drone in Thailand?

A: No, a pilot’s license is not necessary to operate a drone in Thailand, but operators must obtain a permit from CAAT and the NBTC.

Q: Are there any restrictions on the type of drones that can be used in Thailand?

A: Yes, there are restrictions on the type of drones that can be used in Thailand. Drones must meet certain specifications, such as weight and technical requirements, and be registered with CAAT.

How can I register my drone in Thailand?

A: To register your drone in Thailand, you must follow the steps below:

  • Obtain liability insurance for your drone.
  • Submit an application for a drone permit to the CAAT and the NBTC.
  • Provide the following information in your application: personal information, information about the drone, and details about the intended usage.
  • Pay the registration fee.
  • Wait for approval from CAAT and the NBTC.
  • The processing time with the NBTC can take 1-2 days, while the CAAT may take 15 days to 4 weeks.

Note: The regulations and restrictions mentioned here may be subject to change, so it’s advisable to check the latest information on the CAAT and NBTC websites before operating a drone in Thailand.