Drone laws in Belgium (updated 2020)

belgium-drone-laws
can't fly in city

Keep away from Industrial

Line of sight

plane icon white

3 km from airports

can't fly over crowds of people

Don't fly over crowds

All Drone Laws in Belgium (updated for 2020)

Unlike other countries in the region, Belgium does not have a specific set of rules governing drones and their use. It, however, has three classes of operation, each requiring a special license. 

 Drones are instead put into classes. Rather than categorize the drone under recreational or commercial, the yardstick here is much different. Very strict controls and standards of operation are required of every drone user.

Are drones legal in Belgium?

Yes. Drone flying is legal in Belgium according to the national travel and aviation authorities. The Belgium Civil Aviation Authority (BCAA) and the Federal Public Service Mobility and Transport (FPS) recommend self-awareness with drone regulations. 

 

Contact information

 

The best place to get in touch with the BCAA is by contacting them at:

 

  • Tel: +32 (02) 277.43.07

 

 

Can I travel with my drone to Belgium?

Yes, you can. Start by registering for the Belgian aviation register. If the drone is already registered in another country, there will be no need for that. More rules on how Belgian laws apply to foreigners with drones are available here:

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What are the drone laws in Belgium?

Besides these right here, there's specific drone laws depending on what class of pilot and drone there's involved. More on that bellow, to see where you fit.

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How are drones classified in Belgium?

So where does my drone lie according to Belgian law? In which category? The criteria that determine your drone is dependent on the weight and purpose of use.

 

Private use (Recreation)

  • You should not exceed 10 meters (32.8 ft) high. 
  • Only fly on private terrains such as your farm, backyard or property.
  • The drone must weigh less than 2.2 lbs (1 Kg). 
  • Remain within your line of sight 
  • Fly during the day.
  • Open to all ages

Model aircraft (Recreation)

  • Model aircraft have a take-off weight between 1 Kg (2.2lbs) and 150 Kg (330 lbs)
  • Remain within line of sight. 
  • Open to all ages

 

Class 2  (Commercial)

This is the low-risk category as users:

  • Limit their drone flight to 45 meters (150 ft) outside controlled airspace or residential communities. 
  • Fly the drone during the day
  • Remain within line of sight
  • The pilot must be at least 16 years old.

 

Class 1a operations (Commercial)

This is the moderate risk drone category where users:

  • Fly their drones on controlled airspace up to 90 meters (300 ft).
  • If your flight path comes within 50 meters of goods and people. 
  • The pilot must be 18 years old
  • Need a certificate of competence

 

Class 1b operations (Commercial)

This category is of high risk. That being so, users:

  • Fly their drone 90 meters (300 ft) above ground.
  • Do not go anywhere 50 meters(164 ft) from people/goods
  • Limit operations to daytime. 
  • Weigh less than 150 Kg (330 lbs)
  • Maintain a direct line of sight
  • The drone pilot must be 18 years old.
  • Need a drone pilot license
  • Need a drone conformity certificate

Any other operation missing from this list should be regarded as a class A operation.

Is FPV legal in Belgium?

It's still not clear at the moment given conflicting opinions. 

Can I fly over private terrain?

Yes. This is regarded as private land. However, you must ensure you are in adherence to other BCAA flight requirements. 

Can I drop off an object such as a parcel using a recreational or commercial drone?

Whatever your criteria of drone, the transport of mail, cargo and people is prohibited.

Can a pilot fly a recreational drone over a populated beach, recreational stadium or sporting event?

Unless you have the right authorization and are operating under the right class of drone classification, this is not allowed.

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How can I register my drone for commercial use in Belgium?

 Fill out this registration form online and submit it to bcaa.registration@mobilit.fgov.be

How do I get a remote pilot license in Belgium? 

Apply for a remote pilot license from BCAA. You will undergo a test consisting of a theoretical and practical course conducted by a licensed examiner from BCAA. This license is meant for remote pilots within the class 1a and b category.

 

Eligibility criteria are simple. Are you over 18 years old? Have you undergone a medical evaluation from the following facilities? If the answer to both questions is yes, then you can apply for a drone pilot license.

 

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What does the drone pilot license comprise of?

A 50 question theory test on Metrology, Belgium Air Laws, Aircraft Technology, General Flight Operations, and Privacy rights. 

You must select a certified RPAS flight school operating in Belgium that offers training. Here are some of the top selections.

As soon as you are ready to register, proceed at rpas.exam@mobilit.fgov.be and pick a suitable exam day. The exams are normally done at DGAS

What is the required pass score?

Score anything above 75 percent and you are good to go. 

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How do I get the certificate of competence in Belgium?

A certificate of competence is a license for any pilot within the class 2 category. It is also issued by BCAA and requires the user to pass a theoretical exam and a practical skill test issued by the same body. A certificate of competency comprises of:

  1. Personal theory and basic knowledge of Metrology, Belgium Air Laws, Aircraft Technology, General flight information, and privacy rights.
  2. Practical exam conducted by a registered and certified RPAS flight school
  3. On completion, the school gives you a number which is your certificate.
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How long does the certificate of competency last?

The certification lasts for a lifetime. However, if you lose it, you have to repeat the whole process once more. 

For further exam related information, reach out to rpas.lic@mobilit.fgov.be

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Do I need to express authorization from BCAA before flying my drone

Not always. For instance, operating a drone on private terrain or model aircraft terrain exempts the user from registering the drone or seeking a flight approval from BCAA.

 

All other cases of drones particularly class 2, 1a and 1b need to adhere to the Royal Decree requirements of:

  • Register your drone at BCAA
  • Have a certificate of competence for class 2 operations 
  • Have a remote pilot license for class 1 operations
  • Have the organization you represent make a declaration that they are in full compliance with national class 1b requirements or 1a of BCAA.
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What are the restricted areas for flying drones in Belgium?

Belgium has specific drone exempt areas that have been expressed on a flight map. 

Before flying, run a check to avoid flying your drone in a restricted area. You can find out more about that  by contacting droneguide@skeyes.be 

Get the maps here Apple and Android.

Keep away from:

    • Controlled airspaces
    • Low flying areas
    • Steer 1 Km away from Helipads and helicopter training areas
    • Industrial installations
    • Military zones
    • Nuclear power plants
    • Around an aerodrome (not close than 1.5 nautical miles) 3 Km

    As a remote pilot you should ensure:

    • Take off area, flight path and landing area should be on the path of people, obstacles or property on the ground.
    • Your drone flight path is devoid of obstacles that can hinder a direct line of sight view by the remote pilot.
    • You fly in areas accessible for drones and remain in accordance with Royal decree of April 10, 2016.
    • If you spot a plane or helicopter approaching your flight path, land immediately.
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    Can I travel with my drone to Belgium via plane?

    Absolutely, however, check with the airline to find out that their flight requirements are. For instance, some do not allow carrying a drone on-board if the batteries are not detached and placed in a special fire case.

    If the airline has a battery voltage limit, you will be forced to abide by it. More information on this can be found here 

    What are the rules around recreational drones?

     

    No license required provided your operation falls within the Private use and Model aircraft designations.

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    Can I be penalized?

    Absolutely. The severity of the penalty or punishment relayed for contravening the drone laws will depend on just how off you missed the mark. The judge will try to ascertain whether you committed the offense deliberately or within your scope of commercial operation. 

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    Make money with your drone

    • Only if you're serious
    • No experience required
    • I make up to 200$/h after it
    • Yes, it's a course
    • Yes, It's the best I know
    • Everything from A to Z
    how-to-make-money-with-drones
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    What are my top drones to fly safely in Belgium?

    My following two recommendations are 2 great compact drones that are quite silent and also small enough to travel with and not stand out as annoying.

    1.Dji Mavic Mini - The best international travel drone (under 250g)

     2.7k

    30min battery

    4km

    No follow me

    DJI has surprised us with this incredible camera drone under 250g, which is half of the weight required for registering in the first place.

     

    I have covered it much more in depth in my article review and even compared it with the DJI Spark and Mavic Air.

    Advantages

    • 30 min battery life
    • under 250g
    • super portable
    • 4km range
    • can edit videos in the app

    DISAdvantages

    • no obstacle avoidance
    • no settings for iso and shutter speed

    2.Dji Mavic Air - A great professional drone under 500g

    4k 30fps

    20min battery

    4km

    3 direction sensors

    If you want more control over things like shutter speed, iso and such, the best professional drone that still falls under the 500g category is the DJI Mavic Air.
     
    It's made mostly for people who want to play around with settings and enter into the pro category.
     

     

    DJI lowered it's price since it was first released.

    Advantages

    • 3 way sensors
    • 68kph (fastest among the 3)
    • follow me mode(quite a few options)
    • 8gb internal storage
    • ISo & shutter speed settings
    • 6 photo modes
    • takes RAW photos
    • 100mbps bitrate

    DISAdvantages

    • battery life ins't that amazing
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    Restricted Areas and Geofencing (drone FLying map)

    The best way to figure out what areas you can fly in is by consulting DJI offilicial map.
    They do a great job mapping the places that one should avoid while flying in every country:

    • airports
    • military bases
    • prisons
    • power plants
    • any high risk areas
    romania flying map dji

    How do you make money with your drone, though?

    Okay, so you got your new and fancy drone, but how do you stand out from any dad out there who has the same drone and watched some tutorials online?

    I did exactly that and barely had any success. 

    But now I’m charging 5x as much as before and even have to refuse clients from time to time.

    I even bought about 7 online courses… and I didn’t make much progress.

    So how did I finally make it to this level?

    If you want the short answer, I learned everything from this guy Alex, who’s making $200 per hour with his drone. And he’s even teaching exactly how to do that.

    This is pretty much what you need to know:

    how-to-make-money-with-drones

    1. Make sure you have a proper drone.

    If you have any of the latest DJI Drones, like the Mavic Air 2, for example, you’re ready to start making money.

    No need to overthink this, but if it’s any help, check this comparison of the best camera drones compared in 2020.

    types of drones

    2.Learn how to create the best content to stand out

    You won’t stand out from the next dad who bought a DJI drone for Cristmass in the eyes of your clients if you don’t do this.

    It’s WAY more important to know what you’re doing than the gear you have.

    You’ll need to learn and master the following:

    1.  
    • Flying your drone(to stand out from people with basic drone shots)
    • Preparing for the flight and weather in advance
    • Learn the best drone settings (you need a proper setup template)
    • Create the Video Script (it's way easier if you know what to shoot)
    • Have a set of great cinematic shots you know how to do
    • Know how to edit the video so it stands out
    • Learn how to color grade

    This is why you HAVE to invest in a proper way to learn things (instead of watching tutorials here and there).

    3.Find clients that pay 5x more than regular

    But not so fast.

    You won’t make a penny if you don’t know how to find your clients.

    I have struggled finding clients even when my videos were getting pretty good.

    Until I learned a few tricks and how to find and approach them so they won’t be able to say no.

    And what’s best, I learned how to get the price I asked for.

    How can you do the same?

    I have tested quite a few courses online and watched tons of videos on youtube, but frankly, I have learned more from one single course than from everything else… and all that in like a weekend.

    Made back the money from this investment in myself in a single week and then much more.

     

    How do I learn all of this? From youtube?

    You could simply go online and learn everything in terms of video from youtube, forums, facebook groups etc.

    However, let me tell you, it’s the worst way to learn all of this(and the slowest).

    You won’t have a Complete Step By step guide on how to do everything.

    I found myself frustrated, even after I learned how to do most of the video stuff that I still lacked some knowledge and I didn’t know why my shots weren’t standing out.

    I got some general promotion ideas from some articles online, but again… I didn’t have much success and was charging too little for my time.

    This is exactly where I learned how to make $200 per hour with my drone (From A to Z)

    This course is hold by Alex Harris, who’s an international video creator, director, and drone operator with tons of experience.

    And I had a great time stealing his know-how(and greatly profited from it, lol).

    I recommend you watch his video presentation bellow and check out the course sales page. It’s quite cheap, considering you’re getting 320+ minutes of everything you need to know, step by step and 80+ minutes on how to actually find the ideal clients for you.

    I'm a big drone enthusiast, the owner of DronesGator.com and I also make weekly videos on my drone YouTube channel.

    We will be happy to hear your thoughts

        Leave a reply

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