irish drone laws
height flight limit

120m max height

can't fly over crowds of people

30m from crowds

plane icon white

3 miles of any airport

Only line of sight

All Drone Laws in Ireland in 2020 (Ultimate Guide)

Ireland does not have a distinct drone license. What is the legal position of drone users in Ireland? Drones are mainly used for a variety of industries spanning from rescue operations to aerial surveying. The adoption of drones has gained lots of popularity across the country. 

The drone industry is slowly evolving and the laws are playing catch up in Ireland. The Ireland Aviation Authority clearly regards these unmanned aerial vehicles as aircraft. 

Table of Contents

Are drones legal in Ireland?

Any drone flying over land or property raises privacy concerns. It also depends on where you plan to fly the drone. In areas of national heritage such as monuments, you are not permitted to fly a drone. You can find out more information from them here 


Who do I contact?

You can get in touch with the Irish Aviation Authority through:


Tel: +3531671 8655

What are the rules on drone use in Ireland?

The legal framework governing the use of drones in Ireland order is less complicated than it's European competitors.  Any drones weighing over a kilogram needs to be registered with the IAA. Drones weighing less than a kilogram is free to fly.

For more information on drones, check with the IAA.

  • line of sight icon
    Line of sight
    Keep your done within the visual line-of-sight of an observer who is next to you or in direct communication with you
  • plane icon
    No flying near airports
    Don't fly closer than 3 km from any aerodrome.
  • crowd icon
    Don't fly over crowds
    Drones should not excveed 30 meters from any crowds, vehicles, people, bulidings.
  • height icon
    150 meters height limitations
    Do not fly your drone above 150 meters. Fly within the airport control zone but maintain a 3 Km distance away from the runways. The maximum distance of flight is 50 meters. Do not fly your drone above a crowd of people. Always maintain a 50-meter gap.
  • checkmark
    Registration past 15m flight
    REgister your drone if you'll be flying past 49 feet (15meters). Also register your drone if it weighs more than 1kg.
  • historical museum icon
    Don't fly over national monuments
  • camera icon
    Limit operations to daytime hours

Is there a minimum age for flying a drone?

The IAA is guided by the drone age specified by drone manufacturers. However, you must be over 16 years old to register a drone. For those under 16, a guardian or parent can do the registration on their behalf. 

How are drones classified in Ireland?

Drones are generaly classified as unmanned aerial vehicles.

How can I register my drone in Ireland?

Drone registration is mandatory for all unmanned aircraft that fall under the Small Unmanned Aircraft (Drones) and Rockets Order passed in 2015.

Can I fly a drone in Ireland without applying for authorization?

If you own a drone less than 25 Kg, you must seek authorization for flying the drone.

What happens if my drone isn’t licensed?

The laws in Ireland are quite lax given a 2017 publication of only one prosecution since the introduction of the new laws back in 2015. The IAA considers the judiciary to be the sole issuer of penalties after prosecution and examination of the argument of the prosecution.

Can I travel with my drone to Ireland by Airplane?

Yes, however, you must abide by the laws stated on the Small Unmanned Aircraft (Drones) and Rockets Order.

What are the interdictions of flying a drone?

According to the 2015 order a drone should not be operated under the following conditions:

  • Poses a threat to other oncoming aircraft
  • Over a dozen people are assembled
  • A distance of over 300m from the person operating it
  • 30m from any person, structure or vessel involved in its operations.
  • A distance of 5 Km from an aerodrome.
  • A dangerous or negligent manner that can harm others
  • A distance of 120 m off the ground
  • Flight over urban areas
  • In military and civilian controlled airspaces
  • A demarcated restricted area
  • The drone operator has permission to land or takes off

If anyone flies the drone outside the prescribed regulations, they get the special Operating Permission (SOP) from the IAA. This is conducted by IAA registered training facilities.  

To get the special operating permit, the pilot must have attended a drone safety training course and present an operational manual that meets the IAA standards. 

The Special Operating Permission also requires a pilot competency certificate. 

Privacy is treated with utmost importance in Ireland. The drone operator must get permission from the persons whose private data will be captured before.

What are my top drones to fly safely in Ireland?

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)

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.


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


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

2.Dji Mavic Air 2 - My favorite drone overall

mavic air 2 package fly more combo
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.


  • 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


  • battery life ins't that amazing

Restricted Areas and Geofencing (drone FLying map)

The best way to figure out what areas you can fly in, while you're here 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