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All Drone Laws In the Maldives in 2023

Updated in 2023 by Paul Posea

A country with aesthetically perfect beach views, lush green forests, and a beautiful sky is a perfect place to spend your holidays and make memories by filming all these gorgeous sites.

And the cherry on the top, if you own a drone, the whole experience goes to another level and you can make lifetime memories.

All of this can be possible so conveniently if you just go through this article and make yourself informed by these few rules we’ve sorted out for you to fly a drone in the Maldives.

Can I Fly to the Maldives with my drone?

Yes, one can fly to the Maldives with a drone but they should carry along all their permits to the Maldives airport to avoid any inconvenience.

It is advisable to check with the airlines before traveling, because, some of them allow you to travel with the drone only if the batteries are removed and a few of them require them to be kept in a fire-proof container for safety. Some airlines have a battery voltage limit based on TSA (Transportation Safety Association).

Can I Fly a drone in the Maldives?

The Maldives known as a remote tropical paradise is a country full of beautiful views and spots. While exploring the place one would want to capture all those beautiful moments and explorations and you can do so using your drones.

Yes, you read it right! You can fly a drone in the Maldives following certain rules and regulations. 

The restrictions primarily cover the security and privacy concerns that might arise for the daily operations or for other tourists who are there to enjoy their time in serenity.

Do we Need to Obtain a Permit to fly a drone in the Maldives?

Yes. It is necessary for you to get your drone approved and to obtain a permit before flying a drone in the Maldives.

To film the views for your drone you have to take prior permission from Maldives National Defense Force (MNDF) and the Maldives Civil Aviation Authority (MCAA).

In addition to that, you’ll be needing the approval of the premises management that you are willing to film. Not all islands or hotels allow you to use drones on their premise due to privacy and security issues. 

Usually getting approval is a lengthy process, so it’s advisable to gain permits a month or two before your planned visit.

How do I get my drone approved in the Maldives?

Going by the details expressed on their website, approval for flying a drone happens on a case-by-case basis. There are three steps involved in gaining drone approval:

Get approved from your island or hotel

Recreational video - Get approved by a hotel or local island council

Commercial use - Get approval from the National Centre for the Arts.  

The body charged with regulating and enforcing the use of unmanned aircraft in the Maldives is the Maldives Civil Aviation Authority. 

Approval from the Maldives National Defence Force

Here is their Application form 

Email: admin@defence.gov.mv 

To save on time you can carry out steps 1 and 2 together.

Approval from CAA

As soon as you get approval from the island or hotel, apply directly to CAA here or email at ans@caa.gov.mv 

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What are the Rules and Regulations to Fly Drone in the Maldives?

Since the Maldives is mainly a tourist destination, so their major concern is to keep tourists and travelers comfortable. That is why all their regulations are maintained by resort managements and the concerned authorities. 

Apart from this set of rules, every island, resort, and other tourist spot has its own set of rules and regulations as well. These individual rules and restrictions can be asked while getting permits from the respective places.

Mentioned below are the general rules that you must follow while flying a drone in the Maldives:

  • You must obtain permits from MNDF and MCAA prior to flying a drone in the Maldives. For the complete process information, go through the section above. 
  • You’re only allowed to fly your drone during daylight and in good weather conditions. The Maldives do not allow you to fly your drone during the night or in bad weather conditions.
  • The maximum altitude should be 400m.
  • You are not allowed to fly above people or any crowded area.
  • For security concerns, the drone must not be flown above crowded places or sensitive territories (prisons, military facilities, etc.).
  • The drones cannot be flown near airports or in any area where the other aircraft operate to avoid hindrance in their operation. 
  • There are very few places in the Maldives that allow the drones to be flown.

Are there any restricted areas in the Maldives to fly drones?

There’s no set list of places or a map regarding the areas where you can or cannot fly a drone. So it’s always advisable to get a permit from the place where you want to fly your drone and gather all the information regarding their rules and regulation to avoid fines or any other inconvenience.

Usually, the other tourists are not comfortable with a piece of metal hovering above their heads while they are trying to relax on an island with their family so most islands have specifically designated areas for drones. This helps the management to minimize the impact on the other people trying to enjoy their time while facilitating the ones flying drones.

Are there any model restrictions for drones to be flown in the Maldives?

No. There are no such requirements or restrictions on any model or type of drone in the Maldives. As far as the drone is in appropriate condition and you have the required permits, you can fly your drone.

Do I need any special permit to fly drones near airports or seaports in the Maldives?

Yes. If you want to fly a drone near airports or seaports, then you have to submit special notices to Air Missions(NOTAMs), pilots, and air traffic control in advance. This notice contains your date and time of flight and the purposes for which you want to fly your drone in that area.

The prior approved notice is required to keep the pilots and air traffic controls informed about the third-party activity in their airspace to avoid any sort of accident or interruption in their operations.

From where will I get NOTAMs?

Once your application for the notice is approved, Maldives Civil Aviation Authority (MCCA) will issue you NOTAMs.

Is there any Differentiation on the basis of categories?

Unlike most countries, Maldives does not differentiate between commercial and recreational drones.

Contact information

If you would like to reach out with an inquiry here is their information

Website: https://www.caa.gov.mv/

Phone: +960 3324983

Hi, I'm Paul.
A big drone enthusiast, reviewing, comparing and writing about drones since 2015. I'm all about helping people enjoy and even monetize their hobby.

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paul posea
Paul Posea
Hi, I'm a long-time drone reviewer and I hope my articles and comparisons on this site as well as Dronesgator's youtube channel are of as much help as possible.
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