Drone regulations in Bhutan

Flying Drones in Bhutan

Here are the rules for operating drones in Bhutan.

In Bhutan, all drones must be approved before operation at the Bhutan Civil Aviation Authority (BCAA) at Paro International Airport. However, the approval is granted only to governmental organizations. Thus it is not allowed to operate drones as a traveler. If you can somehow get the permission, the following rules apply.

Overview: Drone rules in B

Recreational use of drones allowed? Yes, after registration or approval
Commercial use of drones permitted? Yes, after registration or approval
Maximum Altitude:300 in uncontrolled airspace.
Is drone insurance mandatory? Yes, for private and commercial drone flights. Learn more about drone insurance here.
Does the drone need a badge?Unknown.
Drone labels can be ordered here
Is a registration necessary? Yes.
Keep distance to airports
Respect the privacy of other people

Further information for drone pilots in Bhutan

Currently, there seems to be no distinction between private and commercial flight maneuvers. Bhutan only allows the operation of drones within the line of sight.

In Bhutan, your drone cannot weigh more than 6 kilograms and is not allowed to climb higher than 90 meters (300 feet) above ground or the water surface.

You must guarantee a distance of 5 kilometers (3 miles) to airports at any time.

There is also a flight ban above any yellow roofs (religious buildings).

We have researched the listed drone regulations for Bhutan to the best of our knowledge. We can not guarantee the correctness of the information. If you want to be on the safe side, please contact the competent aviation authority. Alternatively, you can also ask the embassy in your country for further information about the regulations. Please leave us a comment when you receive news and/or gain experience with your copter in Bhutan!

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About the author

Since January 2015, we travel around the world. In our backpack we carry a camera drone which we use to capture the best places from a bird’s perspective. First we travelled with a DJI Phantom 2. But now we use several drones like the DJI Phantom 4 Pro+ or the DJI Mini 3 Pro. On our blog we share the best tips for you about travelling with a drone. If you have questions about this article or new information, don’t hesitate to leave us a comment!


  • Michal | 27.08.2017

    Hey, the info is not correct. While the rules and regulation don’t state it openly, BCAA will not allow tourists to operate drones in Bhutan. Permits are only issued for government agencies, contractors and farm/forest land owners (for monitoring purposes). We investigated directly with BCAA on July 2017. See details here https://www.firefoxtours.com/blog/can-you-operate-drone-bhutan

    • Francis Markert | 26.10.2017

      Hi Michal, thank you for the update! It’s a pity.

  • Jean Hessen | 12.01.2018

    According to the flowing document (update Sept 2017) it looks like you have to be a citizen of Bhutan in order to operate a drone in the country.

  • Jill Crosher | 22.12.2018

    Just back from Bhutan. Delighted drones effectively not allowed. Bhutan is dedicated to conservation and protection of its heritage. Here on the coast of Ireland we are plagued by drones in seabird colonies in the breeding season and at our many beauty spots.

    • Francis Markert | 07.01.2019

      Thank you for keeping us updated!

  • Dawa Norbu Sherpa | 14.04.2023

    Hello sir and Madam can i register for drone in Bhutan…just for YouTube vlogs

  • Sao | 24.04.2023

    any issue to bring in my mini 3 pro into Bhutan?I know all drone are not allowed totally however my trip is start fr Bhutan and ended in Northern India.
    many thanks

  • Dawa Norbu Sherpa | 14.05.2023

    Hello sir/madam can i register for drone in Bhutan for YouTube vlogging.

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