Drone regulations in China
China, as the home country of DJI, is very liberal in dealing with drones. However, there are a few things you need to consider if you want to fly a multicopter in China. In this post you will learn the most important rules.
Flying a drone is allowed in China. In large metropolitan areas or near government buildings or in politically troubled areas, we would, however, exercise particular caution and prefer to forego one or the other aerial image.
Please note that Hong Kong and Macao regulate the operation of drones differently:
Registration of drones in China
Registration of drones with a take-off mass of more than 250 grams has been required since June 2017. It seems like foreign pilots do not have to register (exception: DJI drones), but we recommend that you check with the Civil Aviation Authority (CAAC) for any changes before traveling to China.
A special case are drones from DJI. As soon as you are in China, according to our information, a message appears asking for registration, regardless of your country of origin. So DJI pilots can’t avoid registering.
You can register online here. To do this, simply follow the instructions, which are in Chinese. If you have no way to translate the pages, this blog post has some very helpful tips on how to fill them out.
Important: You need a Chinese phone number to register. That should not be a problem. Either you have Chinese friends who can help you or you buy a Chinese SIM card. Apparently, only larger stores in the country sell them to tourists.
Another note: You may have to enter an email address in the drone portal. Note that Gmail is blocked in China. If possible, use another mail service.
Overview: Drone rules in China
Drone labels can be ordered here
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More information for drone pilots in China
In China, drones may be operated up to a weight of 7 kilograms. Additional approval from the CAAC is required for a higher take-off weight and for commercial copter missions. Your drone can fly up to 500 meters away from you.
You can find out about multicopter insurance in our article.
Good to know: no-fly zones in China
Beijing is in a no-fly zone. Multicopters are not allowed to fly on the 6th Ring Road.
Before starting your drone, try to find out about temporary drone bans, for example during celebrations or important events.
Readers of our blog also had the problem that a no-fly zone was set up along the great wall and their copter could not take off. So do not be disappointed if a flight at a well-known sight does not work as planned.
We have researched the listed drone regulations for China 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 Chinese 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 China!