Drone regulations in France

Flying drones in France

In this post, you will learn which laws you need to consider as a drone pilot in our neighboring country.

In France, there are regular changes to the drone laws. Drones with a take-off weight of 800 grams or more must now also be registered by private users via the AlphaTango portal.

Rules for the operation of drones in France

Maximum altitude: The maximum permitted drone altitude in France is 150 meters above ground. However, there are numerous restriction areas where you can not ascend or where only a low height is allowed. You can see the corresponding regions with the map linked below. The colored areas have the following meaning:

  • Red: flight ban for drones
  • Pink: maximum altitude of 30 meters
  • Orange: maximum altitude of 50 meters
  • Yellow: maximum altitude of 100 meters

For all other areas, the maximum altitude of 150 meters applies.

Maximum horizontal distance and FPV: Drones may only be used within sight. For FPV flights, a second person must be present to monitor the drone with the naked eye.

Compulsory insurance: In France, the completion of drone insurance is mandatory.

Maximum take-off weight (MTOW): Private multicopters may weigh up to 25 kilograms.

Distance to airports: You must always maintain a sufficient safety distance to airports. To large airports is a minimum distance of 10 kilometers.

Other safety distances: People flying over are not allowed in France.

No Fly Zones: A ban on drones is valid throughout the city of Paris. Even in other cities, you can only fly your drone on private property. Also, drones should not be used near nuclear power plants, military facilities, historical monuments and national parks. You can see the no-fly zones in the map linked below.

Operating hours: You are allowed to use your drone in France only in daylight. Even with appropriate lighting, the use at night is not allowed.

Special regulations: Fully automatic flights (e.g., waypoints, points of interest) are permitted within a radius of 200 meters of the pilot, if the maximum altitude is 50 meters, you can regain control at any time, and the drone weighs no more than 2 kilograms.

Requirements for commercial pilots: Commercial Copter pilots must meet several requirements in France. Among other things, you have to pass a theory and practical tests in French and obtain various permits.

Good to know: The rules listed here also apply to the overseas territory of French Polynesia.

Violations of French law can result in a fine of up to € 75,000 or imprisonment of up to one year.

Frequency regulations: 100 mW for the 2.4 GHz frequency

Helpful Links: Map with flight restrictions, rules private use, rules private use

We have researched the listed drone regulations for France 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 France!

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