Drone regulations in Italy
In this article, we explain the legal situation for the use of drones in Italy.
On the Internet, there are many different views on the laws in Italy.
As in most other countries around the world, Italian lawmakers also differentiate between private (model airplanes) and commercial use of drones.
Overview: Drone rules in Italy
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Is registration required at ENAC?
Registration with the ENAC is not required for private drone users, even if the drone has a camera installed. That was the biggest issue in the past. However, the ENAC makes it clear on its website that even model airplanes are allowed to take amateur photos without registration. You can also publish such aerial photographs in private networks on social networks.
Many of our readers have already experienced this interpretation from the local authorities.
Further rules for drone pilots in Italy
If you want to fly in Italy with a drone, the following conditions have to be fulfilled.
There is a limitation in Italy on how far a drone can be away from the pilot. This limit is 200 meters for private pilots and 500 meters for commercial pilots.
In Italy, the maximum flight altitude for private drone operations is 70 meters, for commercial copter flights, it’s 150 meters.
For Italy, a drones liability insurance is necessary, which covers damages of at least 750.000 Euro.
25 kg is the maximum weight limit for private drones.
Radio transmission is possible on the frequencies 2.4 GHz and 5.8 GHz with a maximum of 100 mW.
Safety distances and flight bans
Drones have to keep a distance of at least 5 kilometers to airports.
Private drone pilots may only take off in undeveloped areas and have to maintain sufficient distance to buildings of all kinds.
In Rome, over the Vatican and in Venice (including associated islands), flight bans for drones apply. In other cities, too, I would not start my drone unless I obtained the approval of the local authorities (such as the police or the magistrate).
A reader of our blog knew nothing of it and was arrested on suspicion of terrorism because he flew in Rome with his copter. Newspapers also repeatedly report arrests at major sights such as at the Colosseum or in the Vatican.
Also, it is forbidden to fly on beaches, if there are other people there.
Drones flights are permitted only in daylight. Approvals for night flights can be requested.
Regulations for commercial pilots
The requirements for commercial copter pilots differ according to the type of planned flight maneuvers. For low-risk operations, it is sufficient to submit a statement of compliance with specific requirements. There is a processing fee of 94 €. For drone flights with higher risk, additional requirements (certification, health certificate, training certificate, etc.) must be met. More information can be found on the ENAC website.
Regardless of the risk assessment, any commercially used copter must be registered and marked with the registration number.
We have researched the listed drone regulations for Italy 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 Italy!