EU-wide drone regulation: Register as an operator

EU-wide drone regulation: Register as an operator

Since the end of 2020, most drone operators in Europe have to register due to the new EU regulation. In this article, you will find out all the important information that is known about the registration obligation so far.

There are two types of registration in Europe:

  1. Registration of the UAV operator
  2. Registration of the drone

Since only drones that fall into the Certified Category need to be registered, only the registration as a drone operator is relevant for most pilots.

Registration as a drone operator

Registration is required if you want to fly in the Open Category and your aircraft meets at least one of the two conditions:

  • Drone weighs 250 grams or more or achieves kinetic energy of more than 80 joules when hitting a human being.
  • Drone is equipped with a sensor to collect personal data (e.g. camera) and does not comply with the EU Toy Directive.

Therefore, all owners of a camera drone will have to register. In addition, registration is mandatory for pilots who want to fly a drone in the Specific category.

Where does one register as a drone operator?

For registration, each member state of the European Union must create an (online) platform in which operators can register. The platforms should enable the exchange of information within the EU.

You must register in the system of the country in which you have your residence. For legal entities (especially companies), the country with the main place of business is responsible for registration. Multiple registrations in different EU countries are not possible.

Information for non-EU residents: The rules for you are quite similar to those for residents. You will have to register with the Civil Aviation Authority of the first EU country you want to use your drone in. You will then be given a registration number, which you should stick to each of your drones and upload it in the remote identification system. This registration number will be valid in all other member states.

When registering, the following information must be provided:

Natural persons:

Legal entities:

  • Name
  • Identification number
  • Address
  • E-mail address and telephone number
  • Number of the insurance policy, if applicable.
  • Confirmation of sufficient competence level of the remote pilots
  • Operating permits, LUC and acknowledgments of receipt for declarations in the Specific category

After completing your registration you will be assigned a unique registration number. This number must be affixed to all aircraft and loaded into a remote identification system, if available.

Registering a drone in the Certified category

Registration of the drone is only required if the drone is to be used in the Certified category. To register the drone, you must submit the following information to the authorities:

  • Manufacturer and model name
  • Serial number of the drone
  • Name of the operator
  • Address, telephone number, and e-mail address

After receiving the information, the competent authority then registers the certified drone.

You can find links to the registration platforms in our articles about drone laws in the countries.

Are there any questions left unanswered? Then write to us in the comments and we will try to help you as much as possible.

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Discussions

  • Tobias | 30.11.2020

    If I have obtained (after passing official exam) drone operator license in one EU country but my main place of business/ residence is now in another EU country, which country should I register as drone operator? Isn’t it automatically done already in the country of the authority that gave me the license? If I cannot register twice…, it is a bit confusing.

    • Drone Traveller Team | 04.12.2020

      Hi Tobias,
      Be aware that with the new EU-wide regulations, registration and license are two different things and are not done automatically. You only need to register once, online, usually in your country of residence. You do not have to take an exam for that. For certain types of drones and maneuvers, however, you will also need a qualification certificate. It is possible to take the exam to obtain such a certificate in a country you do not reside in.

  • Tanay | 06.01.2021

    Hi

    Thank you for your helpful article.

    I am a resident of Germany. Unfortunately I have been unable to find a website for drone operator registration. I came across the following website but it seems like this will be replaced: https://www.dfs.de/dfs_homepage/en/Drone%20flight/Rules%20and%20regulations/DFS%20drone%20app/

    Would you happen to know where an operator in Germany can register?

    Thanks in advance
    Tanay

  • Stefanos | 10.01.2021

    good morning , i have the UK A1/A3 Flyer ID registration and i like to know if this is valid in EU.

    • Drone Traveller Team | 16.01.2021

      Hi Stefanos,
      the new UK registration was supposed to be recognized by the other EU countries, but because of Brexit, it could take some time until this is 100 percent clear. There is an official website that will be updated with new info: https://info.caa.co.uk/uk-eu-transition/drones/ Until there is clarity, we recommend contacting the CAA of the country you want to fly your drone in just to be safe.

  • Kevin | 06.03.2021

    The Spanish registration system does not include British as a nationality in the drop down box. Old and bearded or Eel are in there but not British (or variants). I’m keen to use my drone when on holiday so I need to register my drone in Spain. I already have the CAA and EASA certification. Any thoughts?

    • Drone Traveller Team | 13.03.2021

      Hi Kevin,
      This is indeed peculiar and we can only speculate why this might be. We recommend asking the CAA directly.

  • Michael | 10.05.2021

    Hi,
    I am planing to visit Malta in August and I am planning to take a DJI Mini 2 which is less than 250g I have the UK A2 Certificate which allow to fly around almost everywhere. I know that due to Brexit, any registration is not valid in EU, I have looked the Civil Aviation in Malta however there is no or little nformation what to do if I want to take the drone. Could you please advise?

  • Tony Bryan | 18.05.2021

    I am Uk based and have a gvc and a2coc, I fly a mm2 and m2z. Is it a case of getting an operator id, or do I need to redo my a2coc and gvc for the eu

  • Juan García | 27.07.2021

    Where is the link to register my drone open class for Italy

    • Drone Traveller Team | 01.08.2021

      Hi Juan,
      We have included the link to the Italian platform in our article on Italy: https://drone-traveller.com/drone-laws-italy/
      A small note: According to the EU regulation, you do not register your drone but you register yourself as an operator.

  • Avdo | 29.07.2021

    Hi guys,

    I live in Australia and am currently vising friends and family in the Netherlands but will be travelling around Europe. I need to pass the exam for A1/A3, but I cannot obtain a licence in the Netherlands because I must be registered as a resident. Would it be possible to register it in another EU country?

  • Avdaga | 31.07.2021

    I am visiting the Netherlands from overseas, but it appears that you need to be a resident to register your drone and get a licence. This doesn’t see in line with what EASA’s directions. Should I register it in another EU country, and where would be best?

    • Drone Traveller Team | 01.08.2021

      Hi Avdaga,
      Normally, the rules state that foreign operators should register in the first EU country they visit. But if this is not possible, we can’t see why you shouldn’t be able to register in another country. We recommend using the registration platform of a country where you understand the language, that will make it easier. The license can also be obtained anywhere.

  • Vladislavs | 05.08.2021

    Hi.I registred my Mavic Mini as ir operator in uk and want travel trough Italy, now i see its not valid in Europe. Tried to find where to registred in Europe, but can not find where it is.So ,can i get my drone trough Italy aeroport with drone in my bag without problem?

    • Drone Traveller Team | 12.08.2021

      Hi Vladislavs,
      As we have written above, you will have to register in the first EU country you want to use your drone in. It seems like you want to travel to Italy so you can use the Italian registration platform called D-Flight: https://www.d-flight.it/web-app/
      Please also have a look at our article on the drone rules in Italy which contains information specific to the country: https://drone-traveller.com/drone-laws-italy/

  • geoff | 07.08.2021

    Hi , I’ve registered my drone and done the online test in the United Kingdom and was wanting to take my drone to kefilonia in Greece and was wondering if I need to anything extra or will my uk licence do.

    • Drone Traveller Team | 12.08.2021

      Hi Geoff,
      Due to Brexit, the UK certifications are not easily transferable and according to EASA, the recognition process has not yet started, see here: https://www.easa.europa.eu/the-agency/faqs/brexit#category-aircraft-operations
      This means you will have to register again in an EU country (must be the first one you visit) and get an EU license for A1/A3 or A2 depending on your drone and the areas you want to fly in. You can take the test to get a license in any EU country and we recommend that you choose one where you understand the language as this will make it much easier.

  • Danny | 02.09.2021

    Hi. I will be heading to Greece, Portugal and Italy, and would like to bring and fly my Mavic Air 2 in these countries.

    Do you have the platforms for drone operator registration (for non-EU tourists) in these 3 countries?

    • Drone Traveller Team | 09.09.2021

      Hi Danny,
      You only have to register in the first country you visit, your registration will be valid in all of the other countries. We have included the links to the registration platforms in our respective country articles, see Greece for example here: https://drone-traveller.com/drone-laws-greece/

  • Artem | 29.09.2021

    I am registered in Italy and I came to Portugal for vacation. (Mavic Air 2, with A2 certificate)
    – Do I need some authorisation to be able to fly in Portugal, and where I have to request it?

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