Drone guideline Japan.
Welcome to Japan where you can enjoy the scenic landscape throughout seasons.
We have many visitors from oversea capturinng beautifull sights on their videotapes from air by flyling drone.
You do not need license to fly drone.but…
Japan is one of the privileged countries that you do not need license to fly drone in public.
For example, in U.S. you need registration in advance and flying drone is prohibited in India.
HOWEVER, there are rules and restrictions you need to follow before flyling the drone in Japan.
Attached youtube news is the unfortunate example that a visitor flew drone above the crowded area and caused a trouble. It was on air all over the news media.
Japan have rules and restrictions under two laws, which are The Civil Aeronautics Law and Radio Act.
Here are the rules and restrictions for operating drone under the Civil Aeronautics Law in Japan.
Prohibited Airspace for Flight
Any person who intends to operate a UA/Drone in the following airspaces is required to obtain permission from the Minister of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism.
(A) Airspace around airports. (airspaces above approach surface, horizontal surface, transitional surface, extended approach surface, conical surface and outer horizontal surface.)
(B) Airspace above 150m above ground level.
(C) Above Densely Inhabited Districts (DID), which are defined and published by the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications.
※For the further details of (B) and (C), please refer
Please click “OK”,you can confirm the areas of (B) and (C).
Green area : (B) Airspace around airports
Red area : (C) Densely Inhabited Districts (DID)
with reference to
Any person who intends to operate a UA/Drone is required to follow the operational conditions listed below, unless approved by the Minister of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism.
(i) Operation of UAs/Drone in the daytime.
(ii) Operation of UAs/Drone within Visual Line of Sight (VLOS).
(iii) Maintenance of 30m operating distance between UAs/Drone and persons or properties on the ground/ water surface.
(iv) Do not operate UAs/Drone over event sites where many people gather.
(v) Do not transport hazardous materials such as explosives by UA/Drone.
(vi) Do not drop any objects from UAs/Drone.
Operation rules and restrictions under Radio Act law in Japan.
When you operate and monitor drone, you need radio wave. Under the Radio Act law in Japan, sending and receiving radio wave by using any electrical equipment require approval from the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications (MIC)
However, under a certain circumstance, there is a special exemption that acquiring apprval is unnecessary. That is Mark of Conformity. Drone with Mark of Conformity can be operated without approval.
Please recheck your drone. If it does not have this mark, you might be at risk of violating law by operationg drone in Japan
Unfortunately, what we hear on news about drone is rather negative case, and a certain number of people have perception that drone is dangerous. Operating drone at tourist spots can draw peoples attention, so please follow these rules and restrictions to enjoy your trip in Japan and avoid unnecessary troubles.
The best short cut to enjoy operating drone in Japan is to have a Japanese assistant.
If you thought “operating drone in Japan is so complicated,” I recommend you to hire Japanese drone pilot as an assistant. We have drone community in SNS. Please send a message to them.
Of course, you can always count on drone media like us.