Drone Laws in Italy

Agencies Responsible for regulating drones in the Italian Republic (Italy)

Italian Civil Aviation Authority (ENAC)

European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA)

Updated July 14, 2022


UAS Laws – General rules for flying drones in Italy

The Italian agency responsible for drone safety, ENAC, has provided several internet-accessible details on flying for fun or work. The highlights are enumerated below. For more details, go to the link above.

Flying and operating drones in Italy is subject to European Union Regulation 2019/947. The Italian Civil Aviation Authority (ENAC) supervises and implements the Regulation in Italy. This reform aims to create a truly harmonized drone market in Europe with the highest level of safety. In practice, it means that once a drone Οperator has received authorization from its state of registry, they will be allowed to circulate in the European Union freely. According to the level of risk involved, this new legal framework will introduce three categories of drone operations: Open, Specific and Certified

Drone operations are to be conducted according to the Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) 2019/945 and Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2019/947 (as amended).

Are drones allowed in Italy?

According to ENAC, drones are allowed in Italy, subject to ENAC and EASA regulations. Read on for details.

Here are the most important rules to know for flying a drone in Italy:

Drone operators must register all drones in Italy. Following registration, you must adhere to the following rules.

  • Drones may fly up to 50 meters (170 feet) above ground or sea level in the Open category and up to 120 meters (400 feet) in the Specific category. (The ENAC may grant exemptions to operators of specific category drones.) 
  • Direct visual contact with the drone is required, and the operating distance should not exceed 500 meters. 
  • Avoid flying too close to residential areas or populated areas. 
  • Maintain a safety buffer zone of one kilometer around residential areas. 
  • Unless the owner/person consents, a safety distance of 500 meters from isolated buildings, people, vehicles, animals, and structures is required. 
  • Avoid flying near airports and heliports. Stay A minimum of eight (8) kilometers away from airports and three (3) kilometers from heliports for safety. 
  • At no time is it permissible to fly a drone at night. 
  • There shall be no flying over, within, or near military installations, public utility installations, archaeological sites, or public or private facilities.

Open Category

Given the low level of risk, neither prior authorization by the competent authority nor a declaration by the drone operator is required. The drone’s total takeoff mass must be less than 25kg, and it must be operated within a visual line of sight at a maximum altitude of 120m.

Specific Category

Considering the moderate level of risk involved, flights in this category require authorization before the operation. The permission is given considering the mitigation measures identified in an operational risk assessment, except in specific standard scenarios where an operator declaration is sufficient.

Certified Category

Given the inherent dangers, certification of the drone and a licensed remote pilot are required. If your drone is capable of carrying people, you fall under the Certified category!

EASA Summary of Drone Flight Operation Requirements

EASA Summary Table of Drone Flight Operation Requirements
EASA Summary Table of Drone Flight Operation Requirements

Note for foreign operators

Operator Registration (Non-EU Residents)

  • If you are coming from a non-EU country and this is the first time you will fly your drone in an EU country, you MUST register as an Operator.
  • Upon registration, you will receive a unique Operator Registration number which you MUST attach to your drone. If you have several drones, the same number must be attached to all of them.
  • You are not allowed to fly in NO FLY ZONES, and you must keep aways a minimum of 8km distance away from airports/heliports.
  • If you already conducted operations in another EU country before going to Italy, you must not register again. You always register to the first non-EU country you have conducted flights

Remote Pilot Certificate (Non-EU Residents)

  • If you want to fly your drone in Itally and live in a non-EU country, you must hold a Remote Pilot Certificate issued from an EU country.
  • You can get the A1/A3 Certificate by registering with the online Remote Pilot School.
  • The online training and exam are required for those who want to fly a drone in the ‘Open’ category in subcategories A1/A3.
  • The pass mark is 75%, and you have 3 tries in total to pass.
  • Once you pass your exam, you will receive your remote pilot certificate. Its validity will be 5 years.
  • You must have your Remote Pilot Certificate in your possession whenever you plan to perform drone operations in Italy and present it when asked by the authorities

How to register as a drone pilot or operator in Italy?

According to European Regulation (EU) 2019/947, registration is mandatory for UAS operators (not for UAS themselves).

The UAS Pilot, also known as the Remote Pilot (RP), is the person physically behind the UAS flight controls. They are fully responsible for the safety of the flight throughout operations.

The UAS Operator is the person or company who oversees operations and gives flight instructions. This person or legal entity bears all responsibility for the operations of the drone (s) on their behalf. Very often, in the OPEN category and as an individual, the Pilot and the Operator are the same person.

Who should register?

As part of the OPEN category, registration is compulsory for operators:

  • UAS that have a mass of 250 g or more; 
  • UAS that have a mass of less than 250 g but: 
    • are able to operate at speeds greater than 90km / h 
    • are equipped with a camera or a microphone, if these UAS are NOT toys * 

* A UAS is a toy when a manufacturer intends it for children under the age of 14 and meets the minimum safety criteria required to be so named. Compliance with these standards naturally limits the capabilities of the UAS (size, weight, non-dangerous spare parts, no powerful motor, etc.): see Directive 2009/48 / EC of 18 June 2009 on the safety of toys

Under the SPECIFIC category, registration is compulsory for all operators.

Natural persons can only register in the country where they reside.

Legal persons must register in the country where their principal place of business is located.

Registration can only be done in one Member State at a time.

How do you register in Italy for drone operations?

In Italy, all drone pilots must register as an operator in the ENAC approved D-Flight portal.

Recreational pilots with drones weighing less than 250 grams are exempt. However, the portal specifies that all drones with an HD camera or other equipment that could potentially invade the privacy of others must be registered, including those weighing less than 250 grams. 

This UAS operator registration number is valid for one year and must therefore be renewed periodically following the same procedure. The operator therefore always uses the same number unless the latter is permanently deregistered from the register.


Notes for recreational drone pilots flying for fun in Italy

Private drone flying is allowed in Italy. You must follow the rules listed below:

  • Special permission is not necessary.
  • Maximum Height
  • 70m / 229ft
    • 70m / 229ft: special permission required
  • The drone needs to remain in sight always (line-of-sight)
  • Maximum Take-Off Weight
  • < 25kg / 55lbs without special permission
    • 25kg / 55lbs special permission required
  • Flying a drone in Italy is allowed during the daytime only.
  • Night-time flights need special approval.
  • Labeling requirements are not required.
  • Drone liability insurance is always required.
  • Maintain a frequency of 2.5GHz or 5.8 GHz & max 100Mw
  • Keep off people, buildings, sporting events, and generally private property.

Notes for operating Commercial Drone Services in Italy

Commercial drone flying is allowed in Italy. You must follow the rules listed below:

  • Special permission is not necessary.
  • Maximum Height
  • 100m / 328ft
    • 100m / 328ft special permission required
  • The drone needs to remain in sight always (line-of-sight)
  • Maximum Take-Off Weight
  • < 5kg / 11lbs without special permission
    • 5kg / 11lbs special permission required
  • License is required (starting October 2017)
  • Flying a drone in Italy is allowed during the daytime only.
  • Night-time flights need special approval.
  • Labeling requirements are not required.
  • Drone liability insurance is always required.
  • FPV frequency should be 2.4 GHz to 5.8 GHz, at 100 mW.

Useful published information on flying drones in Italy

Here is a sample of what you might expect if you follow the drone laws and fly in Italy…

NOTE: Small Unmanned Aerial Systems (SUAS), Small UAS, Remote Piloted Aerial Systems (RPAS), unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), Unmanned Aerial System (UAS), and drone are interchangeable terms unless specified. Model aircraft, toy aircraft, Remote controlled aircraft, and RC aircraft may be covered by the same regulations unless specified.


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IMPORTANT NOTE

The content on this site (The latest Drone Laws/Drone Regulations) is collated by volunteers from public general information. This material is not presented as legal advice of any kind, and we cannot guarantee that the information is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. Do not substitute the information you find here for legal advice from a licensed attorney who is authorized to practice in the jurisdiction. When in doubt, contact the local aviation authority responsible for drone safety, utilize a licensed drone service operator, and/or consult a qualified attorney.

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46 thoughts on “Drone Laws in Italy”

  1. Hi,

    I was looking through the d-flight website and I still do not understand some of the rules. I’ll be staying close to Budoni next week and while the DJI map shows no flight limitations, d-flight says something like: “open 45m” but then in details it says that flight under the open category is prohibited. I read through the document cited there but I could not find any mention of the open category. The rule is related to the airport and helipad proximity but since the distance is I think around 10-15km you can fly up to 45m. How should I understand the part about prohibition for the open category? It seems like contradictory information.
    Secondly, do I understand it correctly that as an EU resident and registered operator with A1/A3 and A2 category exams passed, I do not need to do anything before flying in Italy? Or do I still need to register somewhere?

    I would really appreciate your reply.

    Reply
  2. Hi! I have read the whole article and tried to look up the rules on other websites but I am still not 100% sure about all the rules.
    I am a EU resident, registered as an operator and passed the A1/A3 and A2 courses.
    As I understand it, that should be enough to fly a Mavic Air2 drone in Italy, right? Or do I need to register in Italy as well for any reason?

    My second question is related to the D-Flight portal maps vs DJI maps. In DJI app, I can see safety zones around airport etc. but when I checked Sardinia, specifically Porto Ottiolu, it seems that the zones around the airport and a Helipad extend way more than mentioned 5 or 8 km. I click the specific zone and get following info:

    “Open max height 45m
    The geographical area is defined starting from a minimum height of 45 meters above the ground AS operations of the Open category are prohibited within the geographical area. Within the geographical area, operations are permitted for AS of the specific or certified category, as reported in the ATM-09 circular, paragraphs 7, 8 and 9.”

    How should I understand this? DJI app says it is ok to fly there, the d-flight says open max height 45m but then that operations of the Open category are prohibited.

    I would really appreciate any response.

    Reply
    • You are qualified to operate in Italy as an EU operator.
      The D-flight maps are typically more precise and up to date than DJI, so we recommend you use those.

      Reply
      • Hi Merlin,

        Thank you so much for your reply. I am sorry about my second comment. I posted it a moment ago because my first one was not visible until I posted the second one.

        Could you please comment on the fact that d-flight says Open max height 45m but then that operation under open is prohibited? Which one is it? It seems to be the same all over Sardinia.

        Reply
        • Kristofer, the “open category” means that you can operate without authorization or prior registration. The portal indicates that flights can be operated at max 45m but will require prior authorization.

          Reply
  3. Hello,
    I have a DJI mini 2 weighing less than 250g. I got my Remote Pilote Certificate from Ireland, so based on what I read this is valid in Italy. I will register in the D-Flight portal and after that, based on what I can read, I am legally allowed to fly in Italy. Is this correct?
    However, I read that flying in urban areas is not allowed in Italy. But if I read the EASA summary of Drone Flight Operations Requirements table above, it seems that with a <250g drone I am actually allowed to fly in urban areas. Is this true?

    I am hope you could confirm that I am understanding this correctly. Thank you very much in advance and best regards,
    Cas.

    Reply
    • According to EASA you can fly in urban areas unless there are specific regulations against doing so. Use the maps on the d-flight portal to check for restrictions

      Reply
  4. Hi Merlin,

    I have a DJI mini 3 (<250g with a cam). I have 2 questions.

    1) On the registration, what is the APR? It's the Serial nr: frame number: ENAC term: APR. I already provided by flight control and ground control numbers.
    2) Once registered through the D-flight portal, should I be good to go? I have not registered my drone anywhere else (in the US) or had any training on how to fly.

    Thanks in advance.

    Reply
    • You should be able to search for the drone type and register that way.
      Once you are registered, you are good to go.

      Reply
  5. Hi.
    I am planning to visit Sardinia in September and i have EASA UAS operator number. I am trying to get access to d-flight restriciton zone map, but i cannot register because of taxpayer number which is invalid. I live in Ireland, but i am from Poland. I am a recreational pilot flying Mini 3. Is there any way to get access to map and restriciton zones ?

    Reply
    • The best options in Italy are the D-flight portal, but there may be other web apps available with this information. maybe someone in the community can point you to alternatives.

      Reply
  6. Can you provide a link to A1/A3 Certificate by registering with the online Remote Pilot School? there are so many online hard to see what is a scam. Also the registration for D-Flight portal doesn’t work. The website is a disaster and there’s no email for contacting them. Any tips? I can’t even get the registration page to open. It just opens a blank white page that says “invalid answer” from any browser or computer. Super frustrated!

    Reply
    • Selena, we did not have a problem with the link. Can you check again please?

      On the school recommendations, perhaps someone in the community can provide some advice

      Reply
  7. I will be visiting Italy in September 2022, I am from the US, I have done the following below, am I missing anything to fly my DJI Mini 3 Pro for recreational purposes. Also, would you provide any advice when attempting to fly recreationally…. in example do I need to contact the local authority?

    – I have a TRUST Certificate
    – I have registered my drone with the FAADroneZone (labeled on the drone)
    – I have my A1-A3 Open Sub Category License
    – I have registered as an Operator in the D-Flight Portal (labeled on the drone)

    Thank you in advance.

    Reply
  8. Can we fly a DJI Inspire 2 drone in Italy? It seems that it doesn’t have the required Electronic Identification Device and DJI has no update for it.

    Reply
  9. Hi there

    I’m conducting some commercial operations under the Specific Category in Italy later this year. I have a EASA permission for the Specific Category from another EU member state. I have registered on the d-flight portal, I am now trying to register on the EASA website as I am aware that I need to do this if wanting to fly in Specific. I can’t get passed the page asking for “Codice Fiscale”. Do you have any advice, and have I gone through the correct process? Thanks

    Reply
    • I am a uk citizen looking to fly my mini 3 pro in venice italy on holiday.
      I am registered and have operator id on my drone. Is there any other requirements i need?

      Reply
      • Is someone from the UK classed as Non-EU Resident and therefore would need to complete the Operator Registration and Remote Pilot Certificate (even if they have completed this in the UK)? Thanks

        Reply
  10. hi there! I am an american and lover of all things ancient rome and I will be visiting spain, rome, and turkey to visit all the ancient roman artifacts and buildings in the near future. I already fly drones in the US and I would really really love to be able to film Marcus Aurelius’ column or even to get some footage of the Pantheon.

    I see some of the requisites for being able to fly drones as an EU citizen. How would I find out more information as an american? We also have licensing in the US to fly drones, perhaps that might be honored in the EU some way? And if I am mistaken that I wouldn’t be able to film something like Marcus Aurelius’ column because it is an ancient artifact, is there a way I can get permitting to do that or is it just completely impossible?

    Reply
    • Dave, the major historical sites are quite rigorous in limiting hobbyist drone flights as you can imagine the danger they pose to tourist groups, as well as the monuments. You should check to make sure the location you are interested isn’t in a no fly zone.

      It may be possible if the drone you are using is below 250g weight which does not need to be registered, however we would contact the regulator to get the best advice on this situation.

      As a non-EU operator, you will need to register to fly your drone in Italy. Follow the link provided above.

      Let us know what your experience was like.

      Reply
    • Chris, if you properly fill in your birth location as outside Italy, try using zeros or another number of the TIN. You should be able to get to the next section and fill in those fields before you create an account.

      Reply
  11. It’s soo complicated, so many conflicting websites and info but this seems to make or have some sense 🙂

    I am a licensed commercial drone op in Australia, I have 20 million dollar liability world wide insurance and fly Mavic 3 cine, under 2kg, so, can I register my drone and fly, purely recreational in the appropriate areas and staying with in the confines of the law? Or do I need to get an A3 licence, remembering I’m not flying for commercial purposes in italy ..!

    Thank you in advanced

    Reply
    • Michael, you should be able to fly recreationally in Italy without the A3 license. But you must register as an operator, and you must get the remote pilot certificate (it is possible that Italy will accept your Australian certification, but you will have to check with the regulator).

      Reply
      • Thank you for your reply, appreciate the info and yes, you would imagine it would be accepted as we go through a 5 day theory and practice sessions on top of the 3k cost, your almost a helicopter pilot by the time you finish lol

        Anyway, I will check it out but you sadly never get responses from Italian side but will keep persisting or do the A3 online course …thank you non the less 👉🏼🙏🏼

        Reply
  12. Hello,
    Going to Italy June 2022. Wanting to fly my drone for recreation.

    I have a D-flight base subscription, registered myself as a UAS operator for my Mavic Mini. Provided ID and received my EASA ID.

    I have read conflicting info about labeling the drone.
    See below:
    Notes for recreational drone pilots flying for fun in Italy
    Private drone flying is allowed in Italy. You must follow the rules listed below:

    Special permission is not necessary.
    Maximum Height
    70m / 229ft
    70m / 229ft: special permission required
    The drone needs to remain in sight always (line-of-sight)
    Maximum Take-Off Weight
    < 25kg / 55lbs without special permission
    25kg / 55lbs special permission required
    Flying a drone in Italy is allowed during the daytime only.
    Night-time flights need special approval.
    *****Labeling requirements are not required*******
    Drone liability insurance is always required.
    Maintain a frequency of 2.5GHz or 5.8 GHz & max 100Mw
    Keep off people, buildings, sporting events, and generally private property.

    Then here I read this:
    Note for foreign operators
    Operator Registration (Non-EU Residents)
    *****If you are coming from a non-EU country and this is the first time you will fly your drone in an EU country, you MUST register as an Operator.
    Upon registration, you will receive a unique Operator Registration number which you MUST attach to your drone. If you have several drones, the same number must be attached to all of them.******
    You are not allowed to fly in NO FLY ZONES, and you must keep aways a minimum of 8km distance away from airports/heliports.
    If you already conducted operations in another EU country before going to Italy, you must not register again. You always register to the first non-EU country you have conducted flights
    As stated the drone is registered.

    Do I need to label my drone and/or controller?
    If so with what number?
    EASA ID?
    OPERATORS ID?
    I AM UNDER THE IMPRESSION THAT I AM TO KEEP MY EASA ID PRIVATE.
    Any help with this is much appreciated!!

    Reply
  13. I’m a portuguese registered drone operator and i’m carrying my DJI mini 2 to Italy in May to fly in A1 Open Category.
    I’ve registered in D-Flight app and paid the 6€ for the basic user. Then i tried to register my drone (since it’s mandatory(?)) but it wouldn’t let me since i didn’t have the operator register there. I introduced my personal info and the portal has created a new Operator code for me… that wasn’t what i had in mind…. yet i’ve registred the drone first and then asked for that ITA***** code to be deleted since i have my POR*** code already.
    All the info concerning tourist always refers to non-EU people. What do i need to do to fly legally in Italy with my DJI mini 2?

    Reply
    • Rui, our understanding is that your EU operator code and registration will be valid in Italy (or all EASA jurisdictions).

      Reply
      • None of the US insurance policies extend to Europe and I cannot find a way to buy European or Italian insurance without being an EU/Italian resident. If someone creates an online company to offer cheap drone insurance, could get rich quick!

        Reply
  14. I will visit Italy this year, and would like to fly drone for recreational purpose. My questions are:

    1: I already sent application to register as UAS operator in D-flight website.

    2: Do I also need to register my drone?

    3: I passed recreational drone flight test in USA, do I need to take such test for
    flying drone in Italy? if yes, can I get a website to take this test online?

    4: Must I need to get liability insurance to fly drone in Italy? Some website says
    that this insurance is not compulsory.

    Thank you for letting me know

    Reply
    • 2. Operators are required to be registered, not drones.
      3. Yes, please see the section for foreign operator above.
      4. Our understanding is that Liability insurance is always required.

      When in doubt, please contact the regulator directly using the links provided above.

      Reply
      • Will it be correct to say that at least until 31-Dec-2022, if the Drone is less 250g, no pilot training or exam is necessary for Category A1 / A3?

        Reply
        • We don’t expect any changes coming in the regulations, but they can occur at any time. Keep checking

          Reply
  15. I’m going to be going to Italy in May and I do plan on bringing my drone, after registering it and taking the drone course to use it recreationaly, I’m wondering if there a special map that shows you where you can fly it along with absolute no fly zones. thanks

    Reply
    • David:
      As part of the OPEN category, registration is compulsory for operators if:
      1. UAS that have a mass of 250 g or more;
      2. UAS that have a mass of less than 250 g but are able to operate at speeds greater than 90km, or are equipped with a camera or a microphone, if these UAS are NOT toys
      * A UAS is a toy when a manufacturer intends it for children under the age of 14 and meets the minimum safety criteria required to be so named.

      Reply
  16. I will be visiting Italy in May. I am from the US and my drone is less than 250 grams. I fly it for recreation only. What do I need to do to fly this drone legally in Italy?

    Reply
    • Donald, the EU rules, applicable in Italy, requires the operator to register. The drone under 250 grams does not have to be registered unless it has a camera.

      Reply

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