Drone Laws in Kuwait

Agencies Responsible for regulating drones in the State of Kuwait

Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA)

Kuwait Drone Laws


UAS Laws – General rules for flying drones in Kuwait

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

Are drones allowed in Kuwait?

According to DGCA, drone use is allowed in Kuwait, subject to strict DGCA regulations. Read on for more details.

Drones are classified in Kuwait according to their weight and intended use. Separate regulations have been enacted for each category. 

UAV flights are permitted in Kuwait only during fair weather, during the day, and within visual line of sight. 

The maximum distance between the drone and the pilot varies according to category; these values are listed in the table below.

The following safety distances to people and objects apply:

  • Category A1 and A2: 120 meters
  • Category A3, B1, and B2: 50 meters
  • Category C: 100 meters
Kuwait Drone Laws - Summary Table of Drone Categories and regulations
Kuwait Drone Laws – Summary Table of Drone Categories and regulations

How to register a drone in Kuwait?

The operator of a UAS/Drone in categories (A2), (A3), (B1), (B2), and (C) shall register with the Kuwait DGCA or with a service provider designated by Kuwait DGCA and display registration or membership marks on all the UAS/Drone they operate. 

  1. The registration process starts with an application to Kuwait DGCA through the Kuwait DGCA web Site.
  2. Form no. xxx1 shall be filled by category (A3) operator and stamped by the relevant Insurance Organization. 
  3. Form no. xxx2 shall be filled by category (B) operator and stamped by the relevant Insurance Organization. 
  4. Form no. xxx3 shall be filled by category (C) operator and stamped by the relevant Insurance Organization. 
  5. Insurance Policy
  6. The Insurance Organization will maintain records of all registered UAS/Drones. 
  7. For the advanced sports activity category (A3), the operator shall submit to Kuwait DGCA proof of registration with an approved flying club or equivalent.  
  8. All operation categories shall also apply for a UOC except for Recreational operator categories (A1) and (A2). 

How to apply for a UAS Operator Certificate (UOC) in Kuwait?

To apply for an initial UOC, you must provide Kuwait DGCA with documentation demonstrating how you will comply with the requirements established in this Regulation. This documentation should include a procedure describing how changes not requiring prior approval will be managed and notified to Kuwait DGCA. In addition, the operator must provide the following information to the DGCA:

  1. The official name and business name, address, and mailing address of the applicant. 
  2. The trade license or equivalent evidence of establishment. 
  3. A description of the proposed operation, including the type(s) and number of UAS to be operated.
  4. A description of the management system, including organizational structure.
  5. The name of the Accountable Manager along with their qualifications. 
  6. A copy of the Operations Manual is required by item 8.
  7. A statement that all the documentation sent to Kuwait DGCA has been verified by the applicant and found in compliance with the applicable requirements.
  8. Security clearance for the organization (From MOI).
  9. Registration/Insurance certificate covering all operations. 
  10. Evidence of qualification of all UAS Operating Crews.
  11. Declaration of compliance.

Special Approvals

An operator may be granted a Special Approval by Kuwait DGCA for the following operations after demonstration of its capabilities to ensure safe operations: 

  1. To conduct night VMC operations within VLOS.
  2. To conduct flights with Altitudes above their respective categories. 
  3. To operate a UAS:
    1. with a maximum take-off mass of more than their respective categories; or 
    2. equipped with novel technology.
  4. To conduct operations over: 
    1. congested or populated area
    2. restricted area or controlled airspace; or 
    3. segregated airspace. 
  5. To conduct flights beyond VLOS or beyond their respective categories horizontal distance from the UAS Operating Crew Member or launching site, whichever is greater.
  6. To conduct flights with less than 50 m from a person and a fixed or mobile object.

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

At a minimum, the following limitations shall apply to any operation undertaken by an operator unless otherwise authorized by the Competent Authority: 

  1. Flights shall be limited to daytime. 
  2. Operations shall be limited to Visual Meteorological Conditions (VMC)  conditions. 
  3. Drones should be limited to visible line of sight (VLOS) operations. 
  4. Operations shall be limited to the height above the ground as per their respective categories.
  5. Flights shall be limited to a maximum horizontal distance of 150m from the UAS Operating Crew Member or launching site, whichever is greater.
  6. Operations shall be limited to UAS with a maximum take-off mass as per their respective categories.
  7. Operations in areas authorized by Kuwait DGCA; and 
  8. Any other conditions imposed for the interest of safety or liability by any other agencies. 

Penalties for illegal drone use in Kuwait

Drones are permitted to be flown in Kuwait if permission is obtained from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation. However, you are not allowed to fly them over private property. Offenders face up to three years in prison or a $9,800 fine. 

Notes for Foreign Operators

Foreign drone pilots can also obtain a permit, but aerial images require the DGCA/Ministry of Interior’s security approval first. 

Import of a drone into Kuwait is prohibited without proper approval. 

Kuwait City Airport is infamous for its bag checks to enforce such injunctions. In addition, authorities have the authority to seize your drone if they discover it in your luggage without import approval.


Notes for recreational drone pilots flying for fun in Kuwait

Kuwait’s drone laws make no distinction between recreational and commercial drones, and both are effectively prohibited for security reasons. 

In Kuwait, both recreational and commercial drone use requires a permit.

See general rules above.


Notes for operating Commercial Drone Services in Kuwait

Kuwait’s drone laws make no distinction between recreational and commercial drones, and both are effectively prohibited for security reasons. 

In Kuwait, both recreational and commercial drone use requires a permit.

See general rules above.


Useful published information on flying drones in Kuwait

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

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

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