Agencies Responsible for regulating drones in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg
Updated July 14, 2022
UAS Laws – General rules for flying drones in Luxembourg
The Luxembourg agency responsible for drone safety, DCA, has provided several internet-accessible details on flying drones for fun or work. The highlights are enumerated below. For more details, go to the link above.
Flying and operating drones in Luxembourg are subject to European Union Regulation 2019/947. The Luxembourg Directorate of Civil Aviation Authority (DCA) supervises and implements the Regulation in Luxembourg. 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 Luxembourg?
Here are the most important rules to know for flying a drone in Luxembourg:
Drone operators must register all drones in Luxembourg. 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 DCA 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.
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.
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.
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
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 Luxembourg, 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 Luxembourg 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 Luxembourg and present it when asked by the authorities
How to register as a drone pilot or operator in Luxembourg?
According to European Regulation (EU) 2019/947, registration is mandatory for UAS operators (not for UAS themselves). It is therefore important to also distinguish between a Pilot and a UAS Operator.
The UAS Pilot, also known as the Remote Pilot (RP), is the person physically behind the UAS flight controls. He is 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 Operators are one and the same person.
Some useful information
You will receive two documents with two separate numbers, namely:
- A Certificate as an Operator via MyGuichet which allows the identification of the operator with a LUXxxxxxxxxxxxxx number (13 characters). By analogy with the automotive sector, the operator number can be likened to a “car license plate” which would be valid for all the operator’s drones.
This process is reserved exclusively for citizens, companies and administrations whose residence / head office is located in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg.
- A Remote Pilot Certificate via the TrainingZone Eurocontrol platform (see Training page) which is proof of training for the pilot himself. This document bears a LUX-RP-xxxxxxxxxxxx number (RP and 12 characters). By analogy with the automotive sector, this number is similar to a driver’s license number.Ce document est accessible à tout citoyen du Grand-Duché de Luxembourg et/ou de l’étranger.
This document is deliverable to any citizen of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg and / or abroad.
Therefore, both documents must be in the possession of the UAS Pilot.
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 Luxembourg for drone operations?
The operator registration procedure is available at MyGuichet .
At the end of the registration procedure, a UAS operator registration number is issued along with the associated secret code. The registration number must be affixed legibly to all UASs that the operator uses.
The complete identification chain (= registration number + secret code) must be encoded in the UAS direct remote identification system operated, if so equipped.
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 Luxembourg
See general rules above.
Notes for operating Commercial Drone Services in Luxembourg
See general rules above.
Useful published information on flying drones in Luxembourg
Here is a sample of what you might expect if you follow the drone laws and fly in Luxembourg…
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, toy, remote-controlled, and RC aircraft may be covered by the same regulations unless specified.
Traveling with a Drone?
Click here to read our Comprehensive Guide For Traveling With A Drone.
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