Agencies Responsible for regulating drones in the Socialist Republic of Vietnam
UAS Laws – General rules for flying drones in Vietnam
The Vietnamese agency responsible for drone safety, CAAV, has provided several internet-accessible details on flying a drone for fun or work. The highlights are enumerated below. For more details go to the link above.
Are drones allowed in Vietnam?
Here are the most important rules to know for flying a drone in Vietnam:
- Each drone flight conducted in Vietnam requires a special flight license. Applications must be submitted to the Operations Bureau of the General Command Post of the Ministry of Defense at least 14 days before the planned date of the flight.
- Drones are not permitted to be used to transport radioactive, flammable, or explosive materials.
- Drones may not be used to launch, shoot, or jettison potentially hazardous objects or substances.
- Drones can fly to a maximum altitude of 492 feet.
- Drones must weigh less than 26 lbs.
- Drones are not permitted to be flown over military bases or government buildings.
- Drones are only permitted to be flown during daylight hours.
- Without a license issued for that purpose, drones may not be mounted with aerial equipment or used for aerial videography or photography.
- Drones are not permitted to fly flags or banners, distribute leaflets, or engage in any other form of propaganda.
How to obtain a drone permit in Vietnam?
Permission is required for recreational drone use in Vietnam. You can obtain it on your own or through the assistance of an agency. In both instances, you must submit a flight license application dossier that includes the following:
- a flight license application. Apply at least 14 days before your scheduled flight (no modifications less than ten days before)
- Technical documentation for your drone, including photographs of the type and a written explanation of its technical aviation properties.
- A license or other legal document authorizing your drone to take off from or land on an airfield, land surface, or body of water.
- All other papers and documents of your drone.
Note for Foreign Operator
You can bring your drone into Vietnam.
You need authorization from the Ministry of Defense, and although you can fill the form yourself (it’s in Vietnamese), it can take up to 3 weeks to be approved.
This process will cost you: between $ 350 and $ 700, depending on who is doing your permit. And that’s only for one day of flying.
Completing a drone recreational permit, yourself in Vietnam
You will need to complete the form and answer detailed questions about your stay and drone category, including the zone in which flight activities are permitted, flight direction and trail, flight times and duration, regulations regarding flight coordination notification, and flight supervision. This will need to be submitted to the Defense Ministry.
Completing a drone recreational permit via an agency in Vietnam
Another option is to hire a local company to assist you with the visa application, which appears to be possible within seven working days.
Permits range in price from $350 to $700 per day of flying, depending on your chosen agency. Bear in mind that you cannot change days in the event of inclement weather, which means you could quickly find yourself in debt.
Notes for recreational drone pilots flying for fun in Vietnam
See general rules above.
Notes for Commercial Drone Services operations in Vietnam
See general rules above.
Useful published information on flying drones in Vietnam
Here is a useful introduction video by CAANZ and Airshare NZ on flying a drone legally in Vietnam…
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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