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No-fly Zone for Drones

Drone Tip: No Fly Zone For Drones

Where can I fly my drone legally in the United States? For all drone users, national no-fly zone regulations must be followed. The drone no fly zone limits the range of activities of drone pilots and maintains territorial privacy in important areas. The relevant regulations of the drone no fly zone are what every drone pilot should abide by.

In the US, most drone pilots buy drones for flying and photography interests. Typically, drone sales are divided into consumer drones and business drones.

Consumer Drones | Recreational users fly drones for their own personal interest and enjoyment. According to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), important rules apply to recreational drone users. Always keep your drone within your line of sight, never fly over crowds, and check airspace restrictions with this interactive map from the FAA.

Enterprise Drones | Commercial or commercial drones are defined as being flown for commercial purposes, or for compensation or hire. From wedding photography to insurance adjustments, drones are increasingly being used professionally.

Drone No-Fly Zone App

The FAA's free B4UFLY mobile app provides live maps showing different airspace types and restricted areas, as well as special alerts. Some drone controller apps (such as DJI's) also have access to detailed information about flight restrictions. They will prevent drones from flying in restricted areas, a process known as geofencing.

What is the difference between a geofence and a no-fly zone?

In the drone industry, a geofence refers to an area open to drone missions or a limited area that requires special permission.

No-fly zones are primarily available areas provided by national airspace authorities. This includes not only drones but also civilian airliners.

Of course, there are software solutions that are advanced enough to allow drone pilots to set their own no-fly zones. Self-built fences are also subject to relevant regulations.

Who is using geofencing?

DJI. Geofencing restrictions on DJI drones are often frustrating for drone pilots. In high-speed flight, geofencing restrictions will cause the dji drone to hover, land, or perform RTH functions.

Who is a drone without geofencing restrictions?

Autel Robotics. The Autel drone is one of the biggest competitors of DJI drones. Autel drones do not use geofencing restrictions, but also load local maps with no-fly zone drones. During the flight of the drone, the operator will receive push notifications, alerts. But the initiative is in the hands of the drone pilot. Each drone user can choose whether to continue flying.

Autel Drones for sale:

Note: Due to the current misuse of drones and stricter regulation of commercial drones, Autel Drones has now introduced a no-fly zone - updated December 2023.

List of no-fly zones for drones

No Fly Drones

Do not fly:

Large-scale sports or recreational activities, national parks, emergency response areas, airports, near state agencies, wildlife reserves and crowded places.

Fly with caution:

National forest wilderness areas, low-level river areas, may enter Class B areas, neighbors' houses, do not invade others' privacy.

Free flight:

Your backyard, non-drone no-fly zone.

General tips for flying both recreational and commercial drones:

  • Stay away from manned aircraft, especially low-flying aircraft and helicopters. Contact the airport and control tower before flying within five miles of an airport or heliport.
  • Keep the drone within sight.
  • Stay below 400 feet.
  • Operate during daylight or civil twilight, which is defined as the 30 minutes before official sunrise to 30 minutes after the official sunset (with appropriate anti-collision lighting).
  • Do not intentionally fly over unprotected persons or moving vehicles, and remain at least 25 feet away from individuals and vulnerable property.
  • Follow temporary flight restrictions around stadiums and racetracks. Flying drones in and around stadiums is prohibited starting one hour before and ending one hour after the scheduled time of any of the following events: Major League Baseball, National Football League, NCAA Division One Football, NASCAR Sprint Cup, Indy Car, and Champ Series races.
  • If you're visiting the nation's capital, leave the drone at home. The airspace around Washington, D.C. is more restricted than in any other part of the country, effectively labeling the 30-mile radius around Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport a no-drone zone.
  • Because of privacy reasons, many people may be apprehensive to accept them into everyday life. As a flier, use this technology in a responsible, ethical and respectable way. When possible, let others in the area know you are using a drone and respect their privacy. Do not conduct surveillance or photograph persons in areas where there is an expectation of privacy without the individual's permission.
  • Download the FAA’s B4UFLY app, which helps operators determine whether there are any restrictions or requirements in effect at the location they wish to fly.

* Operators can apply for waivers from the FAA that allow them to operate at night, beyond line of sight, above 400 feet, and other specific types of operation.

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