Flying Drones in Japan – What You Need to Know

Drones have become extremely popular in recent years and it isn’t hard to see why. Offering a bird’s eye view of unique landscapes, these high-tech drones are easy and enjoyable to fly. However, if you’re planning on flying them in Japan, there’re a few things you’ll need to know. Please also do your research on the area that you plan to fly in and make sure that you are not filming things that should not be filmed like military installations or in a flight path. 

Here, you’ll discover some of the main factors to be aware of when you’re planning on flying a drone anywhere in Japan.

You’re going to need permission

One of the main things to know about flying a drone in Japan, is you’re going to need permission. It is legal, but you do need permission to fly it anywhere, including privately owned properties.

If you’re in doubt over where you can fly the drone, it’s worth asking a local authority. They will be able to explain the rules and whether you are safe to fly the drone in your chosen location.  

Understanding the laws and regulations

Although Japanese laws pertaining to drones are pretty straight forward, there are still a lot of them to adhere to! Therefore, it’s worth familiarising yourself with the laws before you attempt to fly your drone anywhere in the country.

The first law to be aware of is the Aviation Act. This states you cannot fly a drone more than 150 meters near airports or over densely populated areas. You also cannot go near trains or power lines and flying the drone at night isn’t allowed either. Other laws you’ll need to follow can vary between municipalities. For example, within the metropolitan area of Tokyo, it is illegal to fly drones in designated parks. So, you will need to check the area you’re staying to see what the local laws are.  

Where to get a drone?

You have a lot of options on where to get a drone in Japan. It’s the electronic hub of the world and plenty of stores stock a wide variety of drones. Or, if you’d prefer, you could always build your own. Stores such as RS Components provide everything you need to help you put one together.

Overall, flying a drone in Japan can be a great way to see the country from a different perspective. However, there aren’t actually that many places you can fly a drone here. So, it’s definitely worth taking the time to familiarise yourself with the local drone laws before you attempt to fly one.

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