Use of a Drone in Thailand
You don't fly any more just anyhow in Thailand!
This was to be expected....
A new law was introduced some time ago, and as usual, it is always by "word of mouth" between friends that we discover this kind of novelty.
Information is circulating, and nothing is really accurate, it's once again, (but we're used to it) a fair information hunt.
Being there, I personally learned or discovered details only as I progressed through the "test" of "my drone's declaration".
From now on, flying without official authorization can be expensive, very expensive!
The fine is 40,000THB + 1 year imprisonment
The fine would be 100,000THB + 5 years imprisonment!
Not the same measures according to the organisms... strange.
There must be this kind of office in many cities in Thailand. In any case, as far as Phuket is concerned, the premises are in Kathu.
The location is easily found on Google Map here: 7°55'06.7"N 98°20'27.8"E
At the NBTC where the welcome is quite courteous, you must bring your drone. The staff takes a picture of you with your drone in your hands. After about fifteen minutes you will be given, with a smile, the form below which it will be strongly recommended to always carry with you (the best is to keep it permanently in the drone bag). It is a simple double-sided A4 form.
On the spot, I asked the question: does this document allow me to steal immediately... the answer was clear and simple: NO.
This document is only a declaration authorising transport in public places but does not authorise flight, the flight licence being issued by CAAT.
Understanding becomes more difficult. On the spot I am told that we cannot fly....
and this article seems to claim that if...
The National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) has ordered that all drones must be registered before they can take off again.
The move is an attempt to bring the unmanned aircraft under control after only 350 drones have been registered with the Civil Aviation Training Centre, despite their growing popularity.
Following a meeting about the issue, NBTC secretary-general Takorn Tantasith said that both owners and sellers are required to register their drones within 90 days.
The registration can be made at all NBTC offices, police stations and the centre, with an ID card, the serial number and a photo of the drone required for the process, he added.
Violators can be fined up to 100,000 baht and jailed up to five years under the Communications Radio Act.
It remains a little confusing.
Insurance and Flight Licence Application to CAAT
It has become mandatory to apply for a licence from the government authority
CAAT (Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand) in Bangkok.
Before filling in the forms and making this request, the file must be completed with a compulsory insurance with a guarantee of 1 million THB in case of a problem.
To my knowledge, the only company offering a drones insurance policy is:
This company is located in Bangkok, and takes care (after having taken out the insurance) of transferring your complete file to CAAT. This helpdesk service is charged at 1500THB.
Facebook link: https://www.facebook.com/dronethaiinsurance/
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org -> for the attention of Mr Danny
So... first step: send a short email to "dronethaiinsurance" to ask for the forms to be filled in. You will have a more or less rapid return. (24h to 48h)
You will receive 2 forms from CAAT, another from the insurance company.
In return, in addition to these forms, you will also need to provide copies:
- your passport + visa or work-permit
- proof of residence
- invoice for the purchase of the drone
- Jpg photos of the drone
- 4 identity photos (passport size)
In any case, you will receive a detailed list of the documents to be provided.
In order to avoid an unnecessary waste of time, I advise you to send the whole thing in PDF for approval. Only then will it be necessary to send it by post (EMS).
You can download the forms directly from the CAAT website... but I advise against it, the CAAT form received from the insurer has a slight difference, and here in Thailand the slightest difference makes you lose days. My European logic would like the CAAT form to prevail, but here in Thailand.... it's not the same logic.
In principle, your approach is limited to this insurance office.
For information, however, here is CAAT's website: https://www.caat.or.th/en/archives/27220
Your file transferred to CAAT by the insurer will take 60 to 90 days to process.