Latest Drone Laws in Turkey

Drone flights in Turkey are legal. However, to conduct safe operations, it’s crucial to adhere to the latest drone laws in Turkey.

Failure to do so can result in severe rule violation penalties impacting your drone operations.

The current drone laws in Turkey require you to register your drone and acquire a pilot license or approval.

A remote ID and insurance coverage aren’t mandatory, but the national regulatory agency recommends insurance for hobbyists and visitors.

The country’s drone regulator, General Directorate of State Airports Authority, is under the Republic of Turkey Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure. 

Our article provides valuable information about Turkey’s drone regulation framework to help you prepare for your flights accordingly.

Let’s dive in.

What Are the Latest Drone Laws in Turkey

The current drone rules in Turkey include the following: 

  • Before your flights, register all drones weighing over 500g with the Director General of Civil Aviation (DGCA).

  • Avoid flying your drone over residential areas or people without DGCA’s prior permission.

  • Fly your device when the sky and the drone’s operational area are open and free. Avoid crowded places.

  • Keep drone flights away from sensitive areas such as military installations and airports.

  • Only fly your drone during the daylight hours and in the right weather conditions.

  • Don’t exceed the maximum flight speed of 50 km/h for private flights.

  • Your private flight drones shouldn’t exceed 4 kilograms (8.8 pounds).

  • Keep off emergency response events or teams during your flights.

  • Maintain the maximum flight altitude of 120 meters (400 feet).

Note: You must submit an application letter to the customs office before importing some drones.

How Do I Register My Drone in Turkey?

Register your drone in Turkey by filling out form FR-03 online or visiting the DGCA office in person.

Below are the details you must provide:

  • Personal information such as name and address.
  • Drone model and serial number.
  • The intended purpose of your flight.

Upon registration, the DGCA issues a certificate you must have throughout your flights.

It’s limited to a specific location and duration, after which you must apply for a new permit.

It is mandatory to register commercial-oriented flights with the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure.

You must also get liability insurance and adhere to local drone rules.

Notes for Recreational Drone Pilots in Turkey

In addition to the above drone regulation, you must take note of the following:

  • You don’t need to register drones weighing less than 25kg except for commercial activities such as amateur purposes and sports activities.

  • Adhere to the latest drone laws in Turkey, as set by the Aviation Authority, to ensure your operations are within the legal framework. 

  • Get a permit for commercial drone uses, such as sports activities.

  • Observe the maximum flying altitude of 120m.

Additional Notes for Foreign Drone Operators in Turkey

Besides the general laws above, here are a few points for foreigners to note:

  • You must send drone flight requests in Turkish airspace to the General Director of Civil Aviation through diplomatic channels 20 days before your first flying day. 

  • Since you don’t have a Turkish drone registration number, leave the ‘number’ section blank.

  • You must obtain insurance coverage for your drone and send the document to the General Directorate.

  • Upon approval of your request by the civil and military institutions, the General Director notifies your target flying area authority with NOTAM (Notice to Air Missions).

    If they disapprove, you have no permission to fly your drone.

  • After receiving flight permission, you must comply with the provisions of AIP (Aeronautical Information Publication) and other rules.

  • You’ll conduct all your flights under the supervision of a Turkish Republic citizen with a minimum qualification of an IHA2 pilot license from the General Director.

  • You must undertake a risk analysis if your target flying site is in the special permit zone (red area).

How to Take a Drone Through Customs in Turkey

To bring certain drones to Turkey, apply to the customs office via form FR-03.

As a foreigner whose drone weighs more than 500g (maximum takeoff weight), you must also apply for approval from the Turkish Director General of Civil Authority. 

Otherwise, the customs officials may confiscate your drone at customs and demand a technical conformity form (FR-03). You can find this form on the main page of DGCA’s official website.

Fortunately, you can bring a drone whose maximum takeoff is less than 500g to Turkey without the requirement.

You must also send your criminal record to the Director General for your flight permit approval.

What Are the Drone Flying Areas in Turkey?

The drone flying areas in Turkey include the following:

  • Open areas: Beaches, fields, and parks.

  • Designated areas: Spaces set apart for drone flying (marked with a sign or listed on official websites).

What Are the No-Fly Zones in Turkey?

Turkey has a few areas where the Turkish drone regulatory authorities don’t allow operations without their permission.

The primary reason for the restriction is to enforce safety, privacy, and security.

The no-fly zones in Turkey include the following:

  • Densely populated areas or public events
  • Government facilities
  • Military installations
  • Historical sites
  • Airports

No-fly zones may be permanently prohibited, temporarily restricted, or require authorization. The Turkey drone fly map indicates them as follows:

  • Yellow: Warning airspace (limited height)

  • Blue: Authorization required airspace

  • Red: Restricted airspace

What Are the Consequences of Illegal Drone Operations in Turkey?

The consequences of illegal drone operations in Turkey:

  • Fine: The charged amount depends on the severity of your violation.

    For instance, you may face a higher fine for operating in a no-fly zone than exceeding the maximum flying altitude level.

  • Drone confiscation: An area’s authority may confiscate your drone for a particular period. You may even never get it back. 

  • Imprisonment: You may face imprisonment for flying your drone in a prohibited zone.

Conclusion

Turkey is among the countries that embrace drone flying activities for hobbyists, visitors, governments, and commercial fliers.

Hence, knowing the latest drone laws in Turkey is essential for safe flights within the law’s scope.

Turkish drone regulations demand drone registration and acquiring a pilot license or approval from DGCA.

While insurance coverage isn’t compulsory, the authority recommends it for recreational flights.

Our comprehensive article gathers all the relevant information you need to enjoy drone photography and videography without crossing lines with the General Directorate of State Airports Authority.

If you need more information about exceptional scenario, please get in touch with the authorities via the following channels:

  • Address: Mevlana Bulvari No:51, 06330 Akköprü/Yenimahalle, Ankara, Turkey
  • Email: iletisimmerkezi@dhmi.gov.tr or online email contact form
  • Phone: +90 0312 204 20 00

 

Author
Peter Karanja

Peter is a licensed drone pilot and drone fanatic. He owns a DJI Air 2S that he uses to shoot videos for fun, enjoyment and for clients.

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