Last updated: 1st October 2019

It is absolutely fine to enter Thailand with a drone. However in order to fly your drone, you must be registered with paperwork from two different corporations: CAAT (Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand) and NBTC (National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission). We assume your drone is for non-commercial use, is under 2kg and has a camera.

Fines for not complying range from 40,000 baht to 100,000 baht and 1-5 years in prison.

For rules and advice flying your drone in Thailand, see our advice for flying your drone in Thailand.


Sign up for our travel updates, we’ll notify you if the process for registering your drone changes (for good or for worse) or if there’s anything that might affect the way you fly in Thailand


Update (1st Oct 2019): If you are planning to register with CAAT before entering Thailand you must have already obtained a visa. After some of you had a problem and commented, I called CAAT and NBTC to confirm what should be done and they told me it is not possible to register online if you don’t have a visa (entering with 30 day visa exemption). They wouldn’t/couldn’t give any further advice.


1. Purchase third-party liability insurance

You need third-party liability insurance with a minimum coverage of 1 million baht.

There are many options available both within Thailand and internationally. It will depend on your personal preference and the level of cover you want. It is important that your insurance paperwork is in English and states your name and drone serial number.

The point about the drone model and serial number on the paperwork is important, they will reject the application without it.

2. Register with NBTC (in person)

Documents for NBTC (printed copies):

  1. Photograph clearly showing drone serial number
  2. Photograph clearly showing remote/transmitter serial number
  3. Photocopy of passport, entry stamp, & departure card
  4. Receipt of hotel, condo, house book etc showing where you are living or staying.
  5. Photocopy of drone purchase receipt (not needed if registering as a tourist)
  6. Completed คท30 form – Download here
  7. Completed คท32 form – Download here

NBTC currently have 17 offices in Thailand.

Their locations are divided in to 4 sections on their website (PorPor 1-4), but to summarise:

  • Bangkok
  • Nonthaburi
  • Chanthaburi
  • Suphanburi
  • Prachin Buri
  • Ubon Ratchathani
  • Khon Kaen
  • Nakhon Rachasima
  • Udon Thani
  • Lampang
  • Chiang Mai
  • Phitsanulok
  • Chiang Rai
  • Hat Yai
  • Phuket
  • Nakhon Si Thammarat
  • Ranong
  • Chumphon

We used the office in Bangkok (Soi Phahonyothin 8), found here.

Telephone: 02 271 7600
Website: http://nbtc.go.th
Opening hours: Mon-Fri 8:30am-4:30PM

You do not need an appointment at the NBTC office. If you’re visiting the office in Bangkok, you can walk from Ari BTS station. Turn up with a pen and your paperwork. They’ll check the document and issue your certificate in 15 minutes.

Arriving at NBTC in Bangkok you’ll see this building:

NBTC Bangkok

Enter the gates and turn immediately right. The building to register your drone is this one:

NBTC Bangkok

Extra notes:

  • Fill out the form with your address in Thailand.
  • You don’t need to take your drone to the office.
  • Tourists will only receive a document valid until the exit date stamped in to their passport.
  • Something interesting to note is that the officer would not grant us more than a temporary document. At first he said it is because he frequency on drones purchased outside of Thailand is different to those purchased within the country and it would affect surrounding WiFi signals. Then he said the power output is not the same as drones within Thailand. Finally the reason was settled – Drones purchased outside of Thailand have not had tax paid and so the only thing I can do is get a temporary document. Just be aware of that, and if you purchased your drone in Thailand, take a receipt. We did not have a receipt, but could still register as a ‘tourist’.

Edit: On our second visit to NBTC the officer told us the only problem is that our drone was bought outside of Thailand. To get anything other than a temporary certificate, we must import the drone and pay whatever taxes are due. Bottom line is, you’re better off buying your drone in Thailand even if it’s a little more expensive.

Update: A few of you messaged us to let us know it was not possible to register ahead of time as they require a copy of your latest visa and entry stamp. It’s something you may be able to get around if you have already visited Thailand. This was useful information so thank you for your comments.

3. Register with CAAT (online)

Registering with CAAT takes the most time. Their website states 15 days but from our experience you may be waiting many months – we waited almost 6 months whilst a friend only waited a few days – who knows.

Recently, other travelers and expats have been reporting much faster turn around times of 10-14 days

We registered with CAAT first, however the officer at the NBTC office and other documents in Thai said that we should register with NBTC before CAAT. If you’re traveling for a short period of time this will not work as you need to register in person for NBTC.

CAAT registration form

Documents for CAAT (digital):

  • Proof of address
  • Your passport photo page/li>
  • Pictures of your drone including serial numbers of the drone and the transmitter/remote
  • Liability insurance documents
  • Signed self declaration form (downloaded during registration process)

The CAAT website states that the application form only works in Google Chrome.

This is the link for their free online registration: https://www.caat.or.th/uav/index.php.

The website has some bugs and usability issues with a few broken features. We couldn’t make the save progress button work, sometimes the uploads would not work, and we were able to see other people’s applications alongside our own.

To start the process, access the menu and start an “Individual” application. Scroll down and look for the “Drone register” button where you’ll be guided through creating a new account. Read and accept the 3 tabs/pages of conditions and press continue. If you’re prompted with “กรุณากดยอมรับเงื่อนไขก่อนทำการบินก่อนค่ะ”, you forgot to click “accept” on one of the pages.

Continue the registration process but do not send the application until it is complete, it is not currently possible to change your form after submission.

After we submitted the application, the page stopped responding and we had to reload the website, visit our account and submit the documents separately from the main form. If this happens, don’t forget to go back to upload your supporting documents.

4. Know the drone rules and laws in Thailand

There have been many public cases of prosecution which ended in large fines being paid so familiarize yourself with the rules and laws for flying drones in Thailand. You can read our advice here and use the resources we have linked below.

CAAT stated rules (English):
https://www.caat.or.th/uav/Announcement-of-the-Ministry-of-Transport.pdf

CAAT stated rules (Thai):
https://www.caat.or.th/uav/Announcement-of-the-Ministry-of-Transport-thai.pdf

We recommend carrying a copy of your insurance, registration documents and rules from the CAAT and NBTC website with you when you are traveling with your drone. Don’t expect every guard, police officer or other person to know the rules.

Tip: If you’re feeling discouraged by this process and wondering if it’s worth it, check out our videos to get an idea of the amazing landscapes you’ll be able to fly over here. Our Koh Lipe drone video is particularly inspiring 😉

110 Comments. Write your own below:

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  • Bartek

    2 weeks ago

    Hi,
    On October 24, 2019, I registered with CAAT for the second time. In the previous registration I was missing a visa in my passport. Would anyone be able to call CAAT and ask on my behalf at what stage is my registration? I will be on Phuket on November 6.

  • Roberto

    2 weeks ago

    Hello Guys, I’m Italian and I’m looking around web to find a cheap drone insurance for recreational use ( I don’t know but is very hard to find it ). Someone che suggest some company ? I would bring with me my new Mavic Air in my next travel in Thailand 😀

  • Georgi

    2 weeks ago

    Hi Danny,
    Im a travel drone photographer and im doing a World trip at the moment.
    Thailand is my next stop and my flight is in few days from now but i just stumbled online upon something that worries me a lot.
    I’ve read that it is a huge hustle to register my drone to fly in Thailand and apart from being expensive it is also time consuming so most probably everything wont be ready in time.
    Also there seems to be a lot of no-flight zones, most the places i visit actually so to be honest i do not intend to fly at all …
    What worries me is if ill have problems with the authorities if i just carry it with me (ill be flying from Chiang Mai to Phuket and most probably one more flight which means airport securities as well.
    Could you please advise if it is ok to just bring it with me (no filming) while in Thailand and if if there are any fines if it is not registered.
    Thanks in advance

    • Henry

      2 weeks ago

      Hey Danny. Don’t worry, you won’t have any problem traveling with your drone, even if it is not registered. There are no restrictions bringing your drone in to the country if you do not intend to sell it. It is quite a pain to register – there are two authorities to register with – one only takes a day but you must visit in person, the other can take 1 to many weeks and can be applied for online.

      There are lots of no fly zones – though if you’re seeing them from maps online – they’re a little unrealistic. The truth is that you will be ok to fly outside of cities and national parks and certainly away from any temples or religious places such as temples.

      If you fly discreetly away from built up areas, you will be fine. If you intend to fly somewhere and you not sure if you are allowed, you can always just ask to avoid any trouble with guards or owners of the place you are flying.

      • Georgi

        2 weeks ago

        Hi Henry,
        Many thanks for the detailed information, much appreciated.
        Well, fingers crossed then for no issues 🙂
        Have a great day!
        Cheers

  • Christoffer

    2 weeks ago

    Hi Henry,
    This should be shared a lot more – I see a lot of questions about Thailand around social medias and this epxlains it very well.
    Anyway, I’m going to Thailand in January and have some trouble understanding everything 100%.
    I’ll stay at Koh Samui – and their website doesn’t state any office where I can register it but if I search for กสทช (NBTC) in thai it shows up in the maps. Do you have any info about these offices or if I’m doomed about taking my drone?
    Have a great day Henry!

    • Henry

      2 weeks ago

      Hi! I haven’t heard of any NBTC office in Koh Samui but it’s possible. Best option would be to call, or have a Thai friend call and see if it’s possible to register there. Let me know once you find out 😀

      Thanks!

  • Ruggero Varisco

    2 weeks ago

    Hi there,
    Thanks a lot for the detailed info, really appreciated!
    I am going through the CAAT application form now, but I struggle to understand what they mean for “Controller”. Do they mean an adult, in case the person applying is below 18 yo?
    Thanks

    • Henry

      2 weeks ago

      Hi, by controller, they probably mean the ‘transmitter’ (the hand held component controlling the drone).

      • Ruggero

        2 weeks ago

        Hi,
        Thanks for the quick reply.
        It’s weird if they mean the trasmitter because it’s under “type of insurance” and you can only select Identified or Unidentified controller.
        When selecting Identified, another box to fill will appear with the title “Detail identified controller”.
        Also on the page where you have to attach all the scanned docs, it seems that the Controller need to provide a Self declaration.
        I am literally going mad with this, I don’t want to mess it up since I don’t have much time.
        Could it be the main “controller” (parent company) of the insurance company?
        Any help from users would be greatly appreciated.

      • Henry

        2 weeks ago

        I think you were right. It looks like it changed since I used it last. The controller is the person flying the drone – though they should probably be called the pilot.

      • Ruggero

        2 weeks ago

        Thank you very much again, you guys are saviours!
        Going to Koh Chang, Koh Mak and Koh Kood in 3 weeks, I hope to get all sorted in time but I am worried about the VISA thing.
        Hopefully all will go well.
        Thanks!

  • Szarik

    3 weeks ago

    Hi Henry,
    I got this message from CAAT website. What picture should I take to make it correct? Can I add two drone photos?

    “Your registration is rejected and it will be deleted after. Please register again under different registration number regarding your documents are not completed as follow:
    1. Missing Immigration arrival stamps or Visa showing that you are not one of the blacklist before entry into Thailand.
    2. Photo of the whole aircraft need to be attached together with the photo showing Serial Number clearly. – 11/10/19”

    • Henry

      2 weeks ago

      Hi, #1 – did you send a copy of your visa and/or arrival stamps? #2 – send photos of the whole aircraft and then a closeup of the serial number – they want the serial number to be easily readable when printed.

  • Manuel

    3 weeks ago

    Good afternoon, I registered online in the caat but I do not receive an answer, I did it on September 20, 2019. Do I stuff it again or do I have to wait?
    I travel on November 11
    Thank you

    • Henry

      2 weeks ago

      Hi, calling them or sending an email to follow up might be a better option than sending another application. Good luck!

  • Kei

    3 weeks ago

    Hi Henry,
    When I went to NBTC for the registeration they are not accepted my document said that I need to show / declair our drone at immigration for customer or tax payment.
    Sometime i feel confuse with the step of work and I heard from the agency that i’m going to hire that from now on we need to renew our registeration every 90 days.
    Do you have any idea for this renew?

    • Henry

      3 weeks ago

      Hi, yes I had the same issue. I added this as an edit under the NBTC section a few months ago.

      If your drone was not bought in Thailand, you can only get a certificate for as long as your stay in Thailand, basically temporary registration / registering as a tourist even if we are not. I tried for a long time to fix it and they would not change their mind.

      I signed a power of attorney document and let someone else go there every 90 days to renew the certificate for me. It was not ideal but it worked.

      I don’t have any experience with paying tax on the drone – I don’t think it would be worth it.

  • francis

    4 weeks ago

    im tourist i have a drone not register yet in thai.is there any chance to fly it here?land or sea?

    • Henry

      3 weeks ago

      Technically, it should be registered.

  • clive freedman

    4 weeks ago

    Hi
    Iam traveling to Thai in 2 months i have a spark 300gms plus camera – do i only need to register with NBTC – and will do once in Phuket it is purely for recreational usage. I believe i do not need ot register with CAAT – is this correct?- please advise.

    • Henry

      3 weeks ago

      You should register with both NBTC and CAAT. Some of the wording is confusing but from the officials I’ve spoken with, if it has a camera, it must be registered, no exceptions.

  • Bartek

    4 weeks ago

    Hi Henry

    I got this message on the CAAT website. How can I check which documents are missing? I can’t click the status button because it’s not active. I have one more question. Can I take my drone without CAAT registration according to Thai law?

    “Your registration is rejected and it will be deleted after. Please register again under different registration number regarding your documents are not completed. Please click status to see comment in the box.
    ขอ ขึ้น ทะเบียน “

    • Henry

      4 weeks ago

      Hey, yes you can bring your drone. You will not have any problems bringing it in to Thailand.

      It’s strange that there’s no indication why it was rejected. Are you sure you had everything they asked for including visa or entry stamp, insurance with drone serial number on it?

      • Bartek

        4 weeks ago

        I do not have a visa in my passport. I suspect that this document is missing. I have insurance purchased in Poland with visible drone serial numbers. Do you see any sense in taking the drone to Thailand without registering with CAAT? I thought about taking the drone and registering it on the spot with NBTC and immediately after arrival at CAAT with a stamp right after arrival. I am flying out on November 5 for 2 weeks and I am depressed by the situation 🙁

      • Henry

        4 weeks ago

        Without a visa, it seems impossible to register before arriving. Hopefully they fix, or change the situation soon. It’s difficult for everybody.
        You should bring your drone, register with NBTC first and then submit documents (with NBTC certificate) to CAAT. After that, just follow the rules by not flying in cities, near temples, people and national parks.
        Find a quiet place to fly and land from – you won’t have any problems.

      • Bartek

        4 weeks ago

        Henry, thank you very much for your help.

        After landing in Phuket, go to the NBTC office, complete all documents and register it? How long does it take and what documents do I need? When I can register, send the application to CAAT with all documents? Are you sure I can take the drone with me to Thailand without any permission / registration? I would not like to be taken from me (DJI SPARK). Do you think that if I register successfully in the NBTC and wait in CAAT I will be able to fly a drone in places where there are not many people etc.?
        I apologize for such a large number of questions.

      • Henry

        4 weeks ago

        You will absolutely have no problem bringing the drone in to Thailand. I have flown in to Thailand maybe 100 times, as well as my friends and I’ve never heard of anybody being asked for documents. The only story i’ve ever heard is related to import tax because the drone was in brand new packaging.

        You can read above how to register with NBTC. I’ve never used the NBTC office so I can’t give any specific advice on that but in Bangkok the registration takes 20-30 mins on the same day – just walk in with the documents.

        Don’t worry too much. The best you can do is try, and then enjoy your holiday.
        For less risk, follow 4 rules… Don’t fly in Bangkok, don’t fly near people, don’t fly near religious monuments, don’t fly in National Parks.

      • Bartek

        4 weeks ago

        I wonder what if I have a drone registered in NBTC but in CAAT registration will be only in progress. What if I would fly a drone and someone from control (soldier, police) would approach me. I will show him insurance and registration documents at NBTC. Should I tell him that the drone is being registered in CAAT? Arrives for 2 weeks. from November 5 to November 20. I am afraid that during this time I will not get a positive response from CAAT.

      • Bartek

        4 weeks ago

        Henry,

        Hi, there was a message on the CAAT website. I can’t check what documents are missing in any way. The status of the application appears as requested. How can I find out what documents I need to provide?

  • Ivan

    1 month ago

    Can someone provide me a phone number of CAAT, I have NBTC registration and insurance and submitted a CAAT registration on the 3rs of October, I arrive on the 31st. I have a tourist visa, but I fear I wont get the response in time 🙁 do they speak English on the Phone?

    • Henry

      1 month ago

      CAAT: +66 (0)2-568-8800
      I’m not sure if they speak English. If you need someone to contact on your behalf, please send a message on our contact page.

      How did you get NBTC registration if you haven’t arrived yet? From a previous trip?

      • Ivan

        4 weeks ago

        Hi, many thanks for the response! I used dronethaiunsurance services as I also signed a power of attorney so that’s how they made it and I have the certificate already, however CAAT are not responding until now 🙁

      • Bartek

        4 weeks ago

        Hi Ivan,
        Do they speak English at the CAAT office?

  • massimo

    1 month ago

    Hi I need an insurance for my parrot anafi drone. I found an insurance company JP Insurance that insure drones for around 1399Baht. Has anyone applied for this insurance? I have a single entry tourist visa , will that make the registration easier? Thank you and I love all your drone videos :))))

    • Henry

      1 month ago

      Hi, having a visa should make your application process possible before you arrive. I don’t have any experience with JP Insurance but keep us updated. 1399 seems like good value compared to other local solutions I found, but it is possible to get international insurance for a similar price.

  • Jerry

    1 month ago

    Dear friends, I am not a tourist. I am here in Thailand on a retirement visa. I have a Thai ID and house certificate. My drone was a gift from my son. I do not have a receipt for the drone. Is it possible to legally register the drone here?

    • Henry

      1 month ago

      Hi, you can register the drone but you may only be able to register it temporarily, or for as long as your current entry stamp is valid. NBTC will likely ask for proof of purchase if you want to register permanently – they told me this was to prove tax has been paid on the drone.

      • Jerry

        1 month ago

        As I mentioned above, the drone was a gift, I do not have a receipt. So, are you saying it is not possible to register without a receipt? No way to register a drone that was a gift? Secondly, if my son bought it here from outside Thailand, then how does one “pay taxes” on it?

      • Henry

        1 month ago

        As I mentioned, from personal experience they will allow you to register the drone but probably only temporarily. I had the same issue and had to renew the certificate every 3 months. The best option would be to have a Thai friend call NBTC for a definitive answer. CAAT should not be a problem.

      • Jerry

        1 month ago

        P.S. my retirement visa is good for a year at present. So then, can I get a temporary permit for a year?

      • Henry

        1 month ago

        From the experience I had – yes. To be honest everyone seems to of had different experiences, and when calling them to answer some of the questions in this thread I got different answers from different people so it’s hard to say for sure.
        I definitely didn’t have a receipt for my first drone though and I was able to register.

  • Xavier

    1 month ago

    Thanks for the very informative article. Can I know the fee for CAAT registration and NBTC registration. Is it charged by per day or one off payment? I am planning for commercial purpose for drone under 2kg

    • Henry

      1 month ago

      Hi, there is no fee. Both registrations are free.

  • Szarik

    1 month ago

    Hi,

    I’m going to Thailand in November. I completed the application in caat. I have purchased the required DJI SPARK drone insurance. At this point I am waiting for an answer. I have heard that before sending documents online to caat I need a visa in my passport. Is it true ? I get a visa for 30 days at the airport.

    • Henry

      1 month ago

      A few people have reported being denied as they don’t have a visa. I called CAAT and they said it was not possible to register without a visa. That said, someone else commented that they were accepted so the only thing you can do is wait for a response. Maybe they’re making some exceptions – I’m not totally sure.

      • Szarik

        1 month ago

        Currently the application status is requested. I made her on September 19. We’ll see how long you have to wait for an answer. I hope it will work. How long have you been waiting for an answer?

  • Chaw

    1 month ago

    hello!
    I’m from france and i’m going to Thailand next month. I took an insurrance and i would like to finish the form with caat, but they want “A copy of applicant’s passport and on arrival visa”. What can i do please? do you know where can i do this ? thanks

    • Henry

      1 month ago

      When I spoke with CAAT they informed me that it is not possible to register in advance if you will get a visa on arrival or a visa exemption stamp. That said… someone else commented here they were able to get approved so this is something that needs looking in to further.

      • Chaw

        1 month ago

        Thk you. I took an Appointment with the thaï ambassy in paris next week. I will let you know. Khop Khoun Krap 🙏🏼

  • Brad Stallard

    1 month ago

    This great, wish I had found it before I worked the process. My CAAT application was approved in 2 months, no big dramas, finding an insurer was a bit of pain but eventually I used Mittare Insurance Public Company in Thailand for 3000B.

    Please note the link to NBTC form 30 was not working and do you have the English /Thai version of these forms

  • Vincent HUYNH

    1 month ago

    Is it too late to register NOW ( oct 1st 2019 ), I will arrive in Thailand the 22 october 2019 ? ( I HAVE A DJI MAVIC AIR )

    • Henry

      1 month ago

      It shouldn’t be too late if you can cover all of the requirements including a copy of a visa. You’d have to register at NBTC once you arrive though.

      Let us know how you get on.

      • Vincent HUYNH

        1 month ago

        I won’t have a visa because I stay less than 30 days … it will have only the stamp at the airport when i enter in Thailand…

      • Henry

        1 month ago

        I called CAAT on behalf of another commenter yesterday and was simply told that it’s not possible to register in advance if you’re entering on the 30 day exemption. In my opinion, I wouldn’t waste time trying.

      • Brad Stallard

        1 month ago

        Hi Henry, I got approval from CAAT and I’ll be on a Visa on Arrival coming from Australia in April next year.

      • Henry

        1 month ago

        Great news. What did you submit for proof of visa? Thanks!

  • Jakub

    2 months ago

    My application got rejected today because I did not provide arrival stamps or visa to prove that I am not blacklisted from entering Thailand. Obviously I am not, never been there before. What documents can I possibly submit? I have British passport, therefore I’m subject to visa exemption and will get my stamp and visa on arrival. Please help!

    • Henry

      1 month ago

      A few people have had a similar issue so I will call them tomorrow and find out for you.

    • Henry

      1 month ago

      Ok I called for you but unfortunately they said that registering is not possible and couldn’t give me any more information. The process and results seem to be different for everyone. CAAT require a visa or entry stamp in order to process the application and that obviously makes it impossible for quite a lot of tourists.

  • Aaron

    2 months ago

    Can I submit NBTC online?
    I am going to Krabi, Ao Nang and found out that is not any office in Krabi
    Any ideas?

    • Henry

      2 months ago

      Unfortunately not. As far as I am aware NBTC must be done in person at one of their offices.

  • Gabriel

    2 months ago

    Hi. I’m from Japan and I like to know if there is any insurance company that you recommend for “dji spark“??

    • Henry

      2 months ago

      Hi, have you looked locally in Japan? I use. British insurance company. It costs around £40 per year and covers me internationally. That’s a better option if you’re flying in other countries as well as at home.

      One thing to remember is the model and serial number needs to be on the paperwork. My insurance didnt have that but you could either add it yourself or ask the company to do it.

    • Brad Stallard

      1 month ago

      I used Mittare Insurance Public Company, see attached applications. 3000B Her contact details are Noppawan Sarima ([email protected])

      • Henry

        1 month ago

        Hey Brad, thanks for the update. Does the insurance cover you internationally?

  • Kevin Waite

    2 months ago

    My CAAT application was rejected as they wanted to see a visa to cover my visit for 2 weeks in November. I’m from the UK and I will not get my visa until my passport is stamped when I arrive in Bangkok, how do you get around this. Will sending them a copy of my return airline ticket be acceptable? Any ideas?

    • Henry

      2 months ago

      Hi, thanks for the update. That’s strange… I really don’t know how they expect tourists to be able to register if they’re requiring a visa. What you’re doing is not a visa, you’re entering with a ‘visa exemption’ stamp as you don’t require a visa to visit for 30 days. You could contact them and say how you intend to enter and see what they say. Don’t let it put you off bringing your drone though. Having insurance and any paperwork you can will be useful – just fly with caution, away from people and anything religious or royal in nature.

    • Jon Kaiser

      2 months ago

      I’m running into the same issue – not much info given from them unfortunately. If anyone finds out how to resolve that, it would be much appreciated!

    • Bartek

      2 months ago

      Hi Kvin. Did you solve the problem? I am also going to Thailand in November.

  • Darian Haefner

    4 months ago

    I am travelling to Thailand at the end of the month with my DJI Spark. I am happy to register with the NBTC, however I live in South Africa and do not plan on purchasing drone insurance as it is completely unnecessary here, and therefore this limits me from registering with CAAT. As per several sources it seems it is only necessary for tourists to register with NBTC and not CAAT, as even their self declaration is worded in a way that seems it is for residents only as it mentions things towards breaking the law of Thailand: “meet the required
    qualification, and without prohibited characteristics from either of the following;
    Not a threat to the national security.
    Never been sentenced by the final judgement to imprisonment for an
    offense under the law on narcotics or customs. ”

    Do you think I will be fine off not registering with CAAT as it also seems I will not have enough time regardless? Also, do you think anyone would be suspicious if you can at least produce the NBTC documents if asked? Surely you can either mention that you did try register with CAAT but were never approved, or say that you were only made aware that you had to register with NBTC from several sources? It just seems illogical to require tourists do so much admin prior to a trip as this seems like something that may push them away. Any thoughts?

    • Darian Haefner

      4 months ago

      Also i noticed on the rules for flight on CAAT you have to agree with, ‘9.’ on “before blight” states that the pilot must carry around a usable fire extinguisher with them. Surely they are not expecting hobbyist flyers to carry this around with them. It sounds shady, and most drones are not more than 2kg, i expect that it is mainly focused on the 2kg and above drones and not hobby drones.

      • Henry

        2 months ago

        Thai Nationals and Tourists technically have to register. As you’ve experienced, it’s not easy and there are some weird rules. I am quite sure nobody is carrying around a fire extinguisher. I guess there’s a line you have to draw as to what is reasonable.
        Anyone flying safely away from people and tourist hotspots will be fine.

  • Brian Hung

    4 months ago

    Is it true that I can register my drone with NBTC Phuket office? As I am flying directly to Phuket and won’t stop by Bangkok. Thanks
    Brian

    • Henry

      4 months ago

      Yes as far as I am aware you can use any NBTC office.

  • yan

    5 months ago

    May I know where to buy drone insurance? Can I do drone registration in NBTC without issurance?

    • Dean

      4 months ago

      Yes you can register with NBTC with no insurance. You can walk in with all your paper work completed. The process takes only about 30 min if they are not busy. Once this process is done you will still have to register with CAAT and provide drone insurance to them. Any luck with finding drone insurance?

  • Brian

    5 months ago

    From my interpretation of the laws, it appears that the hobby tourist only needs to register with NBTC. If shooting for commercial purposes you also need to register with CAAT. Your post makes it sound like commercial and hobby tourists need both. I found this wording on the Royal Thai Embassy in Washington D.C. “Tourists can bring their drones into Thailand. However, they are not allowed to fly their drones here until they have registered their devices with the NBTC or the Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand (CAAT).
    Also, if a drone is being brought into Thailand for commercial use, then permission must also be requested from CAAT (see below infographic for details)”
    Thoughts?

    • Henry

      5 months ago

      Hi, yes I saw the same wording on thaiembassy.org but according to CAAT: “RPA with camera installed must be registered with no exceptions.”.

  • Simon

    5 months ago

    I have 3 Drones, a 250mm a 500mm and a 1650mm non have serial numbers. The only serial number is my TX unit. I’ve started the online registration but cant complete it because of the serial numbers, 2 months and 3 emails and no response from CAAT. I spend half the year in Thailand but looks like I wont be flying my Drones there. Not legally anyway unless I remove the cameras from the 2 smaller Drones.

    • Henry

      5 months ago

      Hey Simon, custom builds? I don’t know how they go about that. I still have one of my drones unregistered from an application in 2018. How about the receiver on the drones? Do any of the individual parts have a serial number?

      I think there must still be a way for you to fly 🙂

  • adrian

    6 months ago

    very hard to register, once one document is off the will tell you to re register.. but don’t tell you which document.. So how can you finish.. I assume the don’t register outside drones maybe because the have stronger signals setting, but those will be anyways limited in some countries, only in the US full power.
    I hope there will be affordable agencies to do this for you.. Like everything complicated in Thailand need to be done trough agent.

    • adrian

      6 months ago

      have to correct it, actually it said that my insurance document was not in English.. rest seems like got accepted 🙂 took 2 weeks !

  • Filip Vandamme

    6 months ago

    Hi Guys, I have planned to live permanently in Thailand soon. But that could be with short periods of return to Europe because I don’t have a permanent visa yet. So a solution could be to register my drone under the name of my girlfriend (Thai). Is that allowed ? I mean, to register under my GF’s name while I would be the pilot flying the drone ?
    And another question. If I buy a drone online and have it delivered in Thailand, does that count as a drone bought in Thailand ?
    Thanks a lot. Filip
    PS : thanks a lot for all your info here on the blog, Fantastic !!!! It makes it all so much easier, much appreciated.

    • Henry

      6 months ago

      Hey Filip, thanks for your comment.
      I can only advise based on what I was told in person at the NBTC office.
      – I also tried the same approach by registering the drone in a friends name but they would not let me do that at the NBTC office because my drone was American and my friend was Thai – they would first have to import the drone. So if you have a Thai bought drone, this should work – although I am quite sure that officially, the pilot must be registered.
      – I don’t recommend buying and sending a drone to Thailand, you will have problems with import tax. Online within Thailand or at a DJI store here would be fine.

  • Lenbert

    7 months ago

    Good afternoon!
    If I buy a drone in Thailans and doesnt need to enroll in liability insurance, can it be possible?

    • Henry

      7 months ago

      Registering a drone purchased in Thailand is easier, but it still has to be registered the same way.

      • Johnny

        7 months ago

        Why Thai drone is easier to register?

      • Henry

        6 months ago

        It doesn’t need to be imported for a longer registration.

  • Danielle

    7 months ago

    Hi Long,
    I have the same issue with CAAT, how did you get on in the end? My plan is to go to the offices in Bangkok to see whether or not they will process the application.

    • Henry

      7 months ago

      Hi Danielle, I think the best thing to do is apply online and then chase them up by telephone if they take a long time.

  • Long

    8 months ago

    Hello,
    I was just reading your website regarding “How to register a drone in Thailand.” I’m already planning to register in person with NBTC when I arrive. However, I’m running into ongoing and delayed issues with CAAT. I’ve submitted everything but now they say I need to submit a VISA or immigration stamp. I leave in 2 days and it’s now impossible for me to get either one to submit before I arrive! I’ve emailed them multiple times if I could go register in person at their CAAT office in Bangkok as well when I arrive but they’ve stopped responding. Do you have any idea if I can possibly go register in person as well at the CAAT office? Would greatly appreciate your assistance please.

    Thank you,
    Long

    • Henry

      8 months ago

      Hi Long, you can’t register in person for CAAT, their only process is via their website. Thank you for updating me on the issue regarding a visa or stamp though – seems to be almost impossible for tourists on holiday to register in time at the moment. I recommend just resubmitting your application when you arrive and have a copy of your entry stamp.

      • Long

        8 months ago

        Oh my, such a hectic and complicating process!!! It’s literally impossible to get registered and everything then!!! Wow. Such a long and frustrating process. If I resubmit my application with my entry stamp upon arrival, how am I supposed to get approved if it takes more than 15 working days to get approved? Do I just start flying without an approved CAAT and hope they eventually approve?

      • Henry

        7 months ago

        Yes it does seem to be impossible for anyone on a short stay… At the moment I don’t have any recommendations. If they absolutely require a visa or an entry stamp and you are entering on a 30 day exemption, it seems unlikely you’ll get registered within 15 days.

        Hopefully they change the process as they’re making a lot of work for themselves processing applications that will never get used.

  • Pierre-Louis Bourbon

    8 months ago

    Hello
    If i have go to Thailand but i don’t use my drone during my journey, it’s ok ? After i go to Bali and here i want use my drone. So, in Thailand my drone stay in my luggage, you think is a problem ?

    • Henry

      8 months ago

      No problem if it is in your hand luggage.

      • Pierre-Louis Bourbon

        8 months ago

        But at the take off, i need to put my drone in checked baggage ?

      • Henry

        8 months ago

        Any batteries must be in your hand luggage (bag you take in to the cabin) – not checked baggage (stowed under the plane).

      • Pierre-Louis Bourbon

        8 months ago

        Yes i know, but my drone need to be in hand luggage or checked baggage ? At my arrival in Thailand, customs don’t do problem ? (sorry for my english, i’m French)

      • Henry

        8 months ago

        I think either would be fine. The only problem is if it looks like you are trying to sell the drone (maybe if it is in new packaging).
        I recommend you keep the drone in your hand luggage – it is more likely to be broken in checked baggage and hand luggage is less likely to be scanned when you leave through customs.

    • Pierre-Louis Bourbon

      8 months ago

      Can i contact you on Messenger or WhatApps if its possible ?
      Thank a lot

  • Antonio

    9 months ago

    Hi, I am just writing with a query about traveling to Thailand with a drone. I have contacted CAAT and they have asked for insurance that show my devices serial number and the date of my travel.hower my insurance from “Drone cover club” doesn’t show this information.I m happy to do another insurance for my trip in Thailand if it can satisfy this request. Thank you.
    Best regards Antonio

    • Henry

      9 months ago

      Hi Antonio, have you asked your insurance provider to add the serial number to the notes on your insurance? Can you add the serial number by yourself?

  • Melissa

    9 months ago

    Hello,
    So , If I come for 3 weeks and that I want to use my drone. It’s impossible Due to the delay of CAAT ?
    Or he give us a temporary doc?

    • Henry

      9 months ago

      You should be able to apply ahead of time for CAAT but the wait time seems unpredictable at the moment. You could then register with NBTC when you arrive.

  • Steve

    9 months ago

    Hi :),
    Is it possible for the person from Serbia (as myself) purchase third-party liability insurance from BMFA? It would be really helpful and it would save me a from lot of hassle. The information you provided above is highly appreciated. Thank you and have a great one!

    • Henry Brown

      9 months ago

      Hey Steve, I’m not totally sure but their staff were really helpful when I spoke to them – I’d recommend just getting in contact and asking: [email protected]

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