UK Drone Qualifications

UK Drone Qualifications

Learn How To Become a Licenced Drone Operator

When becoming a drone operator for the first time, there are hundreds of rules and regulations to be aware of before you can start legally flying. The UK drone laws are also determined by the size, weight and type of drone you wish to fly.

Whilst it may seem daunting, Drone Safe Store is here to support you on your drone journey.

Operating a Drone Lawfully

Although no qualifications are required to buy or fly a drone, depending on the type and weight, you may be limited in where you can fly it and which models you can legally operate. Drone ownership laws have changed dramatically in recent years, allowing for far more freedom when flying commercially.

The law can be highly ambiguous when it comes to drone permits, qualifications, and approvals. There are two main categories of remote pilot competency certifications, as opposed to a general, all-encompassing "drone licence," that are offered. There is no such thing as a "generic drone license," so keep that in mind.

There are currently 2 IDs in operational use in the UK. The Flyer ID and the Operator ID.

What is the Flyer ID?

The CAA Flyer ID is managed on the CAA website and serves as evidence of proficiency as a remote pilot as an online, open-book test. You do not need to complete the Flyer ID if the drones or model aircraft you will fly are toys or of a certain weight or class. Do note that a Flyer ID is required for almost all commercial flights and for pilots flying drones weighing more than 250g.

The exam is made up of forty multiple-choice questions, with a pass mark of 35. The questions put you in a variety of situations relating to the law, safety, and drone classes. To prepare for the test, pilots can consult the new Drone and Model Aircraft Code. The CAA will issue a flyer ID to operators who pass the test. 

The Flyer ID is an excellent starting point for learning about drone laws and usage, and it serves as the foundation upon which you can build. Your registration will be valid for three years and is completely free.

At Drone Safe Store, we always recommend completing the Flyer ID, regardless of whether you need it or not. This is due to the valuable information it provides and is completely free to complete.

What is the Operator ID?

An operator ID is distinguishable from a flyer ID in the sense that anyone in charge of a drone or model aircraft with a camera or weighing more than 250g must register as an operator. They are responsible for anyone who is flying the aircraft. 

Registering for your Operator ID is as simple as visiting the CAA website and completing a short form. After registering, you will be given an Operator ID in addition to your registration certificate. 

On your drones and model aircraft, your operator ID must be visible. Although you should use the same operator ID for all of your model planes and drones, it is recommended that you buy stickers for each of your drones and keep a record of your models.

You must have an operational ID listed on your drone to prove ownership and control. An Operator ID is required for any drone used in a commercial flight.

Drone Safe Store is more than happy to guide you through the process of completing your Flyer & Operator Identification.