Botswana Drone Laws (2019)

Botswana Drone Laws

Landscape Photography In Botswana

  1. General Botswana Drone Laws
  2. Drone Permits In Botswana
  3. Brining Your Drone On Airplanes Guide
  4. Buying Drones In Botswana
  5. Drone Travel Guide Articles
  6. Contact Information For Questions

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General Botswana Drone Laws

Drone use is allowed in Botswana, but there are several drone laws that need to be followed when flying in the country. Operators must ensure that they follow the following drone laws when flying in Botswana,

(1) The RPA shall not be flown unless the Operator is present
(2) The Operator will at all times maintain visual line-of-sight (VLOS) with the RPA or beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS) under special approval This will be accomplished unaided by any device other than corrective lenses.
(3) RPA will be flown below 400 ft AGL at all times and no further than 500m from the Operator at the controls of the RPA or beyond visual line of sight under special approval
(4) The Operator may make use of a Visual Observer (VO).
(5) The Operator or the VO may not fly more than one RPA at any one time.
(6) The RPA registered in Botswana is not permitted to cross International Boundaries.
(7) No person shall operate an RPA unless they have in their possession the certificate issued by the Authority for each RPA in operation and the user manual for the RPA.
(8) The operator shall be 18 years older.

 

Penalties:
• The Penalty for infringing any of the Regulations governing the Use of Drones is a maximum of BWP$5000 and/ or confiscation of the Drone; and
• In the event that the Drone is used in the commission of any crime, the Maximum penalty shall be BWP $50, 000 and /or two (2) years imprisonment and/ or confiscation of the Drone. There has been a significant increase in the procurement and use of Drones over the past few years, with owners using them for private and professional activities such as photography and videography, agricultural observations, climate studies and other uses.

Permit Needed For Recreational Drone Use?

It is an offense to operate a Drone (also known as Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPAs) in Botswana without first registering with Botswana Aviation Authorities. Individuals and organizations wishing to register are required to pay BWP$250.00 to Botswana Aviation Authorities for them to be issued with a certificate of use.

Registrations is done at CAAB Offices at a fee of BWP $250.00. Non-citizens or non-residents who wish to bring their drones into Botswana for the purpose of flying them within the country should apply to CAAB Offices in writing giving 7 day’s notice.

Please adhere to the above General Botswana Drone Laws however when flying your drone. (What Is Recreational Drone Use?).

Permit Needed For Commercial Drone Use?

It is an offense to operate a Drone (also known as Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPAs) in Botswana without first registering with Botswana Aviation Authorities. Individuals and organizations wishing to register are required to pay BWP $250.00 to Botswana Aviation Authorities for them to be issued with a certificate of use.

When registering, the Operator shall make available to Authorities, upon request, the Drone for Inspection and Testing and any associated documents and records;

• Before registration, the Authority is required to obtain a clearance certificate for the Operator from the Security Organs as part of a background check; and
• The Operator shall be 18 years of age or older

Click here to purchase assistance on how to get a permit, or contact the local aviation authority. (What Is Commercial Drone Use?)

Bringing Your Drone On Airplanes Guide

For a detailed guide to bringing your drone on airplanes click here. All drones should be brought on carry on luggage if possible. This is because according to the Montreal Convention, airlines are only liable for losses up to ~$1,000 USD. When traveling internationally, theft and lost luggage can be common issues, particularly if your flight has many connections. If your drone is worth more than $1,000 USD and you cannot bring it onto the plane you should consider shipping it with DHL, Fedex, or UPS instead and fully insure the shipment.

You should NOT place drone batteries in your checked baggage. All drone batteries should be placed in a Medium Size Lipo Battery Bag like the one shown here in the link and brought onto the plane in your carry on bag. Lithium-ion batteries are considered “dangerous goods” by airlines and rules surrounding these batteries on planes are EXTREMELY strict due to multiple incidents of these batteries catching fire. Failure to properly pack lithium-ion batteries in a bag such as the one shown in the link above can result in the airline seizing them, you getting fined, or being denied boarding.

Aerial video of Botswana, Chiefs Camp Sanctuary Retreats

Here is some video footage shot by Hamza Mujtaba when flying a drone in Bosnia.

Buying Drones In Botswana

Read all of our Botswana Drone Laws, and now looking for drones, parts, accessories, or something else? Read our guide for Buying Drones in Botswana. It includes information on drones for sale in Bosnia, import taxes, payment options, and shipping.

Drone Travel Guide

Botswana drone laws are up to date as of June 03 2019. Please email support@uavsystemsinternational.com , or click “leave a message” at the bottom right of the screen if you have any questions or comments.

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