Drone Laws in Canada

Drone regulations and links for people flying drones in Canada.

drone laws in CanadaCanada Drone Regulations

According to Canada’s national aviation authority, Transport Canada Civil Aviation (TCCA), flying a drone is legal in Canada, but we recommend being aware of and compliant with the drone regulations listed below before doing so.

If you’d like to contact TCCA directly before you travel with any questions you might have, here is their contact information: services@tc.gc.ca / +1 800 305 2059

flying a drone in Canada

Why fly a drone in Canada? To get great aerial shots like these!

General Rules for Flying a Drone in Canada

Based on our research and interpretation of the laws, here are the most important rules to know for flying a drone in Canada.

Recreational (i.e., Flying for Fun)

  • The rules listed below apply to those drone pilots flying for recreational purposes with a drone that weighs between 250 grams (.55 pounds) and 35 kilograms (77 pounds). If you’re flying a drone that weighs less than 250 grams (.55 pounds), the TCAA advises you to observe their tips for safe flying.
  • You must fly below 90 meters (295 feet) above the ground.
  • You must fly at least 30 meters (98 feet) away from vehicles, vessels and the public if your drone weighs over 250 grams (.55 pounds) and up to 1 kilograms).
  • You must fly at least 76 meters (250 feet) away from vehicles, vessels, and the public.
  • You must fly at least 5.6 kilometers (3.5 miles) away from aerodromes (any airport, seaplane base or area where aircraft take off and land).
  • You must fly at least 1.9 kilometers (1.2 miles) away from heliports or aerodromes used by helicopters only.
  • You must fly outside of controlled or restricted airspace.
  • You must fly at least 9 kilometers (5.5 miles) away from a natural hazard or disaster area.
  • You must fly away from areas where its use could interfere with police or first responders.
  • You must fly during the day and not in clouds.
  • You must keep your drone within your sight at all times while flying.
  • You must fly within 500 meters (1,640 feet) of yourself.
  • You may only fly your drone if it is clearly marked with your name, address, and telephone number.

Commercial (i.e., Flying for Work)

  • Commercial drone pilots must obtain a Special Flight Operations Certificate (SFOC) from the TCAA unless they meet the strict safety conditions of the TCAA’s exemptions. Learn more about how to obtain an SFOC on this page on the TCAA website.

No Drone Zones

“No drone zones” are areas where it may be unsafe or illegal to fly your drone. When you fly a drone for any reason you should generally not fly:

  • around airports and aerodromes
  • in busy, populated areas
  • in national parks
  • over border crossings

You can only fly your drone in these areas for specific purposes by getting permission from Transport Canada. For more information on “no drone zones,” see this page on the TCAA website.

For more information on Canada’s drone laws, see this page on the TCAA website.

*Note: These are the provisional, or interim drone laws in Canada—it’s expected that new proposed drone laws will be passed soon. You can see the new proposed laws on this page on the TCAA website.

Know something we don’t about drone laws in Canada? Send us an email at support[at]uavcoach[dot]com. We are not international aviation attorneys and do our best to keep this page up-to-date for drone pilots, but the reality is that given the pace of the small unmanned aerial system (sUAS) industry and how governments are responding, drone regulations in Canada can change throughout the year, and those changes can be hard to track. If we missed something, please reach out to let us know.

Want to get a feel for the kind of footage you could get flying a drone in Canada? Here you go: