Yes, you can fly a drone in the Bahamas. You can bring a drone into the country and fly it for recreational or commercial purposes. However, rules and regulations apply, and there’s a lot you need to know before you decide to pack your drone for your travels in the Bahamas. Don’t worry; we have you covered; we will talk about everything you need to know about flying a drone in the Bahamas.
But first, let us answer some basic questions!
What’s Considered a Drone?
A drone is an aerial vehicle operated remotely. It can fly without the direct involvement of a human, hence the name UAV, Unassisted Aviation Vehicle. UAVs are part of the unmanned aircraft system. Drones are operated with the command of a ground-based controller.
Drones are used for both recreational and commercial activities. The range of uses for drones varies from monitoring climate change to photography to delivering goods to filming; however, military operations like targeted attacks, surveillance, and reconnaissance are the activities commonly associated with drones.
Is Recreational Use of Drones Allowed in the Bahamas?
Yes. In the Bahamas, you can use your drone for recreational purposes, provided that the drone is registered and has a permit.
Is Commercial Use of Drones Permitted?
Yes, commercial use of drones is permitted in the Bahamas. However, as noted above, you need to have your registration and permits.
Is Drone Insurance Mandatory?
Yes, drone insurance is mandatory for both commercial and private drones; you need to have third-party liability insurance.
Can you Fly a Drone Without a Pilot?
You cannot fly commercial drones without a valid drone pilot’s licence, but recreational drones are exempt from this rule.
Can you fly a Drone in Nassau?
Yes, you can fly a drone in Nassau as long as it has a permit and is registered.
Agencies that Regulate Drones in the Bahamas
Civil Aviation Authority Bahamas, also known as CAAB, is the agency responsible for regulating drones in the Bahamas.
What’s the Maximum Altitude Allowed for Drones?
400 feet is the maximum allowed altitude for drones in the Bahamas.
Further, you cannot fly within a 50-feet radius of any person, vehicle, or structure – unless the person, the vehicle, or the structure in question is directly associated with the operation of the drone.
What’s more, you cannot fly within 150 metres of any region that’s congested or highly populated, nor can you fly within a radius of 5 nautical miles of any airport.
General Rules for Drones
You need to adhere to certain rules and regulations to fly your drone in the Bahamas; they are as follows:
- You need a permit
- The drone needs to be registered
- You cannot fly over private property unless you have the owner’s permission
- You cannot fly over military installations, drone-free zones, and nature reserves
- Don’t fly at night or in bad weather with low visibility
How Do you Get a Permit to Fly a Drone in the Bahamas?
A permit is required to fly commercial or recreational drones in the Bahamas. Get in touch with the CAAB to get the permit – all you need to do is visit the CAAB website and submit the required information.
- Visit dates
- Regions in which you plan to fly the drone
- Drone’s build, serial number, and model
- Copies of your home country registration certificate
Once you’ve provided the necessary information, you’ll receive an email with an authorisation letter. You need to keep the letter as it’s required by customs. The letter has a validity period of 30 days.
Customs Requirements – The Bahamas Drone Deposit
The customs will assess the monetary value of the drone and request a deposit reflecting 50% of the value of the drone. You’ll be given a receipt, which will serve as evidence for you to fly your drone in the Bahamas. You will get your deposit back when leaving the country.
Is Registration Necessary?
Yes, registration is necessary to fly drones in the Bahamas. The Certificate of Registration can be obtained from the Civil Aviation Department – that is if you don’t already have one from the Federal Aviation Administration in the United States.
Paperwork for the Registration:
- Photo identification
- Certificate of Registration Liability Insurance
Best Drones to Buy For the Bahamas
Phantom 4, Mavic 2 Pro, and Parrot Anafi are some of the best drones for your travels in the Bahamas.
When buying a drone, you need to consider several things, including cost, model, camera, and battery life. Drones are prone to crash, which means they can cause damage to someone else’s property – this is why insurance is mandatory. Also, the cost range of most drones falls between USD 50 to USD 10,000.
Drone Travelling Tips
Know that airlines will only reimburse $1000 if the drone gets damaged or lost during the flight – the full cost of the drone isn’t taken into account when reimbursing. Due to this reason, we suggest you take your drone in your carry-on luggage.
Further, you cannot have your drone batteries in check luggage; this is because drone batteries can cause fire hazards in response to changes in temperature. Some airlines may have different rules, so make sure you check with the airline.
Cruises generally allow you to bring your drone with you. You can’t, however, operate your drone while on the ship. Also, you cannot fly your drone at ports.