All drones must be registered with the FAA unless they weigh under 250 grams or .55 pounds.

The cost of registering a drone for recreational purposes is only $5 and can be done online, registration is only valid for (3) three years. Drones that are registered to hobbyists or recreational flyers cannot be used for commercial purposes see Part 107. Once the drone is registered it cannot be transferred to a commercial drone certification or vise versa. [FAA Hobby Drone Registration ] If you intend on flying a drone for commercial purposes you will also need an FAA Commercial Drone Certification. Learn more about commercial drone certification from our article here [ Commercial Drone Certification ]

Registration requirement:

  • Must be 13 years of age or older
  • A US citizen or legal permanent resident
  • For foreign operators, The FAA will consider the certificate issued to be a recognition of ownership rather than a certificate of U.S. aircraft registration.

Failure to register a Drone:

  • Failure to register a drone that requires registration may result in regulatory and criminal penalties. The FAA may assess civil penalties up to $27,500. Criminal penalties include fines of up to $250,000 and/or imprisonment for up to three
  • (3) years.

After You register your drone:

Once your drone has been registered you will receive a certificate from the FAA. When flying your drone you must have your registration with you, it can be either a paper or a digital copy, and anyone else flying your drone must also have a copy of the registration in their possession.

Lastly, you will need to label your drone:

Here is a handy pdf from the FAA on how to label your drone. Your label must be legible, must be permanently affixed to your sUAV (Small Unmanned Aerial Vehicle), and must be in a visible area.

For detailed information on Drone Registration visit the FAA site for Unmanned Aircraft Systems

Starting on September 16 2023 all drone pilots in the United States will be required to register their drones. By September 16 2022 all drone manufacturers are required to produce drones with a Remote ID. What is a Remote ID you ask? Remote ID is a way that the FAA and Law enforcement can track all drones and be able to determine if they are being flown unsafely, or in areas where they are not to be flown. According to the FAA – Remote ID also lays the foundation of safety and security groundwork needed for more complex drone operations.

So what can you do if your drone was manufactured before the deadline and does not have a Remote Id?

The good news is it can be retrofitted to comply with the new rules. The information below is directly from the FAA UAS page on Remote ID. If you want to know the full details on Remote Id, follow this link https://www.faa.gov/uas/getting_started/remote_id/industry/

Here are the three ways pilots can meet the Remote ID rule

  1. Operate a Standard Remote ID Drone (PDF) that broadcasts identification and location information of the drone and control station. A Standard Remote ID Drone is one that is produced with built-in remote ID broadcast capabilities.
  2. Operate a drone with a remote ID broadcast module (PDF) giving the drone’s identification, location, and take-off information. A broadcast module is a device that can be attached to a drone, or a feature (such as a software upgrade) integrated with the drone. Persons operating a drone with a remote ID broadcast module must be able to see their drone at all times during flight.
  3. Operate (without remote ID equipment) (PDF) at specific FAA-recognized identification areas (FRIAs) maintained by community-based organizations or educational institutions. FRIAs are the only locations unmanned aircraft (drones and radio-controlled model airplanes) may operate without broadcasting remote ID message elements.

We hope this information helps and suggest as a pilot you stay on top of current rules and safety information. You should check regularly to see what changes are happening with drones and rules as this is a relatively new industry. We also recommend learning as much information on this hobby as you can before jumping right into it. If in doubt, check with the FAA on Unmanned Aircraft Systems., they are there to help.