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Permit To Fly Drones At Night

Updated: Jan 30, 2019

Although it’s fairly common now, it’s worth noting that being able to fly at night does not come as standard in an ordinary drone licence (PFCO). The standard licence allows you to fly up to 30 minutes before sunrise and 30 minutes after dusk.

How To Get An Exemption For Flying At Night

To get a night waiver, I’ve made a sub section in my operations manual explaining the extra precautions I’ll take and any changes in my processes in order to maintain a high level of safety and control for every flight. I then had to note in my PFCO application to the CAA (SRG1320) that I intend to fly at night. They then reviewed and approved this, allowing me to fly at whatever time of day or night.

3 Extra Precautions To Undertake For Night Flights

  • Sufficient onboard lights for navigation and orientation

  • The landing and take off area must be sufficiently lit

  • The flight path and surrounding areas must have been recced in daylight prior to filming to identify and address any potential hazards. Phone lines can often be difficult to see at night!

If you’re a pilot yourself and want to hear a story of how things didn’t go so to plan for me during a night flight last year, check out this article here.


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