Flying a drone in Namibia - this is an aerial shot of the Skeleton Coast

Flying a Drone in Namibia

April 4, 2024

We’ve compiled all the must-knows and must–follows for operating a drone in Namibia, to ensure you abide by the rules acquiring the very best footage to take home along with your unforgettable memories.

Namibia is a remarkable destination for photography and filming, especially for aerial shots when using a drone. The endless wide open spaces and ever-changing landscapes promise all the drama and the makings of incredible footage.

In a country largely uninhabited, it’s all about the vast picturesque landscapes, breathtaking sunrises and sunsets and epic gravel roads that lead seemingly to and from nowhere. All well worth capturing, but also worth noting there are some guidelines to follow when operating a drone, taking into account that some areas even require permits and permission before taking flight.

Namibia Drone Regulations

Flying a drone is legal in Namibia, so you can go ahead and bring it along for your travels to this incredible destination, but keep in mind that you should be aware of the drone regulations within the country in order to comply.

As a foreigner, you must obtain approval from Namibia’s Directorate of Civil Aviation (DCA) in order to fly a drone for recreational or commercial purposes. Applications must be submitted for approval with the DCA.

  • 60 days prior to the planned flight – recreational
  • 120 days prior to the planned flight - commercial

You need to register and apply for the RPAS Letter of Approval (RLA) in order to operate a drone in Namibia. You can download the necessary forms from Namibia Civil Aviation Authority - NCAA.

General rules to abide by:

  • Drones may not be operated in Namibia without prior approval (as above).
  • You may not fly drones higher than 45 metres (150 feet) and not further than 500 metres (1600 feet).
  • You may not operate a drone within a published controlled zone, air traffic zone or air traffic area.
  • You may not fly a drone more than five nautical miles (10km radius) from the boundary of an aerodrome.
  • Liability insurance is required before operating a drone.
  • The drone must be within visual sight (unaided) at all times.
  • Drones may not be operated in weather that could impair vision.
  • You may not operate a drone within 5 nautical miles (10km radius) of a restricted area.
  • You may not fly over assembled groups of people.
  • Do not fly within 50 metres of any persons, vehicles, vessels, structures or roads.
  • No public roads may be used as a place for takeoff or landing unless proper authorisation has been granted.
  • Do not fly in a negligent or reckless manner.
  • Stay clear of National Parks and private Game Reserves. You may not fly within 5 nautical miles (10km radius) of any unless permission has been granted and obtained by the Director of the Namibia Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA).
  • Do not fly a drone from a moving vehicle.
  • You may not fly over private property without consent.
  • You may not fly near or over military, police or prison facilities.

For more visit Namibia Civil Aviation Authority - NCAA.

Some tips:

  • Make sure you check if there are any specific requirements by the international airports or airline you are flying with in regards to travelling with a drone.
  • Start your application procedure in time to ensure approval and avoid delays.
  • Contact the Namibian Drone Academy for further assistance and advice. They have helped many tourists before and can assist with the process.

No matter the process, drone footage in Namibia is worth it and if you are an avid videographer, you’ll be mighty glad you brought your drone along to get the aerial perspective. Namibia isn’t called “vast place” for nothing.

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