Drones in Canada

Also: A note for us US-based folks .... (This is from the Transport Canada website as of today's date)...

Foreign operators
If you are a foreign operator (that is, you are not a Canadian citizen, permanent resident or a corporation incorporated by or under federal or provincial and you want to fly in Canadian airspace), you must have an approved SFOC to fly a drone for any purpose (recreational, work or research).
You must already be allowed to use the drone for the same purpose in your home country. Include your country’s approval or authorization with your application for the SFOC.
(from here)

(Note: An SFOC is a Special Flight Operations Certificate.... meaning a special permission to fly 'outside the rules' established for Canadian citizens.)

I don't mean to hijack the thread but I'd love to hear from any US-based UAV operators who apply for an SPOC for recreational purposes (to understand how it went).


It's a bit confusing for US folks who want to fly common recreational UAVs in Canada to see YouTube videos showing things like how to register the UAV/RPAS in Canada, how to take the test, etc. That kind of implies the way to comply with Canadian law would be to get the UAV/RPAS registered there and take the applicable test. But that's not the case. The registration and test are for Canadian citizens only. Instead, the Special Flight Operations Certificate process relies on the registration and approval already obtained in the US. However, it's not yet clear (to me, anyway) how the SFOC process assures foreign operators have reviewed the Canada-specific flying rules. I did a search through the 'Guides and Help' documents on that SFOC web page and they don't even contain the word 'foreign' at all (yet!). This is a very fluid situation with all the regulation changes and new guidance just put into effect by Transport Canada and by our FAA. So I assume it will take some time before we see more comprehensive info on this topic.


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