Using drones during tours has been a hobby of somebody to record the panoramic scenery, but they must know that things are different in some countries, particularly the strict drone regulations in Myanmar. There was even a foreign tourist prisoned for using drone inadequately in this mysterious country on Myanmar itinerary 5 days. Though it seems that there are no official drone laws in Myanmar (or Burma), but it does apply regulations to even sentence those who don’t follow. The following information is to help you avoid any risks for operating drones just in Myanmar.

About Drone Regulations in Myanmar for Tourist

Based on an article on the New York Times, here are some necessary information to keep in mind about drones in Myanmar.

  • Some tourists said that their drones were confiscated through customs.
  • Import a drone into the country is illegal and people might be put in jail.
  • Drones are forbidden in Yangon and many parts of the Naypyidaw capital city and Yangon city.
  • Drones are forbidden around the areas of the Palace in Mandalay.
  • Drones are forbidden near airports.
  • Drones are forbidden from using over a group of people that are gathering for any reasons, or over private property without permission.

Even though it seems people are legal to operate drones in some areas, it’s best to NOT to fly the drone in the strict country. And, it’s obvious that the authorities are generally opposed to the operation of drones especially by the foreign tourists. The similar caution is about bringing a drone through customs and it will be confiscated. That is a common thing! Oftentimes, when a country does not have a specific law, some customs officials decide to confiscate your drone or not – but as you might know, the drone might not escape their eyes. For a country that has no drone regulation, it is generally the country’s National or Civil Aviation Authority that creates and enforces the rules. So, it’s always best to contact Myanmar’s Department of Civil Aviation if you want an exact confirmation.

For more information, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration has rules for flying a drone as follows:

  • Do not fly a drone within 5 miles of an airport
  • Keep the drone visible
  • Fly at/below 400 feet/ during daylight or civil twilight
  • Fly at/below 100 mph
  • Avoid flying directly over people
  • Produce right of way to manned aircraft
  • Avoid flying from a moving vehicle, except in a sparsely inhabited place
Shwe Indein Pagoda by drone (Credit Trung Monotone)

Tips if you still want to fly a drone in Myanmar

If the panoramic aerial photography urges you, you can buy a drone in the local streets of Myanmar. Then, understand that the local authorities don’t like tourists flying the drone especially in the secretive areas, like government buildings, airports, or bus stations in Naypyidaw and Yangon. Make sure you fly a drone in the safe places, which means not close to the SECRETIVE places or the areas that are in touch of the policemen. It’s obvious that using a drone in the Parliament building in Naypyidaw is prohibited, so if anybody breaks the rules, they will be prisoned. Another clear issue that the rogue drone can be seen and heard for several kilometers in all directions, so make sure you do not draw any attention to your behaviors.

After reading all about drone regulations in Myanmar, just keep in mind that Myanmar has strict laws on unmanned aerial vehicles and those that violate the regulations can face prison for up to three years. For the best benefits, you might need to resist the temptation to fly a drone in Myanmar, especially in the big cities. Use it in the other countries where have specific drone laws or clear warning signposts.