Can You Fly A Drone in Iceland? (Answered)


In this blog post, we’ll explore the question, “Is drone flying allowed in Iceland?”.

So, let’s jump in and discover everything you need to know — regulations, penalties (if any) and safety tips to keep in mind!

Can You Fly A Drone in Iceland

Can You Fly a Drone in Iceland?

Yes, you can fly a drone in Iceland. However, it is essential to familiarize yourself with the local regulations and guidelines to ensure a safe and legal flying experience. Here drone flights are regulated by the Icelandic Transport Authority (ITA), which has specific rules and restrictions in place to protect public safety and privacy. By adhering to these regulations and respecting the local authorities’ guidelines, drone enthusiasts can enjoy capturing stunning aerial footage while exploring Iceland’s beautiful landscapes.

Overview of Drone Regulations

Let’s take a look at some of the key points for drone regulations:

Maximum Altitude Limits

  • The maximum flight altitude for drones in unrestricted areas is 120 meters (400 feet) above ground level.
  • If operation is to be conducted at an altitude of more than 120 meters above ground or within a controlled airspace, a special permission from the Icelandic Transport Authority must be obtained.

Distance Restrictions

  • The distance from any person, vessel, vehicle, or structure not under the control of the operator should not be less than 150 meters horizontally.
  • Remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) or drones should always fly within the visual line of sight and not exceed a distance of 500 meters from the operator.

Prohibited Activities and Actions

  • Directly flying over crowds or large public events is strictly prohibited unless special permission has been granted by the Icelandic Transport Authority.
  • All drone operators must ensure that they maintain visual line of sight (VLOS) with their drones at all times during flight, going beyond VLOS is not allowed unless a special waiver is obtained.

Privacy and Data Protection Considerations

  • All drone operators must respect the privacy rights of individuals and refrain from capturing images or video recordings of private properties or individuals without their explicit consent. This includes not flying over residential areas, schools, hospitals, or other private and sensitive premises.
  • In line with Iceland’s Data Protection Act, any data collected through drone flights, including photos or videos, must be stored securely and not disclosed to third parties without appropriate consent. Furthermore, the data should only be retained for as long as necessary and deleted when it’s no longer needed.

Commercial Operations

  • Commercial drone operators are required to obtain a specific license from the Icelandic Transport Authority (ICETRA), demonstrating that they have undergone the necessary training and that they comply with all safety and privacy regulations.
  • The maximum permissible flight altitude for commercial operations is 120 meters, or approximately 400 feet. Additionally, all commercial drone flights must maintain a minimum distance of 2 kilometers from any airport or airfield.

Penalties for Violating Drone Regulations

If you violate drone regulations in Iceland, you could face significant penalties. These can range from fines to the seizure of your drone, or in serious cases, even criminal charges. The fines could vary widely depending on the nature and severity of the violation. For example, flying in a no-fly zone or causing injury or property damage could lead to severe penalties.

Additionally, if you’re seen to consistently disregard the rules, the Icelandic Transportation Safety Board (ITSB) could potentially revoke your drone operating rights. It’s also important to remember that these penalties can apply to both locals and tourists. So, it’s crucial to follow regulations and respect the privacy and safety of others when flying a drone in Iceland.

Tips for Safe and Responsible Drone Flying in Iceland

To ensure a positive drone flying experience and comply with the regulations, here are some essential tips to keep in mind:

  1. Understand Weather Conditions: Always check the weather beforehand, as high winds, snow, or freezing temperatures can severely impact drone performance and safety.
  2. Respect Privacy Rules: Avoid flying over private property or crowded areas to respect privacy and prevent potential disturbances.
  3. Stay within Range: Always ensure that your drone remains within your line of sight and control range to prevent loss or accidents.
  4. Adhere to Altitude Limits: Never fly your drone higher than 120 meters (400 feet) as per Icelandic Transport Authority regulations.
  5. Protect Wildlife: Avoid disturbing wildlife, especially in sensitive areas such as bird nesting sites, to minimize environmental impact.


Can I Fly My Drone at Night in Iceland?

Yes, you can fly your drone at night in Iceland. However, ensure to follow the Icelandic Transport Authority’s guidelines which includes maintaining visual line of sight with the drone, even in nighttime conditions.

Can You Bring a Drone to Iceland?

Yes, you can bring a drone to Iceland. However, it’s crucial to follow the Icelandic Transport Authority regulations for drone use, which includes respecting privacy laws, no-fly zones, and maintaining visual contact with your drone.

Do I Need a License or Permit to Fly a Drone in Iceland?

Yes, you need a license to fly a drone in Iceland. The Icelandic Transport Authority requires drone operators to get a permit, especially for drones weighing over 3kg or for flying in controlled airspace or near airports.


Before you launch your drone into the Iceland skies, it’s crucial to understand the area’s drone laws and regulations.

This applies not only to Iceland but also to other destinations around the world. For example, if you’re heading to Canada, it’s important to know the specific rules and guidelines for drone flying there. Similarly, if you have dreams of capturing breathtaking footage of Prague or exploring drone opportunities around Lincoln Harbor Park, it’s essential to be aware of the local drone regulations in those locations as well.

Drone laws are subject to change, and information in this blog may become outdated; always consult official sources for the latest regulations.

So, whether you’re planning a leisurely flight or engaging in commercial drone operations, make sure to fly responsibly, and stay informed.

Resources and Further Information:

Photo of author
Peter Karanja is a licensed drone pilot from Kenya, freelance writer and drone enthusiast. He has been using drones for land survey, GIS, and photography for the past three years. Being a drone user, he loves writing about drone applications, safety tips for using drones, and the best ways to get the most out of a drone.

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