Can I Fly Drone Over a Football Stadium? A Handy Guide


Are you planning on flying a drone over a football stadium?

Before you take off, it’s important to know whether or not it’s legal to do so. The rules and regulations regarding drone flight can vary depending on the location, so it’s important to do your research beforehand.

In this article, I’ll answer the question: can you fly a drone over a football stadium?

In short, the answer is NO! You cannot fly drones over a football stadium due to safety and security concerns.

The laws around drone flight can be complex. So, I’ll also let you know about FAA regulations, security concerns, permissions needed, and penalties (if any) so that you’re fully informed.

Can I Fly Drone Over a Football Stadium

FAA Regulations on Flying Drones Over a Football Stadium

Due to the following FAA regulations, you are not allowed to fly drones over a football stadium:

  1. Flying drones in and around stadiums is prohibited starting one hour before and ending one hour after the scheduled time of Major League Baseball, National Football League, NCAA Division One Football, NASCAR Sprint Cup, Indy Car, and Champ Series races.
  2. UAS operations are prohibited within a radius of three nautical miles of the stadium or venue.
  3. Federal law restricts UAS from flying at or below 3,000 AGL within a 3 nautical mile radius of any stadium with a seating capacity of 30,000 or more people during specific events. This temporary flight restriction applies to the entire U.S. domestic National Airspace System.
  4. The FAA and SMA have developed a toolbox for stadium management and team representatives to use for media and outreach purposes. The FAA provides further detail in a Notice to Air Mission (NOTAM).


Security Concerns

Flying a drone over a football stadium comes with its own set of unique security concerns, which are worth considering before launching your drone. Here are some potential security concerns to keep in mind.

Security Concerns for Flying Drones Over a Football Stadium

  1. Privacy invasion: Drones equipped with cameras can capture images and videos of fans and staff without their consent, potentially violating privacy rights.
  2. Unauthorized surveillance: Drones can be used for unauthorized monitoring of security personnel’s actions, team strategies, or other sensitive information during the event.
  3. Interference with play: A drone flying too close to the field of play could disrupt the game, distract players, or interfere with the trajectory of the ball.
  4. Accident risks: Drones could malfunction, lose control, or collide with other objects, causing potential injury to fans, players, or staff within the stadium.
  5. Terrorism threats: Drones can be used to carry and deploy dangerous payloads, such as explosives or harmful substances, posing a significant security risk.

Permissions and Permits

Flying drones over a football stadium is not allowed due to the safety and privacy concerns associated with large gatherings and events. To ensure public safety and airspace regulations, obtaining permissions and permits for flying drones in such environments is not possible.

It is essential for drone operators to follow local and federal regulations, which may include no-fly zones, altitude restrictions, and other guidelines to avoid potential legal consequences and risks.

Penalties for Flying a Drone without Authorization

Penalties for flying drones without authorization over a football stadium can be quite severe. For instance, a pilot who operated a drone during an NFL game faced a $25,000 fine and 24 months probation after pleading guilty. It’s important to note that the punishment could have been even more stringent, with the maximum fine for such a violation being up to $100,000 and a year in jail.

Also check:


1. Can I Fly Drones Over a Football Stadium if I am not a Licensed Drone Pilot?

No, you cannot fly a drone over a football stadium if you are not a licensed drone pilot. Flying drones in restricted areas, such as near or over stadiums, is prohibited by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for safety and security reasons. Unauthorized drone flights in these controlled spaces can lead to penalties, fines, or even criminal charges. It is essential to follow the FAA guidelines and obtain proper certification and authorization before operating drones in any restricted area.

2. Who can Authorize the Use of Drones Over a Football Stadium?

The authorization for the use of drones over a football stadium typically comes from the stadium management, local authorities, and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). The FAA regulates airspace and sets guidelines for drone operations, including restrictions on flying over stadiums during certain events. Therefore, obtaining permission to fly a drone over a football stadium would require coordinating with these entities and ensuring that all safety and legal requirements are met.

3. Can the Police Fly Drones Over a Football Stadium?

Yes, the police can fly a drone over a football stadium if they have proper authorization and are adhering to regulations set by aviation authorities, such as the FAA in the United States. Law enforcement agencies often use drones for security and surveillance purposes during large events, ensuring crowd safety and monitoring any potential risks or disturbances. However, they must follow specific guidelines and coordinate with event organizers and aviation authorities to ensure the drone operations do not interfere with the event or pose a safety hazard.


In conclusion, before flying a drone over a football stadium, it’s important to familiarize yourself with the appropriate resources and tools. Download the B4UFLY mobile app to easily find safe and legal flying locations.

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

And if you have a related query, kindly feel free to let me know in the comments.

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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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