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New Zealand Drone Regulations*

General context

In New Zealand, drones are regulated by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAANZ) under Part 101 and Part 102 of the Civil Aviation Rules. Part 101 covers the operation of drones for recreational and commercial purposes, while Part 102 covers the use of drones under more specific and restrictive conditions. More details are available on the CAANZ website.


It is legal to fly your Parrot drone in New Zealand, but as is often the case, limitations apply to ensure the safety of people and equipment. Here are the main points you need to know.


Key rules with your Parrot drone

  • You must only fly during the day and always keep your drone within visual line-of-sight.
  • You must not fly your drone higher than 120 meters above the ground.
  • You must not fly over or above people, and you should keep your drone at least 30 meters away from other people. You may fly over a given person if you have prior consent.
  • You must keep at least 4km away from controlled aerodromes.
  • Respect personal privacy. Do not record or photograph people without their consent.
  • Do not fly a drone over marine life.

Specific rules

If you want to go beyond the rules of Part 101 listed above, you will need to hold a Part 102 unmanned aircraft operator certificate.


Part 102 is designed for higher-risk operations. It applies to UAS operations that are considered high-risk or beyond the scope of Part 101. For example, this may include operations such as flying drones over people or property, flying beyond line of sight, or flying in controlled airspace. It is extremely flexible, in that very few activities are specifically prohibited (other than carrying passengers, for example).


Under Part 102, operators are required to obtain a certification from the CAA before they can conduct a drone operation. The certification process involves applying to the CAA and demonstrating that the UAS operation can be conducted safely and in compliance with the regulations.


Some of the key requirements under Part 102 include:


  • Operating manual: Operators must have an operating manual that outlines the procedures and processes for conducting the drone operation safely.
  • Risk management: Operators must conduct a risk assessment to identify and manage any potential hazards associated with the drone operation.
  • Training and qualifications: Operators must have qualified and trained personnel to operate and maintain the drone.
  • Airspace coordination: Operators must coordinate with air traffic control and obtain any necessary approvals for flying in controlled airspace.
  • Equipment requirements: drone equipment must meet certain standards and be properly maintained.
  • Record keeping: Operators must keep records of all drone operations, including flight data and maintenance records. You can create an account in Parrot.Cloud and record your flight data.


You can find more information on the CAANZ website, Part 102 page.


You are ready to fly!

If you have followed the steps listed, then you are safe to fly.


A dedicated FAQ is available for drone operators.


Remember to stay away from restricted areas such as airports or government buildings. Find here a drone safety application to find out where you can and can’t fly your drone.


* The regulatory content is provided for informational purposes only. It is not a substitute for obtaining legal advice from a lawyer. Parrot does not warrant that the information is accurate, complete or current.