Can I Fly Here? Guidelines for where you can fly your drone safely and legally in Canada

Can I fly here? It’s a common question for drone pilots in Canada. This video outlines the simple guidelines RPAS operators must use to determine if they can fly their drone safely and legally:
1. Are you within an aerodrome keep-out zone or controlled airspace?
2. Are you in any other potentially restricted areas?
3. Are there NOTAMS in effect that would affect flying here?
4. Is there an advertised event happening here?
5. Are there bystanders close to where you will be flying?
And I touch on the subject of privacy as well. Enjoy!

This checklist is part of the Drone Pilot Canada app. Drone Pilot Canada is the app of choice for Canadian drone flyers and is available for purchase here:

Please join the Drone Pilot Canada Exam and RPAS Regulation Discussion Group on Facebook:

My DonDronesOn Exam Study Guide PDFs and Soft Copy Log Books are available for purchase here:
Drone Study Guides

Videos are available on my channel with demos and training for all capabilities in Drone Pilot Canada. Contact me at with any questions or suggestions.

This video was filmed around Beaver Lake, Erinsville, Ontario, Canada in July and August 2019 using a DJI Mavic 2 Pro drone, a DJI Osmo Pocket camera and royalty free stock photos. All filming was done in compliance with the 2019 Canadian RPAS regulations and permission was obtained where necessary.

Choosing the right music for a video is important. I use music from Epidemic Sound. You can join Epidemic Sound from the link below and enjoy a free month:

#dronepilotcanada #dondroneson #newcanadiandroneregulations


  1. Hao Shi on October 10, 2020 at 12:40 pm

    Ottawa is all red zones, can I fly a mavic mini at all?

  2. Andy Fyon on October 10, 2020 at 12:42 pm

    Excellent review. Txs

  3. Brant Aerials on October 10, 2020 at 12:43 pm

    Interesting. I’m a Certified Advanced Pilot but the DJI Go4 app won’t let me fly near a registered (NOT certified) airport. It doesn’t have a way to recognize my certification. The drone just won’t take off.

  4. RODPIKER DRONES UK on October 10, 2020 at 12:46 pm

    Great video and information very well done thanks for sharing cheers

  5. Saadon Aksah on October 10, 2020 at 12:47 pm

    nice one! 👍

  6. Hadi Khaddage on October 10, 2020 at 12:48 pm

    Thanks for making this video very simple and easy to remember 👍🏻

  7. Zhongyi Ding on October 10, 2020 at 12:49 pm

    If my drone is Mavic mini that is under 250g, can I fly within 5km of airport? I live a few km away from a local airport. And does these rule apply to Mavic mini?

  8. Rod MacPherson on October 10, 2020 at 12:50 pm

    @Don Joyce
    So I think I mentioned somewhere in the Facebook conversations leading to this video that I was trying to find out what the deal was with Rouge National Urban Park and why it is not highlighted in Orange on the NRC map like other National Parks. Well, I got my answer back straight from the source.

    "Hello/Bonjour Rod!

    Thank you for contacting Parks Canada and for your interest in Rouge National Urban Park! Drones are definitely a complicated tool and it’s even more complicated for the Rouge!

    As Rouge National Urban Park does not fall under the Parks Canada Act, the Rouge does not qualify as an automatic “No drone zone” like other parks per Transport Canada regulations. That designation has to come from Transport Canada as that department is responsible for the airspace in Canada.

    Currently Rouge National Urban Park is not a no-fly zone for drones. This may change in the future depending on park priorities, however for now the National Research Council’s Site Selection Tool is an accurate representation of where users can operate their drones. It should be noted that there are airports, heliports and aerodromes within the vicinity of the Park that users need to be aware of. These are reflected in the site selection tool.

    I hope this information helps! If you have any additional questions about Rouge National Urban Park please feel free to call us at 416-264-2020 or email us at

    Hope you had a great long weekend!


    Lesli Rynyk

    Visitor Services, Rouge National Urban Park

    Parks Canada, Government of Canada"

    In a follow up she verified that the Parks Canada restrictions on take off and landing within the park still apply though, but if you launch from outside the park, the airspace over it (for now) is not restricted unless otherwise shown on the NRC map.

  9. Catnet44 on October 10, 2020 at 12:51 pm

    Question? If a drone weighs less than 250g, (eg the rumoured Mavic Mini or the current zerotech dobby) All that I can find from Transport Canada is " If you have a micro drone, you must never put people or aircraft in danger. Always fly responsibly. " Are you aware of other restrictions, given that "responsibly" would cover privacy, national parks and disaster restrictions.

  10. OldGal's Fishin' & Frolics on October 10, 2020 at 12:51 pm

    Hi Don…First and foremost thank you for the great content you make to help us undestand these rules and regulations. WIth your help I was able to pass my basic pilot licence. Now I live in Edmonton Alberta and I was wondering if you know if it’s permissible to fly a drone in our parks here? I keep emailing & asking the city but nobody seems to get back to me!

  11. Dave Stredulinsky on October 10, 2020 at 12:52 pm

    Thank you Don. A great summary with clarifications of the "rules". A good refresher "course". I agree re the inaccuracy of DJI information. On occasion I have had warnings while flying when I was in a zone which had no flying restrictions. Thank you for sharing.

  12. Johnson i Bass on October 10, 2020 at 12:52 pm

    Don thanks for posting good information. God bless

  13. Accent Furniture on October 10, 2020 at 12:53 pm

    Good job Don ,thanks!

  14. Herve Despres on October 10, 2020 at 12:55 pm

    You’ve answered my questions with this.. Thank You!!

  15. shayan vaghei on October 10, 2020 at 12:55 pm

    What is the name of the app to show the red and orange zones in Canada?

  16. Michael Powell on October 10, 2020 at 1:04 pm

    Great video but I’m still confused on according to TC site, the Manufacturer Safety Assurance for the Mavic Air states it can fly in controlled airspace and near people but not over people. With RPAS Advanced certification can I do so even if it’s not stated at ?

  17. spcvicar on October 10, 2020 at 1:07 pm

    Great post Don. Question if someone doing real estate vids with drone less than 250 grams which permit applies? Is it advanced because commercial attachment, could go to Internet, or does no permit required as under the 250 gram size. Thanks in advance!

  18. Scuba Travel and Adventure on October 10, 2020 at 1:08 pm

    not sure why someone could not like this video putting thumb down, i found it informative

  19. Skylers on October 10, 2020 at 1:08 pm

    I checked on Transport Canada’s map and went to a nearby park which is within an uncontrolled airspace. However, I do see plane flying high above within visual sight. Would there be any issues flying there?

  20. Steve Boyko on October 10, 2020 at 1:11 pm

    Thank you, Don – very comprehensive!

  21. mark131984 on October 10, 2020 at 1:11 pm

    Drone laws here in US is way better than Canada. No offense.

  22. JAA J on October 10, 2020 at 1:13 pm

    Thanks Don great tutorial

  23. Nemesis 851 on October 10, 2020 at 1:14 pm

    Nav Canada or Transport Canada are the regulators of air space in Canada, so how can a city BAN ALL flight EVERYWHERE IN THE CITY LIMITS?
    (example : Calgary AB)
    Though what is in print says no flight in/over parks, no flight over streets or pathways, or over City of Calgary property, or the owner of the private land, that excludes like 98% of the city.
    Call into their information line and they “No where”

  24. Omar Bedair on October 10, 2020 at 1:15 pm

    Thank you Don. My goto expert for my drone flying.

  25. Steve Arnold on October 10, 2020 at 1:15 pm

    Hi Don, I have a question about interpretation of "flying over" people. Without a constant gimbal-down orientation, how can one ensure they’re not "flying over" random people while flying from point A to point B? Or is the intent that you’re not intentionally directly overhead while maintaining a stationary position? If a drone has a catastrophic failure and turns into a brick at 100m altitude while traveling horizontally at anything more than 1m/S (a mere 3.6kph), then it can certainly hit someone 5m away at ground level. Also, VLOS to the drone does not necessarily include VLOS with people on the ground below the drone. How does practicality and common sense prevail here where the letter of the law seems blind to the laws of physics?

  26. Luv2rip FPV on October 10, 2020 at 1:15 pm

    EXCELLENT video Don!

  27. leebog31 on October 10, 2020 at 1:17 pm

    When do they ask if you have a certificate of registration? Can I bring the drone through the airport without registraion or they wont let you in to Canada?

  28. Alvaro Torrado on October 10, 2020 at 1:18 pm

    Does rule number one applies for drones less than 250 grams? I read there is only one rule for those drones.

  29. D S on October 10, 2020 at 1:19 pm

    Thank you for your help

  30. Ken Potter on October 10, 2020 at 1:20 pm

    Hey Don, great video as always. I just wanted to clarify though that as a basic certified drone pilot I can fly within the 30M horizontal restrictions as long as I have anyone inside that areas permission? I just wanted to make sure that I understood properly. Thanks again Don.

  31. Pinetree Line Productions on October 10, 2020 at 1:21 pm

    Great information Don! Thanks for breaking this information down.

  32. Tony on October 10, 2020 at 1:23 pm

    Thanks for all of the good work! I just passed the Canadian drone basic exam use the document from your earlier video and get an 80%! After watching this video, I have a more clear head about the place I could fly! Again, thanks for all of the great work!

  33. GunnerMac on October 10, 2020 at 1:23 pm

    Do you know why Ottawa has 2 bubbles around the airport? Is one the 5.6km keep out zone and the other is the controlled airspace?

  34. Derek Cox on October 10, 2020 at 1:23 pm

    Another great episode! I have the dpc app and I love it! Solid info here. Thanks for the good work!

  35. CartExcel Business Ltd. on October 10, 2020 at 1:24 pm

    It is challenging to fly drones in cities like Toronto since all areas have either people and open area belong to city park. I contacted a park authority in Ajax, ON and they could not even tell me where there park ends and regular green field starts

  36. Dominic Owens on October 10, 2020 at 1:25 pm

    I love how the new RPAS guidelines are very unclear for "how" they don’t apply to sub-250 drone such as the Mavic Mini. Transport Canada clearly states that the Mavic Mini or any sub-250 drone does not fall under the basic or advanced categories, but doesn’t state how they rule from those categories therefore apply to said drone.

  37. AmerSheikh on October 10, 2020 at 1:25 pm

    Can you fly in the red zones inside a house if I have Basic License. Thanks!

  38. Dallas Butcher on October 10, 2020 at 1:26 pm

    Thank you

  39. Drone vidéo & travel on October 10, 2020 at 1:26 pm

    Very good job !

  40. Simon Blunden on October 10, 2020 at 1:26 pm

    This is exactly why I’m selling my drone 😡

  41. sylvain lepine on October 10, 2020 at 1:26 pm

    Thanks Don!

  42. Steve Arnold on October 10, 2020 at 1:29 pm

    Hi Don, any chance you could do a video regarding reciprocal agreements and regs for certified Canucks bringing registered drones into the US for personal/leisure use? There seems to be a lack of available guidance in this respect.

  43. Matt Humphrey on October 10, 2020 at 1:33 pm

    Advanced Operations Orange Zones: Ask Permission –
    Do we always require an RPAS Flight Authorization submission, or is there ever a time where it’s okay to just phone the tower for permission?

    I feel like I’m asking so many stupid questions… there’s just so much to remember. You should see how many manuals and lists and maps I’ve printed off for my Flight Review next week… I wish I was able to do the review right after my flight school that I completed, but now it’s been almost a year since I learned all this stuff.

  44. Patrick Morrell on October 10, 2020 at 1:34 pm

    Nicely done!

  45. Polish Surprise Eggs on October 10, 2020 at 1:34 pm

    cool video, sub and big like for you

  46. José Antonio Portero on October 10, 2020 at 1:35 pm

    Mucha confusión en el espacio europeo. Siempre es interesante conocer la legislación de drones en otros países. Buen trabajo, Don Joyce. Saludos.

  47. Cosmo Valentino on October 10, 2020 at 1:35 pm

    Thank you much for the detailed information!

  48. eli imperio on October 10, 2020 at 1:36 pm

    Can you fly over the road with moving vehicles?

  49. Aby Cre on October 10, 2020 at 1:36 pm

    It’s very helpful n thanks 🙏🏾

  50. zhe jia on October 10, 2020 at 1:36 pm

    Hi, thank you for the video. My question is whether I can fly the mavic mini in the red zones and yellow zones? As long I don’t do anything stupid and irresponsible? Thank’s

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