Using your Drone for Paid Work – Commercial Work & Selling Your Pictures & Videos

Using your Drone for Paid Work – Commercial Work & Selling Your Pictures & Videos

#commercialdronerules #2021
0:00 Intro
0:50 USA definitions
1:43 UK definitions
3:38 Rules
4:00 A2CofC
6:03 Wind Turbines & Combines

What are the rules for paid or commercial drone work in the UK or USA? Can you sell your drone pictures and video on Picfair or Shutterstock? When do you need to fly under Part 107 rules in the USA? Can you upload drone footage to a monetized YouTube channel? When do you need Commercial Insurance? When is a flight deemed commercial rather than recreational? Do you need the A2 CofC or the GVC to fly commercially? Too many questions! But all get answered under the new rules for 2021.
Go out and get paid; the World is your Oyster…. 🙂

USA: FAA Drone Site for Remote Pilot Certificate and part 107:

More info in UK Commercial Insurance:
And check out Sean @Geeksvana ‘s excellent video on Commercial Insurance:

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Happy flying everyone…. Ian


  1. Christopher Johnston on May 7, 2022 at 6:27 pm

    Great clear info so I can now fly from my garden any advice on that as I fly a Mavic mini many thanks chris

  2. luke reeves on May 7, 2022 at 6:28 pm

    Hi Ian, great videos thanks 😀 I own a roofing company in the uk and I would love to buy a mini 2 for roof inspections and reports what do I need to do for this. I believe I still need insurance? Sorry if I sound silly haha

    Thanks Luke

  3. Stephen Gibbons on May 7, 2022 at 6:30 pm

    Nice video Ian, thanks. Just to complicate matters, do you know whether I would need commercial insurance if I am flying at the request of a charity. I am not being paid, but they might go on to use the material in any way they wish which might mean they make money, lets say selling prints as an example. Thanks

  4. whitesnake329 on May 7, 2022 at 6:32 pm

    Just bought the mini 2 ! phew ! A drone-aholic friend of mine, put me onto your videos and I am very impressed. (depressed from covid!). A daft question, as you are the oracle on drones, IF i go to Thailand at the end of year (covid permitting of course) are there any specific rules if I took my drone as hand luggage on the plane? and are there any restrictions in other countries? P.S. With reference to your other videos I have taken the batteries out the charger & my mini 2, imagine it catching fire on a plane ! Claiming on the dji ‘care insurance’ would be fun ! That’s a good point is a mini 2 or any other drone covered on holiday insurance !? Food for thought……..could be worth making a video on the options !

  5. Sam on May 7, 2022 at 6:33 pm

    Thanks for the informative video once again.
    I have a question regarding the Mini 2 battery.
    Am i correct in thinking that if the battery is inside the drone or charging case then they DONT automatically discharge and can thus damage battery?

  6. Pro Air Media on May 7, 2022 at 6:34 pm

    Great video Ian. You mention that a DJI Mini 2 can be used to sell pictures without commercial insurance but I can’t find this in written form anywhere. Can you advise where I can find it in case someone questions me? Thanks

  7. RODPIKER DRONES UK on May 7, 2022 at 6:34 pm

    Thanks for sharing Ian 👍

  8. glyn date on May 7, 2022 at 6:37 pm

    hi ian can you please tell me were i can download printable CAA rules so i can keep in bag [just incase ]thanks glyn

  9. Karl on May 7, 2022 at 6:39 pm

    In terms of using larger drones (like for eg: Mavic 2pro, or the new Mavic Air 2S) to get into commercial photography in Ireland (both in the UK in Northern Ireland, and in the EU in the Republic of Ireland), do both of the certifications apply there too, namely the A2 CofC, and the CVC? Or are these certifications only applicable to the UK do you happen to know? Would I have to apply for the certifications above to fly commercially in Northern Ireland, and then (an)other certification(s) to fly commercially in the Republic?

    I suppose I can ask the same question about commercial insurance while I’m here. Would insurance apply across both jurisdictions, or again would I need to get insured in both jurisdictions separately?

  10. Capturin Pixals on May 7, 2022 at 6:39 pm

    So Is it okay to fly in your land with no crowds as a hobby not to making money….?

  11. Steve 'Kaboobi' Roo on May 7, 2022 at 6:39 pm

    Good clear explanation and some superb aerials.

  12. Jason Donavich on May 7, 2022 at 6:39 pm

    What about if you fly and take photos of landscapes or cliffs and the like away from people and then you sell those photos as prints, is that classed as commercial?
    The general public are to blame for all these regulations.

  13. Matthew Hardy on May 7, 2022 at 6:41 pm

    Could you recommend an insurance company for using a mini 2 please, so informative 👌🏼

  14. Landrover Lover166 on May 7, 2022 at 6:41 pm

    So if I posted photos from recreational flights on social media and people bought them then I don’t need commercial insurance but I do need it if they ask me to fly?

  15. mark ockwell on May 7, 2022 at 6:42 pm

    Thanks Ian – I am going to stick with the mini 2, at least for now…..

  16. Ian in London on May 7, 2022 at 6:42 pm

    So hopefully some useful info for selling yourself and making money. And hands up who remembers this track?
    Cheers everyone!

  17. Malcolm - GGMU on May 7, 2022 at 6:43 pm

    Thanks for the clarity Ian 😉

  18. All things Plane on May 7, 2022 at 6:44 pm

    Effectively they have made it easier to make money from drone work. However I still think people will ignore the rules anyway and continue using drones for commercial use without licenses

  19. john godfrey on May 7, 2022 at 6:44 pm

    thanks lan

  20. Captivating Video Clips on May 7, 2022 at 6:44 pm

    Sorry Ian ,
    I would be fly the DJI AIR 2S

  21. Graeme Heinrich on May 7, 2022 at 6:48 pm

    Over "crowds". 2 people could be a crowd according to CAA rules I’ve been told. The ability to escape (or not) defines the word "crowd".

  22. DimmyV on May 7, 2022 at 6:48 pm

    Amazing thanks for the clarification. Also have you found it hard to fly downtown London. I have a mini 2 and getting approval from NTAS for restricted zones has actually be simple and straight forward. I’m struggling to find a suitable place to take off from. Any suggestions?

  23. Matt Warren on May 7, 2022 at 6:51 pm

    Love your work. I’m hoping to find some wind turbines soon to shoot with my mini 1! So it’s just the insurance that’s required bfor All drones including the mini, to fly for reward, just making sure I got the jist of the video correct.

  24. diggerlenox on May 7, 2022 at 6:51 pm

    So just to clarify if I wanted to fly my mini 2 for work purposes all I need is insurance and don’t have to inform the CAA for authorisation and don’t have to inform them of a flight plan?

  25. Drone Flyer on May 7, 2022 at 6:53 pm

    Hi Ian have you any indication on how the new drone laws have affected drone flyers in the UK? I’m based in the Channel Islands and we have yet to change our laws inline with EASA guidelines?

  26. Dave Sandico on May 7, 2022 at 6:54 pm

    Thanks Ian !! 👍

  27. Jim Martins on May 7, 2022 at 6:54 pm

    Once again Ian, clear and precise information, thank you again.

  28. Gaz Deavall on May 7, 2022 at 6:54 pm

    Amazing to know. I was looking at doing my GVC so I could use my mini 2 commercially so this has saved me a tonne of money. Thanks Ian, love your videos. Very informative

  29. Captivating Video Clips on May 7, 2022 at 6:57 pm

    Hi Ian,
    On the commercial insurance…if i have my own drone business and have real estate agents onboard in the uk and i am taking
    Videos and pictures for them and lets just say there property is out in the country do i still need commercial insurance or do i
    Just need commercial insurance full stop whether I’m in the country or not . Plus if i am in towns and cities but there are no people
    Or traffic do i still need my A2CFC.

  30. Dave Mart on May 7, 2022 at 6:59 pm

    Great info thanks ian, just bought mini 2 drone today awesome tips

  31. Lindsay Heyes on May 7, 2022 at 7:01 pm

    Thanks Ian, that’s very useful for everyone who finds themselves on the blurred lines.

  32. Tommy Cote on May 7, 2022 at 7:02 pm

    Would it be possible to include Canada in future videos? I believe Canada rules resemble UK rules.

  33. Jason Harry on May 7, 2022 at 7:03 pm

    Good video cheers

  34. Dave Drew Landscape Photography on May 7, 2022 at 7:04 pm

    Had this happen yesterday at Swanage where I was flying for my own pleasure when I was asked to get some footage of a shop on the pier, so as I understand it, I can buy a short term (one day) commercial insurance.

  35. Виталий Духота on May 7, 2022 at 7:05 pm

    Useful and to the point as usual – thank you Ian. Can you do a video about the commercial insurance providers, available in the UK? I tried to find insurance for filming weddings and didn’t find much choice.

  36. Rob Follett Creative on May 7, 2022 at 7:06 pm

    Great video Ian

  37. Jordie on May 7, 2022 at 7:07 pm

    Under the Open Category rules, it specifically mentions flight over people in the A1 category but then shifts to only referring to horizontal distance from uninvolved people. Does this mean you can fly over people in an A2 flight or are we to respect the rule that horizontal and vertical distance scale evenly?

    Also, are you able to personally treat a flight as C2, for example, if you meet the mass/speed limits, on a drone that hasn’t yet been certified or is it solely for new and officially certified drones?

    Many thanks.

  38. izoyt on May 7, 2022 at 7:08 pm

    Yes, this how open category drone rules in EU should be after December 31, 2020. But sadly, they are not, as different EU member state still managing their drone regulations partially or completely disregarding universal easa rules/directive (in excuse of local geographical zones etc), which should be same within whole eu/easa region.
    For ex. here in Slovenia, you are not obligated to have insurance in open category for drones under 20kg (but it is "recommended" for commercial work), but on the other hand, all drones over 500g are banned in urban (that includes every road or pavement etc) areas, and only max 50m AGL, no night flights and special permission of land owner is required for drones under 500g. No matter if you are A2 certificate holder or not (which i am), so no sense having it here. In Croatia, they actually have some implementation of older legalisation, which bans you fly or better to say take footage in the sky as non commercial user, so they’re basically shot down the hobby for users in open category. Also, as far as I know, countries like Poland etc the actually didn’t implemented easa directive yet, also as i was looking, in Germany for ex. i think it’s actually forbidden to fly over buildings etc in open category etc. There are some speculations, that drone certifications, that you obtain in one EU state, is not truly accepted in other etc, universal EU archive of drone pilot certifications (as this was one of the biggest mantras of that easa representations) is not running yet and probably never be.

    So, all things considered so far, this easa thing looks more as a joke to me and it is still far away from what it should be. An i don’t’ think this is not attentional, there is clearly agenda put "hobby" drones to the ground. As in EU, as in States and the rest of "western" hemisphere. Which i don’t think would happen, if DJI was a company, coming from that regions. Simple as that..

  39. gward135 on May 7, 2022 at 7:12 pm

    Question – What about if you’re purely doing some work for a business that is entirely unpaid or rewardless? So you will fly for them to be able to use some footage either on their website, or social media, and I may post the footage on my own instagram too? Is this still commerical, or can I fly just under recreational use? I’m using a Mini 2.

  40. Dee Markov on May 7, 2022 at 7:14 pm

    Thanks matey

  41. COASTER CRAZY on May 7, 2022 at 7:15 pm

    Brilliant information and has cleared up some questions for me !! I have a Mini 2 and use my drone to get footage over amusement parks here in the U.K. and I am constantly told what I can and can’t do from the typical “drone police” that haven’t got a clue

  42. Shortys Pool stream on May 7, 2022 at 7:15 pm

    Great information look forward to more mini 2 tips

  43. Landrover Lover166 on May 7, 2022 at 7:17 pm

    The FPV club third party liability insurance in the description (19 quid per year) is that only for recreational flights or commercial as well (it doesn’t say anything about commercial insurance on the website)

  44. Rogar0 on May 7, 2022 at 7:17 pm

    Once again Ian, your slant on Drone flying and the rules is very useful! Thanks matey and from Lake Balaton in Hungary, nagyszerű, és köszönöm szépen! Oh yea & egészségedre! 🦉👍🍷😎

  45. Calum MacRae on May 7, 2022 at 7:19 pm

    Thanks Ian! Are you thinking of doing another video for the 2022 rules?

  46. Byron Turner on May 7, 2022 at 7:21 pm

    So I own a mini 2, does that mean like I don’t need anything to fly commercial, confused here

  47. John McKeown on May 7, 2022 at 7:22 pm

    Very helpful video. In the past, you were able to shoot promotional footage for your own company without insurance, or at least classifying it as commercial material if I remember rightly (I did the first part of the PfCo)? I have two companies – one video production and one drinks. Am I able to shoot promotional material for both without need for commercial insurance please, especially as it will be registered in my personal name and producing images for both of my one person limited companies? Thanks.

  48. Simon D on May 7, 2022 at 7:22 pm

    Thanks as always for keeping it simple. For once, it looks like a rule change is an improvement!

  49. Aztech Drones on May 7, 2022 at 7:24 pm

    Love that track it is a pleasure 👍

  50. Mobile Freelancer on May 7, 2022 at 7:24 pm

    What about the Mavic mini? Can you still use this to post videos on YouTube? I renewed my Operator ID and it said insurer not sure what it is, as it wasn’t there last year?

    All i want to know is can i monetize my video with drone videos in it? and can i use my Mavic mini anywhere as its under the 250g? I vaguely remember one of your video few months back saying you can use it even in your garden? Not that i will but do these rules still apply?

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