Drone Licensing

Do I need a pilot certificate to fly my drone in Canada?
Effective June 1, 2019, if you fly drones (UAVs) or Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS) with a maximum takeoff weight of 250 grams (g) up to and including 25 kilograms (kg) in Canadian Domestic Airspace, you are required by law to obtain a pilot certificate to operate legally.

Click here to find out more.
How can I get a pilot certificate to fly legally in Canada?
Effective June 1, 2019, if you are a Canadian Citizen or a Permanent Resident of Canada and plan to fly your drone recreationally, you must pass the Small Basic Exam.
Canadian Citizens or Permanent Residents of Canada looking to fly non-recreationally are required to pass the Small Advanced Exam and an in-person Flight Review.
The written online Small Basic and Small Advanced Exams are administered by Transport Canada. Flight reviews are conducted by RPASOTC's Transport Canada-appointed Flight Reviewer.

Click here to find out more.
What is the Transport Canada online exam based on?
Online exam questions are based on TP 15263 - Knowledge of Requirements for Pilots of Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS). However, this document is not a study guide. Transport Canada strongly recommends taking a course with a drone flight school to prepare for your online exam.

Click here to get started.
Do I need to register with a drone school to prepare for my drone pilot certificate exam?
While it is not mandatory for you to register, Transport Canada strongly recommends you attend a drone school before attempting the exam, given the amount and depth of knowledge that is required to fully cover each subject area of TP 15263 - Knowledge of Requirements for Pilots of Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS).

Click here to get started.
Does RPASOTC guarantee my success with passing the Small Basic Exam or the Small Advanced Exam administered by Transport Canada?
We are extremely proud of our success rate and testimonials from clients are a measure of this.
The only gaurantee RPASOTC offers is to provide an exceptional learning experience delivered by highly experienced pilot-instructors.
Each live interactive session enrols a very limited number of candidates, and each candidate is provided with professionally designed training material.

Click here to learn more or register.
What does a flight review involve and how do I prepare for it?
Once you have successfully completed the Transport Canada-administered Small Advanced Exam and obtained a Certificate of Registration for your drone, an in-person flight review must be completed to demonstrate your ability to fly and apply the knowledge from the Small Advanced Exam.
The fight review is not a training flight but an evaluation of your knowledge and flight skills at the end of your training.
If you do not own a drone, or own one which does not match the sRPAS weight category of 250 grams (g) up to and including 25 kilograms (kg), RPASOTC can lend you a drone for the flight review.

Click here to book your review with our Transport Canada-appointed Flight Reviewer and request a comprehensive guide to help you prepare.
Does RPASOTC conduct flight reviews on behalf of Transport Canada?
Yes, RPASOTC's Transport Canada-appointed Flight Reviewers can conduct flight reviews, which is the last step for acquiring a Pilot Certificate – Small Remotely Piloted Aircraft (VLOS) – Advanced Operations.

Click here to book your flight review with our Transport Canada-appointed Flight Reviewer and request a free comprehensive guide to help you prepare.
What is recurrent training and am I required to take it?
To remain certified, every drone (RPAS/UAV) pilot holding a Pilot Certificate - Basic operations or a Pilot Certificate - Advanced operations is required to successfully complete a recurrent training activity set out in section 921.04 of Standard 921 — Small Remotely Piloted Aircraft in Visual Line-of-Sight (VLOS). This cycle follows a recurring 2 year basis.
For holders of the Pilot Certificate – Advanced operations, the cycle begins the day you receive your certificate.

Click here to download and complete the 2020-2021 RPAS Recency Requirements Self-Paced Study Program released by Transport Canada.

Drone Training

Is RPASOTC a Transport Canada-listed drone (RPAS/UAV) training provider?
Yes, we are officially listed by Transport Canada as a drone (RPAS/UAV) training provider.

RPASOTC offers live instructor-led Ground School (Theory) and in-person Flight School (Practical) training in both, Basic Operations and Advanced Operations categories.
RPASOTC courses cover all the topics/subjects outlined by Transport Canada in TP 15263 - Knowledge of Requirements for Pilots of Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS).

Click here to get started.
Does RPASOTC offer training to prepare for Transport Canada’s online exam?
Yes, RPASOTC’s live instructor-led online Basic Training and Advanced Training offers are comprehensive and exceed the guidelines provided by Transport Canada.
RPASOTC also offers Flight School for those learning to fly or preparing for the Flight Review, a requirement for the Advanced Pilot Certificate.

Click here to learn more.
Does RPASOTC offer Basic drone training?
Our comprehensive Basic Drone Operations training program prepares you to apply for a Pilot Certificate – Small Remotely Piloted Aircraft (VLOS) – Basic Operations and covers material on the following topics/subjects dedicated to TP 15263 - Knowledge of Requirements for Pilots of Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS).

Click here to get started.
Does RPASOTC offer Advanced drone training?
Our comprehensive Advanced Drone Operations training program prepares you to apply for a Pilot Certificate – Small Remotely Piloted Aircraft (VLOS) – Advanced Operations and covers material on the following topics/subjects dedicated to TP 15263 - Knowledge of Requirements for Pilots of Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS).
RPASOTC's Advanced flight training program prepares you for the flight review, which is an in-person exam that must be completed to demonstrate your ability to fly and apply the knowledge from the Small Advanced Exam.

Click here to get started.
Why should I consider RPASOTC for drone pilot training?
RPASOTC’s primary focus is drone operations and training.
Our leading-edge multi-media online and in-class inter-active Basic and Advanced training programs are crafted with the modern learner in mind. Our add-on practical skills training guarantees a well-rounded experience to equip you with the knowledge, skills and hands-on experience required to confidently conduct drone operations in Canada.
Using AI-driven adaptive learning technologies, we offer ongoing sustainment training on all topics/subjects dedicated to Transport Canada’s TP 15263 - Knowledge of Requirements for Pilots of Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS) to help you maintain recency of your pilot certificate.

Click here to learn more.
I am new to drones, can RPASOTC teach me how to fly a drone (RPAS/UAV)?
Yes, RPASOTC offers both, Basic and Advanced flight training, one-on-one or in small groups.
Flight training is conducted by RPASOTC's Transport Canada-qualified instructors who will teach you how to operate and maintain your drone, and prepare you for a flight review.
RPASOTC can also lend you our drone if you need one – we own and operate a variety of the most modern fleet of drones in the market.

Click here to get started.
What is recurrent training and am I required to take it?
To remain certified, every drone (RPAS/UAV) pilot holding a Pilot Certificate - Basic operations or a Pilot Certificate - Advanced operations is required to successfully complete a recurrent training activity set out in section 921.04 of Standard 921 — Small Remotely Piloted Aircraft in Visual Line-of-Sight (VLOS). This cycle follows a recurring 2 year basis.
For holders of the Pilot Certificate – Advanced operations, the cycle begins the day you receive your certificate.

Click here to download and complete the 2020-2021 RPAS Recency Requirements Self-Paced Study Program released by Transport Canada.
Do I need a Restricted Operator Certificate - Aeronautical (ROC-A) when operating my drone in Canada?
Having an aeronautical radio operator license is not mandatory, however, if you plan to operate your drone in or near controlled airspace, having the ability to monitor air traffic in the area of operations, or communicate with air traffic services in case of an emergency, provides additional safety.
Download the self-study guide to prepare for the exam.

Click here to book your exam with our Government of Canada Accredited Examiner.

Drone Operations

I am planning to buy a drone, which make/model should I purchase?
Effective June 1, 2019, all drones (UAVs) or Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS) with a maximum takeoff weight of 250 grams (g) up to and including 25 kilograms (kg) must meet or exceed the Remotely Piloted Aircraft System (RPAS) Safety Assurance rating system developed by Transport Canada to help you choose the right drone.

Click here to find out more.
How do I find out my category of drone operation within Canadian Domestic Airspace?
In Canada, effective June 1, 2019, there are 2 main categories of drone operation: Basic and Advanced. Each one has a different set of rules drone pilots must follow. The weight of your drone, distance from bystanders and airspace rules define your category. The rules do not treat people who fly drones for fun or for business differently.

Click here to find out more.
What is the procedure to fly within controlled airspace (Classes C, D or E) in Canada?
As of June 1, 2019, new Transport Canada regulations apply to all remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) operating in Canadian airspace. Owners of RPAs (also known as drones or UAVs) must follow the requirements for operating their RPA in each class of Canadian airspace.
Airspace in Canada is classified as controlled or uncontrolled. If you plan to operate your RPA in controlled airspace (Classes C, D or E) you must have a Transport Canada Pilot Certificate – Advanced Operations and you must obtain a written RPAS Flight Authorization from NAV CANADA, by submitting an RPAS Flight Authorization Request.

Click here for details.

Drone Regulations

Am I governed by any Canadian regulation when I fly a drone which weighs less than 250 g?
Micro remotely piloted aircraft systems (mRPAS) are made up of a remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) weighing less than 250g and its control station. The weight of the control station is not factored in to the weight calculation when determining whether an RPAS is micro (less than 250 g) or small (250 g to 25 kg). However, the weight of any payload carried, such as optional cameras, will be considered part of the weight.
Pilots of micro RPASs are not subject to Subpart 1 of Part IX of the Canadian Aviation Regulations (CARS), so they are not required to register their RPAs or obtain a certificate to fly them. However, they must adhere to CAR 900.06 and ensure they do not operate their RPA in such a reckless or negligent manner as to endanger or be likely to endanger aviation safety or the safety of any person.
While there are no prescriptive elements of the regulation that inform the pilot how to accomplish this objective, there is an expectation that the pilot of a micro RPAS should use good judgment, identify potential hazards, and take all necessary steps to mitigate any risks associated with the operation. This should include having an understanding of the environment in which the RPA pilot is operating, with particular attention paid to the possibility of aircraft or people being in the same area. If CAR 601.04 - IFR or VFR Flight in Class F Special Use Restricted Airspace or Class F Special Use Advisory Airspace, 601.16 - Issuance of NOTAM for Forest Fire Aircraft Operating Restrictions, and 5.1 of the Aeronautics Act restrict the use of airspace to all “aircraft”, they therefore apply to micro RPAs as they are considered aircraft under the Aeronautics Act and CARs. For more information, see RAC 2.8.6 Class F Airspace in the TC AIM.
A pilot that is found to have created a hazard to either aviation safety or people on the ground is subject to an individual penalty of $1,000 and/or a corporate penalty of $5,000 (CAR 103, Schedule II).

Click here to review the new section on drones (RPA) in Transport Canada’s Aeronautical Information Manual (TC AIM).
Do I need a pilot certificate to fly my drone in Canada?
Effective June 1, 2019, if you fly drones (UAVs) or Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS) with a maximum takeoff weight of 250 grams (g) up to and including 25 kilograms (kg) in Canadian Domestic Airspace, you are required by law to obtain a pilot certificate to operate legally.

Click here to find out more.
Do I need to register my drone in Canada?
Effective June 1, 2019, all drones or Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS) with a maximum takeoff weight of 250 grams (g) up to and including 25 kilograms (kg) must be registered. Drones under 250 g do not need to be registered. Drones over 25 kg also do not need to be registered, but require a Special Flight Operations Certificate (SFOC) instead.

Click here to find out more.
I am planning to visit Canada, can I operate my drone (RPA/UAV) while in Canada?
IMPORTANT UPDATE (effective March 10, 2020):
Transport Canada will not be accepting SFOC applications from visitors to Canada looking to fly recreationally.
This temporary restriction will be re-evaluated in January 2021.
Click here for more information.

If you are not a Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada, you must have an approved Special Flight Operations Certificate (SFOC)-RPAS to fly a drone (RPA/UAV) for any purpose (recreational [read update above], work or research) in Canadian airspace.

If you wish to operate your drone (RPA/UAV) for recreational purposes [read update above] in the Basic Operations category, you must:
  • Attend a Transport Canada approved TP 15263 RPAS Ground School (Advanced Operations) course,
  • On completion of training, apply to Transport Canada via the SFOC-RPAS process.

    If you wish to operate your drone (RPA/UAV) in the Basic Operations and Advanced Operations category, you must:
  • Attend a Transport Canada approved TP 15263 RPAS Ground School (Advanced Operations) course
  • On completion of training, book and pass the RPAS Flight Review
  • On successfully passing the Flight Review, apply to Transport Canada via the SFOC-RPAS process.

    Click here to book your training, or contact us if you have questions.
  • Can a foreign operator fly their drone (RPA/UAV) in Canada?
    IMPORTANT UPDATE (effective March 10, 2020):
    Transport Canada will not be accepting SFOC applications from visitors to Canada looking to fly recreationally.
    This temporary restriction will be re-evaluated in January 2021.
    Click here for more information.

    If you are a foreign operator (that is, you are not a Canadian citizen, permanent resident or a corporation incorporated by or under federal or provincial law and you want to fly in Canadian airspace), you must have an approved Special Flight Operations Certificate (SFOC)-RPAS to fly a drone (RPA/UAV) for any purpose (recreational [read update above], work or research).

    If you wish to operate your drone (RPA/UAV) in the Basic Operations category, your pilot(s) must:
  • Attend a Transport Canada approved TP 15263 RPAS Ground School (Advanced Operations) course,
  • On completion of training, apply to Transport Canada via the SFOC-RPAS process.

    If you wish to operate your drone (RPA/UAV) in the Basic Operations and Advanced Operations category, your pilot(s) must:
  • Attend a Transport Canada approved TP 15263 RPAS Ground School (Advanced Operations) course
  • On completion of training, book and pass the RPAS Flight Review
  • On successfully passing the Flight Review, apply to Transport Canada via the SFOC-RPAS process.

    Click here to book your training, or contact us if you have questions.
  • Where do I find the Canadian drone regulations?
    Part IX of the Canadian Aviation Regulations (CARs) came in to effect on June 1, 2019 and specifically address RPAS (drone/UAV) operations within the Canadian Domestic Airspace.

    Click here to review the regulations.

    Drone Incident/Occurance Reporting

    How can I report a drone incident?
    If you think someone is flying a drone in an irresponsible manner without a permit (for example, flying close to other aircraft, near aerodromes, or at a high altitude), you can complete and submit an incident report.

    Click here to learn more or submit an incident report.
    How can I report a Bird/Wildlife strike?
    Pilots are asked to report any knowledge of bird/wildlife strikes, no matter how inconsequential the event may seem. Even information about a near miss can help authorities learn more about the presence of potentially hazardous species, and the nuances of encounters between aircraft and wildlife.

    Click here to learn more or submit a Bird/Wildlife strike report.
    How can I report an Aviation Occurance involving a drone (RPAS/UAV)?
    The Transportation Safety Board (TSB), established under the Canadian Transportation Accident Investigation and Safety Board Act (CTAISB Act), is responsible for investigating all aviation occurrences in Canada involving civil aircraft registered both in Canada and abroad.

    Current TSB regulations do not, as of yet, take into account the existence and particular nature of RPAS operations. With the View of advancing transportation safety, the TSB’s Air Branch is therefore taking the position that RPAS occurrences are reportable to the TSB whenever the following circumstances occur:
  • An RPAS weighing more than 25 kg is involved in an accident, as defined by paragraph 2(1)(a) of the TSB Regulations;
  • A person is killed or sustains a serious injury as a result of coming into direct contact with any part of a small remotely piloted aircraft (as defined by the CARs), including parts that have become detached from the small remotely piloted aircraft; and
  • A collision occurs between an RPAS of any size or weight and another manned aircraft.
  • Until the TSB Regulations are amended to include specific reporting requirements for RPAS, please refer to the above guidelines in the context of occurrences involving RPAS.


    The above guidelines were provided by the Media Relations Officer, Communications, TSB on February 14, 2020. Please contact the TSB or visit the TSB website for updates.

    Aviation occurrences are to be reported to a regional TSB office, using the telephone numbers listed in TC-AIM (GEN 3.6).