DJI Mavic, Air and Mini Drones
Friendly, Helpful & Knowledgeable Community
Join Us Now

Flying in Puerto Rico - US Territories

NOLA-J

Active Member
Joined
Jan 17, 2017
Messages
42
Reactions
23
I am traveling to Puerto Rico in May and would love to fly the Mavic. I am licensed here in the USA with my sUAV. Does that apply to US territories?
 
  • Like
Reactions: MajicDan
MORE INFO DIRECTLY FROM THE FAA:
The FAA proposed to limit the applicability of part 107 to small UAS operations that are conducted entirely within the United States. YES Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands are considered within the United States. The FAA does have jurisdiction over US territories as well as the Continental US, Alaska and Hawaii.

So, you will need to follow the rules of part 107 when flying in Puerto Rico.

Here is the phone number if you want to ask yourself. 844-359-6982
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: MajicDan and NOLA-J
Nothing about that text says that territories of the US are not part of the US. All other laws about US citizenship still hold true for the territories, except federal taxation and voting. Residents of Puerto Rico are not "foreign."
 
  • Like
Reactions: NOLA-J
No - part 107 doesn't apply in territories.

Per Part 107, SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION - III - C - 2 International Operations and Foreign-Owned Aircraft
...Article 8 of the Chicago Convention specifies that no unmanned aircraft “shall be flown without a pilot over the territory of a contracting State without special authorization by that State and in accordance with the terms of such authorization.” Article 8 also calls on States to undertake “to insure that the flight of such aircraft without a pilot in regions open to civil aircraft shall be so controlled as to obviate danger to civil aircraft.” In accordance with this obligation, the provisions of part 107 set forth the necessary authorizations for operations conducted by U.S. citizens only within the United States. For those seeking to operate outside the United States, special authorization from the foreign civil aviation authority will be required. Thus, remote pilots wishing to conduct operations over another country’s airspace should review that country’s statutes, regulations, and guidance for clarification about how to operate in its airspace. ...

Per this website (and one other I saw) - Puerto Rico currently has no laws regarding drones.
Puerto Rico Drone Laws

Thanks for the information. So it seems like I should be OK as long as I follow the same protocols for flying in the Continental 48. My biggest fear is them confiscating it at the airport for some reason.
 
Just put it in your bag and go. I've watched dozens of videos on YouTube of people travelling all over the world and taking their Mavics with them to foreign countries. No one seems to ever have an issue.
 
  • Like
Reactions: shevlin and NOLA-J
I visited Puerto Rico a few years ago, you should be able to get some amazing video in the hill country forest.
 
  • Like
Reactions: NOLA-J
I visited Puerto Rico a few years ago, you should be able to get some amazing video in the hill country forest.

Good to know. I have never been and decided to go there on a whim. Maybe I'll update this thread in the summer with some footage.
 
I am traveling to Puerto Rico in May and would love to fly the Mavic. I am licensed here in the USA with my sUAV. Does that apply to US territories?

Being that Puerto Rico is Common Wealth state of the US, all US laws apply. You'll see once there that traffic patterns are the same as here, laws are the same as here and the FAA regulates all airspace as here in the mainland or Hawaii. I'd still make proper notifications as we do in the mainland. I would only inquire as to any additional local laws that may apply, but I doubt they'd override any FAA regulations.
 
  • Like
Reactions: NOLA-J
Being that Puerto Rico is Common Wealth state of the US, all US laws apply. You'll see once there that traffic patterns are the same as here, laws are the same as here and the FAA regulates all airspace as here in the mainland or Hawaii. I'd still make proper notifications as we do in the mainland. I would only inquire as to any additional local laws that may apply, but I doubt they'd override any FAA regulations.


Ok, good to know. Thanks!
 
Quick update: brought it as a carry on and have not had an issue at all. Biggest problem is having too many opportunities to fly. I've been getting some great shots. Puerto Rico is beautiful.
 
Quick update: brought it as a carry on and have not had an issue at all. Biggest problem is having too many opportunities to fly. I've been getting some great shots. Puerto Rico is beautiful.

Can't wait to see some shots. If you are still there, travel to the southwestern part of PR to a town called CABO ROJO. Visit the Light house in Cabo Rojo. It sits in a rocky cliff surrounded by white sand beach. I believe they harvest for salt in that area. Due to the white sand the waters appear crystal blue. I have awesome pictures from a camera from previous years. I imagine drone footage has to be amazing.

West coast of PR lends itself to great shots specially in the evening as the sun sets.
 
Can't wait to see some shots. If you are still there, travel to the southwestern part of PR to a town called CABO ROJO. Visit the Light house in Cabo Rojo. It sits in a rocky cliff surrounded by white sand beach. I believe they harvest for salt in that area. Due to the white sand the waters appear crystal blue. I have awesome pictures from a camera from previous years. I imagine drone footage has to be amazing.

West coast of PR lends itself to great shots specially in the evening as the sun sets.


Thanks for the suggestion but I am back already. We did a few days in San Juan, then a few days in Vieques, and finally ended the trip in El Yunque rainforest. I have fallen in love with Puerto Rico. Food, sites, people. What an amazing place. I will definitely be going back. I will update with a few photos and then a video once I get time to edit. Editing is always time consuming.

They did check my carry on on the way home. Opened my bag, moved over the quadcopter, and pulled out a bag of coffee I had purchased. :)
 
Thanks for the suggestion but I am back already. We did a few days in San Juan, then a few days in Vieques, and finally ended the trip in El Yunque rainforest. I have fallen in love with Puerto Rico. Food, sites, people. What an amazing place. I will definitely be going back. I will update with a few photos and then a video once I get time to edit. Editing is always time consuming.

They did check my carry on on the way home. Opened my bag, moved over the quadcopter, and pulled out a bag of coffee I had purchased. :)

Next one you go, shoot me a line and I'll get you in contact with my Uncle. He is a retired HS art teacher, photographer and very known in the island for his paintings. He knows every nook and cranny in the island. I'm sure just so he can get to talk English he would take you around to places hidden and unknown to most tourist guides. If it is a view worth having captured, he knows exactly where it is. That also includes where to eat, drink and have fun. By your post, you visited the "tourist" north east part of the island, beautiful indeed but just wait to you go west to Cabo Rojo, Aguadilla, Crash boat beach....
 
Next one you go, shoot me a line and I'll get you in contact with my Uncle. He is a retired HS art teacher, photographer and very known in the island for his paintings. He knows every nook and cranny in the island. I'm sure just so he can get to talk English he would take you around to places hidden and unknown to most tourist guides. If it is a view worth having captured, he knows exactly where it is. That also includes where to eat, drink and have fun. By your post, you visited the "tourist" north east part of the island, beautiful indeed but just wait to you go west to Cabo Rojo, Aguadilla, Crash boat beach....


Good to know! That is very kind of you. I will definitely try to take you up on that whenever I return. We want to see the West and central areas of the island in the future. Easy living over there. The thought of moving there crossed my mind a few times....
 
Quick update: brought it as a carry on and have not had an issue at all. Biggest problem is having too many opportunities to fly. I've been getting some great shots. Puerto Rico is beautiful.
Glad you enjoyed Puerto Rico! I'm from there but have been leaving outside for a few years. Going there in two weeks and hoping to rediscover the island from above.

Did you have any kind of trouble with cops there? I wanted to get some shots around Old San Juan but I know there's a small airport nearby.
 
  • Like
Reactions: NOLA-J
Glad you enjoyed Puerto Rico! I'm from there but have been leaving outside for a few years. Going there in two weeks and hoping to rediscover the island from above.

Did you have any kind of trouble with cops there? I wanted to get some shots around Old San Juan but I know there's a small airport nearby.

Yes, especially by del Morro. I think it is considered a national park. And definitely try to avoid La Perla. Apparently they do not like any form of photo or video.
 

DJI Drone Deals

Forum statistics

Threads
131,755
Messages
1,566,012
Members
160,603
Latest member
deauxpamine