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Travelling Abroad with Mavic to Mexico

Woolnut

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Hi All,

I am heading to Mexico in June and I am getting together a checklist to make sure that i am fully prepared as i really do not want to lose the Mavic or batteries at the airport because of an oversight! Also, i don't want anything to get damaged!

Current Checklist

  • Mavic Bag (Fly More Combo one, with spare propellers, Lightning Cable & Micro USB for Controller)
  • Mavic Sleeve (In case i don't want to take the bag with me, currently the Mavic is inside the sleeve inside the bag)
  • Propeller Holders
  • Controller Stick Protector
  • LiPO Battery Bag x 3 (Fits each battery nice and snug)
  • Battery Charging Hub w/ Cable
I am looking to get hold of the following still before i go away:
  • ND Filters

I have seen conflicting posts about where the best place is for your Mavic during the flight / at the airport, at the moment i plan to have the Mavic and all three batteries (in the LiPO bags) with me in my hand luggage as i really do not trust the handlers to not lob my suitcase down a flight of stairs or two when loading / unloading. What would you recommend?

Has anyone ever had any trouble in Cancun airport with a drone? (in particular the Mavic) The drone is completely stock, no camouflage or modifications, literally just a Mavic!

I intend to take a look at the rules regarding drones in Mexico soon, i have heard that there are some areas that they aren't allowed such as national heritage sites but i will be doing my own research to make sure i am fully aware of what can and can't be done, i don't fancy a run in with the Mexican Authorities :)
 
I have seen conflicting posts about where the best place is for your Mavic during the flight / at the airport, at the moment i plan to have the Mavic and all three batteries (in the LiPO bags) with me in my hand luggage as i really do not trust the handlers to not lob my suitcase down a flight of stairs or two when loading / unloading. What would you recommend?

There is no conflict (only one or two airlines require the opposite) - but your batteries must be in your carry-on, not your checked bags (in case of fire). Your Mavic should be the same. Most airline companies require you to travel with your batteries in your carry-on, and there's no exceptions. I leave one battery in the Mavic and carry the rest in LiPo bags.

Has anyone ever had any trouble in Cancun airport with a drone? (in particular the Mavic)

You should have no issue at the Cancun airport. The only possible issue is with the VAT tax, if they think you are importing your Mavic into the country permanently.

I intend to take a look at the rules regarding drones in Mexico soon, i have heard that there are some areas that they aren't allowed such as national heritage sites but i will be doing my own research to make sure i am fully aware of what can and can't be done, i don't fancy a run in with the Mexican Authorities :)

Here's a good article covering almost all of your questions about Mexico:
UPDATED: Taking Your Drone To Mexico ? What To Know Before You Go
 
Hi I had already posted this in another thread, so I'm just going to copy that: (in short: foreigners are not allowed to fly drones in Mexico anymore)

I'm Mexican and I've read the latest regulatuion regarding drones here in Mexico, point 7.2v states:

"No podran operar en Mexico un RPAS con matrícula o registro extranjero u operados por operadores de RPAS extranjeros, diferentes a los mencionados en el numeral 7.2u de la presente circular obligatoria, a menos que exista un acuerdo bilateral entre el estado de matricula o el estado del operador extranjero y la autoridad aeronautica Mexicana"

Which translates to:
"An RPAS with foreign registration or operated by a foreign RPAS operators, other than those mentioned in number 7.2u of this mandatory circular, may not operate in Mexico, unless there is a bilateral agreement between the state of registration or the state of the foreign operator and the Mexican aeronautical authority"

That 7.2u number it mentions refers to drones flown for scientific purposes, which require a permit from the military.

Worth mentioning is that, as stated above, this is a mandatory circular, made as a temporary regulation while the official NOM (official regulation) comes out, which means there is really not a clear way for the government to enforce it.
 
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I travelled to Cancun l (commercial flight - Spirit Airlines) last May with my mavic and all accessories. I kept it in a small carry on bag with me at my side the entire time. I never had any problems, issues, questions. No one said a word about it, and I never did or said anything to draw attention to it.

I flew it in various places in Mexico with no problems. The only place I'm told you can NOT fly it is near the national parks/ pyramids, etc.

There was one place on the island of Isla Mujeres (off the coast of Cancun) where the DJI GO app wouldn't let me launch because I was too close to the airport on the south side of the island.
 
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I am a Mexico national and have traveled in and out of the country with the mavic and two additional batteries on my backpack as carry on on the cabin. Never had a problem (although my trips are always on Mexican airlines).
Regarding rules, the current regulation (not very well known) is fairly similar to FAA rules. In addition flying over archeological sites is forbidden.
I have heard of tourist that had to pay 16% tax on the value of the drone, my suggestion is to print an invoice stating that is a used Mavic Pro with 400-500 commercial value, no one will dispute that.
 
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I travelled to Cancun l (commercial flight - Spirit Airlines) last May with my mavic and all accessories. I kept it in a small carry on bag with me at my side the entire time. I never had any problems, issues, questions. No one said a word about it, and I never did or said anything to draw attention to it.

Yeah I really do not intend to let anyone know there is a drone in my bag, i am going to bring a little suitcase with my as my carry on and will put the drone and bag in there i think
 
I have heard of tourist that had to pay 16% tax on the value of the drone, my suggestion is to print an invoice stating that is a used Mavic Pro with 400-500 commercial value, no one will dispute that.

Ouch... I wouldn't want to pay that! Thanks for the pointer, i will pull something together that shows the date purchased and a doctored amount... There is no way i am putting on the real cost!
 
So i am flying out tomorrow... I still think that i will bring the Mavic, it would be a complete waste to not bring it with me!

Has anyone been out there recently?
 
Just flew to Cancun, MX 3 weeks ago on Spirit Airlines with the mavic with me in a carry-on bag. Same as last trip to MX: no problems, no questions, no issues, coming or going. Had my Mav and all accessories and 3 fully charged batteries in my carry on bag, which is just a small camera bag.
 
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So i am flying out tomorrow... I still think that i will bring the Mavic, it would be a complete waste to not bring it with me!

Has anyone been out there recently?
I live in Mexico City and been flying for the past three years. Same FAA regulations (120m, LOS, don't fly over crowds, etc). The only forbidden places to fly are the archeological sites. Other than than, happy flying.

Cheers,
Jorge
 
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Managed to get here fine, at the airport all our bags got scanned when we entered Mexico from the UK, and I was asked to push a red button (the button lottery) and it went green so I went through without additional checks. We are leaving tomorrow so I wonder what they will have in store for me on the way out... (other than the crazy departure tax...)
 
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