Civil Aviation Bureau

Flight Rules for Unmanned Aircraft(Drones and Model Aircraft, etc.)

You must comply with several rules when you fly your unmanned aircraft in Japan.
Sentence or fine is imposed on you if you fly your unmanned aircraft without compliance.
The flow of procedures to fly unmanned aircraft in Japan is below.

Definition of "Unmanned Aircraft"

Unmanned Aircraft is "any airplane, rotorcraft, glider and airship which can be used for air navigation without a person on board and any other apparatus used for air navigation as may be specified by Cabinet Order. In addition, it can be flew remotely or autonomously except for those as may be specified by Civil Aviation Regulation without threat that this flight may be destructive to the security of air navigation and people and things on the ground and water."


Model aircraft
multirotor and model aircraft, which weigh less than 100g (including its battery), are categorized as "Model aircraft".
(1) Registration
It is mandatory to register your unmanned aircraft, which weighs 100g or more, under the Civil Aeronautics Act in Japan.
You must display a registration ID on your unmanned aircraft and equip it with a remote ID function.
Please check "Unmanned Aircraft Registration Web Portal" in detail.

(2) Flight Permission / Approval

You are prohibited to fly your unmanned aircraft in the airspaces and ways to fly below.
You must get flight permission / approval in advance if you fly your unmanned aircraft in the airspace and ways to fly below.

  • Prohibited Airspace

    * Please refer to the website for further details of airspace around airports and Densely Inhabited Districts (DID).

    Please click "OK" on the website, and you can confirm the prohibited airspace.

    Green area: Airspace around airports
    Red area : Densely Inhabited Districts (DID)
  • Prohibited ways to fly, regardless of airspace

In addition, you must comply with each flight operation rule below, regardless of airspace and ways to fly.

  • Flight operation rules below, regardless of airspace and ways to fly
  1. Do not fly unmanned aircraft under the influence of alcohol and drugs.
  2. Fly unmanned aircraft after preflight actions.
  3. Fly unmanned aircraft to prevent collision with airplanes and other unmanned aircraft.
  4. Do not fly unmanned aircraft in a careless or reckless manner.

You can apply for flight permission / approval online.
Please check “Flight Permission / Approval” page on the DIPS 2.0 in detail.

PDFDIPS2.0 Operating Manual (Application for Flight Permission/Approval)

Necessary procedures after getting a flight permission/approval
(3) Report your flight plan

You must report your flight plan (time and date, route, and altitude, etc.) to MLIT in advance, when you fly your unmanned aircraft under the flight permission / approval from MLIT.

(4) Keep your flight logbook

You must keep your flight logbook and enter all of necessary items about journey log, daily inspection log, and inspection and maintenance record, when you fly your unmanned aircraft under the flight permission / approval from MLIT.
Please use the flight logbook form below.

(5) Report an accident / serious incident

You must report an accident / serious incident, regardless of whether you get a flight permission / approval or not.
You can report it online(DIPS 2.0). Please check which cases are categorized as "accident" or "serious incident" in detail on the Unmanned Aircraft "LEVEL 4" Flight Web Portal.

Please check each flight operation rule in detail on the website.

Please apply for each application through DIPS2.0.


There are other rules about unmanned aircraft in Japan.
Please check each rule below, if necessary.

  • Unmanned Aircraft(UA) Remote Pilot Certificate

    This certificate demonstrates that you have the necessary skill(knowledge and ability) to fly unmanned aircraft.
    Please check in detail on the website below.

  • Unmanned Aircraft System(UAS) Certification

    This is the UAS certification to ensure the safety of unmanned aircraft by inspecting its intensity, structure, and function.
    Please check in detail on the website below.

  • Reference

    PDFLeaflet: Drone/UAS flight rules in Japan

For inquiries

Help Desk for Unmanned Aircraft
Tel: +81-50-3818-9961
Bussiness Hours: 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. (JST)
on weekdays, excluding Satyrdays, Sundays, national holidays,
and year-end/new-year holidays (Dec 29 - Jan 3)
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