Importing a Drone in India or buying one and getting it into India is illegal. The Drone will get confiscated by custom officials and you are not going to get it anyway, well in fact there is a way but anyway it is not going to be that easy, it’s much easier to forget it.

Planning to import a drone in India?

There are many drones available at an attractive price tag that you can order from many international website and most of these offer free shipping too, so in all looks quite lucrative. However drones have been banned in India, you cannot import or get one from abroad.

In most cases (if you are unlucky) it will get confiscated by custom officials. Well technically drones are not banned but to import it you need permission and once you go through the permission criteria you are simply going to drop the idea of importing a drone in India.

Following Permission is needed to Import a drone in India

DGCA Permission letter (Directorate General of Civil Aviation) -> Mission impossible, unless you have some high end contacts.

Importing a drone in India

Buying drone abroad and getting it into India personally

Many do this and the same will get noticed by custom officials at airport and will either ask you to break the drone or leave it, you cannot take that with you.

What about drones available in India?

It is illegal to fly a drone in India without permission but selling a drone in India is legal. You can buy drones that are available in India but to fly drone you need permission. For drone that fly below 200 feet you need permit from you local administration and for drones that fly over 200 feet you need permit from the DGCA.

Also at least 90 days before you fly the drone you need to get a permit. This has been done for security reasons.

Where can you fly a drone without such permit?

If you have drone you can use them indoor in your house, in a hall, you should avoid flying it in cities and specially near airports – flying a drone in city / near airport could land you in Jail. If you are flying in public area you need NOC from local police.

You can fly a drone in rural areas / open areas.

What about Toy Drones?

There are many drones that are smaller in size and some are foldable – turns in to a box, thus makes it difficult to know if it is a drone (without the blades), now there is a possibly that such drones may pass though custom checks as they may look like a toy.

drones in India

So importing a drone is a bad idea and you should avoid, moreover flying a drone in city is also a bad idea.

Did you order a drone from international website? and did you get it, let us know.

Published by Gogi Rana

Founder and Chief Editor - gogi.in

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  1. My foldable drone is also held up in mumbai customs recently… is there any way I can get this if I visit personally or any way to return the package and get refund.

  2. I bought a basic drone for 50$ from US and brought it in person, 2 yrs back. I didnt get any questions in the airport. since I also got a 55″ Sony TV along with it, customs focus missed out the drone 🙂

    1. Depends if they come to know it is a drone, but since this is mini size chances are very high that it might pass through.

  3. yesterday i have post about gearbest.com under 1 more classic review but you did not post it..
    anyway, i have purchase BT headphone form gearbest on 12th sept (13.20$),their courier partner in India is Gati , i chose priority shipping like ,promising date is 23 sept but status is showing “Delhi Gate way Held in custom due to EDI”, i have raised complaint to gati they told that EDI is new process , i don’t understand ,pls explain ,how many days it takes to clearance, what abt Gati courier service ,

    pls explain gogi bhai and post this comment..so any one can not facing rouble like this..

  4. How most major metro cities have DJI Authorised Dealers who can supply DJI Drone? How these guys import them?

    1. Selling a drone is legal in India. Don’t know how they got it imported, probably got the permit. And these DJI are used for professional film making.

  5. Plz help I ordered bluetooth handset from aliexpress my handset stay at Mumbai Airport held by costom last 7days what to do

  6. well, purchasing drone is illegal. but I have purchased a small drone from banggood nearly 8months back i didn’t got any trouble delivering my product. so, it is risky but if you want to take risk tahn you should declare it as RC toy with low value.

  7. i tried purchasing from bangood, aliexpress etc , i used master debit card and every i make payment first my bank got deducted after 20 second or so money got reverse back and transaction failed. Please Gogi what may be the problem?

    1. Which bank card you tried ? Maybe it is not enabled for international transactions, you can go to your bank and get international debit card. Currently Airtel payments bank not supported in websites you mentioned.

      1. well its sbi master debit card. i have alrerady enable international usage using my net banking ac.But problem persist.

    2. Yes BALA is right i also try to order 2-3 thing’s from Amazon.com (us), But my transaction is cancelled after 5min. and my money get back to my A/C. so check this with my bank & they issue me new card now i can purchase anything from international stores.

  8. Well we should go for kites and paper made airplane
    Government shouldn’t have any problem with that??

  9. No wonder with such bureaucratic restrictions, drone tech in India is Generation behind, leaders like Israel, USA, China etc. Once in hands of Babus of DGCA, permission would be well niegh impossible to get.

  10. Import parts, assemble it and good luck for flying ur own made in india, parts imported from china drone.

  11. Seriously?
    Is it true ?
    I understand we cannot fly near Airport and above cities ….
    But What about in tourist locations ? We should taken permission each time ? and 90 days earlier?
    I dont think anyone can follow that rule!
    huh

    1. We are Indian by heart & soul, so breaking the rules is also our fundamental right ??, koi na koi jugaad to dhund hi lenge.
      India is a major two-wheeler transport country but still how many people wear a helmet while riding.

  12. I was Planning to buy a drone just a foldable one but now dropped the Idea..! Thank You gogi for such update. Your Articles helps a lot.

  13. I think maybe one can import as completely knocked down parts & assemble later. That maybe how drones are available in India when importing needs permission.