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How to Get Your Part-107 Drone License

In recent years, drones have revolutionized various industries, from photography to agriculture. Whether you’re an enthusiast or looking to turn your passion into a profession, obtaining a Part-107 drone license is essential. This guide will walk you through everything you need to know about getting your Part-107 drone license, including what a drone license is when you should get one, the process, costs, time commitment, and the benefits of being a licensed drone pilot.

What is a Drone License?

A drone license, specifically a Part-107 certificate, is issued by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and allows individuals to operate drones commercially. This certification ensures drone pilots understand the regulations, operating requirements, and procedures for safely flying drones in U.S. airspace.

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When Should You Get a Drone Pilot License?

The need for a drone pilot license depends on how you intend to use your drone. Here are two primary scenarios:

  1. Commercial Use: If you plan to use your drone for any commercial purposes, such as real estate photography, inspections, or delivery services, you are required by law to have a Part-107 license. Commercial use involves any operation that is compensated in any form, including monetary payment, bartering, or even an exchange of services.
  2. Recreational Use: If you fly your drone purely for fun and have no intention of making money from it, you do not need a Part-107 license. However, recreational flyers must still adhere to the FAA’s guidelines for hobbyist drone use.

How to Get a Part-107 Drone License

Obtaining your Part-107 drone license involves a few key steps:

  1. Eligibility Requirements: You must be at least 16 years old, able to read, speak, write, and understand English, and physically and mentally able to safely operate a drone.
  2. Study for the Test: The test covers various topics, including airspace classifications, weather effects on drone performance, emergency procedures, and FAA regulations. Many resources are available to help you study, including online courses, study guides, and practice tests.
  3. Schedule the Test: You must schedule your test at an FAA-approved testing center. Numerous testing centers are located across the country, and you can find one near you through the FAA’s website.
  4. Pass the Test: The test consists of 60 multiple-choice questions, and you need a score of at least 70% to pass. After passing, you will complete an online application through the FAA’s Integrated Airman Certification and Rating Application (IACRA) system.
  5. Receive Your Certificate: Once your application is processed, you will receive your Part-107 drone license, allowing you to operate drones commercially.

How Much Does It Cost?

The cost to obtain a commercial drone license varies. Here are some potential expenses:

  • Study Materials: Depending on your chosen resources, study materials can range from free online guides to $300 for comprehensive online courses.
  • Test Fee: The fee for taking the Part-107 test is $175, paid directly to the testing center.
  • Renewal Fee: The Part-107 license must be renewed every 24 months, which involves retaking the knowledge test and paying the test fee again.

👉 Check out UAV Coach for some excellent study materials.

How Long Does It Take?

The time required to get a commercial drone license can vary based on your prior knowledge and how much time you can dedicate to studying. On average:

  • Studying: Many people study 15-20 hours over a few weeks.
  • Scheduling the Test: Depending on test center availability, scheduling your test might take 1-2 weeks.
  • Processing Time: After passing the test, it typically takes 1-2 weeks to receive your certificate, but in some instances, it can take a month.

Why Do People Get a Part-107 License?

There are numerous reasons why people choose to get commerical drone license, mainly revolving around the ability to make money and expand professional opportunities. Here are some common uses:

  1. Aerial Photography and Videography: Professional photographers and videographers use drones to capture stunning aerial footage for events, real estate listings, and marketing campaigns.
  2. Inspections and Surveys: Drones are used to inspect infrastructure, such as bridges, power lines, and roofs, providing a safer and more efficient way to conduct inspections.
  3. Agriculture: Farmers use drones to monitor crop health, assess irrigation needs, and manage livestock, leading to more efficient and profitable farming practices.
  4. Delivery Services: Companies are exploring drone delivery services for packages, food, and medical supplies, providing faster and more cost-effective delivery options.
  5. Mapping and 3D Modeling: Drones create detailed maps and 3D models for construction, land surveying, and urban planning.

👉 See our post on the top drone industries for drone pilots in 2024!

In conclusion, obtaining your drone license opens up opportunities for those looking to leverage drone technology for commercial purposes. Whether you aim to start a new career, enhance your current job, or make some extra income, becoming a licensed drone pilot is a valuable and rewarding investment.

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