Advice on taking a drone to Turkey

I’m due to fly to Turkey for a week very soon. I didn’t plan on taking my Mavic Air but I’ve changed my mind. I’m finding a lot of conflicting information about taking a drone through Turkish customs.

From what I can find it is below the weight limit before it would have to be registered in Turkey.

Has any one here been to Turkey with their drone?

https://greyarro.ws/t/advice-please-re-turkey-2017-updated-2019

I was in Icmeler the first 2 weeks in August, didn’t take the drone, probably could have gotten away with it to be honest we were in a very quiet spot.

However, security is very tight especially at Dalaman and had I been caught without the proper paper work I’m sure they would have taken it off me

Turkish guy though who probably speaks the language , when I looked the website to register was not available in English

See this is where it’s not too clear to me, if your drone is over 500 grams then you have to register as a drone pilot. Non-Turkish cannot register as a drone pilot.

So my Mavic Air weighs 430 grams so I wouldn’t register anyway. But it then says if you don’t have technical approval your drone may be seized and everything to do with the technical approval is in Turkish. I don’t think it’s worth the risk. I’m not going for anything more than a chilled pool/beach holiday and I was more worried I’d regret not taking it just in case I wanted to get some footage.

I’m flying into Bodrum.

If it was in the hold and I had the battery (I’d only take the one) in my hand luggage do you think there’s a good chance they’d inspect the bags? If anyone has taken a similar drone through Bodrum airport in the last year I’d be interested to hear your experiences.

Thought I’d update here. I decided to take a risk and take my Mavic Air with me. It’s below the Turkish weight limits for unregistered pilots. I packed the drone, without battery, into my hold luggage. I have the hard shell case from the flymore combo and I had it in the middle of the case protected by clothing. The batteries I had down to around 25% power and packed them into a lipo fireproof bag (about £7 off Amazon) and into my hand luggage. I put some electrical tape over the contacts as suggested in other posts. At Manchester Airport I had to empty the lipo bag out to go through the scanner, no issues or questions at all. At Milas Bodrum Airport on the return I did the same thing, I was certain I’d be pulled and questioned but no problems. There were 3 security points. The first one was just a case of putting my bags through a scanner. The second was similar. At the gate was more thorough, they went right through my bag emptying it. They removed the lipo bag and looked inside. No issues and no questions.

I only flew it the once whilst there, 8am off a jetty at my resort. I’d very likely have been fine when it was a little busier but I’m quite shy about it and don’t ever want a shitty confrontation so I’m very careful.

Anyway thought it was worth updating my experience for anyone else ever looking into taking a similar drone to Turkey.

This was 7th-14th October 2019 by the way.

4 Likes

Great update, thanks for sharing @Cheeze :+1:t2: