In order for a company or individual to operate a drone (RPAs) commercially they are required to have the following licences:

  • Air Service Licence (ASL), issued by the Department of Transport
  • Remotely Piloted Aircraft Operator Certificate (ROC)
  • Remote Pilot License (RPL) allowing pilot to operate a certain type of aircraft and within certain limitations
  • RPAS Registration with the SACAA – this should be clearly marked on aircraft using black lettering against a yellow background


  • Third party liability insurance in name of the company
  • Management roles within company
  • Accountable Manager (CEO)
  • Responsible Person Flight Operations
  • Responsible Person Aircraft (Chief Pilot)
  • Safety Manager
  • Quality Manager
  • Security Manager


When a pilot operates commercially the following documents are required onsite:

  • Copy of the ROC and Operational Specifications of the operational company
  • Copy of the ASL
  • Proof of Insurance
  • Original Certificate of Registration
  • Original RPAS Letter of Approval (RLA)
  • User manual for the applicable aircraft and ground station
  • Pilot’s license book
  • Aircraft logbook clearing the applicable RPAS of any outstanding defects
  • First aid kit and fire extinguisher within 300m of the takeoff and landing location
  • Licensed air band radio to communicate with other aviation traffic and Air Traffic Control (this is only a requirement if the pilot is operating outside of the limitations of R-VLOS and without the Control Zone of an operational airfield).

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