Have a question about becoming a drone pilot, licensing, or one of our courses? It might be answered below in our frequently asked questions.


How much does a drone licence cost?

Toll Uncrewed Systems offers 3 licencing courses depending on client requirements and experience:

  • Introduction to Drone Flying Course suitable for professionals wanting to operate commercially as a sub 2kg pilot under CASA (Civil Aviation Safety Authority) regulations. Cost $350.
  • CASA Drone Certification Initial RePL Training enables professionals to become a CASA certified remote pilot through theoretical and practical flight learning. Cost $1750.
  • RePL Drone Licence CASA Pilot Conversion Course enables aviation professionals with prior aviation experience (holding a PPL, CPL or ATPL pilot’s licence) a streamlined path into the RPAS industry. Cost $890.

Do I need a licence to fly a drone in Australia?

If you only fly your drone for private or recreational purposes, you can do so without a Remote Pilot Licence (RePL).

If you intend to fly your drone commercially or for work purposes, there are extra rules you must follow. You will need to hold an RePL or fly in the Excluded Category (sub-2 kilogram or Private Landholder).

Regardless of the category, you must always operate your drone safely and adhere to the Standard Operating Conditions (SOCs) mandated by the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA).

Can I fly a drone at night?

You may only fly at night if you hold an RePL and have been trained in Night Visual Flight Training Rules (NVFR) by an approved organisation.

You must only fly under a Remote Operator’s Certificate with approved NVFR flying systems and processes. We offer a 1-day course which allows candidates to gain experience by undertaking night RPAS flight operations at our approved training area in Brisbane.

Where can I fly my drone?

CASA provides verified drone safety apps with location-based information and easy-to-use maps showing where you can and cannot fly your drone. You will also need to check your local and state government for any local rules or regulations before you fly. https://www.casa.gov.au/knowyourdrone/drone-safety-apps

Do I need a licence to fly a drone commercially?

If you intend to fly your drone commercially or for your employer, there are extra rules you must follow. You will need a remote pilot licence (RePL) or fly in the excluded category (sub-2 kilogram or private landholder).

How often do you have to renew your drone licence?

Once you have successfully completed your training and been issued a valid RePL, it remains valid indefinitely.

Can I fly a drone without a licence?

Recreational Pilots

You fly for fun and enjoyment, but not for payment. There is no requirement to hold a RePL, but it is a good idea to undertake some introductory training that covers all the basics to operate your drone safely and legally. Toll Uncrewed Systems offers a 1-day Introduction to Drones flying course.

Commercial Pilots (Uncertified)

It is possible to fly for money in Australia with a drone that weighs under 2kg without a licence (e.g.  a DJI Phantom or Mavic). You are required to register with CASA, but there are no specific training or application requirements. These operations are regarded as the excluded category.

Excluded category operations are restricted to CASA’s Standard Operating Conditions (SOCs). This reduces what kind of commercial operations can be performed. It is also more difficult to attain public liability insurance without a licence or certificate. You must also notify CASA of your planned operations.

Commercial Pilots (Certified)

To operate commercially with heavier drones (>2kg) and to gain permission for operations in conditions such as night flying, operating near controlled airports, or flying in closer proximity to persons, a pilot must hold a Remote Pilots Licence (RePL) and fly under a Remote Operator’s Certificate (ReOC).

A licenced Remote Pilot may be employed by a business holding a Remote Operator’s Certificate (ReOC) or apply for their own ReOC and operate as an individual or sole-trader.

Who is CASA?

The Civil Aviation Safety Authority is a government body that regulates Australian aviation safety. They licence pilots, register aircraft, oversee and promote safety

Is there a minimum age to become a drone pilot?

There is no minimum age requirement to obtain an RePL. However, the theoretical content is aimed at the level of knowledge and comprehension of someone that has completed grade 10.

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How do I become a drone pilot?

To become a commercial drone pilot and operate aircraft outside of the Excluded Category, you will need to successfully complete a Remote Pilots licence.

Toll Uncrewed Systems offers a 5-day CASA Drone Certification Initial RePL Training course (covering both theory and practical flight components) or 2 day RePL Drone License CASA Pilot Conversion Course for those that already hold an acceptable CASA licence (eg. Flight crew licence).

What subjects would I learn to become a drone pilot?

There is no mandated requirement for any previous level of education prior to undertaking training for your RePL. You will need to complete theoretical competencies on Remote Pilot Aircraft (RPA) law, RPA systems, meteorology, navigation, human factors, operational flight planning, aeronautical radio, aviation English and other modules required by CASA to meet the RPA licensing requirements

How long is a typical drone course?

We offer 5-day CASA Drone Certification Initial RePL Training (covering both theoretical and flying components) or 2-day RePL Drone Licence CASA Pilot Conversion Courses for professionals already holding CASA licensing qualifications

Do I have to do the 5 day face to face course or are there other options?

Five days face to face is the standard course, however we are able to accommodate different options based on your availability. We also offer virtual classroom options so you can choose which sessions to study when.

Do you have payment plan options?

We can work with you on different payment options. Call us to discuss what will work.

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What does RPAS stand for?

Remotely-piloted aircraft system (RPAS) – Defined as a set of configurable elements consisting of a remotely-piloted aircraft, its associated remote pilot station(s), the required command and control links and any other system elements as may be required, at any point during flight operations.

Should I insure my drone and equipment?

Yes. There are many providers in Australia that will issue policies covering the commercial use of drones. If your drone is lost, damaged or causes loss, damage or injury to others, drone insurance covers your liability costs to a certain extent, depending on the policy.

Although many drone insurance policies are designed for commercial purposes there are some insurance solutions that would cover recreational use (including Public Liability and Vehicle & Equipment coverage).

Are there many jobs for drone pilots?

Industries are adopting drones in their standard practices and are looking for people with drone experience. Small and private businesses are also now growing as operators start their own businesses or find a new service they can offer.

It is up to you and how prepared you are to enter such a new and emerging industry. As an organisation, we have taken on several staff who have completed their studies with us, and we have a list of on-call casual pilots available when new opportunities become available.