Think It's Not Important for Your Aerial Photographer to be Licensed? Think Again!
As Federal regulators attempt to keep pace with the relatively new industry of drone photography, they are tightening the rules and upping the fines for unlicensed drone pilots. Simply registering a drone is NOT the same as being licensed. Becoming licensed requires studying VFR maps, weather patterns, geography, FAA rules and regulations, etc. and taking the FAA Part 107 pilot certification test. Depending on the area the pilot intends to fly, the time of day, etc. requires various waivers which must be applied for and granted, in order to legally fly. Until the regulations can catch up to the reality of what's occurring with regard to unlicensed flying, regulators actively troll social media sites, real estate sites, and other websites to identify unlicensed pilots. If caught flying without a license and the appropriate waivers, not only does the pilot get fined, YOU get fined if you've hired that pilot. Unlicensed pilots tend to offer their services for much cheaper than licensed pilots, because they haven't made the financial investment, nor the investment of time that licensing requires. But, going the cheap route doesn't always end up being less expensive as you can see by the letter below.