Non-Standard Flight applications
A Non-Standard Flight is an aerial task that does not follow published routes or notified procedures.
About Non-Standard Flights
Some examples of NSFs are survey flights, pleasure flights, small unmanned aircraft, balloon flights/tethers, kite flights (see UK AIP ENR 1.1.4 for further guidance).
Unusual Aerial Activities such as air exercises, trials, aerial surveys or flying displays (this list is not exhaustive) that involve multiple agencies or are operating both inside and outside Controlled Airspace require the operator to apply for an Airspace Coordination Notice (ACN) from the CAA.
Applications for NSFs should be made with a minimum of 21 days notice – Note applications in the Restricted Areas in London may take longer. Applications submitted less than 7 days in advance of the flight may not be processed.
To submit an NSF application please go to https://nsf.nats.aero/ or click the button below.
Additional Important Information:
- It is illegal to fly any drone at any time within Flight Restricted Zones unless you have permission from air traffic control at the airport or, if air traffic control is not operational, from the Airport Authority itself.
- Further information on flying a drone – https://www.nats.aero/airspace/drones/.
- Submission of an application via nsf.nats.aero does not constitute approval to fly.
- The submission of an application supplies details of your flight and your contact details to the Airport concerned for them to process your application and contact you.
- Air Traffic Control Approval/Clearance does not imply exemption from the requirements of the Air Navigation Order (ANO) or the Rules of the Air Regulations.
- Applications for flights which require exemption or written permission under the ANO must be made to the Civil Aviation Authority. For further details see https://www.caa.co.uk/Consumers/Unmanned-aircraft-and-drones/
- The flight is to be conducted in accordance with the Air Navigation Order and you are responsible for avoiding all other aircraft at all times.
- To fly a UAS in any other UK airport’s Flight Restriction Zone, please see the AIS website or visit the airport’s website for more details.
- A Non-Standard Flight is an aerial task that does not follow published routes or notified procedures. Operators should also file an Enhanced Non-Standard Flight for flights within Restricted Areas within Windsor, Central London – Hyde Park, City of London and Isle of Dogs. For more details, please see ENR 1.1 4.1 Non-Standard Flights (NSFs) in Controlled Airspace.
Guidance for operators of small unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) who wish to operate in controlled airspace and around specific aerodromes
The Air Navigation Order (ANO) contains specific rules for UAS (weighing 20kg or less).
For further information please see the AIS site.
If your UAS flight is for commercial operation, then you need to contact the CAA for an appropriate Permission. Please visit here for more details.