FAA Announces Recreational Drone Pilot Safety Test

June 28, 2021

The FAA has launched its long-awaited The Recreational UAS Safety Test (TRUST) program for recreational drone flyers. All recreational flyers must pass an aeronautical knowledge and safety test and provide proof of test passage to the FAA or law enforcement upon request.

Under FAA rules, education and research uses of drones for educational purposes can be operated under the rules for recreational flyers as an alternative to Part 107 (business use) certification. This means that drone operators flying as part of University research or coursework must, at minimum, earn the TRUST certificate required of all recreational users.

Sixteen organizations have been selected by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to initially administer TRUST. The test was developed to provide recreational drone flyers with aeronautical safety knowledge and an overview of the rules for operating drones in the National Airspace System.

RELATED: The TRUST Certificate and How to Fly A Drone Recreationally  »

“These organizations are key to making this test widely available and easily accessible to recreational drone pilots,” said FAA Administrator Steve Dickson. “We need pilots of all aircraft, including those who operate recreational drones, to have the training and knowledge needed to operate safely in the nation’s airspace.”

The test may be taken through any of the following approved organizations:

  • The Academy of Model Aeronautics (AMA)
  • The Boy Scouts of America
  • Chippewa Valley Technical College
  • Community College of Allegheny County–West Hills Center
  • CrossFlight Sky Solutions LLC
  • Drone Launch Academy LLC
  • Drone U
  • Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (ERAU)
  • HSU Educational Foundation
  • Lake Area Technical College
  • Pilot Institute
  • Proctorio Incorporated
  • Tactical Aviation
  • UAV Coach
  • University of Arizona Global Campus
  • Volatus Aerospace Corp

Links to test administrators are available on the FAA website. The test is administered online at no cost through the approved test administrators.

After passing the test, recreational drone flyers will be issued a completion certificate which they are required to show if asked by FAA or law enforcement personnel. The completion certificate does not expire. Recreational drone flyers should take the test at their earliest convenience. 

The FAA's 2018 Reauthorization Bill (PDF) introduced new requirements for recreational pilots, including the development of the testing program. The drone community provided input into the test development.

RELATED: Helpful Q&As About TRUST From Android Authority »