I fall under the 'open' category will I be able to fly my old drone after 31 December 2020 ?
Yes, from 31 December 2020 to 1 January 2023, you may fly your drone without class Identification label in the ’open’ category under the following conditions:
drones with less than 500 g MTOM cannot fly over people, and pilot competency is determined by your National Aviation Authority;
drones with less than 2 kg MTOM can fly 50 metres or more (horizontally) from people and the pilot must undergo training equivalent to subcategory A2 (see the FAQ section on training);
drones with less than 25 kg MTOM, can fly in areas free from people, 150 metres or more away from properties, and the pilot must undergo training equivalent to subcategory A3 (see the FAQ section on training).
After 1 January 2023, you can still fly your drone without class identification labels, however, only under the following subcategories of operation, for which you have to fully comply with:
Subcategory A1 when the drone’s maximum take-off weight (MTOM) is less than 250 g; or
Subcategory A3 when the drone’s maximum take-off weight is less than 25 kg.
You will not need to apply any retrofit/sticker to the drone in subcategories A1 or A3.
Regulatory reference: Article 20 and Annex part A of EU regulation 2019/947 and EU regulation 2019/945.
Under the 'open' category do I still need training, given that I was flying drones before the rules became applicable?
Any certificates of remote pilots’ competency issued by national authorities will remain valid until 1 January 2022, after which your National Aviation Authority will have to convert your national certificate(s) to new one(s) that comply with this Regulation.
Whether or not you have to undergo more training after that date will depend on the conversion process that your National Aviation Authority decides to put in place.
As of 31 December 2020, if you do not have a national certificate for your remote pilot competency, you will have to undergo the required competency training as required for the ‘open’ category.
Regulatory reference: Article 21 and Annex part A (UAS.OPEN.020) and (UAS.OPEN.040) of EU regulation 2019/947.