Bringing in an RC Helicopter

#1 Aug 30th, 2009, 23:59
Join Date:
Jul 2009
Location:
California
Posts:
4
  • Michael Hess is offline
#1
Hello all,

I know I'm probably begging to get arrested and/or deported on site at customs... But I was just wondering what the likelihood is of being able to bring in a medium sized RC Helicopter into the country from the US via the Delhi airport. We have friends who operate an RC helicopter (no idea re: $ value) and we wanted to have them come with us to get some aerial shots of our friend's wedding in Jaipur. I know India is sensitive about photography/filming, but I'm wondering about even getting the RC Copter through customs w/out raising security issues.

Will we even be allowed to bring it in? If so, what would the duties be on it, if any? Advice on avoiding duties? Once in country, will we be arrested for trying to get aerial shots of our friend's wedding? Any advice to get it into the country without any problems... And on dealing w/ security once in country would be greatly appreciated!

I know it's a crazy ambitious thought but it doesn't hurt to try as long as there is a right way to do it!

Thx!
-M
#2 Aug 31st, 2009, 00:42
Join Date:
May 2008
Location:
Back in Jolly ol' Blighty!
Posts:
8,250
  • Haylo is offline
#2
Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Hess View Post I was just wondering what the likelihood is of being able to bring in a medium sized RC Helicopter into the country from the US via the Delhi airport.
Your first problem will be transporting this without damaging it. Even broken down, it's going to be too big for normal carryon, so you'd be reliant on the goodwill of the airline. They tend to be helpful about letting people carry large but obviously delicate items, but there are no guarantees. RC helicopters are very sensitive pieces of kit, they break very easily and won't stand the sort of jolting that baggage handlers would give them.

Another issue will be finding a supply of the specialist fuel; you won't be able to bring any with you.

As for duty, I believe that you can declare items as being for personal use when you arrive, and as long as you take them with you when you leave, you don't pay duty. I've never done it myself so I don't know all the details.

Quote:
I know India is sensitive about photography/filming, but I'm wondering about even getting the RC Copter through customs w/out raising security issues.
Apart from bridges and other strategic places such as airports, India is only sensitive about photography by professional photographers and journalists.

Is this an amateur hobbyist item, or does it look like a piece of pro equipment?

If your friends do this professionally, their visa applications will be more complicated and their visas will take longer to come through.

Quote:
Once in country, will we be arrested for trying to get aerial shots of our friend's wedding?
Is the wedding venue a country estate in the middle of nowhere, or in the middle of a large city?

Does it look as if there is a camera on board?

Best of luck getting this organised for the wedding, I look forward to hearing other people's opinions as to whether this could work.
______________________________ ______________________________ _________________

The world is mud-luscious and puddle-wonderful - E.E. Cummings, poet (1894-1962)

My India Photos Re-Entry Permit from: UK & USA ~ MHA Tourist Visa FAQ ~ MHA Employent & Business Visa FAQ ~ MHA Student Visa FAQ ~ MHA Entry Visa FAQ .
#3 Aug 31st, 2009, 11:56
Join Date:
Jul 2009
Location:
California
Posts:
4
  • Michael Hess is offline
#3
Thanks Haylo. Some good info in your post. I don't believe there are any strategic/infrastructure areas near the wedding and it is taking place on private property... Pretty much in the middle of nowhere.

I guess the biggest challenge is getting it through customs.

I believe it is rather large... And its debatable whether it looks "professional". Our friends do this professionally, yes, but its also a big hobbyist thing. They actually travel internationally (western Europe mostly) for hobby purposes and haven't had a problem, but I know India is a different thing.

If anyone knows if they should get a work visa and be totally up front with the fact that we are photographic this wedding... Or make it easy & try to get it in on a tourist visa while keeping the "photography" part out of it, please chime in w/ your thoughts.

Thanks again!!
#4 Aug 31st, 2009, 13:55
Join Date:
May 2008
Location:
Back in Jolly ol' Blighty!
Posts:
8,250
  • Haylo is offline
#4
Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Hess View Post If anyone knows if they should get a work visa
There is no such thing as a work visa, only an employment visa which entails having a contract with an Indian company.

Professional photographers coming into India for holidays can have a JT visa (journalist tourist), but of course they would not be bringing pro photographic equipment like this with them.

If you want to go by the book, as professional photographers, they need a journalist visa. This should allow them to bring professional photography equipment into India, but in India there are never any guarantees!

It might help if they had a brochure showing only wedding photographs taken from this helicopter.

Just a thought, but as your friends have not had any problems flying all over Europe with this, presumably their only concern is in entering India. For what it's worth, I have never had my carryon checked in India on arrival.
#5 Jan 15th, 2010, 06:31
Join Date:
Jan 2010
Location:
Singapore
Posts:
41
  • Vdhillon is offline
#5
Please limit the use of American UAVs to Iraq, Afganistan and Pakistan only and avoid the risk of being jailed in India.
#6 Jan 15th, 2010, 06:38
Join Date:
Jun 2008
Location:
Toronto
Posts:
3,003
  • Hal is offline
#6
You could probably avoid duties by getting a CARNET form for it. But that is quite involved, and you have to put up a hefty bond that's a percentage of the value of the items being imported.
#7 Jan 15th, 2010, 06:38
Join Date:
Jan 2010
Location:
Singapore
Posts:
41
  • Vdhillon is offline
#7
There is an archiac federal law in India (from the days of Raj) that arian photgraphy by private citizens is prohibited. Recently shooting of a movie was shifted out of India purely becuase they wnated to shoot highway chase scenes from helicopters. Read the article about ban on arial photography http://www.indianetzone.com/28/aeria...aphy_india.htm

Similar Threads

Title, Username, & Date Last Post Replies Views Forum
Tawang by helicopter Jul 27th, 2009 00:38 3 2167 Arunachal Pradesh
Helicopter ride? Jul 26th, 2009 23:30 2 1217 Chai and Chat
Helicopter service at Kedarnath? May 8th, 2008 14:53 5 5839 Uttarakhand
Tawang helicopter Jan 10th, 2007 00:10 7 6360 Arunachal Pradesh
Fly to Amarnath by helicopter Jun 22nd, 2005 09:21 3 4202 Domestic India Flights


Posting Rules

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
Forum Rules»
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.3.2
© IndiaMike.com 2014
Page Load Success