Getting a License to Fly a Drone in Virginia

I am going through the process of getting my license to operate a drone for commercial use in Virginia. It was hard for me to find a site with all the steps laid out for me. I was jumping from site to site so I could figure it out. So, this is a quick guide to what you need to do if you are looking at operating your drone for any level of income. In my case, it is for my photography business.

Here are the steps I went through:

  1. Register with IACRA as an applicant and get a FTN:

  2. Verify your eligibility:

  3. Find a testing center with PSI True Talent (

  4. Schedule a date & Pay the fee ($175), money is due at time of registry, and if you pay this amount, you have 12 months to take the test.

  5. Study (here is the FAA guide here:

  6. Take the test

I also want to note that you need to register your drone with the FAA by the serial number. I went with to do this, and they emailed me a copy of my drone registration on the same day. I want to say it was like $60.