Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World

Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World

Airsoft is a thrilling sport, and though it’s widely legal, it’s crucial to know that airsoft laws differ globally. In the UK, for instance, airsoft guns are subject to specific regulations concerning muzzle energy and the depiction of real firearm trademarks.

Across the world, the legal landscape varies, so it’s incredibly important to be well-informed about local laws to enjoy the sport fully and responsibly. 

We’ve researched airsoft laws around the world to help you stay safe, just click on your country to get started!

CountryIs Airsoft Legal?Is there an Age Limit?
United KingdomYes18 + years, under 18 with parental permission
AustraliaNoN/A
AustriaYes18 + years
BelgiumYes18 + Years, 14 – 16 with parental permission
BulgariaYesNo age limits
CanadaYes18 + years
ChinaNoN/A
DenmarkYes18 + years, 16 + with parental permission
FinlandYesWritten permission under 18
FranceYes18 + years
GermanyYes18 + years
GreeceUnclearN/A
Hong KongYes18 + years
IndonesiaUnclear18 + years
IrelandYes18 + years
IsraelNoN/A
ItalyYesNo restriction
JapanYes18 + years
LuxembourgYes18 + years
LithuaniaYes18 + years
NetherlandsYes18 + years with licence
New ZealandYes18 + years
NorwayYes18 + years
PhilippinesYes18 + years with license
PolandYes18 + years
PortugalYes18 + years
RomaniaYes18 + years
SlovakiaYes18 + years
SloveniaYes18 + years
SingaporeUnclear18 + years with licence
SpainYes14 + years
SwedenYes18 + years
SwitzerlandYes18 + years
United StatesYes< 14 with parental permission

United Kingdom Airsoft Laws

Airsoft Laws UK
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • Airsoft is legal in the UK
  • You must be 18 to play airsoft (14-18 with parental supervision)
  • You may only purchase airsoft guns over the age of 18

There are currently certain restrictions on the possession of airsoft replicas, which came in with the introduction of the ASBA (Anti-Social Behaviour Act 2003) Amendments. 

These prohibit the possession of any firearms replica in a public place without good cause (to be concealed in a hard gun case or sealed container only, not to be left in view of the public at any time).

The ban on self-contained gas cartridge guns, like Brocock, might also apply to Moscarts and BB-Shower grenades, but there’s no clear legal decision on this yet. 

The Violent Crime Reduction Act

The airsoft community was worried that a new law (the Violent Crime Reduction Act passed in November 2006 but not yet active) would stop them from buying realistic-looking guns. 

But on 20th September 2006, the Association of British Airsofters (ABA) got a letter from Tony McNulty (a government minister) saying that airsoft games would be exempt from this ban. This important letter is on the ABA website.

Since receiving Royal Assent, the Bill, now UK Statute Law, continues to spark debate in the airsoft community, particularly on how the Act and its Specific Defence will be implemented, a process still under consideration by the Home Office as of 5th December 2006.

The Defence hinges on whether an individual is a Skirmisher, defined as someone who skirmishes 3 or more times within at least two months. 

Retailers help identify Skirmishers through a central database, where one must be registered, and the airsoft site must have public liability insurance. 

Registered skirmishers get a membership card, which they must show to buy or trade airsoft weapons from these retailers, though it’s not legally required if they can prove their skirmisher status.

HM Customs & Excise are expected to access the database to check importers’ identities. Following the VCRA (Violent Crime Reduction Act) effective from 1st October 2007, only registered airsoft skirmish site members can purchase RIF (Realistic Imitation Firearms), excluding accessories and ammunition.

UK Age Restrictions for Airsoft

Airsoft gun laws in the UK state that only those over the age of 18 can purchase Replica Imitation Firearms. IF (Imitation Firearms), however, are still legal and may be purchased by anyone 18 or over and used by any age, regardless of membership status. 

These usually take the form of “Two-Tone” guns – normal Airsoft guns that have around 50% of the gun painted or manufactured in bright colours in order to mark them out clearly as Imitation Firearms and not Realistic Imitation Firearms.

However, there is still nothing in the books preventing people from painting the gun after purchase.

Airsoft Laws
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World

Australian Airsoft Laws

Australia Airsoft Laws
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • Airsoft isn’t legal in Australia
  • The sport is federally banned

Airsoft laws in Australia are a little hazy from state to state – but on the whole, airsoft is banned because the markers used to play resemble actual firearms.

Airsoft guns are subject to a federal ban across the country. As it stands, it’s illegal to own an imitation firearm (IF) in Queensland (QLD), with the law treating possession of these items very seriously.

Individuals found with Airsoft guns can face legal repercussions, as these items are prosecuted under the same legal framework as actual firearms, so it’s important to understand and comply with current regulations.

Moves Towards Legalisation

Despite the stringency of Australia’s airsoft laws, Airsoft Australia has been making strides towards legalisation, advocating for the sport’s safe and regulated participation. There’s still a long way to go, though, so don’t expect things to change any time soon.

Austrian Airsoft Laws

Austria Airsoft Laws
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • Airsoft is legal in Austria
  • You must be 18 to play
  • You may only purchase airsoft guns over the age of 18

Airsoft guns and pistols of more than 0.08 joule can be purchased in specialised weapon shops only. 

Austria airsoft laws are very strict, airsoft players have to wear eye protection at all times during airsoft events. It is strictly forbidden to remove or disable the safety mechanism of airsoft guns.

In public places, it is required by law to carry airsoft guns in a holster or bag. Airsoft weapons are not allowed to be carried in a way that might scare other people.

The use of airsoft guns is only allowed on private property with the permission of the owner. It is strictly forbidden to shoot airsoft guns in public places, such as streets, parks or forests.

Austrian Age Restrictions for Airsoft

According to Austrian law, all IF users have to be at least 18 years old.Airsoft laws in Austria are some of the strictest in Europe. Airsoft players have to be very careful to follow all the rules and regulations in order to avoid getting into trouble with the law, so it’s important to stick to these age restrictions even if you’re from a more lax country.

Belgian Airsoft Laws

Belgium Airsoft Laws
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • Airsoft is legal in Belgium
  • You must be 18 to play airsoft (14-16 with supervision)
  • You may only purchase airsoft guns over the age of 18

Belgium’s airsoft laws are very similar to Germany’s. Airsoft is allowed, but players must have a valid airsoft license. There are several airsoft clubs in Belgium that offer courses and events for airsoft enthusiasts.

Airsoft guns and pistols can only be bought at officially licensed dealers, who carry a government permit along with a certified weapon of defence (W.O.D.) to import and sell firearms.

Organisations are able to run airsoft events as long as they’re not affiliated with any ideological/religious agendas. It is forbidden to display or carry airsoft replicas in public. Events must take place in private locations. Airsoft replicas should never exceed 7.5 Joule, measured 2.5 meters from the barrel tip.

Belgian Airsoft Age Restrictions

You must be 18 or over to purchase a replica firearm and have a valid license.

Owning and renting out airsoft replicas is unrestricted. The sale of airsoft replicas to minors is forbidden, including sales over the internet (such as on eBay).

Bulgarian Airsoft Laws

Bulgaria Airsoft Laws
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • Airsoft is legal in Bulgaria
  • There are no age limits for playing airsoft
  • No documents or licenses are necessary for airsoft guns

Airsoft is legal in Bulgaria with no restrictions placed on airsoft guns. People between 14–18 years old need their parent’s permission. 

For the rest (18 and above), there are no restrictions. The Bulgarian law considers Airsoft guns to be Airguns – you don’t need any documents, licenses or anything else to possess them.

In Bulgaria, you’re free to carry, own, and use airsoft guns without any restrictions.

There aren’t any age limits for players, although sellers generally won’t provide airsoft guns to minors. You can also add any accessories like lasers or flashlights to your gun, and there’s no need for the barrel end to be painted orange.

Bulgaria has placed no limit on the power of the airsoft guns either; you can get anything from a 1J Airsoft gun to an 80J PCP Airgun.

While there are no rules against carrying airsoft guns in public places, it’s generally not recommended.

Shooting Restrictions in Bulgaria

Shooting in “protected” areas is strictly forbidden in Bulgaria. Protected areas are schools, administrative buildings and other public property. Also, shooting with an Airgun/Airsoft gun in public areas is forbidden.

Laws Airsoft
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World

Canadian Airsoft Laws

Canada Airsoft Laws
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • Airsoft is legal in Canada
  • You must be 18 to play
  • You may only purchase airsoft guns from licenced retailers

Airsoft guns that closely resemble real firearms are classified as replica firearms in Canada and can only be imported by companies possessing a Business Firearms License. 

Airsoft guns imported into the country by private citizens are at risk of being seized and destroyed at the border by customs agents.

The few Canadian airsoft retailers that exist take advantage of this fact and the prices are high in comparison to other countries.

Air guns with both a muzzle velocity greater than 152.4 metres per second (500 ft/s) and muzzle energy greater than 5.7 joules are considered firearms for the purpose of the Canadian Firearms Act. The legal airsoft fps limit in Canada is 500 fps.

Note: No legal distinction is made between airsoft and true firearms when they are used for the purposes of crime.

Canadian Airsoft Age Restrictions

In Ontario, the minimum age to purchase airsoft is 18. However, minors are legally allowed to play airsoft matches. Children under 18 must be supervised by someone over 18.

Chinese Airsoft Laws

China Airsoft Laws
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • Airsoft isn’t legal in China
  • Airsoft guns can be confiscated
  • You cannot purchase airsoft in China

In the People’s Republic of China, Airsoft guns have been illegal for years in mainland China. However, it is essentially an underground sport, and local authorities have been cracking down. 

People found to be carrying airsoft guns have been arrested, and their stocks have been confiscated by the government.

Market stalls and Shops have stopped selling airsoft guns as a result. Ironically, the majority of the world’s airsoft guns are manufactured in China.

PRC Airsoft Law Exceptions

It is legal in China’s SARs (Special Administrative Regions, such as Macau and Hong Kong), but it has begun to go underground there as well, several cargo companies already refuse to do anything with them.

In Macau, all airsoft guns are legal, but there are some restrictions placed on them. Airsoft guns:

  • May not be fired with a muzzle energy above two joules of kinetic energy
  • Must have an orange tip measuring at least six (6) millimetres
  • Can’t be carried in public unless in a bag or case
  • It’s illegal to modify airsoft guns to make them look more realistic

Penalties for breaking the law may include a maximum fine of MOP 5,000 (£490) and up to three months in jail.

Danish Airsoft Laws

Denmark Airsoft Laws
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • Airsoft is legal in Denmark
  • You must be 18 to play (16+ with parental permission)
  • You may only use airsoft guns on police-approved sites under 18

Airsoft guns are mentioned in the Danish “Våbenlov” (Arms control legislation). You do not require a firearms certificate to own airsoft rifles in Denmark.

There are several airsoft associations and clubs in Denmark, which can help you get started with the sport. The biggest airsoft association is the Dansk Airsoft Union (DAU).

Danish Airsoft Age Restrictions

The law in Denmark states you must be at least 18 years old to buy, hand over or possess airsoft guns. However, you can use airsoft guns, on police-approved sites, with a permission slip, at the age of 16.

Finnish Airsoft Laws

Finland Airsoft Laws
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • Airsoft is legal in Finland
  • You must be 18 to play (written permission under 18)
  • Replica firearms must be carries in a weapons case

The transportation of weaponry out of a case in public areas is forbidden, which applies to airsoft guns. However, they aren’t classified as firearms by law. You may also be asked for a valid defence if found to be carrying an airsoft gun.

All replica firearms must be covered with something, for example, a weapon case, when being transported between home and your skirmish site. To play airsoft, you will need the landowner’s permission to play there. 

Finnish Airsoft Age Restrictions

Finland is relatively relaxed when it comes to age restrictions for airsoft guns. Those under the age of 18 are able to buy airsoft guns with written permission from their legal guardians.

French Airsoft Laws

France Airsoft Laws
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • Airsoft is legal in France
  • You must be 18 to play
  • You may only purchase airsoft guns under 2 joules

In France, as in Finland, the public transportation of replica firearms is forbidden if they are visible. All replica firearms must be covered with, for example, a weapon case. Permission from landowners is needed to play airsoft anywhere.

French Airsoft Age Regulations

Those under the age of 18 can only buy or use airsoft guns under 0.08 joules in power. No airsoft gun’s power can exceed 2 joules; otherwise, they are considered to be a weapon and must be registered.

Airsoft Laws
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World

German Airsoft Laws

Germany Airsoft Laws
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • Airsoft is legal in Germany
  • You must be 18 to play airsoft
  • Airsoft guns under 0.5 joules can legally be sold to anyone over 3 years*

In Germany, airsoft guns under 0.5 joule are considered toys and can be sold to anyone over 3 years old.

* Note: sellers have agreed to sell only to those 14 and older.

Airsoft guns with a power between 0.5 joules and 7.5 joules, which must be bolt-action or semi-automatic, can only be sold to individuals 18 or older. These are classed as “free” firearms and are only available in weapon shops.

All guns must have the trader’s weapon abbreviation, an F-in-a-pentagon mark, and the calibre (like 6 mm BB) marked on them. 

While attaching target-illuminating devices and lasers to guns is prohibited, possessing such devices separately is allowed. For instance, using a flashlight in one hand while shooting is permitted, but mounting it on the gun is not. 

Devices designed to attach to a gun, like certain flashlights with integrated foregrips for mil-spec rails, are banned.

Playing Airsoft in Germany

Although owning airsoft guns is legal, using them in games and airsoft activities is controversial. 

Typically, players with guns over 0.5 joule muzzle energy go abroad to play in countries like France, Belgium, Denmark, or the Czech Republic.

Greek Airsoft Laws

Greece Airsoft Laws
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • It’s unclear whether airsoft is legal in Greece
  • You must be 18 to play airsoft
  • Replica guns must be visible in public

In Greece, airsoft is very much an underground sport, as the law is unclear. In Greek law, airsoft guns are not classified as real firearms and they are free to be purchased from shops.

The use of lasers, scopes, and flashlights on a replica weapon is prohibited by the law. Replica guns cannot be visible to the public at any time.

Greek Airsoft Age Restrictions

Those under 18 years of age cannot buy or use airsoft guns unless there is parental supervision. Replica guns cannot be visible to the public at any time.

Hong Kong Airsoft Laws

Hong Kong Airsoft Laws
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • Airsoft is legal in Hong Kong
  • You must be 18 to play airsoft
  • Airsoft guns may not have a muzzle energy above 2 joules

Airsoft guns are legal in Hong Kong, but there are some restrictions on their use. Airsoft guns may not be fired with a muzzle energy above 2 joules.

You are only allowed to play airsoft in private areas and non-country park areas. You may not reveal the airsoft guns in public areas.

Indonesian Airsoft Laws

Indonesia Airsoft Laws
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • It’s unclear whether airsoft is legal in Indonesia
  • You must be 18 years old to purchase an airsoft weapon
  • Airsoft guns cannot be upgraded above 100m/s

In Indonesia, airsoft guns fall into a grey area, not strictly classified as toys or real firearms, with few strict regulations governing the sport. 

Nevertheless, Indonesian airsoft community founders have imposed some rules that players must follow to stay in the community, including, 

  • Players cannot upgrade their guns beyond 100m/s
  • Buyers must be at least 18 years old 
  • Players must be familiar with airsoft regulations.

Threats to Indonesian Airsoft Laws

There have been incidents, such as robberies using an airsoft replica weapon, threatening the hobby’s future. 

To manage its growth, the government-authorised club PERBAKIN (Indonesian Shooting Club) has been designated by the police to oversee airsoft activities. 

However, airsoft’s association with PERBAKIN is uncertain, with anonymous sources suggesting that PERBAKIN has no airsoft agenda and that oversight might shift to IPSC (International Practical Shooting Confederation), given airsoft’s similarities to IPSC’s practical shooting.

This shift, however, seems optimistic given the government’s limited interest in airsoft, which only recognises target shooting and IPSC, not skirmish games. Thus, for airsoft enthusiasts, joining the Perbakin Club and focusing on IPSC rather than skirmish games might be the advisable path.

Irish Airsoft Laws

Ireland Airsoft Laws
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • Airsoft is legal in Ireland
  • You must be 18 to play
  • Airsoft guns with > 1-joule muzzle speed must be licensed

Airsoft’s status in Ireland was changed after the 2006 Criminal Justice Act, which updated the previous Firearms Acts from 1925, 1963, 1972 and 1990. 

An authorisation or a license was once required for all devices which fired a projectile from a barrel. However, the law now defines a firearm as:

”An air gun (including an air rifle and air pistol) with a muzzle energy greater than one joule of kinetic energy or any other weapon incorporating a barrel from which any projectile can be discharged with such a muzzle energy”

The aim of this change was to establish a minimum power a device must have to be classified as a firearm in order to eliminate the legal oddity where toy suction cup dart guns were legally classified as firearms, bringing Ireland in line with the rest of the EU.

Guns over one joule of power remain perfectly legal to possess and use within the Republic, so long as a firearms certificate is applied for and granted by the local Garda superintendent – but they are, at this point, classed legally as actual firearms.

Airsoft devices with a muzzle energy in excess of one joule must be licensed and must have a serial number marked indelibly on them. For airsoft devices which do not have such serial numbers, one must be indelibly marked on the airsoft device.

Israeli Airsoft Laws

Israel Airsoft Laws
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • Airsoft isn’t legal in Israel
  • The Girit Airsoft Association is pushing for legalisation

In Israel, airsoft guns are classified as “dangerous toys”, which makes all types of airsoft guns illegal to import, manufacture and sell. 

This law is not very well enforced, however, and it is possible to find retailers importing and selling airsoft pistols like MPEG-level and AEG-level airsoft guns.

Israeli airsofters have created an airsoft association in an attempt to make airsoft legal – Girit Airsoft Association in Israel. Girit is cooperating with the Israeli Shooting Federation, joining it shortly as a member and cooperating with other governmental authorities in an attempt to make airsoft legal in Israel.

Girit Airsoft Association has established cooperation with USAPSA, Ukrainian, Slovenian, Swedish and Czech airsofters. An Israeli national airsoft tactical shooting competition took place near Beit Berel in March 2007.

Airsoft Laws Europe
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World

Italian Airsoft Laws

Airsoft Laws Italy
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • Airsoft is legal in Italy
  • There is no age limit for playing airsoft
  • Openly carrying an airsoft gun in public is prohibited

Airsoft guns in Italy are considered toys, not firearms, if their muzzle velocity is below 100 m/s (328 ft/s) or their muzzle energy is 1 joule or less. 

You can buy and sell them without a license or registration, including online and through mail. When imported or sold in stores, they must have a red tip on the barrel, but owners can remove this.

Using or openly carrying airsoft guns in public is prohibited. You can play on private property out of public view or on private or state property with a limited-time permit from local authorities and after notifying the local police.

Modifying an airsoft gun to increase its power or to fire anything other than 6 mm BB plastic pellets is illegal.

Italian Age Restrictions

There’s no minimum age for the use or purchase of airsoft guns, but it’s recommended to restrict sales to those over 18 or 14 with adult supervision for less realistic or powerful models.

Japanese Airsoft Laws

Airsoft Laws Japan
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • Airsoft is legal in Japan
  • You must be 18 to play airsoft
  • Airsoft guns can only fire with a muzzle energy of 0.98 joules or less

In Japan, airsoft guns are legal but can’t shoot with a muzzle energy above 0.98 joules. 

Legal requirements are set on airsoft model manufacturers to prevent any possibility of a replica weapon being converted into an actual firearm.

Standards include but are not limited to:

  • use of low-melting point metals and non-ballistic plastics in structural components 
  • incompatibility of mechanical components with actual firearm components and mechanisms.

The overall litmus test used by the Japanese National Police Authority is whether the replica weapon can be made to chamber and fire an actual round of ammunition. These standards have proven successful within Japan, as it has been found that it’s significantly easier to purchase an actual illegal weapon in comparison to modifying a comparatively fragile replica into a functional firearm.

Luxembourg Airsoft Laws

Airsoft Laws Luxembourg
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World

All airsoft guns are classified as weapons under under the national weapon law and demand a personal user certificate.

Lithuanian Airsoft Laws

Airsoft Laws Lithuania
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World

Registration of any sort is not required for airsoft weapons. However, they are only available for purchase to people over 18 years. 

Airsoft players have established an unofficial set of rules that regulate the behaviour of players belonging to the community.

Dutch Airsoft Laws

Airsoft Laws Holland
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • Airsoft is legal in The Netherlands
  • You must be 18 to play airsoft and hold a licence
  • You may only purchase airsoft guns that are two-tone

The law places full restrictions on Airsoft Weapons, meaning possession of one is illegal.

When you look closely at the Dutch law on this subject, airsoft is not explicitly mentioned, but the characteristics of airsoft weapons would place them in Category I of the Dutch gun laws (legal to own and operate without a license for airsoft guns).

However, the Dutch Ministry of Justice has made exceptions for airsoft weapons. The reason given is that the weapons look so realistic that they can be used for intimidation. This places airsoft weapons that are 1:1 replicas or realistic in Category IV (illegal without any possibility of acquiring a permit).

The sport itself has the same legal status as paintball, but since Airsoft players prefer 1:1 realistic replicas, the Dutch players travel to Belgium instead.

New Zealand Airsoft Laws

Airsoft Laws New Zealand
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • Airsoft is legal in New Zealand
  • You must be 18 to play airsoft
  • It’s illegal to use airsoft weapons to intimidate people

It’s illegal to use airsoft weapons in a way that could endanger or intimidate others, like pointing or brandishing them, unless it’s for a reasonable cause, like an airsoft game. 

For more information, you can check the New Zealand Police Airguns Factsheet.

New Zealand Age Restrictions

In New Zealand, you can legally own and use single-shot and semi-automatic air-powered weapons if you are over 18 years old or 16 with a firearms licence. People under 18 can’t own an air gun but can use one if supervised by someone over 18 or a firearms license holder.

Norwegian Airsoft Laws

Norway Airsoft Laws
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • Airsoft is legal in Norway
  • You must be 18 to play airsoft here
  • You may only purchase airsoft guns below 3 joules

Airsoft guns in Norway must be marked with an orange tip at the barrel’s end and may not exceed 3 joules of muzzle energy. Airsoft equipment is only allowed to be used in areas specifically designated for airsoft.

Norway has no specific airsoft laws, but airsoft guns are considered replica firearms and, therefore, subject to the same general laws and restrictions as actual firearms. 

This means that airsoft guns may not be carried in public places except when going to and from an airsoft event or club. Airsoft guns must also be stored in a locked container.

It is illegal to modify airsoft guns to make them more realistic or to increase the muzzle velocity above 3 joules. It is also illegal to remove the orange tip from airsoft guns.

Norwegian Age Restrictions

The Arms control legislation (Våpenforskrift) requires players to be at least 18 years old to buy, hand over, possess and use airsoft guns. A firearms certificate is not required.

Airsoft Laws Asia
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World

Philippine Airsoft Laws

Philippines Airsoft Laws
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • Airsoft is legal in The Philippines
  • You must be 18 to play airsoft & have a licence
  • Airsoft guns must be registered with permits

In the Philippines, a 1982 Presidential Directive (Letter of Instruction 1264) bans importing, selling, and publicly displaying gun replicas. However, airsoft guns and players have been mostly unaffected, with only a few incidents of confiscated shipments. 

Philippine law defines a firearm based on projectile size, and there’s talk of airsoft becoming officially legal with certain conditions, like repainting guns to distinguish them from real firearms.

A 2006 memo by the Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief classified airsoft guns as air guns, allowing legal ownership and transport under specific conditions. This memo’s validity is debated, as it can’t override a Presidential directive.

The current PNP Chief has signed a revised memo, giving the airsoft community 6 months to comply with new rules, including registering airsoft guns and obtaining permits for transport to game sites. Unregistered guns may be confiscated.

Polish Airsoft Laws

Poland Airsoft Laws
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • Airsoft is legal in Poland
  • You must be 18 to play
  • You can privately import airsoft guns to Poland

Airsoft guns are not considered weapons if they are under 17 Joules. There’s no need for orange markings on the barrel. People over 18 can buy them without registration. However, age restrictions are not strictly enforced, and many are sold as “toys” in shops.

The police usually see airsoft replicas as toys, not “non-lethal weapons”. It’s legal to display or carry them in public, but it’s better to avoid this to prevent issues with the police. Customs allows the private import of airsoft guns. 

The Polish airsoft community has its own “Airsoft Rules”, which, while not legally binding, are followed to show fair play and community belonging. These rules include:

  • Wearing eye protection during games
  • Not brandishing replicas in public
  • Informing local law enforcement about airsoft games
  • Requiring written parental permission for players between 16 and 18 years old

Portuguese Airsoft Laws

Portugal Airsoft Laws
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • Airsoft is legal in Portugal
  • You must be 18 to play airsoft
  • You may only purchase airsoft guns for sports practice

Airsoft is legal in Portugal under the name of Softair. Softair falls into a specific category designated as “Arma de softair” or, in English “softair gun”.

According to the new Guns and Ammunitions Act (DR – Lei n.°5/2006 de 23 de Fevereiro – Regime Jurídico das armas e suas munições), some of the main excerpts are: 

  • Any softair gun must be totally or partially painted in fluorescent red or yellow colour; 
  • The maximum energy level at muzzle exit must not exceed 1.3 Joules (or 374 ft/s); 
Softair gun purchases are limited to:

 

  • Minimum age of 18
  • Only for sports practice
  • Buyer/owner must be registered in a softair federation
  • Softair players/gun owners don’t need to possess Public Liability insurance
  • Other special limitations may apply to softair gunsmiths and players

This information is an excerpt of the law, for further information, refer to the full document (DR – Lei n.°5/2006).

Romanian Airsoft Laws

Romania Airsoft Laws
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • Airsoft is legal in Romania
  • You must be 18 to play airsoft
  • You may only purchase airsoft guns without night vision or LADs

Law number 295 from 2004, which deals with weapons and ammunition, is a bit unclear about airsoft weapons. It’s not certain if these are considered “non-lethal weapons” or just “toys”. Here’s a simpler breakdown of what the law says:

  1. Air-Powered Weapons: These are categorised as “non-lethal”. To use them, you must be at least 18 years old and register the weapon at your local police station.
  2. Night Vision & Laser Aiming Devices: Devices designed for military use, like night vision or laser aiming, are only allowed for army members and related organisations. This rule applies even if you’re using these devices on less restricted weapons, like airsoft guns. However, aiming devices not made for military use are not restricted.
  3. Using Replica Guns in Crimes: If you use a non-lethal or replica gun (like an airsoft or paintball gun) in a crime, like armed robbery, you will be prosecuted as if you used a real gun.
  4. Airsoft & Paintball Replicas: These are not covered by Law 295/2004. They are not considered guns in the law because of how they are used and how they work. So, you don’t need special permission to buy, own, or use them.
  5. Additional Restrictions: On February 17, 2008, an update called OUG 28/2008 was added to the law, introducing more rules and regulations.

Slovakian Airsoft Laws

Slovakia Airsoft Laws
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • Airsoft is legal in Slovakia
  • You must be 18 to play airsoft
  • You may only purchase airsoft guns with less than 15 joules of power

Airsoft guns have a status similar to the Czech Republic and Slovenia, where they are considered to be firearms. 

All firearms are governed by law 190/2003, airsoft guns fit into weapon class D (§7b), and no permit is needed. The use of airsoft guns is allowed by players who are at least 18 years old.

Slovakian Airsoft Restrictions

  • Guns may not have an energy greater than 15 joules. 
  • The use of laser sights or night vision scopes is forbidden, attaching a laser sight to any weapon makes it a class A (prohibited) weapon.
  • The owner of a gun is required by law to secure the weapon when not using it.

Slovenian Airsoft Laws

Slovenia Airsoft Laws
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • Airsoft is legal in Slovenia
  • You must be 18 to play airsoft here
  • You may only purchase airsoft guns below 100m/s

If the velocity of an airsoft gun is below 100 m/s, equivalent to 1 joule, it’s considered to be a toy.

If the velocity is higher than 100 m/s, the airsoft gun is classified as a Section D weapon in the Firearms control legislation of Slovenia. 

Additionally, Air Soft Clubs and the National Shooters Association in Slovenia recommend that airsoft gun velocities should not be above 100 m/s (1 J).

One has to be at least 18 years old to buy airsoft guns.

Singaporean Airsoft Laws

Singapore Airsoft Laws
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • It’s unclear whether airsoft is legal in Singapore
  • Permission from the government & licences are required for IPSC shootings

One year after the sport was introduced in the country, it was banned due to safety issues. A petition is underway, hoping to legalise Airsoft.

Currently, only a few clubs in Singapore have managed to set up IPSC shootings using Airsoft guns, with permission from the government and firearm licenses. Currently, the clubs allow the purchase of airsoft pistols, but these are not allowed to be taken home.

There are no skirmishes except the shooting of paper targets. Airsoft is not regulated due to the outdated gun law. They fall in the category of “replica weapons” of this law and should not be carried away from home.

It’s legal to buy, possess and sell airsoft replicas and accessories, but sometimes there have been legal issues with customs.

Swedish Airsoft Laws

Sweden Airsoft Laws
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • Airsoft is legal in Sweden
  • You must be 18 to play airsoft
  • You may only purchase airsoft guns with less than 10 joules of power

In order to possess a Co2, air or spring-operated firearm without a license, the impact energy of a projectile fired at a distance of 4 meters (from the muzzle) must be less than 10 joules.

If it is semi or fully automatic, the impact energy must be less than 3 joules.

Swedish Airsoft Age Limit

One must be at least 18 years old to buy airsoft weapons. Minors under the age of 18 can only use an airsoft weapon under the close supervision of someone older than 20*

Thu,s there is no legal way for a minor to own or play airsoft. A parent who buys a weapon for their child is committing a crime.

*This law is meant for target shooting at a range.

Swiss Airsoft Laws

Switzerland Airsoft Laws
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World

Airsoft guns are not considered subject to weapon legislation, and no permission is necessary. All types of laser sights are forbidden.

American Airsoft Laws

USA Airsoft Laws
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World
Key points:

 

  • Airsoft is legal in the USA
  • You can play airsoft under 14 with parental permission
  • Specific restrictions vary from state to state

Under Federal Law, Airsoft guns are not considered firearms and are legal for all ages. However, some major cities have stricter laws. 

Airsoft guns must have a 6 mm orange tip or a clear/transparent body for commercial sales. After purchase, local laws vary on whether the orange tip must remain. 

Carrying airsoft guns openly can lead to interactions with law enforcement, as they closely resemble real firearms. In some cities, using airsoft guns in a crime leads to charges as if they were real firearms.

Laws Differ By US State

New York City requires realistic toy guns to be clear or brightly coloured and prohibits airsoft guns without a license. 

In contrast, the rest of New York State has no such restrictions. Michigan requires an orange tip on airsoft guns, while Texas allows ownership but restricts discharging within city limits. Some Illinois cities consider shipping or distributing airsoft guns illegal.

In New York State, airsoft guns are classified as firearms and must follow state firearm laws. Playing with airsoft guns is only legal on private property. 

In Minnesota, children under 14 must be supervised by an adult to possess an airsoft gun, and those under 18 need parental permission to purchase. 

In Saint Paul and Minneapolis, airsoft guns in public must have an orange tip, be clear or brightly coloured, and not have a laser attached. They must be transported and unloaded in a closed gun case. Most Minnesota municipalities ban firing airsoft guns within city limits.

Airsoft Laws USA
Airsoft Laws in the UK & Rest of the World

Summary: Airsoft Gun Laws Around the World

Airsoft is an immensely popular sport all over the world, but it’s important to be aware of your local laws and regulations before you start playing. Hopefully, this article has been a helpful starting point in your research.

Check out our blog for more information about airsoft rules, regulations, and guidelines.

FAQs

About Laurence

Laurence is a keen airsoft player and has been the owner of SoCom Tactical for over 10 years. He’s played airsoft all over the country solo and as part of teams and is an expert on all things airsoft, like tactics, airsoft guns and gameplay equipment. As one of the UK’s leading airsoft suppliers and retailers, Laurence is the go-to source for airsoft knowledge.