Anyone with a drone weighing more than 250g who doesn't register their details by the deadline will face a fine of £1,000.
The operator must be over 18 - although anyone of any age can still fly a drone owned by an adult after completing a free 20 question multiple choice quiz - and pay an annual fee of £9 to register with the regulator online.
Simon Smith - a pilot instructor at the Phantom Flight School in Maidstone, Kent - told the BBC: "Hand-in-hand with regulations will come technology, as drones are automatically broadcasting details of where they are, who's flying them, where the pilot is located.
"Stuff like that will inevitably improve the situation. We've got to share the air safely and in order to do that, everybody has to got to know where everybody else is."
And Lucy D'Orsi - deputy assistant commissioner and the National Police Chiefs' Council lead for the criminal use of drones - added: "We have plans in place to protect the public and we will pursue, investigate and prosecute anyone who uses a drone illegally or in a dangerous way that puts people at risk."