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  • Writer's pictureNicole Lawrence

What is the "REAL ID" and Why Do We Need One?

Starting May 3, 2023, Every state and territory resident will need to present a REAL ID compliant driver's license, state identification, or another acceptable form of identification at Federal facilities and before boarding commercial aircraft. You can use your existing ID until this date. All states have accepted using the new REAL ID cards, and your particular state will post any additional information specific to your state.

Please note that the following information is a broad overview of the new Real ID. Visit your state's website for further details and requirements in your particular state: Click Here.

The good news is that you can Save Time and Apply Online Today!

Did you know the Department of Homeland Security DHS is going to allow Online REAL ID Applications? Since DMV's may be closed, this will help you jump-start the process and avoid the lines before The Real ID becomes mandatory for boarding aircrafts on May 3, 2023. The U.S. Travel Association estimates that 57 percent of Americans are unaware of this new requirement.

Since you are at home and online, go ahead and take care of it now, so you are ready to travel when it is safe to do so.

After the May 3, 2023 deadline, travelers will no longer be able to use non-compliant licenses to pass through security at the nation's airports. Only a valid passport or REAL ID Compliant license or identification will be allowed.

Since 200 million Americans still do not have a compliant license, this could mean very long lines at the DMV.

Travelers will still be required to bring their original documents to the DMV office, but having everything already submitted online will speed up the process.

Here's how you can speed up your process

  1. Complete the online application: Click here

  2. Bring your completed application to your local DMV and State's required Identification Documents

    1. Proof of identity, proof of a Social Security number, proof of birth date, proof of lawful status in the United States, and proof of residence

  3. You're DONE!

How To Tell If Your ID Is "REAL ID Complaint"

A Star will be on the front of your REAL ID. There are 5 variations of stars; gold, white, black, or cut-outs of black or gold circles (see below). All approved images will be posted on your state's website and TSA signage.

For a complete list of accepted alternative forms of identification, please Click Here.

Children Traveling or Not Old Enough for a License?

  • Anyone under the age of 18 that is traveling with an adult will not need a REAL ID. Only the adult they are traveling with will need to present a REAL ID.

  • A child traveling alone will also not need a REAL ID. TSA has a process in effect to assist them.

For More Information - Visit your local DMV website for further details and requirements in your particular state: Click Here.

If you're all set and ready to start planning your next trip, we'd love to help you. We work with many different budgets and styles of travel. Reach out today to arrange a 15-minute Quick Hello chat at a time that suits you.

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