Driver’s license, state IDs will work for domestic flights until 2025

In 2021, DHS stated that only 43% of driver’s licenses were REAL IDs. If you want to use your license to fly in the US after May 2025, it must be REAL ID.

UPDATE (12/5/22): The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has announced that it will extend REAL ID’s enforcement period by two years. Now, driver’s licenses that do not meet REAL-ID standards can still be used to board aircraft until May 7, 2025, when enforcement begins and such driver’s licenses will no longer be valid as ID by federal agencies like the TSA. The dates in the story have been updated to reflect the new deadline, otherwise the story will continue as posted below.

Anyone who’s been to a DMV in the last few years has probably seen signs and placards saying REAL ID is coming soon and everyone will need one to fly.

REAL ID is a state ID or driver’s license that meets stricter issuance standards than a typical state ID. Some states began transitioning to REAL IDs for licenses a decade ago, while others only started recently. REAL ID’s stricter standards and late adoption by some states has meant that so many Americans still do not have a REAL ID.

Angel texted the VERIFY team to ask if they need a REAL ID card for domestic and international travel.


Does your driver’s license have to be REAL ID to fly domestically?



That's wrong.

No, your driver’s license does not need to be a REAL ID card to fly domestically. That will change on May 7, 2025, when the federal government begins requiring it.


Currently, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) lists regular driver’s licenses and state photo IDs as acceptable forms of identification at airport security, but please note that all such IDs must be REAL ID compliant by the May 7, 2025 deadline for anyone wishing to fly within the US

After this date, the TSA will only accept genuine ID cards or driver’s licenses. TSA also accepts passports and certain other forms of identification. REAL ID cards will not be enough to get on international flights, Says TSAfor which passports are still required.

That REAL ID act became law in 2005, barring federal agencies from accepting state driver’s licenses and ID cards unless those documents met minimum security requirements. Those requirements would be set by the Secretary of Homeland Security and would include “the inclusion of certain data, common machine-readable technology and certain anti-fraud security features.”

According to that Department of Homeland Security (DHS)To obtain a REAL ID, you must provide documents proving your full legal name, date of birth, social security number, two proofs of address, and legal status. A REAL ID driver’s license or badge contains a star to identify it, according to the US Travel Associationrepresenting companies in the American travel industry.

For example, if someone were to apply for a REAL ID, they could provide a US birth certificate or passport, an original Social Security card, a bank statement with the address listed, and a utility bill with the address listed Set of acceptable documents. Someone not born in the US would have to do it submit a fifth document to demonstrate their legal authority to be in the United States, such as B. a permanent resident card or a certificate of naturalization.

In 2012, only 13 states were verified as REAL ID compliant, according to DHS National Conference of State Legislatorsand since then each state has updated their licensing requirements to meet REAL ID standards. States still allow Residents to obtain regular driver’s licenses and state IDs by submitting only one proof of residency instead of two proofs.

Passports and passport cards are also acceptable forms of identification to use in place of REAL IDs and will continue to be so even after regular licenses and government IDs are no longer accepted. Other acceptable identification documents include Veteran Health Identification Cards, Permanent Resident Cards, and Department of Defense ID Cards, among other.

In 2013, This was announced by the DHS REAL ID requirements for air travelers would first come into effect in 2016. However, enforcement of these requirements has been delayed several times. most recently in April 2021 when DHS deferred enforcement of REAL ID to the current deadline.

When DHS announced the latest deadline extension, it said only 43% of state driver’s licenses and ID cards were REAL-ID compliant.

A March 2020 survey commissioned by the US Travel Association found that an estimated 83 million American adults (34%) said they would not have any TSA-accepted identification—REAL ID, passport, or other listed ID—after the deadline TSA accepted document – owning passes.

More from VERIFY: No, there is no federal no-fly list for unruly passengers

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Laura Coffey

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