Air Travel and the REAL ID Act

How to Know If Your State is Compliant with the REAL ID Act for 2018

The REAL ID Act was passed by Congress in 2005 based on the 9/11 Commission’s recommendation to establish minimum security standards for state issued driver’s licenses and identification cards. The Act prohibits Federal agencies from accepting licenses and identification cards from states that have not met those minimum standards. The overarching goal of the Act is to make fake IDs harder to acquire.

While the REAL ID Act is mandatory for Federal agencies, state participation is voluntary. However, Federal agencies are prohibited from accepting non-compliant driver’s licenses and identification cards for official purposes (i.e. accessing federal facilities, entering nuclear power plants, and boarding aircraft)

In 2013, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced timeframes and enforcement plans for states to become compliant. As of December 2017, 27 states are fully compliant and have met the minimum standards of the Act (check here for the most up to date status of states and territories).

Enforcement Timeline

January 22, 2018

Driver’s licenses and ID cards for a state that is not in compliance with the REAL ID Act and that has not been granted an extension may not be used as an acceptable form of ID to fly within the United States.

October 1, 2020

Travelers must use a REAL ID-compliant driver’s license, state identification card, or other acceptable form of identification for air travel within the United States.

Overview by State and Territory

Alabama

State is compliant.

Alaska

State has been granted an extension through October 10, 2018. Alaska DMV is working to towards producing compliant IDs by January 2019.

American Somoa

Territory is under review for a renewed extension. TSA will accept state IDs through January 22, 2018 as part of a grace period.

Arizona

State is compliant.

Arkansas

State is compliant.

California

State has been granted an extension through October 10, 2018. California DMV will provide compliant IDs beginning January 2018.

Colorado

State is compliant.

Connecticut

State is compliant.

Delaware

State is compliant.

District of Columbia

District is compliant.

Florida

State is compliant

Georgia

State is compliant.

Guam

Territory has been granted an extension through October 10, 2018.

Hawaii

State is compliant.

Idaho

State has been granted an extension through October 10, 2018.

Illinois

State has been granted an extension through October 10, 2018.

Indiana

State is compliant.

Iowa

State is compliant.

Kansas

State is compliant.

Kentucky

State has been granted an extension through October 10, 2018. Compliant IDs will be available after January 2019.

Louisiana

State is under review for a renewed extension. TSA will accept state IDs through January 22, 2018 as part of a grace period.

Maine

State has been granted an extension through October 10, 2018. Compliant IDs will be available beginning July 2019.

Maryland

State is compliant.

Massachusetts

State has been granted an extension through October 10, 2018. Compliant IDs will be available beginning March 2018.

Michigan

State is under review for a renewed extension. TSA will accept state IDs through January 22, 2018 as part of a grace period.

Minnesota

State has been granted an extension through October 10, 2018.

Mississippi

State is compliant.

Missouri

State has been granted an extension through October 10, 2018.

Montana

State has been granted an extension through October 10, 2018. Montana residents can opt to purchase compliant IDs.

Nebraska

State is compliant.

Nevada

State is compliant.

New Hampshire

State has been granted an extension through October 10, 2018. New Hampshire residents can apply for compliant IDs in person through DMV.

New Jersey

State has been granted an extension through October 10, 2018.

New Mexico

State is compliant.

New York

State is under review for a renewed extension. TSA will accept state IDs through January 22, 2018 as part of a grace period. New York residents can use an Enhanced ID or apply for compliant IDs through DMV.

North Carolina

State is compliant.

North Dakota

State has been granted an extension through October 10, 2018. North Dakota residents can apply for compliant IDs.

Northern Mariana Islands

Territory is under review for a renewed extension. TSA will accept state IDs through January 22, 2018 as part of a grace period.

Ohio

State is compliant.

Oklahoma

State has been granted an extension through October 10, 2018. Compliant IDs will be available mid to late 2019.

Oregon

State has been granted an extension through October 10, 2018. Compliant IDs will be available beginning July 2020.

Pennsylvania

State has been granted an extension through October 10, 2018. Compliant IDs will be available beginning spring 2019.

Puerto Rico

Territory has been granted an extension through October 10, 2018.

Rhode Island

State has been granted an extension through October 10, 2018.

South Carolina

State has been granted an extension through October 10, 2018. Compliant IDs will be available beginning the first quarter of 2018; residents can begin applying online now.

South Dakota

State is compliant.

Tennessee

State is compliant.

Texas

State is compliant.

Utah

State is compliant.

U.S. Virgin Islands

Territory has been granted an extension through October 10, 2018.

Vermont

State is compliant.

Virginia

State has been granted an extension through October 10, 2018. Compliant IDs will be available beginning October 2018.

Washington

State has been granted an extension through October 10, 2018. Washington residents can apply for compliant IDs.

West Virginia

State is compliant.

Wisconsin

State is compliant.

Wyoming

State is compliant.

What You Need to Know About the REAL ID Act When Flying

If your state is compliant:

You may continue to utilize your state issued driver’s license or identification card to fly within the United States until October 1, 2020. Beginning October 1, 2020, a REAL ID compliant driver’s license, identification card, or other form of acceptable identification will be required for air travel within the United States.

If your state is not compliant:

Beginning January 22, 2018, you may continue to utilize your state issued driver’s license or identification card for air travel if your state has been granted an extension to the compliance deadline. If your state has not been granted an extension to the deadline, you may not use your state issued driver’s license or identification for air travel. Beginning October 1, 2020, you may not utilize your state issued driver’s license or identification card for air travel within the United States.

How to Prepare for Air Travel in 2018

If you are unsure that your current state issued driver’s license or identification card will be accepted by TSA beginning January 22, 2018, there are a few steps you can take:

  • Apply for an alternate identification document in advance of your planned travel dates
  • Refer to the current list of acceptable IDs below:
    • Driver’s licenses or other state photo identity cards issued by Department of Motor Vehicles (or equivalent) in accordance with REAL ID enforcement schedule described above.
    • S. passport
    • S. passport card
    • DHS trusted traveler cards (Global Entry, NEXUS, SENTRI, FAST)
    • S. military ID (active duty or retired military and their dependents, and DoD civilians)
    • S. Merchant Mariner Credential
    • Permanent resident card
    • Border crossing card
    • DHS-designated enhanced driver’s license
    • Airline or airport-issued ID (if issued under a TSA-approved security plan)
    • Federally recognized, tribal-issued photo ID
    • HSPD-12 PIV card
    • Foreign government-issued passport
    • Canadian provincial driver’s license or Indian and Northern Affairs Canada card
    • Transportation worker identification credential
    • Immigration and Naturalization Service Employment Authorization Card (I-766)

Find the most updated list of TSA accepted identification here.

Air Travel and the REAL ID Act - Morrissey & Associates, LLC

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