Are You Aware Of The Real ID Act?

Are You Aware Of The Real ID Act?

Anytime I read about a policy or procedure that contains the word “act” I immediately conclude that it will confuse the living hell out of me.
Real ID

Last week I spotted this sign at BWI and since I had no idea what the Real ID Act covered and figuring I’ll be traveling somewhere around January 21, 2018, I needed to learn more.

After researching, if you can call it that, it seems like this “act” is nothing that’s going to cause you to meltdown at TSA and then make you the next viral cellphone video sensation.

If you have recent Florida drivers license you’re more than likely already Real ID compliant.



What is Real ID? Passed by Congress in 2005, the REAL ID Act established minimum security standards for state-issued driver’s licenses and identification cards and prohibits federal agencies, like TSA, from accepting licenses and identification cards for official purposes from states that do not meet these standards.  TSA will continue to accept valid driver’s licenses and identification cards issued by all states until January 22, 2018.

What happens if I show up without an acceptable driver’s license or state ID? Will I be allowed to fly? Starting January 22, 2018, travelers who do not have a license or identification card from a compliant state or a state that has been granted an extension will be asked to provide alternate acceptable identification. If you cannot provide an acceptable form of identification, you will not be permitted through the security checkpoint.

Starting October 1, 2020, every traveler will need to present a REAL ID-compliant license or another acceptable form of identification for domestic air travel.

As with all government labeled “acts”, there’s a website with a picture that explains it best.

Real ID

If your license is from a state that’s Green you’re compliant.
If your license is from a state that’s Yellow you have an extension through October 17, 2017
If your license is from a state that’s Red you’re not compliant and should consider moving. I added the moving part.

Real ID

If you’ve ever wondered why there’s star on your Florida drivers license, here’s why.

Florida began issuing REAL ID compliant credentials after  January 1, 2010. The new credentials have a star in the upper right corner of the card, as shown in the sample license example above. Because Florida is a REAL ID compliant state, all Florida licenses should be accepted nationwide.

This isn’t a travel show stopper, and as 2018 approaches I’m sure we’ll hear more but at least you have a heads-up.

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