Deadline for REAL ID extended until 2023
If you’ve been unable to get a travel-compliant Real ID driver’s license because of the COVID-19 pandemic, you now have more time. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced today they are extending the REAL ID full enforcement date by 19 months, from October 1, 2021 to May 3, 2023.
Beginning May 3, 2023, travelers 18 years of age and older will need a REAL ID-compliant driver’s license or identification card, state-issued enhanced driver’s license, or another TSA-acceptable form of identification at airport security checkpoints for domestic air travel.
The pandemic has caused many state licensing agencies to shift to appointment-only service. The DHS said that has “significantly limited states’ capacity to issue Real ID-compliant drivers licenses and identification cards.” The agency estimated that 43% of all state-issued driver’s licenses and identification cards nationwide are Real ID-compliant.
“As our country continues to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, extending the Real ID full enforcement deadline will give states needed time to reopen their drivers licensing operations and ensure their residents can obtain a Real ID-compliant license or identification card,” Alejandro N. Mayorkas, secretary of Homeland Security, said in a press release. Click to view the full press release.
What do I need to get a Real ID?
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many states are requiring appointments at their state licensing agency offices.
You can find your state’s information on DHS’ interactive map. Expect to bring proof of identity and residency and your Social Security number. For more information on REAL ID, visit www.dhs.gov/real-id.
Do I need a Real ID if I have a passport?
According to the TSA website, all of these are Real ID travel-compliant:
- U.S. passport.
- U.S. passport card.
- DHS trusted traveler card (Global Entry, Nexus, Sentri, FAST).
- U.S. Department of Defense ID, including IDs issued to dependents.
- Permanent resident card.
- Border crossing card.
- State-issued enhanced driver’s license.
- 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.
- U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services employment authorization card (I-766).
- U.S. Merchant Mariner credential.