In the last couple of months, there has been a lot of talk about the REAL ID and how it will effect your travel throughout the US in 2018.

If you live in one of the BLUE or YELLOW states, you need to read this.














Later in 2018 (currently Oct 11, 2018) unless the TSA pushes it back yet AGAIN, you will need a REAL ID in order to travel domestically within the US.

What is the REAL ID Act?

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 the TSA) from accepting licenses and identification cards from states that do not meet these standards. States have made considerable progress in meeting these standards and every state has a more secure driver’s license today. But not ALL states are compliant.

To qualify for the new ID, states must require residents provide a photo ID, a birth certificate (or other documentation), proof of residency, social security number and proof of address to receive a Real ID-compliant driver’s license. In California, for example, that process will require an in-person application.

You may notice signs around airport security checkpoints informing travelers of the new TSA rules going into effect in 2018.

If you live in any of the Yellow Or Blue coded states, you now have until Oct 11, 2018 to get your REAL ID in order.  Even if you live in the compliant states (green) states, your state issued driver’s license may still not be compliant.  How can you be sure?

Just because a traveler lives in a compliant state, doesn’t necessarily guarantee that their driver’s license qualifies for Real ID. Older documentation will still need to be replaced with the newer, more secure ID cards.
How to tell if your license qualifies for Real ID? Check for a gold star in the upper right-hand corner of the card.

If you are concerned that your state-issued driver’s license or photo ID may not be accepted by TSA beginning January 22, 2018, apply for an alternative identification document well ahead of your planned travel dates.

Here are some accepted forms of alternate ID.

  • U.S. passport
  •  U.S. passport card  9The passport card is an alternative that will allow travelers from noncompliant states to board a domestic flight; it will not be valid for international air travel. Passport cards are the same size as a driver’s license, cost $55 for first time applicants, and $30 for anyone who already has a passport.)
  • DHS trusted traveler cards (Global Entry, NEXUS, SENTRI, FAST)
  • U.S. military ID (active duty or retired military and their dependents, and Dept. of Defense (DoD) civilians)
  • Permanent resident card
  • Foreign government-issued passport
  • Canadian provincial driver’s license or Indian and Northern Affairs Canada card


Personally, My Vacation Lady  has a Global Entry card and we have used that for domestic travel.

PLEASE make sure that the name on your airline ticket matches the name exactly as it reads on your COMPLIANT ID.