Get Your Driver’s License With a Real ID Now
Is your driver’s license nearby? Check to see if it has a gold or black star in the upper right corner (if you are in California, your star will be inside the outline of the bear). I have it because I got my last driver’s license in 2017; if you don’t have one, get your new driver’s license as soon as possible.
Why? Because these licenses with a gold or black asterisk are called “Real ID licenses” and are in line with updated security standards and are more difficult to counterfeit or copy. More importantly, if you wish to use your driver’s license to board a domestic flight in the United States on or after October 1, 2020, you will need to present your Real ID license to qualify, and as DOH reminds us , you will receive Real ID license can only be personally applied to DMV.
As reported by The New York Times , people looking to exchange their license for Real ID are already facing longer-than-usual wait times for DMVs:
The new so-called Real ID license has sent an “unprecedented crowd” to the New York State Motor Vehicles office in midtown Manhattan, which a senior agency official said is one of the busiest in the state.
“It was excruciating and extremely frustrating,” said Tony Monteleone, head of a business website, who spent seven hours in a car office in Manhattan to obtain his Real ID license. “I was on vacation. At one point, I said to myself: ‘How long will it take?’ Who knew it would take all day? “
Remember, the October 2020 deadline is still a few months away, so even early risers have to hang around the DMV for hours to get their Real ID license. Imagine what it will be like in August or September, and then plan to go to DMV as soon as possible.
If you do not get your Real ID driver’s license by October 2020, you can still board the domestic flight if you show another TSA approved form of identification , including your passport, passport card, permanent resident card, or trusted traveler card.
But if you have a day or a day to spare, you might consider queuing up for one of these real IDs.