Beginning October 1, 2020, Federally-Compliant Identification will be Required to Fly in the U.S.

The New York State Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) is reminding New Yorkers that new federal travel requirements will take effect in exactly one year and impact anyone flying within the country.

As part of the REAL ID Act, beginning October 1, 2020, a standard license will no longer be accepted alone as proper identification to board domestic flights. Passengers will need a REAL ID, Enhanced ID or another federally- accepted form of identification, like a passport.

“Just as you plan your vacations ahead of time, plan to get a REAL ID now so you are ready when the new law takes effect,” DMV Commissioner Mark J.F. Schroeder said. “We have created several incredible tools to make it as easy as possible for our customers; our online document guide and informational videos will tell you everything you need to know about the REAL ID and how to get one.”

A REAL ID costs the same as a standard license, but it requires a visit to a DMV office and a new photograph. To help consumers prepare, the DMV created an online document guide that shows customers exactly what they need to bring with them, including a checklist of needed documents.

The DMV recommends customers follow three simple steps before coming to a DMV office—use the document guide, bring appropriate proof of residency and bring proof of your full, legal name. These tips are available on the DMV website and through a brochure and video. Customers can also view helpful REAL ID videos on its YouTube channel. 

New York first offered the REAL ID in 2017. The Enhanced Driver License (EDL), which has been available to New Yorkers since 2008, is also acceptable for federal REAL ID purposes. An EDL costs an additional $30 and can be used at land and sea borders when returning to the United States from Canada, Mexico and some countries in the Caribbean.

Currently, REAL ID-compliant identification is required to enter certain federal buildings and military bases. A standard license is now marked “Not for Federal Purposes.”

You can learn more about the three types of licenses available in New York and which ID might be right for you, on the DMV’s website –, or follow the DMV on Facebook  and Twitter.

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