REAL ID—Don’t Fly Without It!
We want your Coolsys travel to be as pleasant as possible. So, here’s an important heads-up on a big change coming later this year.
If you use your state driver’s license as identification when you fly, be aware that beginning October 1, 2020, your license must be REAL ID-compliant. Congress passed the REAL ID Act in 2005 in response to the September 11, 2001, attacks. It adds a layer of security to the process of verifying every person who applies for a new or renewal driver’s license.
What happens if you try to use a non-compliant driver’s license after October 1? You’re going to have a really bad day! You’ll be turned away at the TSA checkpoint and will not be allowed to fly until you can show a REAL ID-compliant driver’s license or another acceptable form of ID (These include a current U.S. passport, a passport card, military ID or other TSA-approved ID).
How Do I Know if I’m REAL ID-compliant?
In order to figure out if your current state driver’s license is REAL ID-compliant Look at or near the top of the license. You’ll see one of these symbols:
- A gold or black star.
- A gold or black circle with a white star inside it.
- In California, a gold image of a walking bear with a white star on its rump.
Also, if you have an enhanced driver’s license (EDL) issued by the state of Washington, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, or Vermont, you’re good to go! Most EDLs do not have the star symbol, but you’re still covered.
Immediate Action Required
Now is the time to act if your driver’s license isn’t REAL ID-compliant! If your license is up for renewal before October 1, be sure you renew with a REAL ID-compliant license. If you’re not up for renewal till after October 1, visit your state’s driver’s licensing agency website to find out what you need to do to get a REAL ID-compliant card before October 1.
Take note that REAL ID applies to flights within the United States only. You’ll still need a passport to fly outside of the U.S. For more information about REAL ID, visit the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s frequently asked questions page.