Flying in 2018 - REAL IDs and extensions (not the hair kind)
September 18, 2018 5:31 AM   Subscribe

I've been googling this a lot and I feel like the answer is somewhere, but I can't find it. Long story short: can anyone point me to a federal or national website or contact person that can confirm that the latest extension of REAL ID implementation expires in 2020 and not 2018?

I live in a state which has yet to implement the changes in license issuance required by the REAL ID Act. I'm planning a trip in November which will require me to fly, but I only have a standard, non-enhanced driver's license. My state's relevant websites mostly seem to say that I'll be fine with that until October of 2020, but the Department of Homeland Security's site continues to indicate that the extension ends on October 18, 2018.

I've looked at the relevant sites from other states in this situation, and though many of them also indicate that an extension is in place until 2020, some do still seem to say the extension ends in 2018. Every page I could find on the DHS website mentions October 2018. (NB: most of those pages are dated January 2018, but at least one (which I cannot find now) was updated on September 10, 2018. These latter also indicated October 2018 is the end of the extension.)

So, can anyone point me to a non-state resource that can confirm whether or not the REAL ID compliance extension ends in October 2018? As I said, I've been trying to research this for days and I feel like I'm chasing my own tail at this point.

(I know I could just pay for an expedited passport, and may do so. I would like to determine if that's the only solution here first. My understanding is that my state is about to start offering REAL ID compliant licenses next month, but because of the changes needed to implement that, they are expecting up to 4 months processing time for any driver's license or ID.)
posted by Janta to Law & Government (8 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
Here you go. Have a nice flight!!
posted by chasles at 5:41 AM on September 18, 2018


Code of Federal Regulations, Title 6, Part 37, Section 37.5 (b): "On or after October 1, 2020, Federal agencies shall not accept a driver's license or identification card for official purposes from any individual unless such license or card is a REAL ID-compliant driver's license or identification card issued by a State that has been determined by DHS to be in full compliance as defined under this subpart."
posted by solotoro at 5:43 AM on September 18, 2018 [1 favorite]


Also, related/unrelated... You can fly without an ID. There is a questionnaire and interview and maybe a little extra screening.
posted by chasles at 5:45 AM on September 18, 2018


I have the same locational situation, and flew last week. There were lots of posters talking about it extended to 2020 in the TSA line. Also, if you have a passport, you can use that (my backup plan).
posted by jillithd at 6:58 AM on September 18, 2018


Seconding chasles. You can fly without an ID, and some people insist on doing so as a protest to TSA overreach.
posted by suncages at 7:44 AM on September 18, 2018


Think of it this way: ~30 million Californians would be unable to fly next month if the deadline were in October of this year, as it’s only been possible to for us to get a CA Real ID for a couple months or so. Open DMV appointments are currently way into Decemeber/January.

If the 6th largest economy in the world was about to be forced to stop flying, it’d be second to Trump as far as news coverage.
posted by sideshow at 8:21 AM on September 18, 2018 [2 favorites]


I can't believe I didn't think of this before. I (gasp) actually called the TSA's customer service number, and the agent I spoke with said that my existing ID would work as long, but that I should also bring a second form of ID (e.g., social security card or birth certificate).

I'll also plan on starting the passport application process, but for now I think my concerns are assuaged.

(Much as I like the "fly without ID as protest" idea on paper, the thought of actually doing so is giving me an anxiety attack.)
posted by Janta at 8:37 AM on September 18, 2018 [2 favorites]


I worked for the TSA in 2012 - 2014. They were delaying the implementation of this law even back then. I’m not saying it will never happen, but it a lot of saber rattling. Implementing this law would totally lock down many airports. After all, California only started offering the complient ID this year!
posted by Monday at 11:37 AM on September 18, 2018


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