The address on my ID card is not my current address: Will the TSA care?
April 10, 2007 10:07 PM   Subscribe

I'm leaving for a trip in a few days (a domestic, US flight), and I'm worried that my laziness is going to cause troubles with airport security.

My home address on my current identification card is not the address of my current residence. About a year ago, I moved to an apartment about 5 miles away from the apartment whose address is printed on my current State ID card. Due to a combination of laziness and extreme busy-ness at work, I never got around to updating my card to reflect the change in address.

Being that I have not flown on a commercial airliner since the big liquid explosives scare, I'm not really sure how serious the security screeners are at the airports at the moment. Will someone notice that the address on my ID card does not match the address which I entered when I purchased the ticket and pull me aside for the requisite TSA anal probe ?

(I know this is a stupid question, but since I'll be on vacation for 2 weeks, I figure it wouldn't hurt to blow my AskMe quota at least this one time)
posted by melorama to Travel & Transportation (25 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
In California, you can go to your local DMV and immediately obtain a 'change of address slip" that compliments your current driver license/state ID - without having to pay any money or dealing with a waiting time for a new card. it's basically a brown piece of paper with a stamp on it and updated address info. that helps you deal with situations like these.

as for flying within the united states, this is not a big deal. screeners check to make sure your name on your ticket and license are the same. i could buy on my credit card for somebody else; as long as the name matches up of the person who is supposed to be flying and you have the ticket, youre good to go.
posted by phaedon at 10:18 PM on April 10, 2007

My boyfriend's driver's license address is my residence, and I'm absolutely positive that's not the address he buys tickets at (and they are not in the same city or even neighboring cities - unlike you, with two addresses within 5 miles of each other). He flies a ton - as recently as yesterday - and I don't believe it's ever given him trouble. They don't print your address on your ticket, right? So when would this even come up? Just check in online and you won't even have to deal with any humans other than checking bags (if you choose to do so) and the folks checking the name on your ID against the name on your ticket.

No worries, I'd say. To add to my case, consider that passports don't even have an address printed on them.
posted by crinklebat at 10:21 PM on April 10, 2007

Will someone notice that the address on my ID card does not match the address which I entered when I purchased the ticket...?

posted by rkent at 10:21 PM on April 10, 2007

The address from which I purchase tickets is not even in the same state as my ID and passport addresses. I have flown both domestically and internationally. It is a non-issue.
posted by event at 10:28 PM on April 10, 2007

dude, they don't care. They just look at the picture and look at the name. you'll be fine.
posted by unexpected at 10:51 PM on April 10, 2007

Seriously, nobody knows your address, or cares. As long as your name matches, you're good.
posted by stovenator at 10:54 PM on April 10, 2007

I just flew to New Orleans and back last month. I am on my THIRD address since the one on the license. I never even thought of it, and it was never mentioned. I am flying twice in the next 2 months, and it had not even crossed my mind. As said above: they look at the photo and name. Yep, that's you. On ya go.
posted by The Deej at 11:04 PM on April 10, 2007

Um, your address doesn't even appear on your ticket. They glance to confirm the names match.

That is all.

Just carry lots of fluids, drugs and bomb-making materials to give the dogs something to sniff.
posted by disillusioned at 11:12 PM on April 10, 2007

Remember that a passport - the ultimate, universally accepted form of ID - has no address on it.
posted by falconred at 11:14 PM on April 10, 2007

Since your question has already been answered, I thought I'd add that you actually don't have to have your ID at all. They'll pull you aside and scan your whole body and go through your stuff, and then let you through (via here and here).

Do make sure you keep all your liquids in the right size containers and plastic baggies. The lines get really long when people are stopped for this. Bon voyage!
posted by lhall at 11:18 PM on April 10, 2007

For your perusal, there's also a technique called CLEAR registered travel.
posted by phaedon at 11:27 PM on April 10, 2007

To add to the chorus, they don't care. I fly at least twice each week, and not once, before or after any real or perceived terror threats, has anyone looked at anything but the names and maybe once in a while my photo. But my mascara, omg the terror. Anyway, you have nothing to worry about.
posted by bedhead at 11:38 PM on April 10, 2007

No. I recently traveled, and without even realizing it, I had a driver's license with my old address on it and nothing to substantiate the address that I had used to book the ticket (CC billing addy). I got one of those little paper cards from the DMV but didn't bother to bring it.

Anyway, nobody cared. All they seem to look at is the name and the photo, and generally at the ID to see if it looks fake. That's all they want, is to make sure you have a USG-issued ID, and that you're the person who's on the ticket.
posted by Kadin2048 at 11:48 PM on April 10, 2007

That's all they want, is to make sure you have a USG-issued ID, and that you're the person who's on the ticket.

If by "USG" you mean "U.S. Government" then that bit is not correct. They want government ID in general, but the government of Texas or Thailand is fine.
posted by grouse at 3:32 AM on April 11, 2007

No, the TSA will not care.
posted by Caper's Ghost at 3:40 AM on April 11, 2007

You don't even have to produce an ID, they will just search you more carefully if you don't. They don't compare the id to your address with the airline.
posted by Lame_username at 4:07 AM on April 11, 2007

I am a TSA magnet. The second time I got pulled out (2002), they asked me 'So, you going to Connecticut?' as they were looking at my ID, as others were rifling through my bag. I stammered out, "Yes, I live there. I'm going home. Wait, no. I'm at school. Outside Philadelphia. I'm going there. That's why I have a ticket to Philly. Yes."

They didn't care, and I'm sure I didn't say the stupidest combination of words possible, although I felt like an idiot.

No one's ever given me the 'Hm, State? But your ticket is through Other City!' question since, though.
posted by cobaltnine at 5:19 AM on April 11, 2007

I accidentally bought a ticket in my married name last month, forgetting that my passport still has my maiden name, and I had no problems flying internationally. I had to prove I was me, but point being a name discrepancy is a big deal, whereas your address change should not be.

The CLEAR lane will be nice when more airports have rolled it out, but right now I can't justify $100 for five airports I never visit and JFK terminal 7. (The Registered Traveler wiki says CLEAR is in JFK 4 but I've never seen it.)

I think it will be quite handy eventually though, and plan to monitor for new airports rolling out. This travel agent website reports 22 new airports have applied to join CLEAR, including both Chicago airports and Atlanta. I figure once O'Hare is in, DFW can't be far behind.
posted by pineapple at 6:17 AM on April 11, 2007

I flew with an expired license a month ago, with a purchase address that did not match my driver's license address - not even the same city. It's no big deal. The bitch was getting a car rental (I had not realized my license expired until the gate attendant pointed it out)
posted by RustyBrooks at 6:27 AM on April 11, 2007

They seriously don't care. I have the little change of address card that PA gives you, but they never want it. They just check to make you look like the picture on the card and your name matches. You'll be fine.
posted by Attackpanda at 6:51 AM on April 11, 2007

I fly on tickets other people buy all the time, so the purchase name and address are different (though the tix are issued in my name). I am fine. Just to add to the don't worry pile.
posted by dame at 6:53 AM on April 11, 2007

I live in Philadelphia and have for several years, but I haven't gotten around to turning in my Michigan ID for a PA one. I flew last week, and no one cared. I've done this for years, and no one has cared. I've flown on tickets I bought at school addresses and that were bought for me by other people. You'll be fine.
posted by monochromaticgirl at 7:47 AM on April 11, 2007

Yup, they won't care. When I moved out of my parents house for college, I never changed my ID address from theirs after 4 years and 3 different apartments- ever after they had moved. Travel abroad or domestic was never a problem.
posted by jmd82 at 9:19 AM on April 11, 2007

Last summer, I lost my wallet the day before flying from California back to Virginia, and still got through the TSA line quicker than most. I wouldn't worry about it. At least you have photo ID.
posted by 4ster at 9:39 AM on April 11, 2007

My address on my license has been wrong for years. The TSA droids have never said a bloody thing about it.

The address I use do *everything* isn't even an actual apartment either.

They just want to verify that you're *you* with some sort of government issued ID. I used my Santa Clara County EMS Agency badge once because I was too lazy to dig my license out of my wallet and my EMT badge was closer.
posted by drstein at 12:23 PM on April 11, 2007

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