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SAG: Flying in the U.S.? You’ll Need a REAL ID


If you are a SAG-AFTRA member who flies for work or pleasure within the United States, starting in October 2020, you will need a new ID to be able to board a plane. Known as REAL ID, most adults in the U.S. have already received the mandatory new identification card or are in the process of getting one. If you still need a REAL ID, now is the time to make an appointment at your local department of motor vehicles.

Beginning Oct. 1, 2020, every traveler 18 and older must present a REAL ID-compliant driver’s license (or other accepted forms of valid ID) to fly within the United States. A regular driver’s license or state-issued ID will no longer be an acceptable form of identification at the airport. Individuals who are unable to verify their identity will not be permitted to enter the Transportation Security Administration checkpoint and will not be allowed to fly.

The TSA has posted signs at airports nationwide to remind people that REAL ID-compliant licenses or other acceptable forms of identification, such as a valid passport, federal government PIV card or U.S. military ID, will soon be mandatory for air travel.

Check for the Star

REAL ID-compliant cards are generally marked with a star located in the upper portion of the card. If you are not sure your state-issued ID is compliant, contact your state driver’s license agency to learn how to obtain a REAL ID-compliant card. You will need to go in person to the DMV to present documentation to verify who you are in order to get your REAL ID.

It’s the Law

Passed by Congress in 2005, the REAL ID Act enacted the 9/11 Commission’s recommendation that the federal government “set standards for the issuance of sources of identification, such as driver’s licenses.” The Act prohibits federal agencies from accepting state-issued licenses and identification cards that do not meet these standards when they are being used for official purposes, such as getting through an airport security checkpoint to board a plane.

To learn more about flying with a REAL ID, check out the Transportation Security Administration website for more information.


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