TSA to require new travel ID in Arizona by Oct. 1, 2020

What is Real ID

TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - Real ID is a real thing.

Still about half of Arizonans don't even know it exists or their responsibility to get a Real ID.

In 2005, in response to 9/11, Congress passed the Real ID Act which requires a federally approved ID in order to board an airplane.

Every person is required to bring in four forms of identification to the motor vehicles department and pay $25 to get the new ID.

The Arizona MVD should follow the 1+1+2 rule to be sure you have the correct documents -- proof of identity (valid U.S. passport or birth certificate), Social Security number and two documents proving Arizona residency (a utility bill, rental statement, etc,).

A passport and government issued photo ID can be used instead of Real ID.

But only 42 percent of Americans have a passport, which means come deadline day, Oct. 1, 2020, millions of Americans will be using their drivers licenses as identification to get through TSA inspection lines.

But without the new ID, they will denied permission to board.

That could affect millions of Americans come day one.

For many states, the issue is not as big as the one Arizona faces.

Most states have a two year to five year renewal for a drivers license.

But not in Arizona.

“The real challenge in Arizona is that most drivers licenses are good until the age of 65 so people are not coming in very often to get a renewal,” said Douglas Nick, of the Arizona Department of Transportation. “It’s a challenge for us to get that awareness out there.”

Melinda Nelson, a school teacher from Indiana, is Real ID compliant because the state requires drivers to get their licenses updated every five years.

"Well my license was about to expire so I needed to get it at that point," she said. "I just took my passport into the license branch and it didn't take long at all."

Arizona has started a media blitz, which can be seen on the electronic signs along the freeway, signs at the airport warning about the need for a government ID and soon there will be a marketing campaign.

"We do have a marketing campaign that out partners from the Department of Tourism will be introducing to get some paid media and advertising out there," Nick said.

His hope that as the deadline looms, the more people who get it done early to avoid the last minute.

“There could be a huge rush next September,” Vick said. “We don’t want to let that happen.”

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