The REAL ID act was passed by Congress in 2005. This act basically sought to scale the standards of personal identification for better security. There were several elements in this act including the regulation of state driver’s licenses as well as personal identification documentation. This act has been implemented in stages after it was passed. The final stages of implementation will tackle commercial air travel. This final stage will start on January 20, 2018. The REAL ID act will certainly overhaul standards of personal identification to discourage fraud while upholding optimal security.
For business travelers, only REAL ID compliant persons will be allowed on domestic commercial flights. In essence, this act will seek to regulate travel while employing advanced security. Already, airlines and airports have been on board since 2016 to make sure that this act is implemented accordingly. Airport checkpoints, handouts and signage have been features that have been witnessed over the years. With visible updates and requirements, the past few years have indeed started to change how people travel.
To be REAL ID compliant, your driver’s license has to be updated accordingly. The information will be used as identification when you are flying commercially. The technology features implementation of scannable microchip technology. This will be fitted in every driver’s license or identification card. These changes will be enforced by individual states. As 2018 approaches, most states have indeed updated their standards to comply as required. However, some states are yet to adhere to these new rules.
If you are wondering whether your documents are REAL ID compliant, the solution is to check an updated list by the Department of Homeland Security. In this list, you will get to know whether your state has complied or not. You will also get to see the states that are under review. Some states have been given an extension for compliance and you will get this information as well. For those states that have no complied by January 22, 2018, there will be need to provide additional information when flying. Without supporting documentation, it will be impossible to fly. It is estimated that all states will have complied by 2020. With the information above, every business traveler must therefore keep abreast with REAL ID compliance requirements. As hinted above, this will definitely change flying dynamics and you should not be left behind. At the end of the day, it is all about raising the bar, improving security and enhancing the travel experience.