Travelers from these 9 states can still fly domestically with a passport – for now


A new ID rule that would have made some American citizens unable to fly on domestic flights without a passport has been postponed after a handful of states got an extension.

The  Transportation Security Administration (TSA) said in December that it would begin posting signs in the country’s airports to remind people that beginning this month it would start to enforce identification requirements stipulating all state-issued driver’s licenses or ID cards needed for fliers to board planes would have to be compliant with the REAL ID Act.

Report: TSA postpones new travel and ID rules for people in these 9 states

Inspired by recommendations from the 9/11 Commission, the REAL ID Act was signed into law by President Bush in 2005. The law prompted a mass crackdown on fake IDs and mandated that all states and territories enact stricter standards before issuing IDs. New technology was rolled out that made it harder for criminals to trick the system and mimic ID cards. The new rules also meant that Americans needed more proof of identity — such as original birth certificates and the like — when applying for the cards.

Since then, most states have complied with the new ID rules but several of them have dragged their feet for various reasons ranging from privacy concerns to budgeting issues.

The TSA now says it will wait until October 2018 to enforce the new ID rules, according to Business Insider. The extra months are specifically to give people in nine states —Kentucky, Maine, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina and Washington — time to get compliant. It also means people from those states will be able to fly domestically with their current IDs up to right before the holiday season.

As we reported previously, people in those nine states may want to consider ordering a passport just in case so as to become TSA-compliant sooner rather than later. If you don’t expedite the process, the typical time it takes to get a passport is four to six weeks, according to the Department of State.

It is the purview of the head of the Department of Homeland Security to grant REAL ID extensions, the agency says on its website: “Federal agencies may not accept for official purposes driver’s licenses and identification cards issued by states that do not meet the requirements of the REAL ID Act.  However, the Act authorizes the Secretary of Homeland Security to grant extensions of time to meet the REAL ID requirements to states that provide adequate justification for noncompliance. Federal agencies may accept for official purposes driver’s licenses and identification cards issued by noncompliant states that have been granted extensions by DHS.”

Is the government using REAL ID to create a national database?

One of the main criticisms about the REAL ID Act, is that many people see it as the government’s attempt to use Americans’ personal information to create a national database that could be used for nefarious reasons. This is what Homeland Security says about that assertion; “REAL ID is a national set of standards, not a national identification card.  REAL ID does not create a federal database of driver license information. Each jurisdiction continues to issue its own unique license, maintains its own records, and controls who gets access to those records and under what circumstances. The purpose of REAL ID is to make our identity documents more consistent and secure.”

 RELATED: Why travelers from these 9 states may need passports to fly domestic



Next Up in Business

Austin might be the ‘most difficult’ real estate market in Texas
Austin might be the ‘most difficult’ real estate market in Texas

As Austinites are in the middle of appealing-your-property-tax season, the folks over at Forbes.com would like to let you know about property investment across Texas. How did Austin do? As you might imagine, the answer is complicated. In a Forbes.com opinion piece entitled “Looking to Buy a Home in Texas? These Cities Are the Best Investments...
UPDATE: Yeti says NRA’s claims are ‘inaccurate’
UPDATE: Yeti says NRA’s claims are ‘inaccurate’

Update: Austin-based Yeti says claims made by the National Rifle Association over the weekend are “inaccurate” and that the company is “unwavering in our belief in and commitment to the Constitution of the United States and its Second Amendment.” In an email to its members, the NRA claimed Yeti “suddenly, without prior...
Austin job growth stays strong, absorbs influx of new workers
Austin job growth stays strong, absorbs influx of new workers

The Austin area’s unemployment rate climbed slightly in March compared with February but remained below its level a year ago, as local businesses continued adding jobs at a pace swift enough to soak up the influx of new workers into the region. The local civilian labor force topped 1.19 million people last month, up by about 45,000 since March...
Austin job growth stays strong, absorbs influx of new workers
Austin job growth stays strong, absorbs influx of new workers

The Austin area unemployment rate climbed slightly in March compared to February but remained below the year-ago level, as local businesses continued adding jobs at an pace swift enough to soak up the influx of new workers into the region. The local civilian labor force topped 1.19 million people last month, up by about 45,000 since March 2017, according...
Central Texas home sales end 1st quarter with a flourish
Central Texas home sales end 1st quarter with a flourish

The Austin area’s home sales and median home sales price both hit record highs for the month of March, bringing the region’s housing market to a strong close for the first quarter, the Austin Board of Realtors said Thursday. Sales rose 10.5 percent over March of 2017, and the median price of the houses sold was up 3.5 percent to $305,233...
More Stories