Voluntary Traveler ID

PHOENIX (3 ON YOUR SIDE) -- Planning a trip? Your flying days may be coming to an end if you don't have the right ID to pass through airport security.

The clock is ticking.

"If you don't have the Voluntary Travel ID by October 1 of 2020 when you go through TSA, they're not going to accept the standard license,” Doug Nick told 3 On Your Side.

[WATCH 3 ON  YOUR SIDE'S ORIGINAL STORY: Travelers need to get voluntary travel IDs before Oct. 2020 (May 14, 2018)]

Nick is a spokesman for the Arizona Department of Transportation. The agency is doing its best to alert people now that they need to trade in their old driver license for a new federally approved one.

TSA checkpoint

If you don't do that by October 2020, then you won't be allowed through TSA checkpoints.

"This is a nationwide issue; this isn't simply an Arizona problem," Nick said.

More than a decade ago, Arizona lawmakers decided not to comply with the federal REAL ID when it first came into existence.

"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,'" explains the Homeland Security website. "The Act established minimum security standards for state-issued driver's licenses and identification cards and prohibits Federal agencies from accepting for official purposes licenses and identification cards from states that do not meet these standards."

But Arizona is now on board with the idea and has been given time to convince people to switch.

"I'm surprised they waited until now to do it; Nevada had done it earlier," Wayne Miller told 3 On Your Side outside an MVD office.

Standard driver license Voluntary Travel ID

Three years ago, Arizona even started issuing driver licenses that clearly stated that the ID is not for federal identification, which is fine if you don't ever plan on flying.

[RELATED: Arizonans can begin obtaining REAL ID-compliant licenses (March 31, 2016)]

But if you want to fly, not surprisingly, the new IDs will cost you money and time. In fact, you're required to make an appointment at your local MVD office to get your new ID. So, don't try just walking in. (Click here to fill out the application before your scheduled appointment.)

You'll then have to pay $25 for it. When you get your new ID, you'll notice some subtle changes.

Voluntary Travel ID

"It does have the gold star which is the visual cue to the TSA," Nick explained about one of the changes.

The gold star in the upper right corner tells TSA that it's the new travel ID and that it meets stricter security standards.

You'll have to renew your Voluntary Travel ID every eight years.

Some travelers have already made the switch.

"I just got a new driver's license last weekend,” Jordan Levine told us.

ADOT says you have about two years to switch over. But if you wait too long, that could be a problem.

Motor Vehicle Division MVD DMV

Remember, getting the new ID is by appointment only and if you think MVD lines are long now, then get ready.

"We want to get the word out as soon as possible, so we don't have a crush sometime in late summer or early fall of 2020,” Nick said. “We want to have more of a steady flow of customers converting to this throughout the next couple of years rather than having that huge push at the last minute."

And if you'd rather show your passport instead of using your driver's license at TSA security checkpoints, that is always good. The TSA has a list of acceptable forms of ID to go through airport checkpoints on its website.

Click here to get more information about Arizona's Voluntary Travel ID from ADOT.


Copyright 2019 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.

Recommended for you