New TSA Rules on Domestic Travel May Require a Passport for Some U.S. Residents

Just when you thought airline travel couldn’t get any more confusing, the TSA has just announced that beginning January 22, 2018, people living in certain states may not be able to fly domestically without a U.S. Passport or other alternative ID.

So before you purchase that airline ticket for travel after the January deadline, double check to make sure your state is in compliance with the TSA and REAL ID rules or run the risk of being turned away at the security checkpoint.

The new rules will only affect states where REAL ID is not issued.  Passengers who are residents of states not in compliance with the REAL ID Act will need to provide alternative identification such as a U.S. Passport or other approved forms of identification.  The REAL ID Act which includes domestic travel and access to government facilities will be in full effect by 2020.

States that are affected and currently do not meet the minimum required security standards are:

  • Kentucky
  • Maine
  • Minnesota
  • Missouri
  • Montanna
  • Oklahoma
  • Pennsylvania
  • South Carolina
  • Washington

Residents from these states will be required to present one of the following alternative identification documents:

  • Valid U.S. Passport/Card
  • U.S. Military ID
  • Federal Tribal Photo ID
  • Foreign Issued Passport
  • U.S. Merchant Mariner Credential
  • Permanent Resident/Green Card

For a complete list of TSA approved identification click here.

The TSA REAL ID rules apply only to residents living in the above-mentioned states.  A resident from a REAL ID compliant state can use their state drivers license as proof of identification traveling domestically to and from non-compliant states.


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