Residents in some states will need a passport for all flights [2019 update]

Residents in some U.S. states will need a passport for all flights because of the Real ID Act.

Starting Jan. 22, 2019, residents in 11 U.S. states will need a passport to board a plane. According to Transportation Security Administration (TSA) rules, state-issued IDs in those 11 states do not meet minimum security requirements for domestic or international air travel.

UPDATE: As of Jan. 22, 2019, residents of these 11 states were granted extensions, many of them in 2019. For more, find information about your state here.

The 11 states are: Oregon, California, Montana, Oklahoma, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Rhode Island, and Maine.

Recommended: Visa-free countries for U.S. passport holders

The minimum security requirements were set forth in the REAL ID Act of 2005.

According to the TSA: “It has been 12 years since the REAL ID Act was passed and half of all the states have already met the REAL ID minimum standards. It is time that the remaining jurisdictions turn their commitments to secure identification into action.” So far, states have either been granted an extension or have change their rules to meet compliance.

Passport applications are expected to take longer to process than in the past, so residents in those 11 states should begin thinking about applying for, or renewing, their passports now.

The good news is some of these 11 states are already in the process of updating their IDs, with hopes of making the changes before Jan. 22.

There are plenty more states that are not compliant but do not fall within the Jan. 22 deadline, because of approved extensions. See if you are in one of those states — and therefore might need to start carrying your passport to TSA checkpoints in the future.

It could soon take much longer to apply for your passport

The new rules that go into place on Jan. 22, 2019 are for states to come into compliance with the act. However, even if your state is compliant, if you were issued your ID before your state began issuing the REAL ID-compliant IDs, you will need a new ID by Oct. 20, 2020.

Learn more about compliance and see if your state is at risk of falling out of compliance.

Learn more about the REAL ID Act.

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