Real ID cards soon to be required for all domestic air travel

West Virginia

CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) — The pandemic has put many things on pause this past year, including the launch of the Real ID.

“If you are someone who does like to fly, getting a Real ID driver’s license or ID card obviously would be very convenient,” said Natalie Holcomb with the West Virginia DMV.

Currently, 43% of West Virginians already have a Real ID-compliant license. Passengers will be required to use a Real ID or passport to fly domestically.

The deadline for the requirement has been pushed back by federal officials. The new deadline is October 1, 2021.

“We want people to have the easiest flying experience possible. We would hate for someone to come to the airport on October the 2nd and never of heard of Real ID, and not have a passport and get on a flight,” said Chris Williams with Yeager Airport.

Real IDs are a more secure version of driver’s license or identification card anyone can get from the DMV. The Real ID was created in 2005 to promote airport safety.

“The hijackers from 9/11 had gotten a whole bunch of fraudulent id’s. Once all that happened the federal government looked at everything and decided they needed to make a more secure credential,” said Holcomb.

But not many passengers are aware of what the Real ID is.

“I didn’t know what it was. I knew of a newer version of a new ID not anything about a star,” said Jonathon Morgan from Florida.

“I didn’t know they were going to make it mandatory. That you have to have real ID or passport,” said Hilda Parker from West Virginia.

So how to you know if your ID is a Real ID.

“It will have a star and be right there at the top,” said Holcomb.

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