RICHMOND, Va. (WAVY) — Next year, you might be swapping out a piece of plastic in your wallet. Virginia is getting ready to issue new, federally-compliant IDs.
If you’re like most people boarding a domestic flight, you flash your driver’s license as proof of ID. But that’s all going to change.
It’s all part of the Real ID Program which Congress passed after 9/11. It requires states to meet new security standards.
“This will look exactly like your current driver’s license,” said Virginia DMV spokesperson Brandy Brubaker. “The only difference that folks will notice is it will have a star in the corner that signifies it’s Real ID compliant.”
The biggest impact will be at the airport. Travelers will need the new ID to board a domestic flight using their license.
If you don’t mind bringing your passport or typically travel by car or train, Brubaker says you might not need the new ID.
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security recently granted Virginia an extension to keep working on compliance.
“Our driver’s license has been one of the most secure in the nation since 2009. We completely overhauled it then and implemented all the security features you see in your current card,” she said. “What’s left for us is just some administrative, behind-the-scenes kind of things.”
Virginia will start offering the new IDs in October 2018, but you won’t need one at the airport until October 2020.
“You’ve got a full two years there to come into DMV at your leisure,” said Brubaker. “You don’t have to rush in right away.”
To read more about Real ID, click here.