As required by federal law, Pennsylvania travelers going to any airport must present an identification other than a driver’s license under the federal REAL ID Act once it goes into effect in October 2020.
At that time, a Pennsylvania driver’s license will no longer be valid to board a plane in America, even a domestic flight.
To get ready for that transition, Lehigh Valley International Airport in Hanover Township, Lehigh County, said it would offer a REAL ID mobile verification unit Oct. 23-24 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the Aviator Room on the second level of the main terminal.
The airport authority said the unit allows customers to pre-verify for REAL ID without visiting a PennDOT license center. PennDOT staff will scan the required documents to a particular driver’s record and mark it as “REAL ID eligible.”
Once REAL ID’s are available in March, customers can apply for their REAL ID online, pay the applicable fees and receive the ID in the mail.
PennDOT is required to verify the original versions or certified copies of the following documents:
• Proof of identity, such as an original or certified copy of a birth certificate with raised seal, valid U.S. passport or passport card;
• Proof of social security number from the original social security card;
• Proof of Pennsylvania residency from two documents such as a current driver’s license or photo I.D. card, current bank statement or utility bill with the same name and address, or W-2 form;
• Proof of all legal name changes such as marriage certificate or court order issued by your county’s family court.
The act is likely to force thousands of Pennsylvanians to obtain passports, which are acceptable identification for boarding planes under the Real ID Act.
REAL ID, passed by Congress in 2005, dictates that federal agencies such as the Transportation Security Administration are prohibited from accepting for certain purposes driver’s licenses and ID cards from states not meeting the act’s minimum standards.