The October 1, 2020 mandate to carry a federally-approved ID (Real ID, passport, or other form) to access military installations, federal buildings, and airport checkpoints was postponed to October 1, 2021.
Do I need a Real ID or another federally-approved ID?
Yes. As of October 1, 2021, standard driver’s licenses or State-issued ID cards will no longer be acceptable identification to access federal buildings, military installations, or TSA checkpoints for domestic travel.
Alaska residents, 18 and older, will need a Real ID driver’s license, Real-ID compliant identification card, or an approved federal ID:
• U.S. passport book or U.S. passport card
• DHS trusted traveler card (Global Entry, NEXUS, SENTRI, FAST)
• U.S. Department of Defense ID, including IDs issued to dependents
• Permanent resident card, aka “green card”
• Border crossing card
• DHS-designated Enhanced Driver’s License (EDL) or Enhanced non-driver photo ID card (ENDID)
• Federally recognized, tribal-issued photo ID
• HSPD-12 PIV card
• Foreign government-issued passport
• Canadian provincial driver’s license or Indian and Northern Affairs Canada card
• Transportation worker identification credential
• U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Employment Authorization Card (I-766)
• U.S. Merchant Mariner Credential
NOTE: Drivers and passengers, ages 16-18, may not need ID at airports, but they must carry a federally-approved ID to get through military gates.
What is the difference between a passport and a Real ID card?
Passport books meet federal mandates, plus international travel via land, sea, or air.
Passport cards meet federal mandates, plus border crossings, but not international air travel.
Real ID cards meet federal mandates, but not any international travel.
Many people purchase both the passport book and the passport card at the same time. Passport cards are easier to carry (but must have passport book for international air travel). It costs time and money to apply for a book or card at a later date, which requires attachment of the valid passport (book or card). Only one execution fee ($35) and one passport photo ($15) are needed when both the passport book and card are purchased at the same time.
People need driver’s licenses. A Real ID is optional, unless it is a commercial driver’s license. Contact DMV (895-4424) for more information.
When is a good time to apply for a passport?
Due to current coronavirus restrictions, the Seattle Passport Agency is processing expedited passport applications for international travel within 72 hours for life/death circumstances. Appointments are required (1-877-487-2778) at the Seattle Passport Agency, 300 5th Avenue, Suite 600, Seattle.
Routine passport applications (through acceptance facilities) and passport renewals (mailed by passport holders) currently take up to 12 weeks to process. Expedited service is not available at this time.
Appointments are required to apply for a passport through City Hall (895-4656). Please do not schedule if you are experiencing any signs of illness, been exposed to anyone that was ill or who traveled out of Alaska in the past two weeks. You are required to wear your own mask.