Imagine arriving to the airport for your honeymoon and after a quick glance at your papers the TSA agent announces, "You won't be flying today. This I.D. does not meet requirements." Are you sweating yet?
What about your guests? They RSVPs "yes" to your wedding, make plans, get to the airport, and check their bags only to be turned away. BOOM! Hundreds of dollars in unused flights and accommodations down the drain...not to mention they won't be at your wedding.
Come October 1st, 2020 if you don't have a REAL I.D. compliant license or federally issued passport - you don't board a plane. So hang tight while I break it down.
WHAT THE HECK ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT?
In 2005 Congress passed the Real ID Act establishing new standards for government-issued identification used for various purposes including commercial air travel. These new regulations apply to all US citizens over the age of 18. Forms of identification that meet the new criteria are referred to as "Real I.D. compliant".
DO I REALLY NEED ONE?
Not necessarily. If you're under the age of 18 or have another form of ID that meets the requirements, you'll be allowed to fly. The most common substitutions are US passports and/or US passport cards.
That said, I'm a "safe over sorry" kinda gal. I don't like traveling with my passport unless absolutely necessary and I want my documentation airtight to ensure I don't encounter issues. So, I hauled my butt down to the BMV to get my new license.
DOES YOUR I.D. HAVE A STAR?
If your Ohio driver license was issued after July 2nd, 2018 it should be compliant. In most states you're looking for a small star in the upper right-hand corner of your license. Double check it's a BLACK CUT-OUT STAR like the one pictured. To be safe, check with your state driver's license agency to verify that your state-issued ID is compliant.
OKAY, HOW DO I GET ONE?
Real talk, check with your local license agency. In Ohio, you'll need to gather the acceptable documents, visit the Ohio BMV in person, and pay the standard replacement fee of $23.00.
WHAT ABOUT MY GUESTS?
Here's your opportunity to be the host(ess) with the mostest. Best case scenario, these take weeks to arrive after an initial visit to the BMV/DMV. Communicate the requirement to guests early and often. Here are three ways to make sure they get the message:
1. MAKE A NOTE ON YOUR WEDDING WEBSITE
Be sure to link the TSA page explaining REAL I.D.
2. WORD OF MOUTH
Grandma would love to hear from you and a quick phone call gives you the chance to casually work the requirements into conversation.
3. SAVE THE DATES + INVITATIONS
A simple insert including a reminder about REAL I.D. is a low cost addition to your invitation suite. If you don't want to spring for the extra paper a combo of the previous two tips should suffice.
Not sure how to word it? Keep it simple. "We can't wait to see you! If you plan to fly, please make sure your license meets the new identification requirements taking effect October 1st, 2020."