There are other acceptable credentials for boarding U.S. flights and entering military bases. TSA provides information on
acceptable forms of identification
, or you can call the facility you plan to visit for more information.
Once you apply for a REAL ID credential, you will be issued a temporary document that can be used to drive. A temporary document, shown with your current license or ID the issuer will give you, will allow you to board U.S. commercial flights.
While REAL ID enforcement begins May 7, 2025, you do not have to have a REAL ID by that date. You can renew your license or ID up to six months before the expiration date. If you request a REAL ID credential outside the six-month renewal window of your existing card, the expiration date will not change.
Only U.S. citizens and permanent residents are eligible to apply for a REAL ID credential.
CAN I RENEW OR UPGRADE TO A REAL ID?
If you are 21 or older, already have a license, and want a REAL ID, read below to find out if you're eligible to renew or upgrade your current credential. Applicants must provide the required documentation when applying for a REAL ID credential for the first time, regardless of whether they are eligible to renew or upgrade.
ELIGIBLE TO RENEW
If you request a REAL ID and your current license expires within six months of the date you apply, you may renew your license for either four or eight years. CDL drivers may only apply for the eight-year version.
ELIGIBLE TO UPGRADE
If your current license expires more than six months from the date you apply, you may pay $15 to upgrade to the REAL ID license, keeping the same expiration date as your current card.
You will be eligible to renew your license once you're within your six-month renewal period and will pay the fee associated with the card lifespan you select.
Applicants who prefer to wait until they are in their renewal window before getting a REAL ID license may use another form of REAL ID, like a passport or military ID, to maintain U.S. air travel and military base entry benefits.
Circumstances are different if you are younger than 21; click here
to learn more.
HOW TO RENEW OR UPDATE YOUR REAL ID
Already have your REAL ID? Renew or update your REAL ID online, by mail, or at any Driver Licensing Regional office. Compare these options here.
Renewals without any name, gender, or address changes do not require any additional documentation.
Name or gender changes require one legal proof of change and can only be renewed at a Driver Licensing Regional office.
Address updates require one proof of residency and can be renewed by mail or at a Driver Licensing Regional office.