Beginning January 22, 2018, you will need to have identification for domestic travel that meets the security standards as set forth in the REAL ID Act. This Act prohibits Federal agencies from accepting driver’s licenses from states that do not meet the Act’s minimum requirements. Therefore, you need to visit the TSA.gov website for the map of states that are in compliance. Certain states have filed extensions to so they can get things in order to be compliant and New Jersey is one of those states. The TSA WILL accept driver’s licenses from these states. However, New York is not compliant and has not filed for extension, so those residents will need to provide other forms of accepted ID, such as:
- U.S. passport;
- U.S. passport card;
- DHS trusted traveler cards (Global Entry, NEXUS, SENTRI, FAST);
- U.S. Department of Defense ID, including IDs issued to dependents;
- Permanent resident card;
- Border crossing card;
- DHS-designated enhanced driver’s license;
- 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); or
- U.S. Merchant Mariner Credential
All U.S. citizens over the age of 18 must provide one of those forms of identification at airports in order to travel domestically. Please go to http://www.travel.state.gov for more information.
For interntational travel, all U.S. citizens over the age of 18 must have a valid passport in order to re-enter the United States. Here are a few helpful tips:
- make sure your passport is valid for at least six (6) months AFTER the date of your travel. Certain countries will deny you entry if
- it isn’t.
- An adult passport is valid for ten (10) years. A child’s passport is only valid for five (5) years, so be sure to check your children’s passports when you are planning travel out of the country.
- A Passport Book is always better than a a Passport Card! While the card may be cheaper, it stops you from traveling via air and/or most cruises that go to foreign countries.
- when traveling in another country, keep your passport locked up in your hotel’s safe when you’re out and about. However, it’s a good idea to make a copy of the passport information pages to keep with you in case there’s ever an issue.
Global Entry and TSA Precheck
TSA Precheck will provide you expedited security screening for flights departing U.S. cities. Global Entry provides TSA Precheck as well as expedited U.S. Customs screening for international air travelers. TSA Precheck costs $85 and Global Entry costs $100 for a five year membership. For the $15 difference, if you travel out of the country even just once a year, the value is in Global Entry. For more information on each program and how to apply, please visit the TSA website.
There is also an app called Mobile Passport, which helps expedite you through U.S. Customs. Download the app and when you are within four hours of arriving back into the U.S., you enter your trip and the information required, which is the same as the paper Customs form the airline gives you before you land. Once in the airport, you go on the Global Entry line, not the other LONG, LONG line, and scan your passport and the QR Code that Mobile Passport gives you. Wa La!! You are through Customs in no time!
If you travel to Aruba frequently: Go to the Aruba.com website and at the very bottom you will see “Aruba ED Card”. If you fill this out before going through Arubian Customs, this will expedite you through without having to fill out the paper form at the airport.
And lastly, if you are an American Express Platinum Card member, you can receive one Global Entry ($100) or TSA Precheck ($85) statement credit every four years for the application fee if you’re charging it to your Platinum Card. Please go to http://www.americanexpress.com and search Platinum Card benefits for a full disclosure on all the benefits of Platinum Card membership.