Kentuckians will need REAL IDs in a year

Published 3:00 pm Wednesday, May 8, 2024

Kentuckians are being encouraged to be “REAL ID Ready,” at the one-year mark to federal enforcement, where some form of REAL ID will be required to board U.S. commercial flights and military bases, starting May 7, 2025.

“We want Kentuckians to be able to board a domestic flight or visit a loved one stationed on a military base without any snags in their plans, and taking the time now to make sure you have a form of REAL ID to ensure you can get to where you need to go,” Gov. Andy Beshear said. “With many acceptable forms of REAL ID available, like a REAL ID driver’s license, military ID or passport, Kentuckians have several options to travel.”

State-issued REAL ID driving and identity credentials must be requested in person at any Driver Licensing Regional Office operated by the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KYTC). One million Kentuckians have already opted for a REAL ID license or ID cardState REAL ID credentials are not the only forms of approved ID that federal authorities will accept. A valid passport or passport card, military ID or Department of Defense ID are other common forms of acceptable ID.

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The full list of Transportation Security Administration (TSA) approved credentials can be found here. A Kentucky REAL ID is not valid for international travel.

Kentucky offers two versions of all driving and ID cards: a standard or REAL ID. A Kentucky REAL ID displays a black cutout star. A standard version displays the Kentucky Unbridled Spirit logo or the words “NOT FOR REAL ID PURPOSES.” To find more information on the differences, click here.

“We don’t want anyone to get grounded by having the wrong ID and miss that important flight to a wedding or access onto a base to watch your child’s football game,” Transportation Secretary Jim Gray stated. “Applying for a REAL ID at one of our regional offices requires documentation so now is the perfect time to start gathering those before visiting an office. REAL ID driver’s licenses can be requested even if you’re not due to renew.”