U.S. Travel exec to Senate: Americans not REAL ID-Ready

Research by U.S. Travel and Longwoods International previously found that 57% of Americans are unaware that next October 1 is the deadline for having a REAL ID-compliant driver’s license—or an acceptable alternative such as a U.S. passport—to board a domestic flight.

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U.S. Travel Association Executive Vice President of Public Affairs and Policy Tori Barnes testified before a Senate subcommittee today, Thursday, October 17, 2019, on the looming October 1, 2020 deadline set to hit American air travel.

The research also estimated that 99 million Americans are currently without any kind of REAL ID-compliant identification.

Barnes summarized U.S. Travel’s policy proposals for getting ahead of the REAL ID problem, which include:

  • accepting CLEAR and TSA Precheck membership as alternatives to REAL ID;
  • allowing application for REAL IDs online;
  • accelerating the implementation of biometrics as a means to securely identify travelers; and
  • developing procedures for screening passengers who show up to the airport without a REAL ID.

“Turning travelers away at the checkpoint is not an option,” Barnes told the committee.

Read Barnes’ full testimony here.

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