Beginning in October 2020, anyone who is 18 years or older will need to be sure they have a gold star on their driver's license if they wish to travel by air.

In 2005, the REAL ID act created minimum security standards for state-issued IDs and Driver's Licenses. In order to comply with the law, the State of Texas started adding a gold star to the upper right corner of driver's licenses to signify that the person is allowed to travel by air.

It's time to check your Texas driver's license to be sure there is a gold star because if not you'll need to order a new one in time to arrive before any schedule trips by air after October 1, 2020.

The Texas Department of Transportation website states that, "Cost will be the same as current cost for a Driver License or Identification Card. Texas residents holding a non-compliant card after October 1, 2020 will not be able to board domestic flights or access federal buildings without secondary proof of identification approved by DHS."

After the change goes into effect, travelers who are unable to prove their identity with an acceptable form of identification will not be allowed through TSA checkpoints. Travelers under the age of 18 will not need this identification when traveling with an adult who has proper identification.

The Transportation Safety Administration website lists the following as valid forms of identification:

  • Driver's licenses or other state photo identity cards issued by Department of Motor Vehicles (or equivalent)
  • 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)
  • U.S. Merchant Mariner Credential

The website also warns that "A weapon permit is not an acceptable form of identification. A temporary driver's license is not an acceptable form of identification."

You can renew or replace your driver's license online at the Texas DPS website by clicking here.

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