Getting a REAL ID May Be Your Easiest Back-to-School Task

Contact:  Office of Public Affairs
2415 First Avenue 
Sacramento, CA 95818
(916) 657–6437 |

September 6, 2022

REAL ID enforcement begins in eight months

Sacramento – If you don’t have your REAL ID yet, add it to your list of back-to-school tasks. Applying for one takes less time than shopping for new clothes and school supplies.

In just eight months, you will need a REAL ID or another federally approved form of identification to fly within the United States and enter secure federal facilities. If you get yours now, it will be one less thing to think about when you return to college for the school year or plan your next family trip by air after May 3, 2023.

“Whether you’re a parent dropping off the kids at school or a college student taking your last class before lunch, make plans to swing by a DMV office afterward to complete your REAL ID application,” said DMV Director Steve Gordon. “Don’t forget to do your homework before heading to the DMV office – you’ll need to fill out your REAL ID application online ahead of time.”

Get started at You will need to provide one proof of identity, two separate proofs of California residency, and your Social Security number. You are encouraged to use the REAL ID checklist to find out which types of documents you can submit. Once completed, bring your original uploaded documents and a copy of the confirmation page to your office appointment, where you will have your documents verified and take a photo for your new REAL ID. The office visit generally takes less time than taking a pop quiz.

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) does not require individuals under the age of 18 to provide identification when traveling within the U.S. However, the companion will need to show a federally approved form of identification, such as a REAL ID.

Try Online First

Most DMV tasks do not require an office visit. The DMV encourages customers to use its online services and other service channels to complete transactions, including vehicle registration renewals. Customers can also use the Service Advisor on the DMV website to learn their options to complete DMV business.


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