Tuesday, April 9, 2013

TSA Travel Tips Tuesday – Can You Fly Without an ID?


Passports
Click to See Acceptable IDs
Did the gnome that steals your socks and car keys run off with your ID? Did your license expire and you don’t have time to renew it before you travel? Did you lose your wallet? Did you simply forget your ID at home? While it is much easier to go through screening with the proper identification, you’re not going to cause a snafu if you don’t have it.


If you’re 17 or younger, no problem… you don’t need ID to travel. If you’re 18 or older, no worries… you can still travel.



How so? Simply approach the travel document checker and let them know that you don’t have your ID. At this point, you will be asked a simple randomly computer generated question such as: “What is the average annual rainfall in the Amazon basin?”



Seriously though… You’ll be able to fly as long as you provide us with some information that will help us determine you are who you say you are.



If you’re willing to provide some additional information, we have other means of substantiating your identity, such as using publicly available databases. If we can confirm your identity, you’ll be cleared to go through security, and you may or may not have to go through some additional screening.



If we can’t confirm your identity with the information you provide or you’re not willing to provide us with the information to help us make a determination, you may not be able to fly. Regardless, if you do not have ID, please allow extra time for check in. We would not want you to miss you flight.

You can find a list of acceptable IDs here.



Every Tuesday, I plan to share tips for convenient travel and other useful customer information on my blog. If you have your own tips to add, please feel free to leave a comment! See you next Tuesday!


If you have a travel related issue or question that needs an immediate answer, you can contact us by clicking here.

48 comments:

Anonymous said...

Of course, if every passenger and their bags are screened and cleared, who cares WHO you are?

Funny how to fly domestically in Australia, no ID needs to be shown, and I haven't heard about planes falling from the skies daily there because no ID was shown.

Oh, so if a passenger doesn't have ID and then is caught in a TSA make-work gate ID check, what is he supposed to do? Go through the whole rigmarole again at the gate?

Anonymous said...

Please make it clear this only applies to DOMESTIC travel.

Anonymous said...

If traveling internationally you MUST have travel documents.

Anonymous said...

Why is ID required to board a plane?

In United States v. Deborah Davis, the prosecutor dropped the charges because the courts have consistently ruled that one is required to present ID only at the request of law enforcement officers performing a criminal investigation.

Are TSA agents law enforcement officers? Are TSA agents performing a criminal investigation?

If a 19 year-old college student can get a fake ID to drink, why couldn't a terrorist get one too?

Anonymous said...

Which part of The Constitution of the United States of America says that the Federal Government needs to know who is procuring transportation services from an airline?

Anonymous said...

1. What does identity have to do with security? As long as someone is screened, who cares who they are?

2. What happened to the blog post about the public comment period for nude body scanners?

Anonymous said...

Why do we need ID at all to fly? As long as passengers are properly screened, who cares who is on a flight? They wouldn't have any dangerous items on them if they are properly screened. The person checking ID's at the checkpoint isn't checking against the no fly list since that is done when the ticket is bought. The ID check could be eliminated which would allow that person to help screen passengers or just eliminate the position to save money.

Also, I have witnessed ID's being checked at the boarding gate. The TSA wasn't randomly screening baggage, they were just checking ID's. What is the point of that? It just seems like a waste of resources.

Anonymous said...

Okay, TSA. You have had more than enough time and more than enough prodding to create a blog entry about the public comment process on AIT. Where is it? Are you trying to circumvent the intent of the court order by refusing to notify the public about it even through a means as simple and as reasonable as a blog entry?

RB said...

Showing ID to TSA does nothing to improve security. Waste of time and effort so typical of government stoggies.

Anonymous said...

What I need to know is can you pack a lunch and bring it on the plane. I haven't traveled on a plane for quite some time. Someone told me you can pack a lunch of a sandwich,chips,and a 5 oz of water. Can you help me with with question. My husband and I are traveling come Sunday.

Anonymous said...

I was told two forms of ID? License and boarding pass information?

Anonymous said...

EVERYONE HERE has lost their mind who says they do not need to check ID. ANYONE can print out (if they have your password for airline website) or steal your boarding pass (when you drop it etc) and then have a free trip! Apparently no one thinks of that. HUH?

Wintermute said...

Anonymous said...

"ANYONE can print out (if they have your password for airline website) or steal your boarding pass (when you drop it etc) and then have a free trip! Apparently no one thinks of that. HUH?"

Actually, I HAVE given that thought and, well, it has NOTHING to do with preventing a terrorist attack on aviation. If the AIRLINES wish to use ID to prevemt one passenger from stealing another's boarding pass, that's one thing. But when it's the government doing it for no good reason (even TSORon has said the TSA wants to keep dangerous items off of planes, not people), then it stomps all over our right to travel freely within our own borders, which is a basic human right, BTW, and isn't merely a Constitutional issue.

Anonymous said...

"EVERYONE HERE has lost their mind who says they do not need to check ID. ANYONE can print out (if they have your password for airline website) or steal your boarding pass (when you drop it etc) and then have a free trip! Apparently no one thinks of that. HUH?"

Neither of those situations has anything to do with air travel security, or is any concern of TSA's.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
EVERYONE HERE has lost their mind who says they do not need to check ID. ANYONE can print out (if they have your password for airline website) or steal your boarding pass (when you drop it etc) and then have a free trip! Apparently no one thinks of that. HUH?
-----------------------------

This wouldn't be a TSA issue though. The TSA's mission is keep harmful items off of a plane so it can't be destroyed or crashed into a building. The issues you are describing are for law enforcement to deal with.

I could care less if a thief, drug dealer, or even a terrorist is next to me on a plane. As long as they have been screened properly and have no bombs on them, who cares who is on the plane. The TSA is not law enforcement, although they like to brag when they find things that aren't a threat to the plane such as pot.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
"What I need to know is can you pack a lunch and bring it on the plane. I haven't traveled on a plane for quite some time. Someone told me you can pack a lunch of a sandwich,chips,and a 5 oz of water. Can you help me with with question. My husband and I are traveling come Sunday."

Yes you may bring food with you. However, any liquids must be 3.4oz or less to go through the security check point. So get drinks once you pass through security not before. for more info go to www.tsa.gov


Mike Toreno said...

Bob, what happens if we have an ID that's acceptable according to the TSA's SOP, but the clerk checking the IDs is so lazy that during the training he didn't pay attention to the list of IDs. If we report a clerk like that, will he be fired? It does seem that if a clerk's only job is to check IDs, and he's too lazy to pay attention to which IDs are acceptable, any salary that is paid to him is wasted.

RB said...

Why does an expiration date on ID matter since for TSA purposes the expiration date has no meaning. Second since ID has bearing on security why it's TSA squandering our tax dollars on this useless exercise.

Anonymous said...

I have a suggestion for a future Tuesday post...make sure explain the "enhanced patdown" procedure that American families may be subject to in private screening rooms. Stop wasting taxpayer money with these silly posts that do not address any "real" taxpayer concern. If you feel the need to repeat messages over and over, start with the TSA staff.

tramky said...

Yes, I never understood this thing with asking for an ID. That serves no purpose, and has nothing to do with the mission of TSA. If you want to check out a boarding pass, then do that, but an ID?! Not necessary and pointless.

And stop tossing confiscated bottles of water into large garbage containers in the middle of the passenger checkpoint area. Geez, it is all explosive material, isn't it?

@SkyWayManAz said...

My father was an executive at a major airline and told me in the 90's they were lobbying the federal government to require ID check. This predated 9/11 and the horrible accident off Long Island. The reason for this was to prevent frequent flyer account fraud and ticket resale. All the airlines wanted it but none wanted to be the first out of fear of losing customers. The federal government had little interest at the time in enforcing this. As pointed out above it was constitutionally questionable to implement. There was nothing stopping the airline from requiring this at boarding so why should the government step in? After the accident off Long Island the government reluctantly required it out of security concerns for an accident that probably was not terrorism related. The airlines had to enforce this when the boarding pass was printed, either at the ticket counter or the gate. There were no self serve kiosks then. After 9/11 the government made the screeners do it and banned non ticketed/non employees from the sterile side of the airport. I doubt this will ever change and can accept an ID check as part of TSA Pre Check, an optional program. Let's not kid ourselves though that 99.999% of what keeps this in place is inertia and security as an excuse by the airlines to charge change fees. The constitutional question is why technically it is possible to fly without ID as pointed out in this post. Like say a friend might be able to fly on my miles and be able to "verify" my identity.

Anonymous said...

More importantly: when will I be able to fly with toothpaste and shampoo, plus my favorite beverage for a snack?

Anonymous said...

Still waiting for Bobby to make a public comment on the San Francisco TSA personnel who (in violation of TSA policy) denied a man his medically necessary liquids, after deciding that they knew the man's medical needs better than his own doctor.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NjNh8dZ5Y0g

Come on, Bobby. It's in the news. The questions are simple: why do TSA employees feel qualified to override official agency policy and the medical opinions of licensed medical professionals? What medical training does the TSA provide that would make its personnel feel qualified to make such medical determinations?

Or maybe the TSA's PR team just prefers to ignore issues where it's obvious that the TSA can't blame the victim of its misconduct? Look the other way, and maybe it will go away?



Submitted at approximately 3:25 central time on 11 April 2013.

Anonymous said...

Why can't travelers just do what they are told? If you need to present an ID, so be it. If you don't you slow down the line.

Stop griping about your rights. Your rights don't matter when you slow down the line. Get real.

Anonymous said...

What do recommend when the TSA's document checker is unaware of all fifty states in the union and rejects your ID?

http://tsanewsblog.com/10435/news/tsa-worker-but-hawaii-is-a-foreign-country/

SSSS for some reason said...

So what, exactly, does a picture ID protect an airplane from?

Anonymous said...

So, the averange rain its around 2.5 meters per year... So, can I fly now?

@SkyWayManAz said...

Anonymous said...

"What do recommend when the TSA's document checker is unaware of all fifty states in the union and rejects your ID?"

I always show my passport or lately my Global Entry card. In the early days of TSA I had a document checker look at my DL and told me it was fake (if I said where post gets sent to delete-o-meter). My state expires the DL on your 65th birthday and I was in my mid 30's at the time. Document checker insisted it was fake because it expires in the mid 2030's. I decided afterward I'd rather use my passport instead of get attitude back from TSA and they don't need to know where I live either. Not that they'd remember but given what is always in the news with TSA I decided it is just better this way. Then again I have that option, not everyone does as a passport or TSA Pre Check/Global Entry are quite expensive.

Anonymous said...

If TSA had an Airline, then maybe they could say: "You Fly Without an ID". In fact TSA can only tell you what you need to get through security.

Check with the airline and not with Bob.

Wintermute said...

Anonymous said...
"If TSA had an Airline, then maybe they could say: "You Fly Without an ID". In fact TSA can only tell you what you need to get through security.

"Check with the airline and not with Bob."

Why? The ID requirement is a government requirement, not an airline one, which is what makes it Constitutionally questionable. Granted, the airlines LIKE this requirement, but it's still the government requiring it, even when TSO's such as TSORon agree that identity doesn't matter.

Anonymous said...

I'm curious why a Firearms Owner Identication (FOID) card issued by the IL State police is not an acceptable photo ID? It is a state ID, with photo, expiration date, and requires a background check to obtain.

Anonymous said...

Complete bull. When I flew out of my home airport they didn't question my ID. When I flew out of a major airline hub in the rocky mountains the TSO challenged my ID since in the ID I did not have glasses on but I was where glasses when I flew. They where rimless and recent Rx. Then she "guessed" that I could be let through and that it was me and that I could go through to the metal detector "this time."

Anonymous said...

It's 80 inches by the way... the average rainfall in the Amazon basin.

Anonymous said...

the interstate commerce clause.

Rosina Lippi Green said...

My daughter lost her wallet the day before a flight from JFK to Seattle -- today, right now. I found this weblog post and read it to her, and she followed the instructions here. She's now at JFK going through hell, talking to TSA agents who seem to have never heard about this official policy, who keep sending her to new places where she has to explain all over again. She has no wallet, no ID, no credit cards, nothing, and is likely now to miss her flight. It's 7 am on a Sunday morning and there's nobody to call and no way to get any support. So while this website is a good idea, in practical terms, it helps not one whit. Who knows when this comment will even be read and/or approved?

Bob Burns (TSA Blog Team) said...

Mrs. Green,

I'm sorry she is having trouble. Please send more details to tsablog@tsa.dhs.gov and I'll try to find out what the problem was.

Thanks,

Bob Burns
TSA Blog Team

Anonymous said...

Hi Bob,

I have a ticket to fly home from New Jersey to California next thursday, but have lost my wallet and passport. I can not replace my California Driver's license from out of state, and also can not schedule an appointment to replace my passport in New York without a ticket for international travel within the next seven days. (let alone the problems of replacing my passport without photo ID). Knowing ahead of time that I will not have a photo ID to bring to the airport, or most other wallet items like credit cards. What should I bring to security so that I will be cleared? I have bank issued checks with my name on it, some old tax files, other third part documents with my name, my passport number, drivers license number, copy of my birth certificate and social security number but nothing with both a photo and a name outside of facebook. Can you please be specific as to what the screening process will be, and whether or not I will be able to fly? How much time to I need to allocate for extra screening?

Thank you,

Rob

Bob Burns (TSA Blog Team) said...

Rob, I would suggest you contact the TSA Customer Support Manager at EWR by using the Talk to TSA page. Your comment and contact information will go directly to them.

https://apps.tsa.dhs.gov/talktotsa/

Thanks,

Bob Burns
TSA Blog Team

Jon Breen said...

Hi Bob,

I am traveling to New York at the end of Feb, and just realized that my CA driver's license/ID is about to expire a week before my trip. If I can't get my replacement in time, will I be able to use my expired Driver's License/ID to get through security?

Thanks,

Jon

GSOLTSO said...

Jon Breen asked - "I am traveling to New York at the end of Feb, and just realized that my CA driver's license/ID is about to expire a week before my trip. If I can't get my replacement in time, will I be able to use my expired Driver's License/ID to get through security?

Thanks,

Jon"

Take the expired ID with you Jon, and if there is some problem with verifying the ID for clearing into the checkpoint, there is a process in place to help you get through. You can also contact the the airport directly through the Talk To TSA page here:

https://apps.tsa.dhs.gov/talktotsa/

After communicating directly with them, they should be able to give you the best advice on how to proceed at that specific location.

West
TSA Blog Team

Julieta Martinez said...

Bob

I have almost the same situation as the person before, the issue is that ALL my IDs expire one week before my flight on 02.12.2014. This is due to me having a EAD document whose renewal is still in process and should be here no later than the end of Feb. The only doc I have is a Mexican Passport with no Visa. I'm afraid that I won't be able to fly since this is a job requirement for certification and of course I don't want to miss it.

Thanks for your help in advance.

Anonymous said...

I'm just wondering... this has never happened to me Knock on wood... But I wonder if we took a picture of the ID on our phone if that will work.. I'm going to ask on Monday.

Anonymous said...

TSA actually neglected to provide my drivers license back to me when traveling out of state a few weeks ago. On my return flight, I was allowed to fly by showing my car insurance ID and/or car registration, which was a great relief to me.

Two weeks later, I received my drivers license in the mail, which was returned to me by TSA!

Anonymous said...

I am travelling to California after 3 days but I don't have any id as I have aaplied for shengen visa and my passport are with them. My question is can I fly by showing them my passport photocopy, or my insurance details ??

John57 said...

My Georgia USA DL will not expire until 2017, but it does not meet the new TSA ID requirements (Federal Real ID) for acceptable government ID, as I understand them.

According to Georgia, I cannot get a new ID until 180 days prior to the old one expiring, unless it is lost or stolen. That will be in 2017.

Will I be allowed to fly for the 3+ yrs where the Georgia DL and TSA requirements do not concur?

Anonymous said...

Couple of things:
1) About two thirds of the way down the replies to this post I saw a customer post an issue happening now and a fairly prompt reply from the TSA Blog Team - I was impressed that they engaged directly. I'm not sure I've seen that level of customer service from other agencies before.

(and)

2) I'm glad they are trying to address a worst case scenario for travelers like loosing your wallet. I'm a little surprised about the fleet of comments complaining about having to show ID in the first place. It's not any different from getting in your car and driving to another state - you still need your license. This is the same type of argument that tends to back up the line at the airport every other time I go through it.

Norberto Garcia said...

Dear tsa, I have just realized that I have lost my picture drivers license while visiting my mother in Texas. I only brought with me my license, which I lost and my non picture debit card. I fly out tomorrow and willing to provide any information to tsa agents but might not be able to get a copy of a picture I'd. Please help. I need to get back to work tomorrow. Your prompt reply is much appreciated.

Anonymous said...

March 20 commenter (TSAnonymous?) - an American is not required an ID to be a passenger in any vehicle...except a commercial airplane, only according to the TSA.

Regarding the quickness of West's reply, it took two days, which may be understandable, but he ignored many other comments.

Also, ironically, West, a government employee, told the American citizen, "Take the expired ID with you Jon, and if there is some problem with verifying the ID for clearing into the checkpoint, there is a process in place to help you get through."

This is NOT what occurred when Sherry Wright went to the airport with an expired ID. It appears that if one is a disabled woman minority, any attempt to satisfy a screener on a power trip is futile.

*screen shot*