LITTLE ROCK, Ark.—The six-month countdown to the REAL ID requirement begins today (April 1, 2021).
On October 1, 2021, Arkansans will need a REAL ID or passport to board a flight or enter a federal facility.
According to Scott Hardin with the Department of Finance and Administration, the deadline will not be pushed back again.
Last year, the federal government extended the deadline by one year due to COVID-19 concerns.
“We are officially six months from this October 1, 2021 date,” said Scott Hardin with the Department of Finance and Administration. “If you want to board a flight you’re going to need the REAL ID.”
Hardin says their biggest concern is that individuals will show up to the airport in October without a REAL ID and be turned away.
“If you’re going to fly from here to Dallas, here to Los Angeles, here to Vegas, whatever the case may be, you’re going to need that REAL ID,” said Hardin.
States have had since 2005 to implement the REAL ID, and with just 6 months until the deadline, still 1.8 million Arkansans have yet to get theirs.
“It is kind of a pain. You have to bring all sorts of documentation and just when you think you have it all, you didn’t have the right ID,” said JJ Childers.
JJ Childers is one of many who spent the day in line at the DMV to get their REAL ID.
“It’s going to be another trip, we thought we had everything, we were scrambling to get here– long line– and then all of a sudden it turns out you got to go home and get some more,” said Childers.
Before getting your REAL ID, you need to show five forms of ID; one proving legal presence, identify, and social security number. You will also need two proving you are an Arkansas resident.
“We have a very full understanding that Arkansans don’t want to spend more time at a revenue office than required,” said Hardin.
Hardin says they anticipate a last-minute dash at the DMV right before the October 1, 2021 deadline, which is why he is encouraging Arkansans to get the REAL ID sooner rather than later.
“We don’t want you waiting in line if you get in and out now you can save yourself serious time,” said Hardin.
For a full list of everything you need to bring to the DMV when trying to obtain your REAL ID, click: https://appengine.egov.com/apps/ar/DFA/RealID