CHERRY HILL, N.J. (CBS) — The deadline is fast approaching to make sure you have a Real ID. You’ll need one starting in October if you want to use your driver’s license to get on a plane.
For some, getting a Real ID has proven to be a real difficulty for some. Officials say they’re working to make it easier for people to get their Real ID. One of the issues is that many people aren’t aware that they need them.
Ronald Spencer was doomed before he ever made it through the front door Friday morning, attempting to get a Real ID driver’s license without an appointment at the Motor Vehicle Services office in Cherry Hill.
“I mean, what I’ve heard so far is you just got to get one soon,” Spencer said.
Need to get that little yellow star on your driver's license? You're not alone! Officials tell me only about 30k out of NJ's 6+ million drivers have Real ID's. They expect a "crazy summer" as people rush to get them before Oct 1 air travel deadline. pic.twitter.com/xvb4ETaTZW
— Cleve Bryan CBS3 (@CleveBryan) February 21, 2020
Not knowing much about Real ID puts Spencer in the majority.
Essentially, Real ID is the new federal standard for identification.
Come Oct. 1, you’ll need it or a passport to use at our nation’s airports. Standard driver’s licenses will no longer count.
According to the U.S. Travel Association, that means as many 182 million Americans need to get real about Real ID.
“We all know that this summer, it’s going to be crazy,” Sue Fulton said.
Fulton is the chief administrator at the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission. While the state has only issued about 30,000 Real IDs so far, they’re trying to pick up the pace.
They’re dedicating more equipment and training more employees to help as many of New Jersey’s 6.5 million drivers as possible get Real IDs in the next eight months.
“No one knows what the real percentage is of people who want the Real ID instead of the standard, so we don’t know what we’re up against,” Fulton said.
There are two ways to get a Real ID: Make an appointment on RealIDNJ.com, or starting this month, you can walk into an MVC office between the 5th and 20th of each month without an appointment.
Jason MacArthur just got his.
“Painless, easy,” he said of the process. “It’s out of the way, it’s done.”
While New Jersey continues to roll out its plan to make it easier to get Real IDs, it could be a bit easier across the region.
PennDOT has special bureaus equipped for walk-in services, while Delaware received over $1 million in federal grants to ensure that everyone can walk out the same day with a Real ID.