You Can Now Get Your Real ID Card Through AAA in California

Appointments can be made starting at the end of July and the program will last through the end of the year

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You may have longer to get your Real ID driver's licenses and identification cards, but you won't want to wait too long. The American Automobile Association wants to help.

AAA members can now apply for their Real ID at select auto club locations, including one in San Diego, through a new pilot program in partnership with the Department of Motor Vehicles.

To get the Real ID card through AAA, members will have to fill out the application and upload documents to the DMV's Real ID website. Customers must also schedule an appointment at a participating AAA location and pay the usual driver's license or identification card fee.

Appointments can be made starting at the end of July and the program will last through the end of the year.

The following locations will offer Real ID services:

AlhambraCosta MesaLong BeachRedlands
ArcadiaFullertonLos AngelesRiverside
CamarilloInglewood-LaderaManhattan BeachSan Diego – Clairemont
ChatsworthLaguna HillsNorthridgeSanta Barbara
ChinoLa QuintaRancho Palos Verdes

Real IDs allow Americans to board a flight in the U.S. or access federal facilities. Without it, you won't be able to fly after May 3, 2023. The deadline to get a Real ID was extended from Oct. 1, 2020, due to the pandemic.

Congress passed the Real ID Act in 2005 to establish minimum security standards for state-issued driver’s licenses and ID cards, following a recommendation from the 9/11 Commission. The purpose of the law was to standardize the way states issue driver’s licenses and federal IDs.

Real ID compliant cards are issued after a more thorough verification of an applicant's identification and incorporates new security features that make them harder to counterfeit. 

Under the new law, travelers 18 years or older must present a Real ID or other product, such as a passport, to board a domestic commercial flight or enter a “super secured” federal facility.

However, older IDs are still acceptable for driving, voting, buying liquor or other age-regulated products, and gambling at casinos. Travelers also can use military IDs or passports to access flights and federal facilities.

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