U.S. Travel Association Executive Vice President of Public Affairs and Policy Tori Barnes testified before a Senate subcommittee Thursday on the looming October 1, 2020 deadline set to hit American air travel.
Research by U.S. Travel and Longwoods International previously found that 57% of Americans are unaware that next October 1 is the deadline for having a REAL ID-compliant driver’s license—or an acceptable alternative such as a U.S. passport—to board a domestic flight. The research also estimated that 99 million Americans are currently without any kind of REAL ID-compliant identification.
Barnes summarized U.S. Travel’s policy proposals for getting ahead of the REAL ID problem, which include:
• accepting CLEAR and TSA Precheck membership as alternatives to REAL ID;
• allowing application for REAL IDs online;
• accelerating the implementation of biometrics as a means to securely identify travelers; and
• developing procedures for screening passengers who show up to the airport without a REAL ID.
“Turning travelers away at the checkpoint is not an option,” Barnes told the committee