Hawaii residents will need REAL ID compliant identification to fly starting Oct. 1, 2020

Posted on Sep 26, 2019 in Airports News, Harbors News, Highways News, Main, News

HONOLULU – The Hawaii Department of Transportation (HDOT) in coordination with the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) and county agencies remind the public of the Oct. 1, 2020 date to obtain a REAL ID compliant Hawaii driver’s license or State identification card with the “star in a gold circle” marking.

Every person traveling domestically on a commercial airline will need to present a REAL ID compliant credential or another acceptable form of identification by October 1, 2020 pursuant to the REAL ID Act, which was passed by Congress in 2005. This law enacted a recommendation from the 9/11 Commission and established minimum security standards for state-issued driver licenses and identification cards. The Act further prohibited federal agencies, including the TSA, from accepting state-issued driver licenses or identification cards that do not meet the minimum standards.

The “star in a gold circle” on a Hawaii driver’s license or identification card indicates the credential is REAL ID compliant. If people want to continue using their driver’s license for Federal purposes, such as boarding a commercial aircraft after the deadline, it must have the “star in a gold circle.”

“We want people to know there is about a year remaining until the federal deadline to update your identification. While there is time, we don’t want people to wait until the last minute,” said Director Jade Butay, Hawaii Department of Transportation. “People should also be aware the driver’s license is not their only option. There are various other acceptable identifications that will work to allow you on a plane.”

“Because the majority of people who travel on a commercial aircraft use a driver’s license as their form of identification at the TSA security checkpoint, now is the time to plan ahead to ensure compliance with REAL ID requirements,” said TSA Federal Security Director for the Pacific Jenel Cline. “Starting Oct. 1, 2020, TSA officers will be prohibited from accepting identification from a traveler that does not meet the REAL ID standards.”

Sample Hawaii driver license with the star in a gold circle for a person over 21 years of age.


Sample Hawaii driver license with the star in a gold circle for a person under 21 years of age.

While the driver license is the most common form of identification used by travelers, TSA accepts multiple forms of identification at the security checkpoint including:

  • Driver’s licenses or other state photo identity cards issued by Department of Motor Vehicles (or equivalent)
  • U.S. passport
  • U.S. passport card
  • DHS trusted traveler cards (Global Entry, NEXUS, SENTRI, FAST)
  • U.S. Department of Defense ID, including IDs issued to dependents
  • Permanent resident card
  • Border crossing card
  • State-issued Enhanced Driver’s License
  • Federally recognized, tribal-issued photo ID
  • HSPD-12 PIV card
  • Foreign government-issued passport
  • Canadian provincial driver’s license or Indian and Northern Affairs Canada card
  • Transportation worker identification credential (TWIC)
  • U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Employment Authorization Card (I-766)
  • U.S. Merchant Mariner Credential

In Hawaii, if required documents proving legal presence, legal name, date of birth, social security number and current Hawaii principal residence are already on file, you may be able to apply for a duplicate license with the “star in a gold circle” online. Links to individual county services are below.

If the proof of legal presence, legal name, date of birth, social security number and Hawaii principal residence documents are not already on file, or your legal name or address have changed, the request for the “star in gold circle” ID must be submitted in person.

All Hawaii driver licenses and IDs are valid through their expiration date for non-federal purposes.

Hawaii began issuing REAL ID complaint licenses and State identification cards on January 16, 2018.

To view the TSA Real ID webpage including tool kits and a fact sheet with useful information please click here.

For additional information please visit the Department of Homeland Security Frequently Asked Questions webpage by clicking here.

To view information from individual county agencies including time saving tips, licensing locations, documentation requirements, fees, and other helpful information please click the links below.

City & County of Honolulu

Maui County

Kauai County

Hawaii County