Getting the new Enhanced Driver License or Real ID in New York may be harder for some people than others as time is running out for the upgrade.

The New York State Department of Motor Vehicles Commissioner is making the rounds of the Southern Tier and Central New York, stopping at airports in Broome and Onondaga counties, reminding residents that the deadline is approaching for travelers to get a Real ID or Enhanced Driver License if they have any plans to fly or travel outside the country even to Canada or Mexico.  



The process for getting the upgrade is a little more complicated for women who have a name change after being married or divorced.  Commissioner Mark Schroeder says information can be found online to make sure all documents are lined up before going to the DMV to apply for the new license.  Many women have complained that they have turned up to the DMV with birth certificate, social security card and other documents in hand but didn’t have an original copy of their marriage certificate, complete with official seal and the signature of the officiant, divorce documents or other papers reflecting all changes in in their name and ended up walking out without the new identification. 

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In addition to not being able to board a domestic flight starting next May without the Real ID or Enhanced Driver License, people are also prohibited from entering buildings where federal identification is required, like the federal court house on Henry Street or a military base. 

A Real ID costs $12 if applying outside a regular driver license renewal.  The upgrade is included in a normal license renewal.  An Enhanced Driver License has the additional perk of working as a passport for travelers to Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean in addition to allowing access to domestic flights and federal facilities. 

The Enhanced Driver License fee is $30. 

Pre-application and information is available at

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