Can You Fly Without an ID?

A government-issued photo ID, such as a driver’s license, passport, or military ID, is required to check in at the airport. 

Lost or stolen? 

You have good news: if you are 18 or older, you will not be immediately refused to board if you cannot produce correct identification.

So, can you fly without an ID?

Don’t worry! We have got you covered!

If you don’t have any documentation to prove your identity, there are several things to consider before you go off. Depending on the airline, passengers may have to show two government-issued forms of ID before boarding. 

It could be anything from a birth certificate to a passport. The US government also requires that every passenger goes through a thorough security check, which includes a check by TSA agents.

If you are traveling without identification, TSA agents may subject you to extra screening. As part of this additional screening, you may be patted down or asked about your plans. 

The weather will cause delays and may disrupt your travel arrangements. The most effective method is to make a mental note to bring another type of identification to the airport in case you forget your ID at home.

If you need to finish your journey tomorrow but you’ve misplaced your identification, read on to the end to make sure you know all the rules and restrictions.

So, what are you waiting for?

Can You Fly Without an ID

Can You Fly Without an ID?

You may still board domestic US planes, but you’ll have to go through mandatory identity and security checks at the TSA checkpoint. So, if your driver’s license or other government-issued photo ID was lost or stolen, you can still fly domestically. 

However, there are prerequisites, so continue reading to learn more.

You’re either getting ready to leave the house but can’t find a photo ID like a driver’s license, or you’re already out and about but forgot to bring it with you. The TSA will do everything it can to verify your identity so you can get on your flight. They know that if your ID was stolen or lost while you were abroad, you wouldn’t be able to get a new one until you got back home.

What to Do If You Cannot Produce an ID and Must Fly?

  • People should get to the airport a few hours before their flight because the extra security checks will take longer than usual. There should be an earlier start time of two hours.
  • To prove who you are, please bring a valid photo ID and one or more of the types of ID listed below.
  • A skycap cannot assist you with baggage check-in at the curbside; you must go inside the airport to the check-in office.
  • Call for a manager at the TSA checkpoint and explain your predicament to them.
  • Prepare for your flight by printing your boarding card at home.

At check-in, all passengers above the age of 18 are required to show a government-issued photo ID. At check-in, we accept military ID, driver’s licenses, passports, and passport cards. Your passport will be accepted for domestic travel. 

If you have questions about your airline’s specific policies, call their customer service department. You should request that they make a note of your situation in your file. When flying within the country, it’s important to remember that some airlines may be more flexible than others. 

However, if you’re going abroad, you may need more forms of identification and immigration documents, like a passport. state At check-in, passengers on Southwest and United must show a government or state-issued photo ID. 

If you can’t bring your driver’s license or state ID card with you on your trip, the TSA has a page that lists the other forms of ID that can be used at TSA checkpoints. 

If you want to know how alternative forms of identification are accepted at TSA checkpoints, make sure to read the last line.

Can I Board a Plane Without an ID?

To get on the plane, passengers over the age of 18 must show a government- or state-issued photo ID with their name, date of birth, nationality, expiration date, and a tamper-resistant feature. 

If your main form of ID is lost, stolen, or no longer valid, the TSA might accept a secondary form of ID instead. The documents shown below can be used as identity proof. Check out this CBS news story and the video that goes along with it for further details.

Last but not least, here’s a selection of alternatives to ID that can be used at TSA checkpoints. You should bring as many of the items on the list below as possible so that your address and Identification may be verified. The TSA accepts the above kinds of identification for domestic flights within the United States.

  • Used government-issued picture identification that has expired
  • Consumer Expenditure Patterns and Utility Billing
  • Prescriptions
  • The Library Card (as a TSA spokesperson is quoted as saying as some have photos)
  • Membership card to Costco (while not government-issued they do have a photo)
  • ID badges for the workplace (especially if it has a photo)
  • Snapshots of identification documents on mobile devices (for example, a driver’s licence photo).
  • A lost or stolen passport or wallet reported to the police
  • Checkbooks with Student ID Photos
  • Photographic business cards
  • Publications with mailing addresses

What other ways of proving who I am can I use if I lose my main form of ID while I’m abroad?

Without proper identification, overseas travel is more difficult than domestic travel. The best way to prove your identity is with a government-issued photo ID, like a driver’s license, but you should bring any identification you have in case you don’t have one. Travelers must carry two kinds of identification with them at all times. 

These can include passports, driver’s licenses, state-issued ID cards, and more. The traveler’s name must appear on all of the necessary paperwork. A photo, date of birth, gender, and/or residential address must all appear on the same document. 

If you can prove who you are, they will let you through security screening and give you a working card with a notice that says you don’t have an ID. Review the TSA ID Requirements at Airport Checkpoints for further details.

Identity Verification by the TSA

Because the TSA has access to public databases, you will likely be allowed to board the plane. It is recommended that you arrive two hours before your scheduled departure time to allow for this process.

A TSA agent will need to check your identification documents. The TSA agent will ask you for information that can be used to prove who you are, like your name, where you live now, and other personal information. Time may be required for this procedure.

Get yourself to the local police station. Immediately if you lose your ID or experience any other kind of crime while traveling. If you go to the police station and file a report, you will usually be permitted to continue with your trip. 

You’ll need to show the airport staff and TSA agents a copy of your report when you check-in. If you do not have your official identification with you, a police report can help you make your case.

But if you don’t have a driver’s license, don’t worry; there are other methods the TSA can confirm your identity. Get your hands on a photo ID that can be validated, whether it’s a driver’s licence, passport, or expired ID card. 

Keep in mind that expired government-issued IDs are no longer legitimate but can still be used as a form of identification. Having a photo of your license on your mobile can come in handy here.

Make a backup plan before you go in case your identification is stolen or lost on your trip.

Keep your credit cards, driver’s license, and other valuables photographed and their numbers are written down on your phone.

Second, you can take photocopies of your license and passport with you on your trip. Hide them in places you can access easily, like an email you sent yourself or a photo album. Put in a password to secure your phone. Make sure a trustworthy friend or relative has a copy and can email or fax it to you or the authorities in case of an emergency if you don’t know how to use a cell phone.

Third, always have a backup copy of your government-issued photo identification with you at all times. Put them somewhere safe in your bags.


We hope this post provides the most helpful information for answering the question “Can ID?” In case you can’t do it at the airport, print your airline boarding tickets from the convenience of your own home or the hotel’s kiosk before heading out to the airport. In the long run, you won’t be able to use them, but they could assist in establishing your identity.

Use an Anti-Theft Document Organizer to make it even less likely that you will lose or have your things stolen. To keep our identification documents, cash, and credit cards safe while traveling, we favor hidden waist wallets or those that can be clipped into our clothing.

If you travel with any of the above, keep in mind that you may have to wait longer at security checkpoints. If you have any of these documents, TSA may decide not to let you into the airport. If you lose or have your wallet stolen, TSA employees will do everything they can to help you out.

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