The REAL ID Act

Flying after January 22, 2018?

Be prepared, identification rules are changing on domestic flights.

(Note this information is up-to-date as of 11/10/2017)

 

Who is affected by this?

Everyone.  If you are flying within the United States you will need to be aware of the new rules.

What is changing?

Anyone traveling domestically will need a REAL-ID compliant state-issued driver’s license or ID to pass security and board an airplane, otherwise, alternate forms of identification are needed.

What is a REAL ID?

A REAL ID is a state-issued form of identification that passes certain security standards set by Congress. The purpose of REAL ID is to make our identity documents more consistent and secure.
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Do I have a REAL ID?

If your driver’s license or ID card has a gold star in a circle on it you have a REAL-ID compliant driver’s. Most often this is found on the top right. Enhanced driver’s licenses are also REAL-ID compliant.
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Do the rules apply to me?

Not if you live in Michigan.  Michigan has an extension to October 1, 2020. If you live in another state you can check your state’s compliance deadlines here.


 

FURTHER INFORMATION

 

Does this just affect flights?

No. After the deadline, a REAL ID-compliant license or ID will be required for domestic air travel or entering a military base, nuclear power plant and certain federal buildings.
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What happens to my Standard License or ID after the deadlines?

Nothing.  You can still use your standard driver’s license for driving.  Both standard licenses and state ID’s will still be accepted as identification for voting, applying for or receiving Federal benefits, cashing checks, renting vehicles, purchasing alcohol and tobacco, or entering casinos.

What do the different cards look like?

You can see images of a Michigan standard card, a REAL ID-compliant card, and an enhanced card by clicking here.

How do I Apply for a REAL ID?

If you are applying for your first Michigan driver’s license or ID card visit a Secretary of State office and provide the proper forms of identification required.
If you are renewing a Michigan driver’s license or ID card check your renewal notice, it will say whether your card is REAL ID compliant. If your renewal notice says you are compliant your new card will have a star printed on it.  If your renewal notice says you are not compliant you will have to visit a Secretary of State office to provide more forms of identification.  Read your renewal notice carefully to see what documentation you will need to bring with you.  You cannot apply for a REAL ID online or via mail.

What does a REAL ID cost?

In Michigan, if you are up for a standard license or ID card renewal or are applying for your first card, standard driver’s license and ID card fees apply.  If you apply for a REAL ID-compliant license or ID outside of your normal renewal cycle a correction fee will be charged.

Do minors need a REAL ID?

TSA doesn’t require children under 18 to provide identification if they are traveling with a companion.  The companion will need acceptable identification.

What if I have a passport card?

TSA considers passport cards an acceptable form of identification.  After the deadlines, you can use this instead of a REAL-ID for domestic travel.  Click here for a list of other acceptable forms of identification.

For the latest information visit the Department of Homeland Security REAL ID Act website. 

Island Route Tours

Island Routes is a Caribbean Tour operator and a member of the Sandals Group of Companies.  It was founded by a group ofCaribbeanpeople whose mission is to showcase the culture, beauty and natural resources that define each unique island destination.  Currently, Island Routes operates over 140 tours inJamaica,St. Lucia, Antigua, theBahamas, Turks and Caicos, andBarbados.  Island Routes recently received the 2010 World Travel Award for “World’s Leading Caribbean Attraction Company” and has set the tour industry standard by becoming the only tour company to receive a prestigious Six Star Diamond Award from the American Academy of Hospitality Sciences.

 Islands Routes has tour desks in all of the Sandals and Beaches properties as well as the Grand Pineapple locations; however, guests staying anywhere on the islands (or cruise passengers visiting the islands) can book tours with Island Routes.

TSA Statement on New Security Measures for International Flights to the U.S.

article courtesy of the Transportation Security Administration

Today, the Transportation Security Administration issued new security directives to all United States and international air carriers with inbound flights to the U.S. effective January 4, 2010.

The new directive includes long-term, sustainable security measures developed in consultation with law enforcement officials and our domestic and international partners.

Because effective aviation security must begin beyond our borders, and as a result of extraordinary cooperation from our global aviation partners, TSA is mandating that every individual flying into the U.S. from anywhere in the world traveling from or through nations that are state sponsors of terrorism or other countries of interest will be required to go through enhanced screening. The directive also increases the use of enhanced screening technologies and mandates threat-based and random screening for passengers on U.S. bound international flights.

TSA Guidance for Passengers on Heightened Security Measures in Place Following Dec. 25 Incident

Article courtesy of the Transportation Security Administration website.

On Dec. 25, 2009, an individual on board Northwest Airlines Flight 253 set off a device and was subdued by passengers and crew. TSA wishes to acknowledge the heroic efforts of those individuals.

As a result of this incident, TSA has worked with airline and law enforcement authorities, as well as federal, state, local, and international partners to put additional security measures in place to ensure aviation security remains strong. Passengers traveling domestically and internationally to U.S. destinations may notice additional screening measures.

The American people should continue their planned holiday travel. TSA encourages passengers to remain observant and aware of their surroundings and report any suspicious behavior or activity to law enforcement officials.

Read a statement about the incident from Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano.

Q: What additional security measures is TSA taking domestically?
A: TSA has a layered approach to security that allows us to surge resources as needed on a daily basis. We have the ability to quickly implement additional screening measures including explosive detection canine teams, law enforcement officers, gate screening, behavior detection and other measures both seen and unseen. Passengers should not expect to see the same thing at every airport.

Q: What additional security measures are being taken for international flights to U.S. destinations?
A: TSA issued a directive for additional security measures to be implemented for last point of departure international flights to the United States. Passengers flying into the United States from abroad can expect to see additional security measures at international airports such as increased gate screening including pat-downs and bag searches. During flight, passengers will be asked to follow flight crew instructions, such as stowing personal items, turning off electronic equipment and remaining seated during certain portions of the flight.

Q: Do passengers need to do anything differently to prepare for checkpoint security procedures? Has anything changed in terms of what passengers can bring in their carry-on or checked bags?
A: At this time, security checkpoint requirements for passengers departing U.S. airports remain the same. Passengers do not need to do anything differently, but they may notice additional security measures at the airport.

Q: Should passengers plan to arrive at airports earlier than normal?
A: Passengers traveling within the United States should give themselves extra time to check in and proceed through the security checkpoint before their flight, especially during the busy holiday travel season. TSA advises that passengers traveling on international flights to U.S. destinations allow extra time for security and arrive an additional hour earlier.

Q. How long will these measures remain in place?
A: TSA will continuously review these measures to ensure the highest levels of security.

Carnival Cruise Lines to Resume Port Calls in Mexico

Carnival Cruise Lines will resume visits to Mexican ports of call based on the latest guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, which is no longer recommending against non-essential travel to Mexico. Once all voyages with previously modified itineraries are completed, those vessels will revert to their original routes featuring stops in Mexico.

Most itineraries were modified through mid-June with the exception of the Holiday which was modified through late May.

Please rest assured that the health and well being of our guests and crew is our highest priority and we are returning to Mexico after careful evaluation and consultation with the CDC. It is important to note that the concentration of H1N1 flu cases in Mexico has been inland rather than in the coastal resort areas where our ships visit.

The cruise industry works closely with U.S. public health officials in the CDC’s Vessel Sanitation Program in developing and complying with extensive policies and procedures that are effective in mitigating illness aboard cruise ships. Carnival will continue to follow CDC guidelines for cruise ships which include pre-boarding health questionnaires for all guests and crew, along with secondary screening by shipboard medical professionals as necessary. Additionally, all Carnival ships stock influenza test kits and anti-viral medications for treating type A influenzas.

Mexico is one of our most popular destinations and we look forward to once again providing your clients the opportunity to enjoy its many wonderful sites and attractions. We are very pleased to be returning to Mexico and would also very much like to thank you for your understanding and patience during the past few weeks.

Article courtesy of Carnival Cruise Lines

MLT Vacations Confirms: NWA WorldVacations to Become Delta Vacations

As the Delta-Northwest merger progresses, the two package vacation brands combine to support the world’s largest airline.

MLT VacationsSM confirmed today that the NWA WorldVacations® brand will integrate with the Delta Vacations brand on July 6 when the company assumes management of Delta Vacations.

“This is the logical time to transition our NWA WorldVacations business to the Delta Vacations brand,” said Ken Pomerantz, President and Chief Marketing Officer for MLT Vacations. “The merger of the two airlines is progressing quickly, and we are confident that the integration of NWA WorldVacations with Delta Vacations will be seamless for our customers and partners, ” he added.

MLT Vacations launched the NWA WorldVacations brand 20 years ago to support the sales and marketing efforts of Northwest Airlines. The NWA WorldVacations brand has since become one of the largest package vacation brands in the industry. In 2008, MLT Vacations became a wholly owned subsidiary of Delta Air Lines as part of the merger with Northwest. In January of this year, Delta announced that MLT Vacations would take over the management of Delta Vacations.

“When we integrate the two vacation package brands, our customers will still find the same great travel products with the same great service they have come to expect from MLT Vacations over the past 20 years,” said Pomerantz. “What will be different is the fact that with the Delta Vacations name and support from Delta Air Lines, we will offer even more flights and vacation options to the world’s best-loved vacation destinations.”

Pomerantz says the Delta Air Lines route network allows MLT Vacations to market and sell the new Delta Vacations to travel agents on a national scale, with appealing flight options from hundreds of cities to destinations all around the globe. The company is in the process of adding many more hotels and tours and excursions to better support the anticipated growth of the business.

Travel agents will book Delta Vacations (beginning July 6) the same way they book NWA WorldVacations today – the phone number will remain the same, as will access through the company’s travel agent only website. Travel agents will continue selling NWA WorldVacations until the July 6 transition date. All NWA WorldVacations bookings made prior to July 6 will receive the full support and service from MLT Vacations.

Princess Announces 2010 Alaska Cruise and Cruisetour Program

Season Features Widest Array of Cruise Itineraries, More Options to Visit Glacier Bay National Park, Simplified Cruisetour Choices, and Convenient New “Seattle Air Advantage” Package

SANTA CLARITA, Calif. – Princess Cruises’ 2010 Alaska program will offer the most diverse array of opportunities to experience the “Great Land,” with a simplified lineup of cruisetour options, more sailings that include the “must see” destination – Glacier Bay National Park – and a new “Seattle Air Advantage” package that turns every cruisetour into a convenient roundtrip journey.

The lineup will continue to offer passengers the company’s hallmark Alaska experience, whether at sea on board amenity-filled ships or on land with Princess’ signature wilderness lodges and exclusive Direct to the Wilderness program, where guests step right from their ship onto luxury railcars that transport them directly to magnificent Denali National Park.

Next summer the Princess fleet will offer a total of 112 Alaska sailings aboard seven ships offering four itinerary options during the May to September season. The lineup includes Diamond Princess, Coral Princess, and Island Princess traveling on the line’s popular “Voyage of the Glaciers” route through the scenic Gulf of Alaska; Golden Princess, Sapphire Princess and Sea Princess sailing the Inside Passage from Seattle and San Francisco, and Royal Princess offering the line’s small ship experience on an extended 14-day Connoisseur voyage to some of the state’s less-visited ports.

Princess cruisetours will offer passengers the opportunity to enjoy an immersive Alaska experience, combining a seven-day “Voyage of the Glaciers” cruise with three to eight additional nights on land exploring Alaska’s interior. All Princess cruisetours include the company’s exclusive wilderness lodges, rail travel, plus the two top attractions in the state – Glacier Bay National Park and Denali National Park, where visitors spend at least two nights exploring the wonders of this area.

“Alaska is indeed ‘The Great Land’ with a myriad of ways to experience the state, so we wanted to simplify the choices, and make it easy for our passengers to find the perfect itinerary including the breathtaking scenery and wildlife they came to see,” said Charlie Ball, president of Princess Tours and senior vice president of Princess Cruises. “And we’re also making it easier than ever to travel to Alaska by introducing a new Seattle roundtrip package for cruisetours, eliminating the need for one-way airfare in or out of the state.”

Cruises – Princess offers four ways to experience the awe-inspiring glaciers, historic towns and scenic waters of Alaska, with sailings from seven to 14 days.

  • Voyage of the Glaciers – The line’s famed Gulf of Alaska route between Vancouver and Whittier features calls at Ketchikan, Juneau and Skagway with daylight cruising in Glacier Bay and the 16 glaciers of College Fjord (or Hubbard Glacier on southbound sailings). Three ships, Diamond Princess, Coral Princess and Island Princess, will sail on 54 sailings throughout the season.
  • Inside Passage from Seattle – Golden Princess and Sapphire Princess offer convenient seven-day roundtrip itineraries from Seattle with calls at Ketchikan, Juneau, Skagway and Victoria, B.C. In addition, passengers will enjoy dramatic glacier viewing in Tracy Arm or Glacier Bay National Park. The two ships will sail on 37 departures.
  • Inside Passage from San Francisco – Sea Princess returns to the City by the Bay to offer 13 voyages from San Francisco on 10-day roundtrip cruises to Victoria, Juneau, Ketchikan, and either Skagway, Haines or Icy Strait Point, plus Glacier Bay National Park or Tracy Arm.
  • Connoisseur Voyage – The intimate Royal Princess takes over this extended Alaska route featuring a small ship cruising experience on a 14-day voyage from Seattle, featuring the less visited ports of Kodiak, Icy Strait Point and Seward, plus Ketchikan, Juneau, Skagway and Victoria, B.C., with daylight cruising of Tracy Arm and Glacier Bay. Royal Princess will sail on eight Connoisseur voyages.

Cruisetours – Princess introduces a new simplified cruisetour lineup, making it easy for passengers tochoose the perfect land/sea Alaska experience with itineraries ranging from three to eight nights. All tour options feature at least two nights in the Denali National Park area, stays at Princess’ own riverside wilderness lodges, and a seven-day Voyage of the Glaciers sailing including Glacier Bay National Park.

  • Direct to the Wilderness – Princess’ exclusive direct rail service between the Whittier cruise terminal and the dramatic Denali wilderness features seven itinerary options offering multiple nights at Denali Princess Wilderness Lodge and/or Mt. McKinley Princess Wilderness Lodge.
  • Explorer – These itineraries enable travelers to explore both Denali and other scenic areas, including the Kenai Peninsula at Kenai Princess Wilderness Lodge and Wrangell-St. Elias National Park with stays at Copper River Princess Wilderness Lodge. Passengers can even choose to venture to the state’s far north into the Arctic Circle and Prudhoe Bay.
  • Deluxe Escorted – Three cruisetour options offer the services of a professional tour director and additional time for passengers to experience the Great Land. Most meals are also included in these extended vacations.

New Seattle Air Advantage– With this new package, any Princess cruisetour can become a convenient roundtrip vacation from Seattle. This package includesmotorcoach transportation between Seattle and Vancouver, airfare between Alaska and Seattle, and an overnight stay in a Seattle-area hotel. All passengers will need to do is make arrangements to get themselves to and from Seattle.
Gulf of Alaska cruises and cruisetours for 2010 are available for reservations on May 7, 2009. Launch Fares begin at $749 for seven-day voyages, and $1,649 for cruisetours.

U.S. Set to Implement Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative

Article courtesy of travelpulse

The U.S. Departments of Homeland Security (DHS) and State (DOS) have announced that their efforts have enabled the departments to jointly certify to Congress that all statutory criteria have been met prior to implementing the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative (WHTI) at land and sea borders on June 1.

WHTI is a joint DHS-DOS plan to implement a core 9/11 Commission recommendation, which Congress subsequently passed into law in the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004. Upon implementation of WHTI, travelers will be required to present a single WHTI-compliant document denoting both citizenship and identity when seeking entry into the United States through a land or sea border. Children under the age of 16 will need to present an original or copy of their birth certificate or other proof of citizenship. Standardized, secure and reliable documentation will enable U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers to quickly and accurately identify travelers at land and sea ports of entry. The WHTI secure document requirement is already in place for all air travelers, and applies to travelers entering the United States who were previously exempt, including citizens of the U.S., Canada and Bermuda. These land and sea document requirements will be effective June 1, 2009.

Many cross-border travelers already have WHTI-compliant documents such as a Passport, Passport Card or a Trusted Traveler Card (NEXUS, SENTRI, and FAST), or an enhanced driver’s license (EDL) currently issued by the states of Washington, New York and Vermont and the Province of British Columbia. The State of Michigan and additional Canadian provinces will be issuing EDLs in the coming months—all of which are options specifically designed for land and sea border use. For more information, visit the Department of Homeland Security.