Voters won’t need an ID to vote, but Real ID’s will soon be a travel requirement

Wake County News

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — Voters in North Carolina don’t need an ID to cast their ballots, but when it comes to travel you’re soon going to need a Real ID to make it to your final destination.

For months we’ve seen people piling into long lines at the DMV for one reason.

“Starting October 1st you won’t be able to fly commercially in the United States or go to visit a nuclear power plant or military buildings without a Real ID or it’s equivalent,” said NCDMV spokesman Steve Abbott.

NCDMV spokesman Steve Abbott says to date North Carolina has issued 1.7 million Real ID’s, including roughly 72,000 in January alone.

“It’s just easy to get,” said Abbott. “All it is is an upgrade of your license.”

With the Oct. 1, 2020, deadline quickly approaching Abbott says there are some misconceptions that could be costing time standing in line.

“Some people think you have to have one,” said Abbott. “No, you don’t in North Carolina. In some states you do, but you don’t here. Some people think you have to get it by October 1st, and that is not true. Get it when you need it or if it’s convenient for you.”

Why the shift in message from the state?

“We’re trying to spread out the urgency,” said Abbott.

Abbott says the summer months are typically the busiest, so he has a little advice.

“You can get it done next year if you don’t need it until then,” said Abbott.

If you feel like you don’t need a Real ID you can skip the line at the DMV and renew online.

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