SAN DIEGO – The wait to get a California Real ID just got a little shorter.
AAA Auto Club of Southern California announced plans this week to offer the Real ID at select offices for a limited time and by appointment only by the end of July. Starting May of 2023, regular California drivers’ licenses will no longer meet federal standards.
“The journey has never been easier,” California Department of Motor Vehicles Director Steve Gordon said.
A Real ID is a driver’s license or identification card that is also a federally accepted form of identification, according to the California DMV. Residents who plan to board a flight or enter a government building like a courthouse, military base or other secure federal locations will need a Real ID or another form of identification like a passport.
“We have had 11 million Californians get their Real ID and 10 million more to go,” Gordon said. “In an effort to ease the burden, we are going to expand the services to 19 select offices within AAA.”
Chris Pocock, who got his ID last month, says “it’s an absolute game changer.”
“I love AAA and go there for everything,” he said.
Pocock said he waited at the DMV for six hours last month, so he welcomes the change of policy. However, he does have one concern.
“The only thing I worry about is when my registration is up and my tags are up, will the line there at AAA be longer?” he questioned.
A spokesperson for the Auto Club said no because appointments for Real IDs will be made online only, no walkups are allowed. Additionally, you have to be a AAA member to get a Real ID at an Auto Club location.