You Might Soon Need Your Passport To Fly Within The United States

Attention good people of New York, New Hampshire, Louisiana, Minnesota and American Samoa: Your travel plans are about to get a lot more complicated.

Starting in 2016 (exact date TBD) residents of the aforementioned states and territory will need their passports in order to fly international and fly domestic.

Yes, if you are a New York state resident taking an hour-long flight from New York City to DC you'll have to bring your passport.

If you're a New Hampshire native taking the 37-minute flight from Manchester, New Hampshire to Portland, Maine you must now bring your passport in order to board your flight.

These new changes are all thanks to the Real ID Act, which will affect an estimated 31 million American travelers.

The act, enacted in 2005 by the Department of Homeland Security, aims to make travel more secure in the United States and has been on an active rollout plan for years.

The reason these states have been singled out is due to their lack of security standards when issuing licenses. None of the states above requires proof of citizenship or residency to obtain an ID.

So what should you do if you live in a state with a subpar ID?

According to Forbes, you can use military or governmental IDs, a passport, a passport card, an Enhanced Driver's License (EDL) or Department of Homeland Security trusted traveler cards such as NEXUS or Global Entry.

Forbes also noted if you're looking for the cheapest option, go with the EDL; it will only set you back about $30.

Or if you're one of the 38 percent of Americans without a passport, maybe it's time to get one. If you need a little travel inspiration, check out our travel posts here.

Citations: If You're From One of These Four States, You'll Likely Need a Passport for a Domestic Flight (Travel and Leisure), NY, New Hampshire, Louisiana & Minn. Residents Will Soon Need Passports To Fly Domestic (Forbes)