Stop me if you've heard this one before.

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has set a deadline for all of us to have a Real ID-compliant driver's license in order to be able to board commercial airline flights within the United States, access certain federal buildings, and enter nuclear facilities.

The absolute drop-dead, must-have, no-exceptions date is May 7, 2025.

At least for now.

You see, the government has been trying to implement Real IDs since the end of 2009.

You read that right. This has been going on for the past 15 years.

The original deadline was the end of 2014.

That was eventually extended to October of 2020.

Then COVID hit and pushed everything back to 2022, only to be extended again to May of 2024.

But now the DHS says they are serious about next year's deadline.

The rationale for the Real IDs is to meet 'minimum security standards' for the distribution of identification materials, including driver’s licenses, which means that certain federal agencies, like the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) or DHS, won’t be able to accept state-issued forms of identification without the Real ID seal, which is indicated in most states by the presence of a gold star in the upper right corner of a driver's license.

So what does that mean for those us in South Dakota, Iowa, and Minnesota?

South Dakota Driver's License
State of South Dakota

The Mount Rushmore State is sitting pretty.

South Dakota jumped on the Real ID bandwagon from the beginning and now boasts that more than 99 percent of the state's licenses are Real ID compliant.

Iowa Driver's License
State of Iowa

Iowa wasn't too far behind South Dakota.

The Hawkeye State rolled out Real IDs at the beginning of 2013 and, according to the latest numbers, now has 64 percent of residents carrying around the proper driver's license.

KYBB-FM / B102.7 logo
Get our free mobile app
Minnesota Driver's License
State of Minnesota

Minnesota was a little late to the party, finally adopting Real IDs in October of 2018.

But even though more than five years have passed since then, residents of the North Star State have been slow to embrace the new licenses.

As of May 1st of this year, less than 38 percent of Minnesota driver's license and identification card holders are Real ID ready. ​

So what happens if you still aren't compliant by this time next year?

Don't worry.

You can still get on an airplane if you're carrying one of these other forms of identification:

  • State-issued Enhanced Driver’s License
  • U.S. passport
  • U.S. passport card
  • DHS trusted traveler cards (Global Entry, NEXUS, SENTRI, FAST)
  • U.S. Department of Defense ID, including IDs issued to dependents
  • Permanent resident card
  • Border crossing card
  • An acceptable photo ID issued by a federally recognized, Tribal Nation/Indian Tribe
  • HSPD-12 PIV card
  • Foreign government-issued passport
  • Canadian provincial driver's license or Indian and Northern Affairs Canada card
  • Transportation worker identification credential
  • U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Employment Authorization Card (I-766)
  • U.S. Merchant Mariner Credential
  • Veteran Health Identification Card (VHIC)

LOOK: Most dangerous states to drive in

Stacker used the Federal Highway Administration's 2020 Highway Statistics report to rank states by the fatalities per billion miles traveled. 

Gallery Credit: Katherine Gallagher

Best Looking State Patrol Cars In (Almost) Every State

For the past 10 years, the American Association of State Troopers has held a contest to determine which state has the best looking patrol cruiser. Nearly every state police agency submits their best photo of their sharpest patrol vehicle a chance to win the coveted cover photo on the association's annual calendar. From cop cars rushing through blizzards to vehicles on the Grand Ole Opry stage, here are this year's nominees.

Gallery Credit: Rob Carroll

Here Is How To Blur Your Home On Google Street View

More From KYBB-FM / B102.7