How to Fly if You Lost Your ID

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Flying can still be accomplished if you lose your ID.
Flying can still be accomplished if you lose your ID. (Image: Jupiterimages/Goodshoot/Getty Images)

Losing your ID can be quite frightening if you are traveling away from home, and can often cause problems when it comes to flying. The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) requires that all adult passengers show a US federal or state-issued photo ID to board their flight. For those who can't present an acceptable id, they will have to provide information to the TSA officer to verify their identity. Fortunately, there are a few ways this can be accomplished.

File a police report immediately with local law enforcement if your ID was stolen. Ask for a copy of the report and the name and contact information of the officer taking the report. You can show this type of documentation at the security checkpoint at the airport.

Arrive at the security checkpoint early and explain the situation to the officer at the document-checking station. If your ID was stolen, you should also bring a copy of the police report, if you filed one. The officer will then ask you to fill out a form that includes your full name and address. Officials will check this against all publicly available databases.

Prepare for additional screenings and interviews from local police and TSA (Transportation Security Administration) behavior-detection officers. You may also be required to submit to a whole-body pat-down, a body scan and a full luggage check before you are allowed to board you flight.

Check with the TSA agent at the entrance to security and see if they will accept other forms of photo ID you may have, such as a Costco Card, which has the member's photo embedded in the card, or a work photo ID.

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