Lufthansa announced that it has begun what it refers to as expedited security screening for certain flights that depart from Munich at certain times of the day.
Specifically, the new program called ‘Smart Depart’ creates an expedited security process for flights departing Munich for Berlin, Dusseldorf, Hamburg, and Frankfurt during peak travel times. The nature of this program allows the gates for these flights to be located closer to the security check points in Munich’s Terminal 2 and dedicated check points will only process passengers flying to the cities listed above.
The program will be available on weekdays only, between 6a and 8:30a, and between 4p and 6:30p.
To locate these special checkpoints, look for the ‘Smart Depart Fast Lane’ signage when approaching security.
As a result of laws enacted by Congress in 2005, passengers traveling on January 22 and beyond will need a ‘compliant’ driver’s license in order to clear security at airports in most US states.
The ‘Real ID Act’ requires enhanced identification to be put in place by January 22, 2018. This basically meant that your basic driver’s licenses needed to be updated with either barcode or ‘RFID’ technology that would contain more information than what is printed on the license. 28 States and several US territories are currently compliant to the new standard, while 22 states received extensions to implement the changeover.
For residents traveling from states that have already enacted the ‘compliant’ licenses, they’ll have to provide the enhanced ID when clearing security, otherwise they run the risk of not be allowed through security. For residents in states that have been granted extensions to implementing the new ID program, you can continue traveling on your current ID. However, it may be wise to carry another official ID such as a passport or Global Entry card as a backup piece of ID.
The map below shows which states are already part of the Real ID program and which states are operating under an extension. States shaded in Green are already compliant, while the yellow states are those with extensions.
Map courtesy of CNBC.com
So for example, if you are a Texas resident, you need to use your ‘Real ID’ license on January 22, otherwise you will need to show additional ID (Passport, Global Entry Card, etc) if you wish to clear security. According to the TSA, if a resident of a ‘Real ID’ state shows up at security without the right ID and the TSA can’t prove the identity at screening, the passenger can be prevented from traveling.
Another example….. If you are a Michigan resident (a state under extension), you can still use your normal driver’s license at security. According to the TSA, if you are a resident of a state that is currently under extension, and are traveling from a state already in compliance you should be OK to use your Michigan license (i.e. Michigan resident flying from Texas). But if we know anything, it’s that the TSA rules can be interpreted differently by each ‘officer’, so it might make sense that if you are in a state that is under extension to take along your Passport or Global Entry card as a back-up piece of ID.
Regardless of the changes coming on January 22, it will be required of all residents of all states to have a ‘Real ID’ Driver’s License by October 1, 2020. At that point only Real ID Licenses will be acceptable, otherwise you’ll need to provide another valid ID, such as a passport or other officially recognized piece of identification.
The TSA expects this to go smoothly.
Where have we heard that before! 🙂
The US State Department has announced that individuals who have a US passport and have a conviction of a sex offense against a minor will have their passport revoked and reissued with one that contains a disclosure citing their criminal conviction.
The passport will contain language printed on the inside back cover stating that “The bearer was convicted of a sex offense against a minor, and is a covered sex offender pursuant to (specific regulation cited).”
The State Department has asked the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to provide them with a list of registered offenders so that they can begin contacting current passport holders who qualify for the ‘sex offender’ passport. The DHS is responsible for maintaining a federal database of all child sex offenders in the country.
According to the State Department, this ‘enhancement’ is part of ‘Megan’s Law’ that was passed last year to increase penalities for sex offenders of minors.
Hopefully none of you reading this need to worry about it.