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Old 10-25-2008, 12:08 PM   #1
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Do Children Need Identification?

Do children under 18 need identification to board an airplane? If so what identification is acceptable?
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Old 10-25-2008, 12:39 PM   #2
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I have never been asked for ID to board with my boys but we have only flown within the US. Now when we went to Canada, driving over the boarder I was asked but they only glanced at their birth certificates (2007- now I believe they need their passports for this).
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Old 10-25-2008, 01:17 PM   #3
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No - on domestic flights only passengers 18 and over need acceptable ID.

The exception is a lap child - a BC can be required to prove the child is under 2 and eligible to fly for free on a parents lap.

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Old 10-25-2008, 02:27 PM   #4
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I just returned from a Disney trip flew from ATL to MCO and back with no ID questions for my 6-year-old daughter.
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Old 10-25-2008, 07:05 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tjmw2727 View Post
The exception is a lap child - a BC can be required to prove the child is under 2 and eligible to fly for free on a parents lap.

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This was always my experience flying Southwest with my dd as a lap child. They always asked to see her birth certificate. Had I purchased a seat, she wouldn't have needed ID.
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Old 10-27-2008, 11:02 AM   #6
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My DS14 (looks older, could pass for 18) was asked for ID at EWR 10/5, I just told the woman he was only 14 and there was not a problem. Funny thing they didn't even ask DD18 for ID, she looks younger.

At MCO on 10/11, they didn't even ask him, but they did ask DD, go figure.
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Old 10-27-2008, 01:22 PM   #7
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My son was 17 when we flew down last August and, like a PP said, looked older, so he was asked. When he said he was 17, the person at security informed us it didn't matter how old he was he had to have a photo ID.

Luckily, I had brought along his previous years school ID (we hadn't even started for the year here, he didn't have a current one) and his ID and she very grudgingly accepted that as ID.

I would say, only as caution, that you should bring a school ID if your child is old enough to have one. My son is a big guy and I suspect she thought he was well over 18 because he could look it, so little mom next to him saying he was only 17 probably didn't seem right.

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Old 10-27-2008, 01:22 PM   #8
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Same thing for me, DD is 13, looks 17 or 18, but has never been asked for an ID. Domestic flights, only. I guess everyone needs a passport for international.
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Old 10-27-2008, 02:18 PM   #9
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I'm Canadian so my situation is a bit different, but the one thing I have discovered is that I use my passport all the time. I always grab it when I fly whether domestically or (or course) into the US. It's the one form of ID that is always acceptable and never questioned. We have passports for the kids, too and use them regularly, not just for travel. It's nice to know that we'll be prepared if we're ever diverted to a US airport because of weather or other cause, too.
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Old 10-27-2008, 02:44 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Resseda View Post
My son was 17 when we flew down last August and, like a PP said, looked older, so he was asked. When he said he was 17, the person at security informed us it didn't matter how old he was he had to have a photo ID.

Luckily, I had brought along his previous years school ID (we hadn't even started for the year here, he didn't have a current one) and his ID and she very grudgingly accepted that as ID.

I would say, only as caution, that you should bring a school ID if your child is old enough to have one. My son is a big guy and I suspect she thought he was well over 18 because he could look it, so little mom next to him saying he was only 17 probably didn't seem right.

Ress
Unfortunately the TSA agent was wrong - and if a TSA agent is going to require an ID then a school ID isn't an acceptable form if ID.

Many 16 and 17yo's do have a drivers license and if so should be prepared to show it. If your teen looks as if he/she could be 18 then I would probably bring a passport or get a walking ID from the DMV as both are listed as acceptable forms of ID.

Otherwise IMHO there is no need to scramble around and find ID's for children under 18 (other than a BC for a lap child).

Here is the info right from the TSA:
"Effective June 21, 2008, adult passengers (18 and over) are required to show a U.S. federal or state-issued photo ID that contains the following: name, date of birth, gender, expiration date and a tamper-resistant feature in order to be allowed to go through the checkpoint and onto their flight. "
http://www.tsa.gov/travelers/airtrav...documents.shtm

I fly several times a year with my kids and they have never, ever been asked for ID.


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Old 10-27-2008, 03:50 PM   #11
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I was just about to post what tjmw2727 did. NO ID needed for kids flying domestically. (and a student ID wouldn't count anyway.)
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Old 10-27-2008, 03:52 PM   #12
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On another note it is a great idea to have a copy of your child's social security card and birth certificate available. Several years ago, I had to take my child to a "medical center" kind of like a walk in hospital. Luckily, I always have my BlackBerry and I had e-mailed myself those documents sometime in the past. I was able to forward the documents via e-mail to the nurse. They told me that they would not have treated her without either payment in full or an insurance card plus identification.

You can put this data on a camera's SD card or a jump drive to be certain that you always have it with you. I also e-mail myself copies of the tickets to Disney and to the MNSSHP just in case they got lost.
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Old 10-27-2008, 04:10 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dis_guy View Post
I'm Canadian so my situation is a bit different, but the one thing I have discovered is that I use my passport all the time. I always grab it when I fly whether domestically or (or course) into the US. It's the one form of ID that is always acceptable and never questioned. We have passports for the kids, too and use them regularly, not just for travel. It's nice to know that we'll be prepared if we're ever diverted to a US airport because of weather or other cause, too.
This is the best answer, IMO. My kids all have passports (mainly because I took them to Bermuda last year) but it's a great thing for them to have. A passport never gets questioned.
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Old 10-27-2008, 05:24 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bell30012 View Post
On another note it is a great idea to have a copy of your child's social security card and birth certificate available. Several years ago, I had to take my child to a "medical center" kind of like a walk in hospital. Luckily, I always have my BlackBerry and I had e-mailed myself those documents sometime in the past. I was able to forward the documents via e-mail to the nurse. They told me that they would not have treated her without either payment in full or an insurance card plus identification.

You can put this data on a camera's SD card or a jump drive to be certain that you always have it with you. I also e-mail myself copies of the tickets to Disney and to the MNSSHP just in case they got lost.
I have never needed either - a BC or the SS card to obtain my own children medical attention. In fact both are in the safe at home. Of course I always carry my insurance cards as well as the kids insurance cards and they have never ever been questioned at home or during travel. This includes (unfortunately) some trips to urgent care and some less urgent needs like stitches. What type of ID would any hosptial expect a parent to be carrying ??

I do have a notarized authoriztion for my neice (14) when she travels with us and even then all I needed was that and her insurance card (no id).

That's really OT to the OP anyway the simple fact is that children under 18 don't need ID to travel within the US.

If you travel often and may take a trip outside the US a passport may be a good investment. If you travel only occasionaly and within the US then most folks would not want to/need to spend the $$ on a passport.

Another option is a "state ID" but some states charge more than others - and again its not necessary.

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Old 10-29-2008, 10:29 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tjmw2727 View Post
Unfortunately the TSA agent was wrong - and if a TSA agent is going to require an ID then a school ID isn't an acceptable form if ID.

Many 16 and 17yo's do have a drivers license and if so should be prepared to show it. If your teen looks as if he/she could be 18 then I would probably bring a passport or get a walking ID from the DMV as both are listed as acceptable forms of ID.

Otherwise IMHO there is no need to scramble around and find ID's for children under 18 (other than a BC for a lap child).

Here is the info right from the TSA:
"Effective June 21, 2008, adult passengers (18 and over) are required to show a U.S. federal or state-issued photo ID that contains the following: name, date of birth, gender, expiration date and a tamper-resistant feature in order to be allowed to go through the checkpoint and onto their flight. "
http://www.tsa.gov/travelers/airtrav...documents.shtm

I fly several times a year with my kids and they have never, ever been asked for ID.


TJ

Oh, I realize the woman was incorrect, and I suspected it at the time. I just spent the resto of our vacation imagining racing home to get his school ID if I hadn't had it, him losing it somewhere in Florida...and then wondering how MCO would have been if that agent had suddenly decided he needed to show some sort of ID.

He has his learner's permit now, so it wouldn't be an issue in the future. But rather than have to spend precious time and energy on your vacation, I do think that, if the kids are old enough, the 10 seconds it takes to tuck a school ID in a bag is very worth the annoyance of having it and not needing it. I'm sure we would have won an arguement with a supervisor, but we were on our way to our first family vacation, and the 15 seconds it took me to pull out his ID was worth not taking it up with a supervisor.

Ress
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