I went to pick up a package today at FedEx today and the first thing they asked me was my valid photo Identification. I gave my Driving license and thought of all the places that ask for valid Picture ID and realized it is good idea to write an article just giving the typical list of places to emphasize the importance of getting State ID or Driving license.
List of places where you will be asked for valid picture ID
- Driving License (from US or International license from your home country)
- State ID issued by US state Government
Typical places that ask for Picture ID :
- Grocery stores ( if you are using Credit Card )
- Gas stations (when you are buying anything using Credit card)
- Liquor store.( Even if you do not buy and accompany with others)
- Dance Clubs and Bars
- Mail pick up from FedEx, UPS or any others
- Public Library (for getting library Card )
- Casino (even if you do not play)
- Banks ( if you want to withdraw money or check balance)
- Any stores where you buy using Credit Card.
- Fast Food places (if you use credit card)
- Restaurants (if you use credit card)
- Any corporate offices ( if you are visiting anyone, for Visitor ID)
- Coffee shops ( if you use credit card)
- Renting anything for outdoor Jet Skis, Boats, Canoe, etc
- Car Rentals ( You need Driver’s license for sure)
- Any theme parks like Disney, etc for rentals
- Any outdoor activity like Sky diving, Bunge Jumping, etc
Any place where you use Credit card, you will be asked for your picture ID. I can keep on writing still more, but you get the idea the importance of having an ID in US. The first thing most people ask is “can I have a look at your picture ID ?”. You better have one when someone asks for it.
Why NOT to carry passport ?
As I have already mentioned in article why International Students or H1B holders should get State ID, it is a very risky proposition for us to carry passport to all the places listed above. Imagine you going to a Jet Ski place and they asked for picture ID, you give your passport: “ Do you expect the passport not to get wet ? What if the passport slips and gets into water ? What if you go to bar and lose the passport in Bar after getting drunk ?”. It is much harder to get a new passport. Also, you will have to get your Visa stamped again if you lose passport. There are so many complexities that can kick in. You really do not want to get into any of these risks. So, do NOT carry passport and get a State ID or Driver’s license from US state