September 12, 2019
Did you know you can renew your Washington state driver license or ID card up to a year before it expires?
If you’re considering it, now’s the time to act. Licensing service offices tend to be less busy from September through April. And 2020 is no ordinary year.
On Oct. 1, 2020, the REAL ID Act goes into effect. Under this federal law, standard driver licenses and IDs will no longer be valid for the purposes of flying or accessing facilities such as military bases. Washington residents have several options for acceptable identification, including an enhanced driver license (EDL) or enhanced ID (EID).
A resident’s first EDL or EID can’t be obtained without visiting an office. Thus, the Department of Licensing expects a significant surge of in-person transactions as REAL ID enforcement draws closer.
This will inevitably lead to longer lines and wait times, but you can avoid the crowds by renewing early. Many customers can renew online. If you need to come in, choose any office.
Whatever you do, don’t delay. Our offices are only going to get busier as October 2020 approaches, and nobody likes sitting in traffic.
Even if you’ve been putting it off, it’s not too late to save yourself some time and trouble. If your license or ID is expired 60 days or less, there’s no late fee to renew (though you could be penalized by law enforcement). If your license is expired over 60 days, the late fee is $10.
Learn more about REAL ID.
September 17, 2012
OLYMPIA—The Department of Licensing introduced a fast, easy way to manage your driver license and all of your vehicle, trailer and boat licenses in one secure online service called License Express.
This new service allows people to take care of all of the most common DOL license transactions like renewals and address changes. It also makes it easy to take care of many less common tasks like ordering a duplicate driver license or ID card, signing up for email renewal reminders, ordering copies of your driving record and report the sale of vehicles or boats.
“It’s no secret our customers typically dread a trip to a local driver licensing office to wait for service,” Licensing Director Alan Haight said. “License Express is like having a DOL office at home.”
License Express ties together DOL’s most popular online services that, individually, have been used more than 2.5 million times by customers wanting to skip a trip to an office. DOL plans to keep improving this new service over time and adding more features to make it even more useful and save DOL customers more time.
License Express takes advantage of a highly secure login process through the state’s Secure Access Washington service to safeguard personal information.
DOL customers can learn more about this new service and sign up at the DOL website at dol.wa.gov.