Enhanced Driver Licenses Gain Popularity

Kenneth P. LaValle

July 01, 2009

Senator Kenneth P. LaValle would like to remind the public that the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) now issues Enhanced Driver Licenses (EDLs) and Enhanced non-driver IDs, which meet identification and citizen requirements for travel to and from the United States, Canada, Mexico, Bermuda, and the Caribbean.

            New York State residents who are citizens of the United States can apply for an EDL or Enhanced non-driver ID at their local DMV and should receive their license in approximately 2 weeks.  There is a charge of $30 in addition to regular driver license or non-driver ID fees. The EDL is valid up to 8 years, or 10 years for a non-driver ID.  Children under the age of 16 must have his or her parent or guardian present to apply for a non-driver ID. 

The wallet-sized document contains a Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) that will enable faster border crossings than a passport.  However, it should be noted that and EDL or Enhanced non-driver ID cannot be used for travel between the United States and other countries.

            “EDLs meet the criteria established to protect our nation’s borders,” said Senator LaValle.  “Many New Yorkers have found EDLs and Enhanced non-driver IDs to be a less expensive, more convenient identifying document for border crossing and travel within the United States.”