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New Jersey REAL ID Everything You Need to Know

WE NOTICED Longer Lines at NJ Motor Vehicle Commission as People rush to get the new REAL ID driver's License 

Image by Welcome to all and thank you for your visit ! ツ from Pixabay 

There are approximately 6 million licensed drivers in New Jersey.  Anyone guessing how many of them will want a REAL ID?  Our guess is all of them based on our most recent trip to the MVC facilities the long wait times that range from 3-6 hours from the time we arrived before we departed the facility.  To HELP you if you’re one of the unfortunate individuals that have to make a trip to an MVC location and it's not to obtain a REAL ID, we will give you some tips to make the trip less of a wait and save you some aggravation. 

The standard New Jersey driver's license after Oct. 1, 2020, can still be used for driving, receiving federal benefits and entering federal facilities ”that DO NOT require a showing of ID” to enter.  So, if you typically used your driver's license or non-driver ID (instead of a passport or other form of ID) to fly domestically or enter military bases and federal facilities that require showing of ID, you probably want to get a REAL ID. New Jersey was slow in setting up the process to obtain a REAL ID so that shortens the deadline time frame. 

Why are the lines so, so long and the wait times killing your day? 
In addition to the unforeseen extended time its currently taking to process a REAL ID application, MVC is experiencing some technical issues with equipment breaking down, their integrating software updates/patches to fix glitches and the MVC employees are undergoing some additional training and need time to get more familiar with the new systems that are currently in place.    

On the bright side, rumor has it, to help with the inevitable long lines that are continuing to occur, MVC is testing additional sites to go fully operational to start issuing REAL ID driver licenses and non-driver IDs as soon as they can. MVC officials are planning on adding additional cameras to current operational locations and adding additional staffing.    

Our recommendation for the best times to go if you don’t want to get online before 8am, would be Tuesday through Thursday before 9:30am. Currently, avoid planning on arriving after 2:30pm if you want to ensure you will be processed the same day. Avoid going 3 days before months end or 3 days into the new month since traffic volume increases automatically during this period. Saturdays avoid if you don’t want to spend half your day there unless you are before 8am most location.

For those that are interested in getting a REAL ID, you can only get REAL ID by appointment, and you get an appointment by signing up at and filling out a short form.
East Orange
North Bergen
Jersey City
South Brunswick
West Deptford
Cherry Hill
South Plainfield


The below items can be done online.

  • Address Changes
  • Duplicate License
  • Copy of Registration or Renew Registration
  • Renew Standard License
  • Register Organ Donor
  • Request Your Driver History Abstract
  • Pay your surcharge fee
  • Specialized plates
  • Schedule a Road Test


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