I need to fly across the US in about two weeks. Currently, the only ID that I have is a passport, which will be expired then. Is it possible for me to either get a new passport or California ID, that will allow me to board a plane in two weeks?
If the passport is a U.S. passport expired less than one year the TSA will still accept it. See Four Tips To Remember When Checking Your ID At Airport Security at the TSA blog:
If you’re traveling with an expired license or passport you may still be able to fly. Acceptable forms of ID cannot be more than 12 months past the identified expiration date.
If it's expired more than one year you should still bring it, along with something else that has biographical information. A social security card, birth certificate, even a utility bill or something similar, along with your expired passport will get you through with a little extra scrutiny.
Even if you bring no identification whatsoever, the TSA has a process to identify you using public records. This will also lead to a little extra scrutiny.
I would suggest that you go to the DMV tomorrow and apply for a non-driver ID. The card will be mailed to you, and it might come in the next two weeks if you are lucky.
In principle you could also apply for a driver's license, but this will also require you to take some tests, and adds the risk that you might not pass. If you would have to take a road test, this might require an appointment which may not be available right away.
A passport renewal will probably take more than two weeks. Expedited processing might make it happen in time, but is quite expensive. There can be a possibility for same-day passport renewal if you go to a passport agency, but there are only three in California, and this also typically requires proof of imminent international travel.
Even if you don't get your ID in time, you can still go to the airport and hope that TSA can verify your identity. See https://www.tsa.gov/travel/security-screening/identification under "Forget Your ID?". Bring every form of identification you have (the expired passport, student ID, credit card, utility bills, library card, receipt from your driver's license application, etc.).
You don't necessarily need a state ID. TSA will accept alternate ID.
A driver's license is simply a state ID card that also authorizes driving.
Your best hope is to get a California state ID card. I recommend you do not overload the task and try to get your driver's license also, because that's a huge production. However you can ask whether a REAL ID card can happen as fast as a plain ID, if so, it's a few dollars now but will save you the trouble of returning next year when it will be a total madhouse because REAL ID will be required to fly after October 2020.
California is being forced into REAL ID by TSA, so they have tightened up on the documents you require for plain IDs also. You need several types of documents:
- an original birth certificate, passport or similar
- social security number, or for REAL ID, an original social security card or documents that show your social securiry number, such as a paystub.
- proof of residency: certain items of mail, mailed to you at a particular address in the state that is not a PO box or PMB. If you don't have this yet, you're in trouble :b
If you already have all the documents required on the DMV website, just go tomorrow morning to a DMV an hour before they open and get in line. Figure on a good long while there. Some have a system where your first stop is a clerk who checks to see that you have all the required paperwork, and then you "take a number", and may let you run home and get the missing piece while you are in the queue. So don't let your ride leave you there until you know you have everything.
The Federal SSA office wasn't bad to deal with (they're all over). They do not like expired documents, so if you don't have a Social Security card, get it before your passport expires.
Oh, and one more thing. Chances are the SSA office is closed due to the Federal shutdown.