To begin with, I am aware that various iterations of this question have been asked, so I will be specific to my case since I feel there may be some differences.

I am on a temporary Visa in the United states, My Passport was stolen when someone broke into my car. Fortunately I am carrying my original Driving License issued in India. I have my work ID, and can print my bank statements out.

I have reported the case with the Police, have a copy of the report, have spoken to my consulate. They will issue a one time travel permit to me ONLY one month before the date of travel ONLY when I show them my ticket. I am set to depart 50 days from now so that doesnt help in getting an ID. So for the time being I do not have an ID on me issues by the consulate, nor my VISA. I have scanned color print outs of passport and VISA, my date of arrival and the date of VISA expiry.

Am I expected to face any issues if I am to board a flight to travel domestically? I am here on a business trip and need to travel within the United states.

I have spoken to the TSA, one of the people I spoke to was positive that I can go through. However the reason I write this is the second person: She was equally sure that I will not be let through unless I have a piece of paper signed by my consulate with a photo on it.

Any help on this? I dont want some thief to effect my plans here, which I made months ago, and have considerable interests in!!

  • possible duplicate of Travelling within the US as a British citizen without a passport
    – Karlson
    Jun 4, 2014 at 18:07
  • 1
    Thanks for pointing that out. The question might be slightly similar, but the discussion on that question was limited to bars and other ID requirements, and driving. In my case, I am looking for flying domestically, hence the separate question
    – DB5
    Jun 4, 2014 at 18:41
  • The discussion beyond first answer yes. But the first answer is exactly on point for your circumstance.
    – Karlson
    Jun 4, 2014 at 18:44
  • 6
    @Karlson Saying "first answer" is unhelpful, as the answers are displayed in a random order. Thus I'm not sure exactly which answer you're referring to, however I would not consider any of the answers to that question to be "exactly on point".
    – Doc
    Jun 4, 2014 at 19:07
  • @Doc They are usually displayed in the vote order in this case: travel.stackexchange.com/a/10228/1372 It also happens to be the first answer chronologically.
    – Karlson
    Jun 4, 2014 at 19:08

1 Answer 1


Yes, you will have problems passing through airport security - however you WILL almost certainly be allowed through.

The TSA page on acceptable IDs states :

We understand passengers occasionally arrive at the airport without an ID, due to lost items or inadvertently leaving them at home. Not having an ID does not necessarily mean a passenger won't be allowed to fly. If passengers are willing to provide additional information, we have other means of substantiating someone's identity, like using publicly available databases.

Passengers who are cleared through this process may be subject to additional screening. Passengers whose identity cannot be verified by TSA may not be allowed to enter the screening checkpoint or onto an airplane.

In your case the information you've stated you can provide will almost certainly be sufficient for them to be able to confirm your identity. In addition they will likely be able to access the USCIS/DHS database which will contain photographs of you from your visa, and also those taken when you entered the country if the other items are not sufficient.

You should plan to add at least an hour extra to the time you expect it to take to get through airport security - odds are it will not take this long, but the extra will be worth it just in case.

  • Thanks for the re-assurance! :) My only cause for concern was that they "may" have a different policy for foreign nationals perhaps? Any idea on that front?
    – DB5
    Jun 4, 2014 at 19:48
  • 1
    I don't believe so. I've passed through TSA twice using my Australian drivers license when I grabbed it by accident. Officially that's not allowed, but...
    – Doc
    Jun 4, 2014 at 19:52
  • Oh I see. Thats very helpful and puts me at ease! I had planned this trip well in advance and this theft had me worried about the outcome and how it would end up screwing things for no fault of mine!! I am much more optimistic about it now
    – DB5
    Jun 4, 2014 at 20:00
  • @Doc So they don't recognize a driver's license issued in another country as a valid ID? What about a driver's license issued in the US? Jun 5, 2014 at 2:20
  • 5
    @AdityaSomani: US driver's licenses are the 8th entry on the list in Doc's link. That's what the vast majority of US domestic travelers use. Jun 5, 2014 at 2:25

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