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How to add your driver’s license to Apple Wallet

Apple has broken new ground by allowing iPhone users' Apple Wallets to serve as official identification if equipped with a driver's license or state ID. There isn't currently a huge use-case for the tech, as Arizona is the only state to recognize Apple Wallet as legitimate ID. That said, Apple has a whole list of other states in the U.S. that the company expects will follow Arizona's lead in the coming months.




5 minutes

What You Need

  • iPhone 8 or later

  • Apple Watch Series 4 or later (optional)

  • Driver's license or state ID

As more and more states start allowing iPhone owners to leave their official IDs at home in favor of Apple Wallet, knowing how to properly enter your information will be crucial. Before getting started, make sure that your iPhone is up to date with iOS 15.4 or any later editions. Additionally, if you're planning on using your Apple Watch to serve as your ID, make sure that it's fitted with WatchOS 8.4 or later as well.

What states accept Apple Wallet as a form of ID?

As mentioned above, this technology is still in its early stages, so hasn't been widely accepted as an official ID. The current list of states that recognize Apple Wallet's driver's license and state ID feature as legitimate is as follows:

  • Arizona

While the list of states is still small, Apple has big plans for the rest of the country. Currently, the company anticipates that Georgia will be the next state to follow Arizona's lead in adopting its Wallet ID features. Apple has its own list of specific states that it's planning on prioritizing when it comes to Wallet IDs, so fans eager to start using the feature should expect the following states to be the next to come:

  • Colorado
  • Connecticut
  • Georgia
  • Hawaii
  • Iowa
  • Kentucky
  • Maryland
  • Mississippi
  • Ohio
  • Oklahoma
  • Puerto Rico
  • Utah

The list above is obviously far from all-encompassing when it comes to the U.S., but it seems like these states will be testing the waters before Wallet ID is used nationwide.

How to add your driver's license to Apple Wallet

Setting up your iPhone with a driver's license or state ID is just as simple as adding a card to your Apple Wallet. The only prerequisite is that you'll need to have Face ID turned on and set up to access the feature. Face ID has been something of a point of contention for many Apple users, but, unfortunately, registering your device as an official ID requires it. If you're not comfortable using Face ID, then you'll have to continue carrying your physical driver's license or state ID for now. That said, here's how to set up your ID in Apple Wallet.

Step 1: Open the Wallet app.

Step 2: Tap on the "Plus" in the top-right corner of the screen.

Step 3: When the Add to Wallet menu pops up, tap on Driver's License or State ID.

Step 4: If not done previously, you'll be prompted to set up Face ID. Follow the steps required to set it up, or check out this guide for more in-depth steps.

Step 5: From here, if you've got an Apple Watch, you'll be given the option to either set your ID up with both your iPhone and Apple Watch or just set it up with your phone. Decide which device(s) you want to set it up with and tap either Add to iPhone and Apple Watch or Add to iPhone only. If you don't have an Apple Watch, simply tap Continue.

Step 6: Place your ID on a flat surface in a well-lit room and line up the edges of it with the edges on the screen. Your phone will automatically take a picture once it recognizes your ID. Tap Continue once you have a good photo of the front of the ID.

Step 7: Flip your card over and repeat step 6 with the back of the card.

Step 8: Tap Continue on the page notifying you that additional verification will be needed to finish the process.

Step 9: Follow the on-screen prompts and position your phone like you're going to take a selfie using the front-facing camera on your iPhone. You'll be asked to do different movements such as closing your eyes or moving your head to the left or right. Hold each position until the phone vibrates and gives you a new task. If doing such movements isn't possible for any reason, select Accessibility options at the bottom of the screen and follow the prompts. After following the instructions, tap Continue.

Step 10: From here, you'll be prompted to take a selfie using the front-facing camera. For the best results, try to match the face you made in your driver's license or state ID photograph. Once taken, tap Continue.

Step 11: The next screen will ask you to confirm all of the photos you've taken so far. If everything looks good, tap Continue with Face ID. If not, go back and retake the photos and then continue once completed.

Step 12: Tap Agree on the terms and conditions page.

With all that completed, Apple will send your information to your state's MVD. It should take a few minutes for them to confirm your ID, but once they do, your new ID will be viewable in the Wallet app. It can be used at select airport terminals by opening your Apple Wallet and tapping your iPhone or Apple Watch to the terminal, similar to paying using an Apple Wallet credit or debit card.

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Peter Hunt Szpytek
A podcast host and journalist, Peter covers mobile news with Digital Trends and gaming news, reviews, and guides for sites…
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