Lost Your License Or Passport? Airport Security Will Accept A Costco Card


A few years back, I misplaced my license while in Washington, D.C. for a wedding. Little did I know that I didn’t have to take a bus back to New York; I apparently could have just shown my Costco card.

KPIX-TV in California decided to see exactly what was needed to get through airport security when a passenger doesn’t have his or her government-issued photo ID available.

So a producer went undercover at airports in San Francisco, San Jose and Oakland, each time without any government-issued ID. All the producer needed to get through was a student ID and some credit cards. TSA agents at both San Francisco and Oakland actually suggested the Costco card as possible alternative.

Your passport to savings... and apparently airport security.

Your passport to savings… and apparently airport security.

“Its about validating who you are so if it’s a library card or a Costco card or a school ID, they are all not forms of government identification, but at least it is something that is printed with your name on it,” a TSA rep explains about the agency’s flexibility on the photo ID issue, adding that those without government-issued ID should expect a secondary screening — like being subject to a swab test or further inspection of carry-on bags.

However, the KPIX producer says the only time she experienced anything resembling a secondary inspection is when — during her second time through the Oakland airport — she was made to answer some additional questions.