ILLINOIS (WCIA) — Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White announced Wednesday that throughout the next few months, many larger downstate and central Illinois Driver Services facilities will require appointments for behind-the-wheel road tests, REAL IDs, standard driver’s licenses and ID cards.
White said vehicle services, such as renewing a license plate sticker or applying for a vehicle title, do not require an appointment.
The facilities and tentative dates for appointments include:
Other locations may be added to the list of appointment-required facilities after this rollout is complete.
Aside from the Springfield Dirksen Parkway facility, these central and downstate appointment-based facilities will have the same standardized days and hours of operation: Tuesday from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Wednesday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Saturday from 7:30 a.m. to noon. The Springfield Dirksen Parkway facility is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Customers and employees are required to wear masks. People can visit ilsos.gov to schedule an appointment up to 10 days in advance during this phase of the program. New appointment slots will be available each day at ilsos.gov.
Secretary White emphasized that seniors, veterans, persons with disabilities and expectant mothers will be served as walk-ins at all of the designated appointment facilities. They also have the option to make an appointment.
The Secretary of State is also partnering with the Chicago Lighthouse to provide an appointment hotline, which the public may call at 844-817-4649.
Officials said many small, rural facilities will not require the appointment system because they do not experience the heavy customer volume that large facilities encounter. These facilities will all remain accessible to walk-in customers. Some facilities in the Chicago area will also continue to serve walk-ins. There are currently 16 Chicagoland facilities that require appointments.
White’s office is expanding remote renewal for driver’s license and ID cardholders. During this fall and through the end of 2021, the office is mailing letters to eligible customers with expired driver’s licenses and ID cards requiring them to renew online, by phone or by mail.
In addition, White’s office will continue mailing online renewal letters to drivers and ID cardholders 90 days before their cards expire. Many customers will be able to renew online, by phone and by mail, and avoid visiting facilities. Customers who must visit a facility include first-time driver’s license or ID card applicants, first-time REAL ID applicants, and drivers ages 75 and older who are required by state law to visit a facility when renewing their license.
White has extended all driver’s license and ID card expiration dates to January 1, 2022. This extension does not apply to commercial driver’s licenses (CDL) and CDL learner’s permits.
Additionally, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security has extended the federal REAL ID deadline to May 3, 2023.
“During the pandemic, my office has continued to serve the public, including face-to-face transactions, in a safe and responsible manner,” said White. “Throughout this time, we also greatly expanded online services. This comprehensive plan further addresses the heavy customer volume at facilities caused by the ongoing pandemic.”