RAPIDS, which stands for "Real-time Automated Personnel Identification System," is a program within the Department of Defense that is managed by the Defense Manpower Data Center (DMDC). RAPIDS is responsible for managing the issuance of identification cards to military personnel, their dependents, retirees, and other eligible individuals.
The Defense Manpower Data Center has a website to help you locate and find information about where you can renew or obtain new military IDS. The RAPIDS Appointment scheduling website has a robust search function, allowing you to search by state, zip code, place name, or country.
Once you find a location, the RAPIDS site gives you hours of operation and contact information, plus useful information such as what documents you will need, how to add family members, policies for disabled veterans, etc. You can even schedule an appointment through the website. Once you're set for your appointment, you can use the RAPIDS website to confirm or cancel an appointment, if necessary.
If navigating the site is frustrating, see How To Use The RAPIDS Appointment Scheduler. It flummoxed me for a bit.
The RAPIDS website supports military ID services for all branches of the military, including:
- Army Reserve
- Navy Reserve
- Air Force
- Air Force Reserve
- Marine Corps
- Marine Corps
- Coast Guard
- Army National Guard
- Air National Guard
- US Public Health Service
- National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
- Department of State
It is possible that you will receive a security error message when you try to use this site. These error messages occur because of the nature of websites maintained by the Department of Defense. Generally speaking, I click through without incident. Every setup is different. On my computer, I have to click on "ADVANCED," then scroll down and click on the link that says "proceed to...."
It is also possible that your anti-virus or other protection software will not permit you to go further, due to the settings you have on your computer. Two options are to try another browser or to temporarily turn off your security software.
Despite the fabulousness of this website, I still encourage everyone to call and confirm everything before making a trip to an ID office. Hours may change, requirements may vary, and sometimes they even run out of stock. (Yes, this has happened to me. I don't know how ID offices run out of IDs, but it happens.)
This website is particularly helpful for those who don't have regular contact with the military, including retirees, reservists and Guard families. I hope that you find it useful!
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