Identification Cards

This section includes information about the different type of identification cards listed below. All students must be in the U.S. to apply for these Identification cards.

How to Get a MIT Student ID

Once you have arrived in the U.S., please complete the iMIT Online Check-In Process and then you can obtain your MIT Student ID card from the Atlas Center (Atlas Service Center, E17-106). You can save time at the Atlas Center by uploading your own photo for use on your ID card at mycard.mit.edu in advance of appearing at the Atlas Center. At the mycard.mit.edu site, click “Submit ID Photo” to review the checklist of required documents and upload your photo.

How to Get a Massachusetts Driver’s License

To be eligible for a Massachusetts Driver’s License, international students must show that their visa status for their program of study, as written on their Form I-20 or Form DS-2019, is at least one year (365 days) in duration. Student’s whose program of study are less than 365 days are not eligible for a Massachusetts Driver’s License. 

Driving on License from Home Country
For information on eligibility to drive in Massachusetts using a driver’s license issued from your home country, please see the information on the Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles website, here.

Transferring Driver’s License from Home Country to Massachusetts Driver’s License
Massachusetts RMV also provides instructions on how to transfer your driver’s license from your home country license to a Massachusetts driver’s license, though eligibility is limited to certain countries with an agreement with Massachusetts. Details are available here.

Direct Application for Massachusetts Driver’s License
If students meet eligibility requirements to apply for a Massachusetts Driver’s license, international students must apply in person to the Registry Of Motor Vehicles (RMV).  See full instructions on application procedures below.

The closest office to MIT is:

Boston RMV
136 Blackstone Street
Boston, MA
(857) 368-8000
Hours: Monday – Friday, 9:00 am – 5:00 pm
except Thursday, 10:00 am – 6:00 pm

Other locations and more information, including current wait times, can be found on the RMV website.

A listing of required documentation is available on the RMV website, which includes the following items plus additional documentation: 

  • Social Security Number (or official denial notice) from the Social Security Office
  • passport
  • I-20 form or DS-2019 form
  • white I-94 arrival/departure card
  • evidence of current address in Boston (e.g. lease or rent agreement, utilities bill, or mail received with address)
  • current driver’s license from your home country or international driver’s license
  • method of payment

A checklist of Acceptable Identification Documents is available here.

Driving on a Foreign Driver’s License

The Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) has updated its guidance on ability for foreign nationals to drive in Massachusetts on a driver’s license issued from their home countries/country of residence. The RMV allows individuals to drive the same type of vehicle as provided by the driver’s license issued by the country of residence. Individuals must also have a full translation into English of the foreign driver’s license. When driving, students must also carry their passport, Form I-20 or Form DS-2019, and copy of Form I-94 arrival record to document their student status. Details on the requirements for driving on a foreign driver’s license are available on the MA RMV website.

IMPORTANT NOTE: The guidance by the MA RMV only applies to driving in Massachusetts. If you are planning to drive in another U.S. State, please consult the Registry/Department of Motor Vehicles in that State to confirm their regulations. 

How to Get a Liquor ID Card

A Liquor ID Card may also be obtained from the Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles. (Please note that you must be age 21 or older in order to obtain a liquor ID Card.)

Requirements for Liquor ID Card are also available on the RMV website, which includes the following:

  • passport, I-94 record, entry visa, and Form I-20 or Form DS-2019
  • birth certificate
  • home country license or home country ID (both must contain the person’s signature)
  • Social Security Number (SSN) or an SSN Denial Letter (see instructions below)
  • copy of rental agreement, a utility or service bill, or letter received to confirm your current Massachusetts address
  • A completed application form and fee

A checklist of Acceptable Identification Documents is available here.

Requesting SSN Denial Letter for Driver’s License Applications

Students and dependents not eligible for a U.S. Social Security Number, but wish to apply for a Massachusetts Driver’s License, will be required to obtain an SSN “Denial Letter” from the Social Security Administration Office to include in the driver’s license application with the Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles.

To request an SSN “Denial Letter”, the following documentation is required to present in-person at the SSA Office:

  • Complete the SSN application form online; then download and print a copy of your SSN application receipt submitted online to take in-person to the SSA Office to submit within 45 days the supporting documents below.
  • Copy of passport identity pages (including name, photo, date of birth, passport number, passport issue and expiration date)
  • Copy of Entry Visa (issued by U.S. Embassy/Consulate) in the passport along with a copy of the most recent admission stamp in your passport from U.S. Customs and Border Protection (USCBP) at time of entry
  • Copy of Form I-94 Arrival record (from https://i94.cbp.dhs.gov/)
  • Copy of Form I-20 (F-1 visa holder) or Form DS-2019 (J-1 visa holder) certificate of eligibility for student status