Governor Branstad and DOT director Paul Trombino (L-R) talk about online driver's license renewal.

Governor Branstad and DOT director Paul Trombino (L-R) talk about online driver’s license renewal.

About 284,000 Iowa drivers will be able to renew their driver’s license online, starting today. Iowa Department of Transportation director Paul Trombino cautions drivers to beware of imposter websites.

“The only place to renew your driver’s license online is through http://www.iowadot.govor our mobile app,” Trombino says.

“That’s really the place to come. It’s secure. That’s where you’re going to input all your information and do all that activity. All the rest of them are really giving you false information.”

It costs $20 to renew a driver’s license and there’s a $1.50 “convenience fee” for renewing online. Drivers will only be able to renew online every other time, since the duration of the license will increase from five to eight years.

Drivers with medical or vision problems are to go into a DOT facility or country treasurer’s office to renew their license and there are a series of questions in the online format to screen out people who’ve had recent eye trauma or vision problems.

“I think that it’s consistent with the process that we have right now,” Trombino says. “People, when they come into the office, they certify that there haven’t been significant changes in their eye statement. The screen that we do is not a vision test. It’s really just a quick screen and that online renewal is consistent with that and the statement that you sign (online) is the exact same one you sign if you did it in person.”

Trombino demonstrated the online license renewal process this morning during the governor’s weekly news conference and Branstad noted drivers can apply to renew their license within a large window — 180 days before the license expires.

“Mine is due in November,” Branstad said. “So I’m eligible, Right?”

The DOT plans to help eligible drivers renew their license online at the State Fair, and Branstad plans to renew his license on the fairgrounds. 

AUDIO of Branstad’s weekly news conference, which began with online driver’s license renewal demonstration.