| News |

Arizona Getting Ugly New Driver's License Design

Keep New Times Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Phoenix and help keep the future of New Times free.

There's going to be a new design for Arizona driver's licenses, starting June 16.

As you can see from the sample above, it's hideous.

According to the Arizona Department of Transportation, this new license is "designed to protect against identity theft."

On this new design sample, we're counting 10 different fonts, sizes, or colors of text. We're counting four text differences on the old license, which are nicely aligned, unlike the new one.

Gone is the background of the Grand Canyon and the blue sky above it, as it's being replaced with something that looks like it would be awarded an "honorable mention" in an art contest among third-graders.

Even the word "Arizona," which was printed in a clean, traditional serif font on the old license, now looks like the lettering above the cheap diner in your local strip mall.

Even better, ADOT says you can't actually pick up the new license at the MVD. You'll be issued a temporary license, and the ugly license will be mailed to your home within 15 days.

According to an ADOT explainer, "As in other states that have moved to this process, the decision to accept the temporary credential as proof of identity exists solely with the organization requesting to see the license or identification card."

Although the old license doesn't expire until you're old, you're supposed to get your photo updated every 12 years, so the current style of licenses are valid for another 12 years.

ADOT describes the "art" in the background as a "high-security design comprised of unique Arizona geological features in the background created by using many different patterns, lines and images." (And 15 different flavors of ugly.)

Other security features include a raised feel to the date-of-birth field, a laminate overlay (similar to the current one), the second portrait, and a "laser perforation" in the shape of Arizona.

Got a tip? Send it to: Matthew Hendley.

Follow Valley Fever on Twitter at @ValleyFeverPHX.
Follow Matthew Hendley at @MatthewHendley.

Keep Phoenix New Times Free... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Phoenix with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Phoenix.


Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Phoenix.