In the event that you will be abroad during any U.S. elections (including local, state, or national), don't forget to vote! Remember that you are eligible to request an absentee ballot in order to vote while abroad. We recommend that you take action to ensure you are able to vote well in advance of your travel so that you are all set before you go, as some steps could take some time to complete.
Step 1: Register to Vote
If you are not already registered to vote, please be sure to do so by deadline indicated! Check out the board of elections website for your state of residency for information on how and when to register to vote. You will need to be registered in the correct county based on your permanent residence - be sure to check that your registration is correct and update your registration ASAP if necessary. Otherwise, you might not be able to vote!
Step 2: Request Absentee Ballot
Request an absentee ballot to be sent to you while abroad for the specific election. The following are two non-partisan websites to request an absentee ballot to use while you are abroad:
- Nonpartisan Voter Services for U.S. Citizens Overseas and Uniformed Services Members
- Vote from Abroad
Be sure to pay close attention to when you will need to return the ballot in order for your vote to be counted.
Note: If you need to enter your international mailing address to receive your ballot and do not have your address yet, you can either:
- Wait until you arrive abroad and complete the absentee ballot request as long as the date to request the absentee ballot has not passed
- Contact your program/ host university before you depart and see if they can provide a mailing address that you can use for your absentee ballot
Step 3: Submit Your Completed Ballot
Once you receive your absentee ballot, you will be given instructions on how to fill it out and return it. Follow those instructions to send back your ballot by the applicable deadline.
- Absentee Voting Information for U.S. Citizens Abroad (U.S. Department of State)
Photo by: J. Guess, Italy