How to Vote in U.S. Elections Off-Campus

There are several ways for you to vote in local, state and Federal elections back in the United States while you are abroad; however, it does take some preparation.  Each county and state in which you may be registered to vote has different rules for casting absentee ballots.  Please look at the following steps for guidance:

Step 1: Register to vote in your state of permanent residency or home university if you are not already registered.  You can find information on how college students can register to vote in the state of their college address here.

*Please note that each state has its own voting requirements and deadlines to request a ballot. Check your state of voter registration to view that information.

Step 2: Request an absentee ballot be sent to you while abroad for the specific election. You can use either one of these two non-partisan websites to request your absentee ballot while abroad: The Overseas Vote Foundation or Vote from Abroad. Select "U.S. Citizen Residing Outside the U.S. Temporarily and I Intend to Return" and then complete the rest of the form.

Step 3: If you need to enter your international mailing address to receive your ballot and do not have your address yet, you can either A) wait until you arrive abroad and complete the absentee ballot request as long as the date to request the absentee ballot has not passed or B) contact your program/ host university before you depart and see if they can provide a mailing address that you can use.

Step 4: Once you request your absentee ballot, you will be given instructions on how to fill out the ballot abroad and return it.

*Note for "study away" participants who may be going on a U.S. domestic program during an election: Request an absentee ballot on  "U.S. Based Voters" in order to vote in a different state.

Official absentee voting information can be found on the U.S. Department of State website.