Voting is Now Easier Than Ever Before
Now all U.S. citizens can receive their blank ballots electronically. Depending on the state in which you are eligible to vote, you may get your ballot by email, fax, or internet download. To start, go to www.FVAP.gov to complete a new Federal Post Card Application (FPCA), print and sign the form then return it to your local election office in the United States. We recommend overseas U.S. citizens get in the habit of completing FPCAs each January. You should include your email address on the form so it’s easier for your election officials to reach you if there is a problem. If your state delivers ballots electronically by fax only, be sure to include your fax number. If you request electronic delivery and include your email address or fax number, you’ll receive your blank ballot 45 days before general and mid-term elections and generally 30 days before special, primary, and run-off elections for federal offices. Most states now have voter registration verification websites, and many offer a means of tracking the status of your registration and ballot.
States are no longer required to automatically send ballots to voters for an entire election cycle so everyone who wants to vote in the U.S. elections from overseas should send in a new Federal Post Card Application in January of each year.
If your state requires you to return paper voting forms or ballots to local election officials by mail, then the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate can assist you. Place your ballot in a postage-paid return envelope (a template is available at www.FVAP.gov) or in an envelope addressed to the relevant local election officials and bearing sufficient U.S. postage to cover domestic shipment from Washington, D.C. to your local election office.
If you bring your FPCA or ballot to U.S. Embassy Bandar Seri Begawan, we will mail it for you without requiring you to pay for international postage. To calculate the correct domestic postage or print a mailing label, please see the U.S. Postal Service website at www.USPS.com. Please note international mail sent through the U.S. Embassy takes about four weeks for delivery. Your ballot will require up to three weeks to get to Washington, D.C. through the diplomatic pouch and another week to reach your local election officials. If it is more convenient for you, you can also return your FPCA or ballot to your local election officials via international mail or professional courier service at your own expense.
Researching the Candidates and Issues: Online Resources. Check out the FVAP links page for helpful resources that will aid your research of candidates and issues. Non-partisan information about candidates, their voting records, and their positions on issues is widely available and easy to obtain on-line. You can also read national and hometown newspapers on-line or search the internet to locate articles and information. For information about election dates and deadlines, subscribe to FVAP’s Voting Alerts (firstname.lastname@example.org). FVAP also shares Voting Alerts via Facebook (@DODFVAP), Twitter (@FVAP), and Instagram (@fvapgov).
Learn more at the Federal Voting Assistance Program’s (FVAP) website, FVAP.gov. If you have any questions about registering to vote overseas, please contact U.S. Embassy Bandar Seri Begawan’s Voting Assistance Officer at (673) 238-7500 or at ConsularBrunei@state.gov.