Voting

U.S. citizens overseas who are 18 years of age and over can vote, wherever they are.  Remember YOUR VOTE COUNTS!

The 2023 United States elections are scheduled to be held on Tuesday, November 7, 2023. The off-year election includes gubernatorial and state legislative elections in a few states, as well as numerous citizen initiatives, mayoral races, and a variety of other local offices on the ballot. For further information on state and territory specific election dates, please see the Federal Voting Assistance Program (FVAP) Election Guide.

Registering to Vote and submitting a ballot is fast, easy, and, depending on your state, can be done online.  Please follow the three simple steps below.  

1. Voter Registration and Absentee Ballot Request

Most states provide the option to register to vote and request ballots through their state election portals, which you can easily access via FVAP.gov.  You can also choose to complete a Federal Post Card Application (FPCA).  To ensure that you receive absentee ballots for all elections in which you are eligible to vote, we recommend that you submit a new Federal Post Card Application in January of each year and whenever you have a new mailing address.  The completion of the FPCA allows you to request absentee ballots for all elections for federal offices (President, U.S. Senate, and U.S. House of Representatives) including primaries and special elections during the calendar year in which it is submitted.  FPCA forms (PDF 227kb) that are correctly filled out and include a signature and date are accepted by all local election officials in every U.S. state and territory.  FVAP’s easy online assistant can assist you with completing the FPCA.  Whether you request your ballot through your state’s portal or the FPCA, we encourage you to select the option for receiving your ballot electronically (by email, internet download, or fax) when available.  This is the fastest way for you to get your ballot and ensures you have it in time to return a completed form before your state’s deadline.

If you do not have a state of residence, or are unsure in which state you should register to vote, please consult the “Voting Residence” page on the  FVAP website.

2. Receive and Complete Your Ballot

States are required to send out ballots 45 days before a regular election for federal office and states generally send out ballots at least 30 days before primary elections.  Most states allow you to confirm your ballot delivery online.

3. Return Your Completed, Signed Ballot

Some states allow you to return your completed ballot electronically and others do not.  If your state requires you to return paper voting forms or ballots to local election officials by mail, you can do so through international mail, professional courier service, or through U.S. Embassy Quito or U.S. Consulates Guayaquil’s diplomatic pouch.  The diplomatic pouch provides free mail service from embassies and consulates to a U.S. sorting facility.  You will need to place your ballots in postage paid return envelopes or in envelopes bearing sufficient U.S. postage, in order for them to be delivered to the proper local election authorities.  Please note that in-person voting is not available at U.S. Embassies and Consulates overseas.

If using the diplomatic pouch, ballots can be dropped off to the American Citizens Services sections:

  • U.S. Embassy Quito
    Fridays between 10:00 and 11:30
  • U.S. Consulate Guayaquil
    Tuesdays and Thursdays between 09:00 and 12:00.

Please note that when you come to drop off your ballot you will be required to enter the premises, therefore the following guidelines will apply:

  • You may not enter with any bags and will be required to leave your phone at the security desk.
  • Face masks are mandatory at all times.
  • Please maintain social distancing (6 feet, 2 meters).
  • Please note that all visitors to the U.S. Mission are subject to security screening and you will not be permitted to bring electronic devices, including cell phones, inside the facility.

Please note that it can take up to four weeks for mail to reach its destination if sent by an embassy or consulate via diplomatic pouch.  All overseas U.S. citizens are advised to submit their forms and ballots accordingly.

 

For information about election dates and deadlines, subscribe to FVAP’s Voting Alerts (vote@fvap.gov).  FVAP also shares Voting Alerts via Facebook  (@DODFVAP), Twitter (@FVAP), and Instagram (@fvapgov).

 

If you have any further questions about registering to vote overseas, please contact U.S. Embassy Quito’s Voting Assistance Officer at VoteQuito@state.gov or Consulate Guayaquil’s Voting Assistance Officer, at VoteGuayaquil@state.gov.