Registering to Vote and submitting a ballot is fast, easy, and can be done from anywhere in the world!
Step One: Register to Vote!
In order to participate in U.S. elections, you must first ensure that you are registered to vote before you can request your absentee ballot. To register go to https://www.fvap.gov/ and use your specific state’s online tool. Alternatively, you can also fill out the Federal Post Card Application (FPCA) and send it to your election office by your State’s deadline. The easiest way to register to vote is to use the Federal Voting Assistance Program’s Online Voting Assistant, which will walk you through the process of registering to vote and/or requesting your absentee ballot. Most states now allow you to send your voter registration form and the FPCA electronically to your local election officials, but others still require you to print and mail in a hard copy. The Online Voting Assistant will tell you which method(s) your state permits.
Step Two: 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.
STOP! Make sure to sign and date your ballot as instructed before mailing it.
Step Three: Submit your absentee ballot as soon as you receive it!
If your state requires you to return paper voting forms or absentee ballots to local election officials by mail, you can do so through international mail, professional courier service, or through the U.S. Embassy and Consulates in India (see ballot submission instructions below).
If you choose to return your ballot through the U.S. Embassy or consulates, we will forward it to the United States via diplomatic pouch. Please note that it can take up to a week to mail ballots from your location in India to the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate, another three to four weeks for the diplomatic pouch to arrive in the United States, then a few days for the ballots to be forwarded to the appropriate local election offices. We recommend that you submit your ballot as soon as you receive it in order to ensure that your ballot arrives at the local election office by your state’s deadline.
If you don’t receive your absentee ballot by September 19th, you may want to use the back-up Federal Write-In Absentee Ballot (FWAB) from https://www.fvap.gov/. Fill it out and send it like a regular absentee ballot.
Ballot Submission Through the U.S. Embassy or Consulates in India
- Make sure you have signed and dated your ballot as instructed.
- Ballots must be placed in postage paid return envelopes or in envelopes bearing sufficient U.S. domestic postage so they may be delivered to the proper local election authorities.
- Please note that postage from India to the United States is not required if you submit your ballots through the U.S. Embassy New Delhi or U.S. Consulates Chennai, Hyderabad, Kolkata, or Mumbai. It can take up to four weeks for mail to reach its destination if sent through the embassy or consulate.
U.S. Embassy New Delhi: Please mail your ballot to U.S. Embassy New Delhi, C/O American Citizen Services, Panchsheel Marg, Shantipath, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi, Delhi 110021.
You may also drop off your ballot in the ballot box placed at the Embassy’s American Citizen Services entrance at Gate 6 between 9am and 12pm. We are unable to accept ballots on local and U.S. holidays.
U.S. Consulate General Chennai: Please mail your ballot to U.S. Consulate Chennai, C/O Voting Office, Gemini Flyover, 220 Anna Salai, Chennai, Tamil Nadu 600006, India.
You may also drop off your ballot in the ballot box placed at the Consulate’s entrance on Cathedral Road.
U.S. Consulate General Hyderabad: Please mail your ballot to U.S. Citizen Services Unit, U.S. Consulate General Hyderabad 1-8-323, Paigah Palace, Chiran Fort Lane, Begumpet, Secunderabad-500003, Telangana, India.
You may also drop off your ballot in the ballot box placed at the Consulate’s entrance.
U.S. Consulate General Kolkata: Please mail your ballot to U.S. Consulate Kolkata, C/O American Citizen Services, American Center, 38A, Jawaharlal Nehru Road, Kolkata, West Bengal 700071.
U.S. Consulate General Mumbai: Please mail your ballot to U.S. Consulate Mumbai, C/O American Citizen Services, C-49, G-Block, Bandra Kurla Complex, Bandra East, Mumbai 400051.
You may also drop off your ballot in the ballot box placed at the Consulate’s main entrance.
Learn more at the Federal Voting Assistance Program’s (FVAP) website, FVAP.gov.
New Delhi: VoteNewDelhi@state.gov