An official website of the United States government

Message for U.S. Citizens: Voting Deadlines Approaching for 2020.
(September 25, 2020)
September 25, 2020

Voting overseas is easy; simply register, vote, and send!

As highlighted in the video (on the right of the page), if you are a U.S. citizen living abroad, you can make sure your vote is counted by voting absentee in the 2020 general election. Voting absentee is as easy as 1, 2, 3.

1: Register to Vote Overseas

Overseas U.S. citizens usually need to register every year, which means mailing in your Federal Post Card Application (FPCA) so you’re eligible to receive an absentee ballot. Complete the Federal Post Card Application (FPCA) to receive your overseas ballot.   FPCA  forms 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.  In completing the application, 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.

2: Receive Your Ballot and Vote

States are required to send out ballots 45 days before a regular election for federal office.  Most states allow you to confirm your  ballot delivery online. If you have not received your blank ballot 30 days before an election, use the  Federal Write-in Absentee Ballot  to vote.

3: Send Your Completed, Signed Ballot

You should return your ballot as soon as possible to ensure it is received by your state’s deadline. You can find information on your state’s deadlines, guidelines, and submission options (mail, email, or fax)  here. 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 or through U.S. Embassy Dar es Salaam’s diplomatic pouch.  While there is no fee for the Embassy to forward your ballot through diplomatic pouch, you will need to place your ballots in postage paid return envelopes or in envelopes bearing sufficient U.S. postage to complete delivery to the proper local election authorities. Ballots can be dropped off at the Consular Section of the U.S. Embassy in Dar es Salaam.

Please either mail ballots or deliver in person to:

U.S. Embassy
686 Old Bagamoyo Road
Dar es Salaam

Hours for personal delivery are 7:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m., Monday to Friday. Please note that there is no visitor parking at the Embassy and that masks are required to enter the guard station. Bring your passport for identification and your ballot in an unsealed envelope for security scanning. After scanning, you will seal your ballot and place it in the secured ballot box.

To ensure delivery of your paper ballot by election day, we encourage you to drop off your ballot at the Embassy by October 1, 2020 or earlier. 

If you have any questions about voting, please contact the Voting Assistance Office at voteDarEsSalaam@state.gov.

Additional resources:

Overseas Voting (https://www.fvap.gov/citizen-voter)
Absentee Voting (https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/international-travel/while-abroad/voting.html#ExternalPopup)