How to vote

Once you are registered on the electoral register, you are eligible to vote. You can vote in three ways:

In person

Most people in the UK choose to cast their vote in person at a local polling station. Voting at a polling station is very straightforward and there is always a member of staff available to help if you're not sure what to do.

Voters will need to show an accepted form of photographic identification (photo ID) to vote at a polling station.

By post

Voting by post is an easy and convenient way of voting if you are unable to get to the polling station.

To vote by post, you need to be on the electoral register. Then you need to fill in a postal vote application form. After completing the form, you'll need to print it, sign it, and send it back to your District Elections Office for your area. If you can’t print the form, contact the electoral services team at your local council/the Electoral Registration Officer for your area so that a form can be posted to you.

When voting by post, you should mark your vote on the ballot paper in secret, and seal the envelope yourself.

You will be asked to give your date of birth and signature when applying for a postal. When you return your postal voting pack you will again be asked for your signature and date of birth, and these will be checked against those you have already provided in order to confirm your identity.

Your signature and date of birth are separated from your ballot paper before it is looked at or counted, so giving this information will not affect the secrecy of your vote.

By proxy

If you aren't able to vote in person, you can ask someone you trust to vote for you. This is called a proxy vote and the person is often referred to as your proxy. To apply for a proxy vote, complete the form to vote by proxy, explaining why you can't get to your polling station in person. The person voting on your behalf can either go to your polling station to vote, or can apply to vote for you by post.

If you already have a postal or proxy vote arrangement in place, and your details have not changed, you don't need to take any action. If in doubt, you can check with your local election officer.

Voting by Post

Voting by post? Don’t forget to:

  • read all the instructions carefully
  • mark your vote on your ballot paper in secret
  • take care filling in the postal voting statement
  • put all the documents in the correct envelopes
  • seal the envelope yourself
  • post your ballot back as quickly as possible to make sure it’s counted

Find out more about voting by post.

Voter Resources

Voter ID Resource Booklet