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Do you know how to vote in the upcoming federal election?

News story

The Australian federal election is being held on Saturday 18 May and it is important to know how to make your vote count.


Voting is different in state and federal elections, so familiarise yourself with how to complete the House of Representatives (green) and Senate (white) ballot papers with the Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) practise voting tool on their website.


To find the location of your nearest voting centre, visit the AEC website or call 13 23 26. Please note that the locations of some polling places have changed since the previous federal election.


There are a range of voting options available to you. These include:

  • Ordinary vote – you can vote at one of around 7,000 polling places on election day from 8am to 6pm.
  • Absent vote – If you are outside of your electorate on election day, but within your home state or territory, you can cast an absent vote at your nearest polling place.
  • Interstate vote – If you are outside of your home state or territory, you can vote at a designated interstate voting centre.
  • Early vote (pre-poll) – If you can’t make it to a polling place on election day you may be entitled to vote early, either in person or via post. You must have a valid reason for voting early. Visit the AEC website for more information about voting early.
  • Overseas vote – If you are overseas on election day, you can vote in person at one of around 90 overseas voting centres or apply for a postal vote. Visit the AEC website for more information about overseas voting.
  • Mobile polling-place vote – People living in remote communities, at mine sites, or in prisons and selected hospitals and nursing homes, may be able to cast a vote when an AEC mobile polling booth visits them.
  • Postal vote – if you are entitled to vote early, you can apply for a postal vote on the AEC website. If you can’t apply online, hardcopy application forms are also available at all Australia Post and AEC offices.

There are special provisions available for electors who do not wish to attend a polling place on the day or have special requirements such as low-vision or blindness.

Remember, voting is compulsory if you are on the electoral roll. Voting more than once is a criminal offence.