How to Vote
Choose your Preferred Voting Option
Once a writ of election is issued, the 28-day election period commences. Electors can choose when and where to vote from several different options. For example, while the majority of electors vote in person on Election Day or at the advance polls, there are opportunities on all 28-days of the election calendar for electors to vote.
During an election, more information will be provided about your closest locations and alternative options on your Where to Vote card or on our Where to Vote website.
Voting In Person
There are four in person voting options available to voters during the election period:
1) Election Day
On Election Day, every elector is assigned a polling location based on their place of ordinary residence. Electors may only vote at their assigned polling location.
Polls are open from 9:00 am to 8:00 pm.
Election Day polls are usually established in schools, churches, community halls, and other public buildings to provide electors with a voting location that is close to where they live.
Electors that are unable to vote on Election Day should consider voting at the advance polls, voting at the returning office, or voting by mail.
2) Advance Poll
Advance polls take place the week before Election Day. They generally run Tuesday through Saturday, between 9:00 am and 8:00 pm. While days and hours of operation may vary for some locations, every electoral division will have at least one location open for the full voting period.
Most advance poll locations also offer Vote Anywhere service to electors. This allows electors to vote from any advance poll location, for their local candidates.
Advance polls are often established in malls, community centres, libraries, work camps, universities, and other public buildings to provide electors with locations that are convenient to where they live, work, shop or travel.
Voting in advance is the preferred option for electors that cannot attend a poll on Election Day. Students, persons working away, and those travelling in Alberta can vote at any polling location that offers “Vote Anywhere” service. Otherwise, electors should choose to vote by mail.
3) Vote at the Returning Office
If you are unable to vote on Election Day or at the advance polls, you may vote at the returning office for your electoral division. This option is available once the writ is issued, for the entire 28-day election period. Returning offices are open from 9:00 am – 6:00 pm weekdays, and from 10:00 am – 4:00 pm on Saturday. Offices are closed on Sunday.
Note: The locations of the returning offices are not established until the election is called.
4) Mobile Poll
Some facilities are eligible to receive a mobile polling station on Election Day or during advance polling days. Eligible facilities include:
- Treatment Centres, such as hospitals and facilities providing care under the Mental Health Act;
- Supportive Living Facilities, such as lodges, and facilities providing assisted living and accommodation;
- Long-term Care Facilities;
- Emergency Shelters providing short-term housing for individuals experiencing homelessness or escaping domestic violence; and
- Community Support Centres providing services to people experiencing poverty or homelessness.
Facilities must have at least 10 electors that are resident or receiving services at the facility to be eligible for a poll. The date and hours of operation of the poll are established in consultation with the facility operator, considering the number of electors that reside or receive services at the facility.
Only residents and those receiving services at the facility may vote at a mobile poll. Identification is not required, but the facility representative must confirm that the individual resides or receives services at the facility. Staff and family members are not eligible to vote at a mobile poll.
Mobile poll voting provides electors that are unable to access a poll or provide identification with a voting opportunity within the facility that they reside or receive services.
Voting By Mail
Electors that are unable to vote at the Advance Polls or on Election Day because they are:
- physically incapacitated,
- away from their electoral division,
- an inmate,
- an election officer, candidate, official agent or scrutineer, or
- living in a remote area, as defined in the Election Act
Electors planning to vote by mail are encouraged to request their package early. Special ballot packages can only be sent out once the writ is issued and must be received back at the returning office prior to the close of polls on Election Day. This provides just 28 days to send, complete, and return the package.
Find your closest polling location here.