Vote from Japan

Be sure to check back here for updates throughout the year!

2024 is sure to be another close election year for Democrats up and down the ticket. In just a few steps, make your voice heard from Japan:

  1.     Make sure you’re eligible to vote
  2.     Visit to 1) check your state’s voting requirements 2) complete the Federal Postcard Application, register to vote, AND 3) request your absentee ballot
  3.     Check the status of your absentee ballot request
  4.     Fill out and send in your absentee ballot
  5.     Confirm your absentee ballot arrived.

Details below.

Key dates

1) Make sure you’re eligible to vote.

You’re eligible to vote from Japan if: 
  • You are a U.S. citizen or binational Japanese/US citizen.
  • You will be 18 on Tuesday, November 5, 2024. 
  • Generally, U.S. citizens can vote in federal elections even if you weren’t born in the US or have never lived there.

2)  Visit

  • Check your state’s voting requirements
  • Complete the Federal Postcard Application (FPCA) click here
  •  Register to vote, AND
  • Request your absentee ballot for your
    • Home state primary
    • The Democrats Abroad Global Presidential Primary
    • Home state general election

To complete the FPCA click here the Start an FPCA button.

  • Complete the FPCA as accurately as possible, specifying the method you wish to receive your blank absentee ballot – email is recommended as you’ll receive it as soon as it is sent (check your state’s requirements here).
  • Submit your completed FPCA to the appropriate election officials (available from a dropdown list and based on your US voting address) via email, fax, or regular mail; most states allow emailing from (check your state’s requirements here).
  • Save contact info of your local election officials, generated upon completion of the FPCA.
  • Questions? Go to VFA’s FAQ section or email [email protected]

3) Check the status of your absentee ballot request ☑️  Vote From Abroad Screen Shot

  •  Email or call your local election officials to confirm its receipt and that they will be sending you a blank absentee ballot.
  • Use the contact info saved when you completed your FPCA, or look up their contact info here.
  • Watch for your blank absentee ballot

    • By law, states are required to start sending overseas absentee ballots 45 days before the election.
    • Check spam or junk folders if you chose to receive your ballot by email.
    • Check with your local election officials using the contact info you saved during the FPCA process (or check here) if you haven’t received your ballot when you think you should
    • Send in a new ballot request form if necessary, just go to
    • If you have to physically mail your ballot back and are concerned you won’t receive it in time to mail it back by your state’s deadline, send in a backup ballot, the Federal Write-in Absentee Ballot (FWAB) – go to to complete the FWAB online (you may need to print and submit, depending on your state). All details about the Backup Ballot can be found here.

    If you don't have your ballot 45 days before the Federal election and you must mail it back, we recommend you send in a Backup Ballot to make sure your vote gets to your state in time. All details about the Backup Ballot can be found here.

4) Fill out and send in your absentee ballot 🗳️

Fill out your absentee ballot

  •  Fill it out as completely as possible
  • For help deciding on candidates and ballot initiatives:
  • Your state or local Democratic Party website
  • League of Women Voters 
  • Ballotpedia 
  • Candidate’s campaign website
  • Note some elected positions – such as judges and school boards in some states – are non-partisan.

Return your completed ballot

  • Return via email (fastest), fax, online upload, or postal mail (least recommended) to the local election official specified on the ballot by the specified deadline; check ballot requirements for your state here.
  • If your state requires postal mail ballot return, use international Japan Post or EMS or other express mail service  and get a tracking number and postmark; allow for a few days for the ballot to arrive 
  • If posting your ballot, follow the exact package instructions. 

Although the US Embassy in Japan does forward completed ballots to local election officials in the United States, we do not recommend this service due to a lack of access to information and the extra time required.Express Service

5) Confirm your absentee ballot arrived 🗳️

    • Follow up with your local election official using the contact info you saved during the FPCA process (or check here) – don’t be afraid to be persistent.
  • Go  to VotefromAbroad here and scroll down the page and click Track Your Ballot.
Watch a video on how to use in English


Key links

We understand that the voting process can be confusing — that's why we're here to help. Send an email to [email protected].