Message for U.S. Citizens: Voting in the 2016 Elections


Your vote counts!  Did you know that many U.S. elections for members of the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate have been decided by a margin smaller than the number of ballots cast by absentee voters? All states are required to count every absentee ballot as long as it is valid and reaches local election officials by the absentee ballot receipt deadline.

Follow a few simple steps to make sure that you can vote in the 2016 U.S. elections:

  1. Request Your Ballot:  Complete a new Federal Post Card Application (FPCA).   You must complete a new FPCA after January 1, 2016 to ensure you receive your ballot for the 2016 elections.  The completion of the FPCA allows you to request absentee ballots for all elections for federal offices (President, U.S. Senate, and U.S. House of Representatives) including primaries and special elections during the calendar year in which it is submitted. The FPCA is accepted by all local election officials in all U.S. states and territories.You can complete the FPCA online at  The online voting assistant will ask you questions specific to your state.   We encourage you to ask your local election officials to deliver your blank ballots to you electronically (by email, internet download, or fax, depending on your state).  Include your email address on your FPCA to take advantage of the electronic ballot delivery option.  Return the FPCA per the instructions on the website. will tell you if your state allows the FPCA to be returned electronically or if you must submit a paper copy with original signature.  If you must return a paper version, please see below for mailing options.
  2. Receive and Complete Your Ballot:   States are required to send out ballots 45 days before a regular election for federal office and states generally send out ballots at least 30 days before primary elections.  For most states, you can confirm your registration and ballot delivery online.
  3. Return Your Completed Ballot:  Some states allow you to return your completed ballot electronically and others do not.  If your state requires you to return paper voting forms or ballots to local election officials, you can do so free of charge at the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.  Place your ballots in postage paid return envelopes or in envelopes bearing sufficient domestic U.S. postage, and address them to the relevant local election officials.Jakarta:  Correctly addressed and labeled envelopes containing absentee ballots or registration materials can be dropped off by U.S. citizens without an appointment between 12:30 and 2:30 pm, Monday through Friday. Envelopes will be mailed to the United States via the Diplomatic Post Office (DPO) one business day after receipt by the U.S. Embassy. Please allow up to two weeks for delivery to the United States.If it’s more convenient for you, you can also return your FPCA or ballot to your local election officials via international mail or professional courier service at your own expense.If your absentee ballot requires notarization, or if you need assistance with other voting issues, please make an appointment under notarial and other services by visiting

    Surabaya: You may submit forms and ballots directly to the Surabaya consular section.  Please request an appointment by sending an email to Mail sent through the Diplomatic Pouch from Surabaya is delivered to the United States through the U.S. Embassy in Jakarta.

    Bali: You may submit forms and ballots directly to the Bali Consular Agency.  Please request an appointment by sending an email to  Mail from the Consular Agency will be sent weekly to the U.S. Consulate in Surabaya.

Researching the Candidates and Issues:  Online Resources.  Check out the FVAP links page for helpful resources that will aid your research of candidates and issues.  Non-partisan information about candidates, their voting records, and their positions on issues are widely available and easy to obtain on-line.  You can also read national and hometown newspapers on-line, or search the internet to locate articles and information.  For information about election dates and deadlines, subscribe to FVAP’s Voting Alerts (  FVAP also shares Voting Alerts via Facebook and Twitter.

Learn more at the Federal Voting Assistance Program’s (FVAP) website, FVAP.govIf you have any questions about registering to vote overseas, please contact Jakarta’s Voting Assistance Officer at +62 21 3435 9055, or at or Surabaya’s Voting Assistance Officer at + 62 31 297 5300, or at

Remember, your vote counts!

For information about travelling and living in Indonesia:

  • See the State Department’s travel website for the Worldwide Caution, Travel Warnings, Travel Alerts, and Indonesia Country Specific Information.
  • Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive security messages and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
  • Contact the U.S. Consulate General in Surabaya, located at Jl. Citra Raya Niaga No. 2, Surabaya, at +62 31-297-5300, 07:30 a.m. to 04:00 p.m. Monday through Friday.  The after-hours emergency number for U.S. citizens is +62 81-133-4183.
    • The American Citizen Services Unit of the Consulate General can also be reached by e-mail at
  • Contact the U.S. Embassy in Indonesia, located at 5 Jalan Medan Merdeka Selatan, Jakarta,at +62-21 3435-9055/9054, 07:30 a.m. to 04:00 p.m. Monday through Friday.  The after-hours emergency number for U.S. citizens is +62-21 3435 9000, then press 0 for the operator. The American Citizen Services Unit of the Embassy can also be reached by e-mail at

Call 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the United States and Canada or 1-202-501-4444 from other countries from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, Monday through Friday.  The U.S. Embassy and the U.S. Consular General will be closed for the following holidays:

  • February 8 (Chinese New Year)
  • February 15 (Washington’s birthday)
  • March 9 (Balinese Hindu’s New Year/Silent Day)
  • March 25 (Good Friday)
  • May 5 (Ascension of Christ)
  • May 6 (Ascension of Prophet Muhammad)
  • May 30 (Memorial Day)
  • July 4 ( US Independence Day)
  • July 6 & 7 (Idul Fitri)
  • August 17 (Indonesian Independence Day)
  • September 5 (Labor Day)
  • September 12 (Idul Adha)
  • October 10 (Columbus Day)
  • November 11 (Veterans Day)
  • November 24 (Thanksgiving Day)
  • December 12 (Prophet Muhammad’s Birthday)
  • December 26 (Substitution day for Christmas Day, Sunday, Dec. 25.)