Local and EP elections Hungary 2024 – Can you vote?

مارس 13, 2024

If you live in Hungary, there is a chance you can vote in the upcoming municipal and EP elections even if you are not a Hungarian citizen. If you have a Hungarian address card, you might already be registered. Vote and make an impact on your community.

Next elections on 9 June 2024, Sunday

At the upcoming elections, two events will be combined: the local or “municipal” elections to choose the next mayor and other local representatives, and elections for the European Parliament.

In the EP elections, EU citizens can vote for a party to represent them in the European Parliament. If you are an EU citizen living in Hungary, you can decide if you want to vote for the Hungarian list or the list of your country of nationality.

At the municipal elections, everyone with a local address card can vote for the mayor and the representatives at the local municipality, which is basically the town council where you live. If you live in Budapest, this means the mayor of Budapest, the mayor of your district, and a representative in the district council. If you live in the countryside, this means the local mayor, a representative at the local council, and a representative at the county council.

Members of acknowledged ethnic minorities can also vote for their own representatives in the local council. You can register for this if you are Armenian, Bulgarian, Croatian, German, Greek, Polish, Romani, Romanian, Rusyn, Serbian, Slovak, Slovenian, or Ukrainian.

Who can vote?

Citizens of the European Union can vote in both the municipal elections and the EP elections, while third-country nationals can only vote in the municipal elections. Whichever group you belong to, you can do this only if you have a permanent address in Hungary, which means you also have a plastic address card (so not the accommodation slip with the QR code).

You can probably vote if you have one of the following documents:

  • EU registration card
  • Residency card issued to a family member of an EU citizen
  • National permanent residence permit
  • Permanent residence card
  • National residence card
  • EU residence card
  • Interim residence card

Voter registration in Hungary

You can only vote if you are registered as a voter by the 25th day before the elections, so by 15 May 2024. In the local elections, voter registration is automatic, so if you have an address card, you are already a registered voter at your local municipality.

If you are in the voter registry by 3 April 2024, you should receive a letter in the mail by 19 April 2024 about the upcoming elections and all the relevant data, including where to vote and which documents you need. If you do not receive such a letter, you can check if you are registered (and get registered) at your local government office. You can learn more about checking your registration here or getting registered here.

If you are an EU citizen, you should decide whether you want to vote for the Hungarian list or the list of your country of nationality, and take care of your registration for the EP elections accordingly.

  • If you want to vote for the Hungarian list, you must register to vote by 24 May 2024. Learn more here.
  • If you want to vote according to your country of nationality, you should deregister in Hungary by 30 May 2024, and contact your embassy or consulate to learn how to proceed as soon as possible.

How to vote in the upcoming elections?

The letter you should receive mid-April will contain all the information you need about the logistics of the upcoming elections:

  • The date: 9 June 2024, Sunday
  • The time: it is normally 6 a.m. to 7 p.m.
  • The address where you can vote (it is usually a school close to your address)
  • Your electoral district
  • The ID documents accepted

When going to cast your vote, make sure you have the right ID documents on you, otherwise you will not be allowed to vote.

  • Your ID or passport
  • Your residency document
  • Your address card

At the venue of the vote, find the room relevant to your electoral district. The district number will be indicated in the letter you received, but electoral districts are defined based on your address, so you can find the right room even if you do not have the letter with you.

In the room, there is a committee in charge of the process, a booth to cast your vote in privacy, and a sealed ballot box to collect the ballots.

  • Present your documents to the person in charge
  • Receive an envelope and the ballots (the papers on which you can cast your vote)
  • Sign a sheet indicating that you have received these items
  • Move to the booth and close the curtain
  • Mark your one preferred candidate with an X or a + in the circle on each ballot
  • Put the ballots in the envelope and close the envelope
  • Put the envelope in the ballot box

Voting is anonymous. Even though you show your ID and sign for the receipt of the ballots, the ballots themselves are identical and cannot be traced back to you.

Exercise your rights in Hungary

Voting is not mandatory in Hungary, but it is a great opportunity to express your wishes for your community and exercise your rights. Elections are always held on Sundays to let as many people attend as possible. If you cannot go, you have alternative options, like asking for a more accessible venue, a mobile ballot box, or voting by mail.

Take this opportunity to have an impact on your community

Helpers provides administrative assistance to foreigners living, working, and doing business in Hungary. Our services include residency application as well as business registration, and we would be happy to help you with every step on the way.

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