Postal voting and stamp prices

By | March 18, 2024

Last week, I explained all about needing photo ID to vote, and how to get a free Voter Authority Certificate if you don’t currently have the right form of photo ID.

So this week, I’m going to explain how to apply for a postal vote – which is another alternative for if you don’t want to get photo ID, or you weren’t able to apply for the Voter Authority Certificate for any reason.

Postal voting is really useful for if you struggle to get out of the house much, or if you’re going to be away on the day of the election, or if you’d rather have it all organised in advance.  And I do mean in advance – you need to have applied for a postal voting pack a few weeks before the elections.

So that’s why I’m talking about it now, so that you can be ready for it when the time comes.  All you need to do is click on this link and choose the appropriate form, depending on whether you’re in England, Wales, or Scotland.  Or if you’re in Northern Ireland, there’s some different guidance here.

You need to download and print off the relevant form, fill it in – as forms go, it’s fairly simple. The first page is information, and the second has 5 boxes to fill in with your name and address, date of birth, and the dates you want the postal vote to cover.

Finally, sign the form, and then you need to send the form off to your local electoral registration office.  If you don’t know the address of your local electoral registration office – I certainly couldn’t tell you mine off the top of my head – you can find out here by searching for your postcode in the “Enter your postcode” box.

You’ll then receive a postal voter pack in the post, which has instructions on how to fill it in and send it off.  The only thing that it (and I) won’t tell you is who to vote for – that decision is entirely up to you.

Don’t get stamped on by the price increase

Speaking of sending things off, it looks like the price of stamps is going up again as of 2nd April. It’s going up by an extra 10p per stamp (both 1st and 2nd class) for standard size letters.

So sending a standard letter first class will cost you £1.35, or second class will cost you 85p – unless you happen to have stocked up on stamps before the price rise. It might be worth nipping to your local Post Office or supermarket and grabbing a few while they’re still available at the lower price.

And if you still have some of the older, non-barcode stamps (not including Christmas stamps or special picture stamps), you can’t use those any more. But you can swap them out for the newer, barcoded stamps at no extra cost by following the instructions here.

There’s currently no deadline for when you need to do this by, but since we’re already past the initial 6 month grace period, I’d suggest getting it done sooner rather than later!

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