Voting in Germany

If you are an EU citizen living in Germany, you are allowed to vote there. This is actually an EU wide arrangement but not every country honours the rule. The main exception is Belgium.

Germany does not just honour the rule, it goes out of its way to encourage eligible foreigners to register to vote.

You are allowed to vote in local elections and in elections to the European Parliament. In the latter case, you are not allowed to vote in more than one country.

After you register your residence in Germany, you should receive a letter inviting you to go to the "Wahlamt" to register to vote. This office opens on most weekdays and all that you need to do is to go along, show some ID, fill out the simple forms and that's it. When I did this, they had forms in English. You will then receive the voting papers for those elections in which you are entitled to vote.

In Ulm, I was able to vote in local elections, European Parlaiment elections and in a local referrendum on the subject of busses versus trams. Some of the voting papers were complex but I was also sent guidance notes in English from the city offices.

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