Last chance to apply for free voter ID

Last chance to apply for free voter ID

There is just one day left to apply for a free Voter Authority Certificate, for voters who do not have another accepted form of photo ID they can use in a polling station. The Electoral Commission is calling on anyone who needs the free ID for the upcoming local elections to apply now, before the deadline of 5pm on Wednesday 24 April. 

Over 38,000 people have already applied for a Voter Authority Certificate ahead of the elections on 2 May, where photo ID will be required at polling stations in England and Wales. 

Commission research shows that people who are unemployed, people with disabilities, and people from lower socio-economic backgrounds are least likely to have an accepted form of ID, and should therefore apply for the free voter ID.

Craig Westwood, Director of Communication, Policy and Research at the Electoral Commission, said:

“The deadline to apply for the free voter ID is fast approaching and anyone that needs it should get their application in as soon as they can. The free ID helps ensure that everyone is able to take part in the May elections, even if they don’t currently have an accepted form of photo ID.

“The process of applying doesn’t take long and there is information and support available from the Electoral Commission and your local authority. And if you have friends or family who don’t have an accepted form of photo ID, please spread the word.”

Applications for the free ID can be submitted online at, or by completing a paper form and sending this to the local council’s electoral services team. Voters will need to provide a photo, their full name, date of birth, the address at which they are registered to vote and their National Insurance number. Applicants must already be registered to vote before applying.

Voters with questions about applying for the free ID should contact their local authority. Contact details – and more information about the ID requirements – can be found on the Electoral Commission website


For more information contact the Electoral Commission press office on 020 7271 0704, out of office hours 07789 920 414 or

Notes to editors

  • Accepted forms of photo ID include a UK, European Economic Area (EEA) or Commonwealth passport; UK or EEA drivers’ licence; and some concessionary travel passes, such as an UK Government funded older person’s bus pass or an Oyster 60+ card. Voters can use expired ID if they are still recognisable from the photo.
  • Research into voters least likely to have a form of accepted ID was carried out by YouGov on behalf of the Electoral Commission. Data is for a representative sample of eligible voters in the UK. The total sample size was 1,881. Fieldwork was carried out online between 23 January – 13 February 2023.
  • The Electoral Commission is the independent body which oversees elections and regulates political finance in the UK. We work to promote public confidence in the democratic process and ensure its integrity by:
        o    enabling the delivery of free and fair elections and referendums, focusing on the needs of electors and addressing the changing environment to ensure every vote remains secure and accessible
        o    regulating political finance – taking proactive steps to increase transparency, ensure compliance and pursue breaches
        o    using our expertise to make and advocate for changes to our democracy, aiming to improve fairness, transparency and efficiency
  • The Commission was set up in 2000 and reports to the UK, Scottish and Welsh parliaments.