Nearly 1.5 million in NC already cast ballots — here are tips for early voting

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RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — Nearly 1.5 million people in North Carolina have voted early in the upcoming election.

According to numbers released Sunday morning by the North Carolina State Board of Elections,  605,322 absentee ballots have been cast and 828,525 people voted in person.

“I knew it was important for me to get out and vote in-person myself to make sure it counts,” said Gareasia Holmes who voted on the first day of early, in-person voting in Garner.

The NCSBE says Day 1 of one-stop in-person voting set a single-day record for early voting and was roughly twice the number cast on the first day in 2016.

Some voters reported waiting several hours in line at polling places in Wake County.

“This is the longest I’ve ever really seen,” said Holmes.

Election officials say one way to avoid long lines is to take advantage of the ability to use any early polling site in a voter’s county. 

Voters must use their designated precinct on Election Day.

There are 20 early voting sites in Wake County.  The county offers an interactive early voting look up map, where voters can put in their current location and see which polling place is closest to them.

Wake County voters can also check online to get estimated wait times at early voting sites.

Durham County’s Board of Elections offers a similar tool, as well as estimated wait times at each of its 14 early voting sites.

Elections officials say some of the best times to avoid going to vote are lunchtime during the week, 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. on Saturdays and the last three days of the early voting period.

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