As part of every Canadian election, advance voting happens before the actual day of an election so that people who can't vote on election day can still have their say. But just how many Canadians voted in advance polls? This year, a record-breaking number of Canadians voted ahead of election day. 

The number of Canadians who went out early to cast their vote is something Elections Canada has never seen before. The estimated 4.7 million votes cast is a 29 percent increase from the last federal election in 2015 when just over 3.6 million Canadians voted in advance. 

"More and more, Canadians are taking advantage of early voting opportunities to cast their ballots," said Stéphane Perrault, the chief electoral officer for Elections Canada, in a news release.

Advance polls were open from October 11 to October 14 from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. and the last day to vote in advance was exactly one week before election day. The days advance polls were open also coincided with the Thanksgiving long weekend. 

Based on Elections Canada data, CTV News estimates during advance polling that 1.24 million ballots were cast on Friday, 977,000 on Saturday, 915,000 on Sunday, and 1.6 million on Thanksgiving Monday. 

As Canadians cast their ballot during advance polls, many chose to share the moment on Twitter. One person said they were "thankful for the opportunity to vote at the advance polls," and another said, "make sure your voice is heard in this very important election."

Perry Bellegarde, national chief of the Assembly of First Nations, former CFL player turned Conservative candidate Peter Dyakowski and Ontario MPP Rod Phillips were also among those who voted in advance polls. 

"Having extended voting hours at advance polls gave Canadians more flexibility to use this option. I want to thank returning officers for their careful planning and the thousands of election workers who made that possible," said Perrault. 

In the 2015 election, 17.7 million of the almost 26 million Canadians who were eligible to vote actually voted. With the number of people believed to have voted at advance polls, this election's voter turnout is already at 26.5 percent of the total voter turnout from the last election. 

If you're an eligible voter but didn't cast your ballot at advance polls, you can have your say on election day, October 21, 2019. 


There are stories everywhere. If you spot a newsworthy event in your city, send us a message, photo, or video @NarcityCanada on Twitter and Instagram.


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