European elections: your chance to have your say 

The European elections  give you the chance to use your vote and help decide on the direction Europe will be taking.

By voting in the EU elections, you exercise your democratic right to take part in decisions on Europe’s future, but you also give the Parliament the legitimacy it needs to perform its duties.

Why the European elections matter

The European elections are about selecting who you want to defend your interests in the EU. Not only can MEPs shape and decide on new legislation, they also vote on new trade agreements, scrutinise the EU institutions and how your tax money is spent, as well as launch investigations into specific issues. Find out information about the MEPs that are representing your country at the moment.

The elections take place every five years and are the largest transnational elections in the world. Following the elections, Parliament votes to elect the new head of the European Commission, which is EU’s executive body, and to approve the full team of commissioners.

The latest elections took place in June 2024 - find out the election results.

Parliament ran a non-partisan information campaign urging people to vote in the elections. Citizens also took part via the community, a European Parliament initiative bringing together people who want to promote active participation to democracy in Europe.

Sign up here to join the community!

How voting works

Although there are some common rules regarding the elections, some aspects can vary by country, such as whether it is possible to vote by mail or from abroad.

Election days can also be different. The elections normally start on a Thursday (the day on which the Netherlands usually votes) and finish on a Sunday (when most countries hold their elections).

The number of members elected in each country depends on the size of the population, with smaller countries getting more seats than strict proportionality would imply. Currently, the number of MEPs ranges from six for Malta, Luxembourg and Cyprus to 96 for Germany.

Elections are contested by national political parties but once MEPs are elected, most opt to become part of transnational political groups. Most national parties are affiliated to a European-wide political party.

Check out the European elections website to get more information about how the elections work.