All you need to know about voting in the Eighth Amendment referendum

Polls open from 7.00am on Friday morning

All you need to know about voting in the Eighth Amendment referendum

A woman walks by a polling station in Dublin in 2014 | Image: Mark Stedman/

As we come into the final day of campaigning before a broadcast moratorium on the Eighth Amendment referendum, there is one issue all sides can agree on.

They are both stressing how important it is to vote on Friday.

Here is what you need to know:

What exactly are we voting on again?

You'll be asked a YES/NO question when you get to the polling station.

If you want to repeal the Eighth Amendment and give the Oireachtas the power to legislate for abortion put an 'X' in the YES box.

If you want to retain the Eighth Amendment in full as it is now put an 'X' in the NO box.

The only question you're being asked is whether to change the Constitution to allow a change in the law on abortion.

How that is done will be decided by the Oireachtas if there is a YES vote. If the NO side wins things will stay as they are now.

When can I vote?

Polling booths will be open from 7.00am on Friday morning and will close at 10.00pm on Friday evening.

Do I need my polling card?

You should bring your polling card with you. But if you can't find it you can still vote as long as you're on the register of electors and bring a valid ID.

A passport, drivers licence, student card, Public Services Card, or an employee identity card with a photograph will be accepted as ID.

How do I know if I'm on the register of electors?

You can search to see at

If you've just registered or have changed address you will now be on the supplementary register.

Once you're on the register you can vote even without your polling card.

How do I find my local polling station?

It will be written on your polling card. Alternatively contact your local council and they'll give you a steer.

What can I wear?

It's probably best to leave your 'Repeal' or 'Save the 8th' jumpers and badges at home.

Canvassing isn't allowed within 50 metres of a polling station and is classed as an offence.

It's up to each individual returning officer to decide what's allowed and what isn't.

So while some may be fine with jumpers and badges others may ask you to remove them.

It's easier for everyone if you leave anything branded in the car or at home.

Can I take a selfie?

No. All photography and videography is banned in the polling stations.

It's a rule aimed at respecting the secrecy of the ballot box and the people who are in the centre with you.

So keep your phone in your pocket, the Instagram 'Likes' aren't worth it.

What about marking the card itself?

You'd be best not to channel your inner artist or write 'Love Both' on the ballot itself.

This would mean your vote will be seen as spoiled and won't count.

Just mark an 'X' in the box next to how you want to vote and nothing else.

If you make a mistake don't put your paper in the ballot box and immediately ask the attendant for another ballot.

They'll give you one if they think it's an honest mistake.

This is what your ballot paper will look like | Image: Referendum Commission

When will we know the result?

It's hard to say for sure.

Usually there's a clear idea of what side has won by early afternoon with the formal result announced somewhere between 3.00pm and 5.00pm.

But if it's close, it could be longer.

With reporting by Jack Quann