Early voters have been at the polls for three days in Ada and Canyon counties, and the chance to cast an early ballot continues for the next two weeks.  If you're an early voter like me, maybe you've developed a strategy and have a few helpful tips, like these.

Maybe there's a bit more energy and buzz at the polls on the actual election day (especially if it's a Presidential election) because the campaigns have rested their cases and the results are near.  But voting early sure is convenient.

Three Reasons Why Early Voting is a Good Idea

1.  Lines are shorter.  Usually.  If you can make it to a polling location in the middle of the morning or early to mid-afternoon and it's not the final day of early voting, the process probably won't take longer than 15 minutes. At least that's been my experience.  If you go right when the polls open for the day, or at lunchtime, or when they're about to close, it can take longer.  But overall, early voting spreads out the crowds over two weeks time instead of inviting everyone out on the same day, and that shortens lines and saves you time.

2.  Locations are convenient.  The mobile voting trailer is traveling around to several different locations this week and next, and it might end up just down the street from your office at some point.  They're bringing the ballots to us, and that makes it hard to say no.  The mobile trailer is at the Eagle Library, 660 E. Civic Lane today (October 17), and it will be at the Star Library, 10706 W. State Street tomorrow (October 18).  The Idaho Statesman has other locations for the mobile voting trailer.

3.  It's done!  On election day you can kick back and listen to everyone else complain about long lines, and wonder if they'll have time to vote because this came up and that.  Your duty is done, and as long as you're confident with your vote and there was no chance of changing your mind, you can high five yourself for getting out there and sharing your opinion with the masses.  Then put up your feet on election night and watch the results roll in, and see if everyone agreed with you.

Voting is important and we should do it even if it's not super easy.  But if we can cast a ballot and still have time to get to the grocery store before heading back to work, it makes the process a little more rewarding.

In Ada County, early voting runs through Friday, Nov. 2, and it includes the next two Saturdays. In addition to the mobile trailer, you can vote at these locations:

Ada County elections office, 400 N. Benjamin Lane in Boise

Boise City Hall, 150 N. Capitol Blvd.

Meridian City Hall, 33 E. Broadway Ave.

See ya at the polls.