HORRY COUNTY, S.C. (WBTW) — Early voting begins Monday in South Carolina, and Horry County election officials said they are prepared for the busy days ahead. 

Early voting is relatively new in South Carolina. This will be the second election it is used in, and although officials have been preparing, they are ready to be flexible. 

“If there’s gonna be any hiccups, it’s gonna be the first day,” said Sandy Martin, registration and elections director for Horry County. “We don’t anticipate any because we did it for the primary, and we didn’t have any issues. So we’re hoping that it’ll go really smoothly.”

She said early voting is not any different than voting on Election Day. 

“It’ll be just like Election Day,” Martin said. “Voters will go in, they’ll show their photo ID,  they’ll be allowed to vote on a voting machine, they’ll scan their ballot, and they’ll be finished.” 

Even though casting an early vote will be the same as voting on Nov. 8, Martin encourages everyone to take advantage of early voting. 

“You don’t ever know what’s gonna happen before an election day,” Martin said. “If you go ahead and get it done, then, if something comes up, you won’t have to worry about it. You’ll already be voted.”

She said Horry County is expecting to see the polls busy on the first day. 

“I don’t think it’ll be overwhelming, but I think we’ll have a good turnout,” Martin said. “We’ve got 12 days, so I don’t think everybody’s gonna show up on the first. If it were a presidential election I might say, yeah, it might be overwhelming, but, I think we’ll have a steady day.”

It does not take anything extra to early vote, and it can be done at any polling location. 

“If you just show up, anybody can early vote,” Martin said. “We actually have seven locations and it doesn’t matter where you live, you can vote at any of the seven. So if you live in Conway, but you work at the beach, then you could go to the site at Myrtle Beach and vote.”

She said she hopes voters take advantage of this new opportunity to have their voices heard. 

“If you know who you’re gonna vote for, go ahead and go out and vote,” Martin said. “Then, you won’t have to fight the lines on Election Day.”