NZ Election 2020: More overseas New Zealanders voting early in this election

More than 22,000 Kiwis overseas have already voted in this year's general election, and early voting numbers are higher than ever before.

Over 72,000 Kiwis living abroad enrolled to vote in the October 17 election and 22,000 have already voted, according to Sunday's figures.

The number of people who have already voted is up 61 percent compared to the same time in 2017.

Voting started on October 3, and since then, already a third of New Zealand voters have already cast their ballot.

The Every Kiwi Vote Counts campaign was launched in September to encourage Kiwis overseas to participate in the general election.

Campaign founder and former expat Tracey Lee says this is important as COVID-19 has prompted many people to consider moving back home.

"There's lots of people looking home in a way, much more viscerally and more urgently than in the past, we've got a whole lot of people coming back in return."

Kiwi couple Charlie and Emily living in London says COVID-19 has given them plenty of time to think about what they want for the country.

"Kiwis particularly want to have a say about when they move back to New Zealand, or the state of New Zealand," Charlie told Newshub.

"In such a time of uncertainty, it's really nice to have something that's within your control," Emily said.

"So you voting, is you pitching towards something you would like to have a say towards."

Only 40,132 Kiwis living overseas cast their votes in 2014.

The number of voters - 61,524 - rose in 2017.

This year, 72,759 from overseas enrolled to vote.

In New Zealand, more than 1,150,000 have already cast their ballots compared to 1.2 million in 2017 and 702,137 in 2014.