If you want to have a say in the 2019 Miss Universe pageant, now is your chance… but don’t wait too long, because online voting closes before the pageant starts on Sunday (Dec. 8). And online is the only way you can vote because live voting during the pageant isn’t being used this year.
Up until midnight ET Friday (Dec. 6), fans can go online and vote for their favorite contestant to make it into the Top 20. Each voter may vote once for free at vote.missuniverse.com or telemundo.com/shows/miss-universo, then you may cast additional votes by purchasing voting packs. Votes may be bought for €0.33 apiece (that’s approximately 36 cents U.S.) in packs of 3, 15, 30, 60, 150 or 300. Once voting closes Friday night, any votes received outside the voting period will not be counted.
But that is not the only competition fans can vote on. Beginning at 12:01 a.m. ET on Saturday (Dec. 7), just one minute after voting closes for the Top 20 vote, fans can vote on the National Costume competition until 9 p.m. ET that night. The same rules apply to one free vote, purchasing any subsequent votes, and no votes being counted outside of the voting period.
These votes are sizable — they don’t make up some kind of tiny fraction of the overall vote. The one contestant receiving the most Top 20 votes will automatically be placed in the Top 20. Fans will also choose the Best National Costume outright.
As for live voting during the pageant, that isn’t something the Miss Universe organization chose to use this year. It was something they tried previously, in 2017, when they let viewers vote online, via Twitter, and via the Miss Universe and Vodi apps. That year, the organization estimated that over 100 million votes were cast during the show.
The 2019 Miss Universe pageant is being held in Atlanta this year, with the preliminary competitions (evening gown and swimwear) happening Friday evening. Over 90 countries are competing, with Bangladesh and Equitorial Guinea making their debuts in the Miss Universe pageant. This year also marks the return of Lithuania, Romania, Sierra Leone, and Tanzania; Lithuania has not competed since 2014, Sierra Leone has not competed since 2016, and the others have not competed since 2017.
Prior to the competition, Ghana, Greece, Guatemala, Hungary, Kyrgyzstan, Lebanon, Russia, Sri Lanka, Switzerland and Zambia all withdrew from the competition for various reasons.
Steve Harvey is returning to host the pageant; the talk show host famously said the wrong name when he announced the winner in 2015, crowning Miss Colombia Adriana Gutierrez, who was actually the first runner-up, instead of Miss Philippines Pia Wurtzbach. Harvey eventually realized his mistake and had to apologize and fix the error live on television.
The debacle didn’t stop the Miss Universe organization from asking Harvey back, however. This year is his fifth consecutive year hosting. In 2019, he’ll be joined by Vanessa Lachey and Olivia Culpo to help with backstage interviews, plus Fifth Harmony’s Ally Brooke is performing.
The 2019 Miss Universe pageant airs live Sunday (Dec. 8) at 7 p.m. ET/PT on FOX.