ALLIANCES between Sunshine Coast Council mayoral candidates have been revealed and voting preferences will be exchanged almost on party lines.
Michael Bloyce and Warren Blee endorsed each other as number two on their how to vote cards while Mr Blee has also included Kim Edwards and Brett Winkler.
Ms Edwards has chosen to support Mr Winkler and Mr Blee.
Former Labor candidate Debbie Blumel and former Greens candidate Matthew Ryan-Sykes have positioned each other as number two on each other's how to vote cards.
Mark Jamieson is advocating a Vote 1 strategy, Mr Winkler is yet to announce his preferences, and Jim Hopkins has not decided.
Mr Blee said he believed it was important for candidates to exercise preferences.
"Otherwise you could have theoretically somebody getting the job if it were only the first past the post exercise, less than 20%, when you have eight candidates," he said.
Mr Bloyce said he believed many voters would take advantage of optional preferential voting.
"Given the great number of candidates this time, a lot of people will wish to cast preference votes and follow how to vote cards," he said.
He said voters still yet to make up their minds might also want to take guidance from how to vote cards.
Mr Bloyce said he and Mr Blee wanted a preference exchange on the conservative side of politics.
"The reality is, on the non conservatives, there are only a couple of candidates. Blumel is Labor and Ryan-Sykes is a Greenie candidate," he said.
"Unless there's a preferences deal on the conservatives, five or six splitting the vote, it's very hard to beat Cr Blumel. That's why we were keen to do a preference swap.
"I think that anyone who doesn't have preferences in place will find it hard to win outright. I don't see any single candidate getting over 30-35% to win outright."
Mr Winkler said optional preferential voting was important because of the number of candidates.
"I don't have any alliances as such, but I believe I have some general alignments with candidates," he said.
Mr Jamieson said he took the Vote 1 approach because "when they vote for me, they know what they're going to get".
"They won't end up with another person. I'm strongly advocating Vote 1, it's the basis of my campaign," he said.
"It supports my candidacy as a true independent. I'm not a member of any political party and never have been. I don't think we need party politics in local government."