- The annual Henley Passport Index has just been released.
- It ranks all the passports in the world according to the number of countries their holders can travel to visa-free.
- The ranking named Germany as the country with the most powerful passport in the world for the fifth year in a row.
- Last October a separate ranking put Singapore at the top of the list, but Germany has since reclaimed the top spot on this list also.
Germany is officially the country with the most powerful passport in the world, according to the 2018 Henley Passport Index.
It’s the fifth year in a row that the European country has topped Henley’s list, which takes into account the number of countries a passport holder can visit without a visa.
The ranking is based on data from the International Air Transport Association (IATA), which maintains the world’s largest and most comprehensive database of travel information.
German citizens can now visit 177 countries, up one from 2017, according to the report.
In October 2017, a separate list, the Global Passport Power Rank produced by advisory firm Arton Capital, named Singapore as the most powerful passport in the world. However, Germany has since reclaimed the top spot in this ranking also, meaning its passport truly is the most valuable.
Here are world’s top 15 most powerful passports, and the number of countries their holders can visit visa-free:
1. Germany 177
2. Singapore 176
3. Denmark, Finland, France, Italy, Japan, Norway, Sweden, UK 175
4. Austria, Belgium, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland 174
5. Ireland, South Korea, Portugal, US 173
6. Canada 172
7. Australia, Greece, New Zealand 171
8. Czech Republic, Iceland 170
9. Malta 169
10. Hungary 168
11. Liechtenstein, Slovakia, Slovenia 167
12. Latvia, Lithuania, Malaysia 166
13. Estonia 165
14. Poland 163
15. Monaco 162
Ukraine (44th) and Georgia (53rd) were the biggest climbers on this year’s list, moving up by 15 and 14 ranks respectively, following their recent visa liberalisation with the EU.
Pakistan, Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan remain at the bottom of the index for the second year in a row, each able to access 30 or fewer countries visa-free.
Dr. Christian H. Kälin, group chairman of Henley & Partners, thinks that the need for visa-free access is greater than ever.
“Across the economic spectrum, individuals want to transcend the constraints imposed on them by their country of origin and access business, financial, career, and lifestyle opportunities on a global scale,” he said. “The Henley Passport Index shows individuals where they lie on the spectrum of global mobility, revealing the strength that their passport has in relation to other passports.”