Having valid passports is crucial for every traveler, but having a powerful valid passport is even better. Going through visa procedures and travel limitations can be very frustrating and add stress to any travel plan.
But how powerful is your passport? Henley & Partners, an international agency specializing in residence and citizenships, recently published its annual ranking of the most powerful passports in the world.
A group of experts from the company considered data from the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and its own historic data —gathered during the last 17 years— and most recent mobility reports to get the most accurate information available at the moment.
The index includes 199 different passports that were compared to 227 destinations across the world and the most powerful are the ones with fewer visa requirements.
Useful information for travelers, especially for US citizens with dual nationalities currently waiting for months to renew their passports. Here’s a summary of the results:
The 10 most powerful passports in 2022
Travelers holding passports within this list are the luckiest and can travel to more destinations than the majority of the countries listed.
- Japan: The World’s most powerful passport can access 193 without a visa.
- Singapore and South Korea: Can access 192 countries without a visa.
- Germany and Spain: Can access 190 countries without a visa.
- Finland, Italy, and Luxemburg: Can access 189 countries without a visa.
- Austria, Denmark, Netherlands, Sweden: 188 countries.
- France, Ireland, Portugal, and the United Kingdom: 187 countries.
- Belgium, New Zealand, Norway, Switzerland, and the United States: 186 countries.
- Australia, Canada, Czech Republic, Greece, and Malta: 185 countries.
- Hungary: 183 countries.
- Lithuania, Poland, and Slovakia: 182 countries.
Asian and European countries take the lead on the best passports to hold in 2022. Other popular citizenships among residents in the United States were also featured in the global ranking: Mexico ranked 24 with access to 159 countries, China ranked 69 with access to 80 countries and India ranked 87 with access to 60 countries.
Compared to Japan, the US passport needs a visa to visit more countries. Destinations like Bolivia, China, India, Iran, Japan, Tukey, and Venezuela require visas for Americans but not to Japanese citizens.
The Worst Passports 2022
Travelers with unique citizenships in other nationalities with the worst international relationships are not that lucky.
- Afghanistan: ranked last place, 112, and can only access 27 destinations without a visa.
- Iraq: ranked 111 and can access 29 destinations without a visa.
- Syria: ranked 110 and can access 30 destinations without a visa.
- Pakistan: ranked 109 and can access 32 destinations without a visa.
- Yemen: ranked 108 and can access 34 destinations without a visa.
- Somalia: ranked 107 and can access 35 destinations without a visa.
- Nepal and Palestinian territory: ranked 106 and can access 38 destinations without a visa.
- North Korea: ranked 105 and can access 40 destinations without a visa.
- Libya, Kosovo, and Bangladesh: ranked 104 and can access 41 destinations without a visa.
- Sudan: ranked 110 and can access 30 destinations without a visa.
Arab countries and from the Middle East were featured as the most unfavorable citizenships to travel the world.
More About The Index
Another interesting feature of the reporting platform is an interactive option called “Compare my passport” that allows travelers to compare different passports —up to four— and also see in more detail which countries require or not visas and what kind of visa, if a regular visa or just an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA).
Regarding the criteria, in order to publish the Henley Passport Index, experts go through a research process and analyze data throughout the year with mechanisms to detect policy shifts.
They also used a scoring system depending on the visa requirement: destinations that don’t require a visa or when the visa can be obtained upon arrival or with an eTA —when no government approval is required before travel— got 1 point, and destinations that required a visa or an e-Visa got 0 points.
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Disclaimer: Current travel rules and restrictions can change without notice. The decision to travel is ultimately your responsibility. Contact your consulate and/or local authorities to confirm your nationality’s entry and/or any changes to travel requirements before traveling. Travel Off Path does not endorse traveling against government advisories