World’s Most Powerful Passports, US Ranks 6th
Henley & Partners regularly monitors the world’s most travel-friendly passports. It also publishes its Henley Passport Index since 2006, based on exclusive data provided by the International Air Transport Association (IATA).
There’s very little change at the at the top of the list of countries with the most powerful passports. But the latest report shows the effect of the Russian invasion which has impacted the Russian and Ukrainian passports.
The European Union, United States and Canada have all banned Russian operators from their airspace, while some destinations are no longer issuing visas to Russian citizens, “effectively condemning the Russian passport to junk status throughout much of the developed world,” the report by Henley & Partners says.
The Henley Passport Index compares the visa-free access of 199 different passports to 227 travel destinations. If no visa is required, then a score with value = 1 is created for that passport. The same applies if you can obtain a visa on arrival, a visitor’s permit, or an electronic travel authority (ETA) when entering the destination.
Where a visa is required, or where a passport holder has to obtain a government-approved electronic visa (e-Visa) before departure, a score with value = 0 is assigned. This also applies if you need pre-departure government approval for a visa on arrival.
The total score for each passport is equal to the number of destinations for which no visa is required (value = 1).
In the list for the second quarter of 2022, Ukraine has moved up one place and is now ranked 34th on the index and its nationals can now travel to 143 destinations visa-free (or visa-on-arrival).
Russia has dropped four places to 49th, with open travel to 117 countries. Its ranking is position expected to worsen as more visa suspensions and sanctions are formalized.
Looking at the top of the list, Japan and Singapore remain the best passports available, tied for the number one spot. Holders of these passports are able to travel to 192 destinations visa-free (excluding temporary restrictions).
South Korea is still tied alongside Germany in second place, with a score of 190, and Finland, Italy, Luxembourg and Spain are all together in third place, with a score of 189. Austria, Denmark, Netherlands and Sweden share fourth place, with a score of 188. France, UK, Ireland and Portugal are tied for fifth with a score of 117.
The United States passports still ranks sixth, with a score of 186. Belgium, New Zealand, Norway and Switzerland also have the same score.
At the opposite end of the list, Afghanistan is again last. With an Afghan passport you can access just 26 countries without requiring a visa in advance.
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