World's Most Powerful Passports of 2018

In the latest edition of the Henley Passport Index, Japan edges out former chart-toppers Singapore and Germany for offering their passport-holders visa-free access to 189 destinations.

Germany and Singapore fall to second place by a slim margin, with 188 destinations.

While European countries in the Schengen Area have traditionally dominated the index, analysts point to the rising power of Asian nations, thanks to increasingly strong international trade and diplomatic relations.

Recently, South Korea and Singapore, for instance, struck deals with Uzbekistan and Somalia.

China also climbed the index after gaining access to Bosnia and Herzegovina and the United Arab Emirates this year.

In fact, the reciprocal agreement between China and the UAE is credited with boosting growth in the local tourism industry by up to 70 percent so far, compared to last year, the report notes.

Meanwhile, the fastest climber on the index is the United Arab Emirates, which has risen 38 spots to 23rd place since 2008.

The country also secured eight new visa-waivers for its citizens in 2018 alone, more than any other country: China, Ireland, Burkina Faso, Uruguay, Guinea, Tonga, Benin and Honduras.

The ranking is based on data from the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and is updated in real-time.

Here is the latest ranking:

1. Japan – visa-free access to 189 countries
2. Germany, Singapore – 188
3. Finland, France, Italy, South Korea, Spain, Sweden – 187
4. Austria, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, UK, US – 186
5. Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Ireland, Switzerland – 185
6. Greece, Australia – 183
7. Czech Republic, Malta, New Zealand – 182
8. Iceland – 181
9. Hungary, Slovenia, Malaysia – 180
10. Latvia, Lithuania, Slovakia – 179

So The Question Arises, Where Does Our Beloved Pakistan Stand On The List?

Unfortunately, Pakistani passport has once again ranked amongst the bottom of the lot.

For those who own one, your passport ranks at 98 and hence becomes the fifth weakest passports in the world.

Pakistanis are allowed to travel without applying for a visa to only 33 countries.

At rank 100, Afghanistan’s passport is at the absolute bottom.

Here is the list of countries with the least freedom of movement! 

  1. Afghanistan- 30
  2. Iraq- 30
  3. Syria- 32
  4. Somalia- 32
  5. Pakistan-33
  6. Yemen- 37
  7. Palestinian, Eritrea, Sudan- 39
  8. Nepal- 40
  9. South Sudan, Bangaldesh, Lebanon, Libya- 41
  10. Sri Lanka, Ethiopia- 42

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