Tourism

What are the most powerful passports in the world?

If you could have your pick of passports, which would you choose?

Well, according to a new report, it should be a Japanese passport – as of this week, they’re the most powerful in the world.

The report is from Henley & Partners, a citizenship and planning firm who ranked the passports of every country in the world according to how many countries can be visited without a visa.

This year, Singapore has been knocked off first place by Japan, Traveller.com.au has reported.

Japanese passport holders can go to 190 countries without needing to apply for a visa. With a Singapore passport, you can visit 189 out of 218 countries without a visa, and German citizens can visit 188 countries.

Japan and Singapore were previously neck and neck, but this year, Japan was given visa-free access to Myanmar, bumping the country to number one.

As for Australia? The Aussie passport fell a few places on this years list to 183, making it an equal 22nd place alongside Greece and Malta.

UK and US passport holders have visa-free access to 186 countries after topping the list together in 2015.

Governments in Asian countries have signed over 40 visa-waiver documents this year, while Australia, the UK and the US have not gotten access to any new jurisdictions in 2018 so far.

The UAE is the fastest-climbing country on the list, after nabbing more visa exemptions for UAE passport holders this year than any other country. They’ve moved up 38 places since 2008.

“As the world economy has become increasingly globalised, the need for greater visa-free access has grown steadily,” said the report.

“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.”

Iran and Afghanistan are at the bottom of the list, just behind Syria and Somalia – both of which can enter 32 countries without a visa. Iran and Afghanistan passport holders have visa-free access to just 30 countries.

Over the course of last year, 143 countries passports have improved in power. Check out the top countries below!

1.  Japan 190
2.  Singapore 189
3.  Germany 188
France 188
South Korea 188
6.  Denmark 187
Finland 187
Italy 187
Sweden 187
Spain 187
11. Norway 186
UK 186
Austria 186
Luxembourg 186
Netherlands 186
Portugal 186
United States 186
18. Belgium 185
Switzerland 185
Ireland 185
Canada 185
22. Australia 183
Greece 183
Malta 183

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