• How powerful is South Africa’s passport?

    Posted by Elise Kirsten on 8 July 2019

    Henley Passport Index has released its latest review of travel documents worldwide and the world’s three most powerful passports of 2019 are all from Asia. Japan and Singapore tie for first place – both of these passports allow holders to travel to 189 countries visa-free – while the South African passport comes in at 54th, allowing holders to visit 99 countries without needing a visa.

    In Africa, Seychelles, Mauritius and South Africa respectively continue to hold the top three spots for the continent. The Seychelles and Mauritius are the only African countries to have made gains in their scores over the past decade. South Africa has dropped 19 places in that period, as has Kenya.

    Also read: 10 countries South Africans can travel to visa-free

    world map, south african passport

    South Korea is currently in second place on the global index along with Finland and Germany, with citizens of all three countries able to access 187 destinations around the world without a prior visa.

    Denmark, Italy, and Luxembourg sit jointly in third place on the index, each with a visa-free/visa-on-arrival score of 186, while France, Spain, and Sweden are in join fourth place, each with a score of 185.

    Interestingly, Pakistan now offers an ETA (Electronic Travel Authority) to citizens of 50 countries, including Finland, Japan, Malta, Spain, Switzerland, and the United Arab Emirates, however not to the United States or the UK.

    With a visa-free/visa-on-arrival score of 183, the UK and the US now share sixth place – the lowest position either country has held since 2010, and a significant drop from their first-place spot in 2014.

    Featured image: Pixaby


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