Australia’s passport is LESS powerful in 2019 as two countries cut their visa-free access (and you’ll never guess the nation at the top of the global list)
- Australia has dropped to tenth position on the scale of best passports to possess
- The Henley Passport Index ranks each country for its value in travelling with ease
- Travellers can now freely visit 181 countries visa-free or obtain a visa on arrival
- Recent updates to visa policies in Turkey and Ukraine had a major impact on rank
- Australian citizens nevertheless still have considerable passport power globally
Australia has dropped from seventh place to tenth on the international ranking of best passports to possess to freely visit countries around the world.
Global citizenship and residence advisory firm Henley & Partners this week revealed their passport index which showed Australians can now freely visit 181 countries in 2019 – two fewer than last year.
‘This change is due to very recent updates to the visa policies of Turkey and Ukraine, which have both suspended their visa on arrival policies,’ Henley and Partners director Tony Le Nevez told Daily Mail Australia.
Australia has dropped from seventh place to tenth on the international ranking of best passports to possess to freely visit countries around the world
Henley and Partners this week revealed the details of their passport index and Australians can now freely visit 181 countries in 2019 – two fewer than last year
The ranking system bases itself on the number of countries a passport entitles its holder to freely enter without having to pre-apply for a visa.
Despite having more restrictions in 2019, Mr Le Nevez said Australian passport holders still have greater freedom compared to other nationals.
‘Overall, Australian citizens enjoy considerable passport power, able to access 181 countries and territories around the world visa-free,’ he said.
Mr Le Nevez said in addition to Australia, a number of other countries had been affected by the recent changes to Turkey and Ukraine’s visa policy shift.
‘It means (Australians) will now need to apply for e-visas to both countries before they travel,’ he said.
The Henley Passport Index also showed Asian countries dominated the ranking order when it comes to overall passport power in 2019.
The ranking system bases itself on the number of countries a passport entitles its holder to freely enter without having to pre-apply for a visa
Top 10 visa-free access passports
1. Japan – 190 (destinations)
2. Singapore, South Korea – 189
3. France, Germany – 188
4. Denmark, Finland, Italy Sweden – 187
5. Luxembourg, Spain – 186
6. Austria, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Switzerland, UK and US – 186
7. Belgium, Canada, Greece, Ireland – 184
8. Czech Republic – 183
9. Malta – 182
10. Australia, Iceland, New Zealand – 181
Japan took out the top spot for the second year in a row, offering its citizens visa-free access to a record 190 destinations around the world.
While Singapore, along with South Korea, which moved up from third place, came in second place, allowing their passport holders to freely visit 189 global destinations.
One of the biggest climbers this year was United Arab Emirates, which jumped five spots to 22nd place, allowing passport holders visa-free access to 164 countries.
Columbia and Tuvalu equally made an impressive move by five spots to their new ranking of 42nd place, allowing visa-free access to 127 destinations.
Afghanistan and Iraq passports ranked the lowest in terms of offering its holders the freedom to visit countries visa-free with a visa-free/visa-on-arrival score of just 30
China also climbed the ladder to 69th place, which means its passport holders can now enjoy visa-free access to 74 international ports.
In less impressive results, the United Kingdom dropped from fourth place to sixth, where it tied with the United States which also moved downward from fifth place.
The Henley Passport Index also revealed which passports offered the least amount of travel freedom, including Pakistan (33 destinations) and Syria (32 destinations).
Afghanistan and Iraq passports ranked the lowest in terms of offering its holders the freedom to visit countries visa-free with a visa-free/visa-on-arrival score of just 30.