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The ‘best’ passports that give you travel freedom

Posted on January 20, 2015
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Dubai: One of the things that annoy many travelers is having to apply for a visa each time they enter a country. What is even more frustrating is canceling holiday plans due to a denied visa application.

That’s why a lot of people seek to acquire a second passport or citizenship. If you belong to this category, it may be worth looking at which passports enjoy the least travel restrictions.

Henley & Partners, a global company specializing in residence and citizenship planning has published the Visa Restrictions Index for 2014. The index, done annually, ranks more than 200 countries according to the travel freedom that their citizens enjoy.

Henley & Partners drew up the ranking after combing through numerous visa regulations of all countries and territories in the world. Researchers, in particular, looked at each country and counted the number of destinations that their citizens can visit without having to obtain a visa.

Obtaining the highest score of 174, the clear winners in terms of hassle-free travel are passport holders from Finland, Germany, Sweden, United States and United Kingdom. This means citizens of these countries can go to 174 destinations visa-free.

Second in rank are Canada and Denmark (173), followed by Belgium, France, Italy, Japan, South Korea, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Portugal and Spain, all garnering a score of 172.

Coming in the fourth place are citizens of Austria, Ireland and Norway, all scoring 171. New Zealand, Singapore and Switzerland occupy the fifth place, with a score of 170.

Lying at the bottom of the list are Nepal, in the 90th spot, Palestinian Territory in 91st position, Pakistan and Somalia in 92nd place, as well as Iraq (93rd) and Afghanistan (95th).

In the GCC, citizens in the UAE, Qatar and Oman saw their passport ranking increasing from 2013 to 2014. The UAE, ranked 77th in 2013, moved several places up to occupy the 56th position, while Qatar jumped from the 75th to the 56th place and Oman went up from 66th to 64th position.

The ranking was created in collaboration with the International Air Transport Association, which handles the world’s largest database of travel information.

Top 5 PASSPORTS

Finland, Germany, Sweden, USA, United Kingdom
Rank: 1
Score: 174 (Number of destinations citizens can travel visa-free)

Canada, Denmark
Rank: 2
Score: 173

Belgium, France, Italy, Japan, South Korea, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain
Rank: 3
Score: 172

Austria, Ireland, Norway
Rank: 4
Score: 171

New Zealand, Singapore, Switzerland
Rank: 5
Score: 170

BOTTOM 5 PASSPORTS

Nepal
Rank: 90
Score: 37

Palestinian Territory
Rank: 91
Score: 35

Pakistan, Somalia
Rank: 92
Score: 32

Iraq
Rank: 93
Score: 31

Afghanistan
Rank: 94
Score: 28

http://gulfnews.com/news/gulf/uae/visa/the-best-passports-that-give-you-travel-freedom-1.1442085

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