These are the world’s 11 most powerful passports

London, England - August 30, 2016: An editorial stock photo of a collection of British Passports. Photographed isolated on a white background. Photographed using the Canon EOS 5DSR

Photos: Lucy Dean

As anyone who has ever lived abroad, migrated or travelled will know, applying for a visa can be a tedious and confusing experience.

But some countries have it much easier than others.

Residence and immigration firm, Henley & Partners, has released its 2019 global passport index, ranking each nation’s respective passport by its ability to allow the holder into different countries without requiring a visa.

Based on data provided by the International Air Transport Authority, the index named Japan and Singapore equal first, with both passports achieving access to 190 countries without a visa.

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Germany, South Korea and Finland were all equal second, being able to travel to 188 countries without requiring a visa and Denmark, Italy and Luxembourg were equal third, achieving access to 187 countries without a visa.

In 2014, the UK and the US topped the list, but both have now fallen to 6th place.

These are the 11 strongest passports in the world

These are the 11 best passports to have, measured on the number of countries accessible without a visa.

  • Japan (190)

  • Singapore (190)

  • South Korea (190)

  • Germany (188)

  • Finland (188)

  • Denmark (187)

  • Italy (187)

  • Luxembourg (187)

  • France (186)

  • Sweden (186)

  • Spain (186)

United Kingdom and the United States’ passports fall just short of the top 11, with access to 184 countries.

These are the 11 weakest passports in the world

On the other end of the spectrum, Afghanistan passports only open doors to 25 countries, with Iraqi passport-holders faring slightly better; their passports grant access to 27 countries without a visa.

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Those countries are followed by Syria (29) and Somalia and Pakistan (31).

  • Afghanistan (25)

  • Iraq (27)

  • Syria (29)

  • Pakistan (31)

  • Somalia (31)

  • Yemen (33)

  • Libya (37)

  • Palestinian Territory (37)

  • Sudan (37)

  • Nepal (38)

  • Lebanon (39)

  • North Korea (39)