The British passport was recently ranked the most desirable passport in the world for international travel, according to a global consulting firm in residence and citizenship planning.
The famous maroon travel doc came in at number one for travellers, based on the number of countries its citizens can visit without a visa. The UK was tied with Finland and Sweden on 173 points, meaning that its passport holders can enter 173 countries without a visa.
The Portuguese passport came in at number four; its citizens can visit 170 countries without a visa. This passport has been long coveted as a gateway to the European Union (EU). Portugal is also one of the few countries to offer a unique ‘citizenship by investment’ solution, where a property investment in Portugal entitles you to Portuguese residency – and, after 5 years, EU citizenship for yourself and your family.
According to John Dunn, Visas Manager at 1st Contact Group, visa restrictions are a standard way to control the movement of foreigners across borders.
“We’re living in a globalised world, with people moving across borders every second. The different visa requirements highlight the relationship between the individual country, and its status in the international community.”
This would explain why Afghanistan, ranked 93rd, has the ignominious honour of having the worst passport in the world, with a score of just 28. Its residents have the least freedom of travel in comparison to their global citizens.
“Some visa application processes are easier than others,” a spokesperson from Flight Centre said. “The US has an electronic system which is easy for customers to complete online, while the process to obtain a Chinese or Indian visa can sometimes take a few months.”
Depending on your passport, unrestricted international travel may be well within your grasp. If you have a possible ancestral link to the UK and would like to find out whether you qualify for a British passport, contact 1st Contact Visas & Immigration.