Photo: Markus Lerner

Mapped: How Powerful Is Your Passport and Where Can You Go?

Maps + Infographics
by Henry Miller Nov 20, 2017

Ever wonder why, no matter where you travel, there always seem to be fellow tourists from western countries standing around you? This has a lot to do with the power of their passports, which allows European and American nationals to travel to most other countries without the need of special visas.

This interactive map, provided by Markus Lerner, not only shows how powerful each of the world’s passports are, but also which nations the holder is allowed to visit.

Unsurprisingly, it is the world’s most geopolitically powerful nations that have the most useful passports for international travel in 2017. Germany’s passport stands out of the herd as one of two that permits a holder to visit 150 nations (the other being Singapore). But the US is no slouch: a US national can visit 149 countries without needing a special visa.

This map demonstrates just how useful it is to be from certain political regions. While Malaysia may rank high in passport power, it is far preferable to be a European citizen than one from Southeast Asia. The same goes for South America over Africa, which has the highest concentration of less-powerful passports.

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