This European Country Now Has the Most Powerful Passport in the World

Spoiler alert: It’s not the United Kingdom!

Germany's powerful passportPhoto: Shutterstock

This Country Now Has the Most Powerful Passport

Among the things you should always pack in your carry-on luggage, a passport is chief among them. It’s the one foolproof way to get in and out of the country, after all. But before you zip off to an exotic land, you should know that not all passports are created equal.

Why, you ask? Turns out, the passport you own determines whether or not you need a visa to enter the country. Take a U.S. passport, for example. If you want to visit Chile, you can simply present your passport at the Chilean border. But Americans travelling to Brazil must apply for a visa before they can enter the country.

That said, some passports allow you to enter more countries without a visa than others. Want to know how your passport fares? Using data from the International Air Transport Association, the 2018 Henley Passport Index has ranked every country’s passport from most to least powerful, based on how many countries it would give a citizen access to without a visa.

For the fifth year in a row, Germany has the world’s most powerful passport, according to the Index. Citizens of the European country can now visit 177 nations—one more than last year. While a previous ranking gave Singapore the top spot, Germany has dethroned the Lion City on that list, too.

At the end of the day, nothing ruins a vacation more than getting turned away at customs. So before you book a trip to your dream destination, make sure you don’t need a visa to enter the country (or submit the proper paperwork if you do!) These airport mistakes could ruin your vacation, too.

Here’s what your passport colour really means.

Reader's Digest
Originally Published on Reader's Digest