Has the Coronavirus pandemic affected the passport ranking? Let’s find out.
Between March 24th and 30th, 2020, only 280,000 flights were reported. This was a marked drop from the 780,000 flights that flew during the same period in the previous year.
The COVID-19 pandemic has seen thousands of flights cancelled, tourists stranded in foreign lands, closed borders and temporary visa suspensions.
Once the lockdown is eased across the world, air travel may return to what it was earlier but it will have a lasting impact on how people travel and how countries create their visa policies.
Passport Ranking – The Power Of Passports
A passport allows citizens of a country to travel abroad and allows them visa-free entry to certain other countries. The number of countries an individual can enter without a visa determines the power of the passport he holds.
On average, travelers can visit 107 countries without a visa or with a visa on arrival. In 2006, this number stood at 58. According to the Henley & Partners Passport Index, Japan has the highest global ranking.
Japanese passport holders can visit 191 countries without a prior visa. On the other hand, an Indian passport allows entry into 58 countries without a prior visa.
Most Powerful Passports To Hold In 2020 –
According to Henley Index, below listed are the most powerful passports in the world:
|Rank||Country||Destinations To Travel|
|9||Malta, Czech Republic||183|
Passport Ranking – Welcoming Ranking
Countries can also be ranked according to how many country’s citizens can enter their borders without a visa or with a visa on arrival. The first rank is shared by 22 countries that welcome travelers from 198 other countries.
This includes Bolivia, Cambodia, Maldives, Lesotho, Nigeria, Rwanda, Seychelles and Somalia. As is apparent from the above-mentioned names, simply holding the same rank does not equate their desirability.
There’s no doubt that countries like Cambodia and Seychelles see many more tourists as compared to Somalia and Rwanda.
COVID-19 Impact On Passport Ranking System
With countries closing their borders to fight the COVID-19 pandemic, the power of all passports has been levelled. Once the borders open, many countries may revise their visa policies and the rankings may change.
Until now, visa policies were based on geopolitical and economic factors. Now, health may become an equally important consideration.
This could include access to quality healthcare, the quality of the overall health system, and the availability of emergency care.
This implies that countries that have been able to respond efficiently to the COVID-19 outbreak such as Germany and New Zealand may see their passport ranking increase. Similarly, the updated visa policies will also affect welcoming ranking.
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