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Most powerful passport in the world

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For those who wish to freely roam the world, the most powerful passport holders are Germans. Today I read an article ranking countries based on the amount of "travel freedom." This is defined as the number of countries where citizens can travel with no visa requirements, or where tourist visas can be obtained upon arrival. Germans have visa-free access to 177 countries and territories, and the other top five countries ( all European nations and America) are not far behind in global access for citizens.

(1) Germany - 177 countries
(2) Sweden - 176 countries
(3) Finland, France, Italy, Spain and the UK - 175 countries
(4) USA, Belgium, Denmark and the Netherlands - 174 countries
(5) Austria, Japan and Singapore - 173 countries

At the bottom of the list are Somalia, Iraq, Pakistan and Afghanistan. Russian passport holders rank 48th. You can see the entire index here.

We cannot control the country into which we are born, but we can control the passport we hold and use to a certain extent. For instance, my Ukrainian friend moved to France to study and has lived and worked there for several years. Soon, he will be able to apply for French citizenship and obtain a French passport. Imagine how much easier it will be for him to travel! It's an awesome sense of freedom, in my view. I understand that Ukraine does not allow for dual citizenship, so technically he must give up his Ukrainian passport, but he is under the impression that given the slow and inefficient bureaucracy there, no one will notice the dual citizenship. Of course, visa waivers reflect a country's ability to play nice with the rest of the world and maintain good diplomatic relations. I hope for the day when American and Russian citizens can freely travel to each nation without the burden and cost of visas, but I don't foresee it anytime in the future, although American citizens can currently travel to a lot of former Soviet bloc countries with no hassles. Now I'm starting to plan my autumn trip to Georgia, where no visa is required.

What are the benefits of a Russian passport, or your home country? Yes, I'm very grateful to be born in the USA and carry a passport from this country, as I've written many times. It allows for freedom of travel to a lot of places on the globe, and we have excellent infrastructure and roads to travel within America as well. It's very important for an eternal wanderer like me...

Comments

( 116 comments — Leave a comment )
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south_of_broad
Mar. 2nd, 2016 01:40 pm (UTC)
i wonder which 3 countries we can't go and the Germans can?
peacetraveler22
Mar. 2nd, 2016 01:41 pm (UTC)
Not sure, this will require too much research time for me to figure out. Now I sit and my desk and am supposed to be doing legal work. :)) Are you back in the USA now?

Edited at 2016-03-02 01:45 pm (UTC)
(no subject) - south_of_broad - Mar. 2nd, 2016 01:47 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - piterburg - Mar. 3rd, 2016 12:42 am (UTC) - Expand
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fesma94
Mar. 2nd, 2016 01:57 pm (UTC)
My passport is not so bad too. Unfortunately I can't visit some countries that I want, but not so much, may be 3-4.And to USA need visa, I can't understand the logic of your officials .
peacetraveler22
Mar. 2nd, 2016 01:58 pm (UTC)
Well, American citizens also need a visa for Israel but you get it at the airport. Is the same for Israeli citizens who visit the USA, or you have to get the visa ahead of time?
(no subject) - fesma94 - Mar. 2nd, 2016 02:03 pm (UTC) - Expand
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alexanderr
Mar. 2nd, 2016 01:58 pm (UTC)
yeah, but how many of those countries are safe to visit?
the list is very short: Canada, US, plus a few countries in Europe.
that's it. I would not want to go anywhere else
peacetraveler22
Mar. 2nd, 2016 02:00 pm (UTC)
Lots of countries are safe to visit, don't believe all the scary things the media tells you. When I went to the West Bank and Palestine, my mother was in complete panic, yes all the scary Muslims would attack or rape me. People there were so kind, friendly and open. There are many dangerous places on the globe, but a smart traveler always takes precautions and is aware of his or her surroundings.
perycalypsis
Mar. 2nd, 2016 01:58 pm (UTC)
USA sitizen woman wrote:
'I was held at the UK border and turned away after 31 hours of interviews and a night in a detention center because they felt I didn't have enough money to sustain myself and felt I would not leave the country if I was offered a job. I told them I was helping friends, hence the limited funds, which was still ?1,000, not WWOOFing, and was going to help on their farm calve and lamb baby cows and sheep. I'm a vet nurse here in the US and they felt because i was coming over to do something related to my field, a job offer would be possible and I'd remain in the UK. Despite having a $715 return ticket to the US booked, I could not convince them otherwise. I'm so saddened and disappointed as one can imagine.'
peacetraveler22
Mar. 2nd, 2016 02:01 pm (UTC)
Crazy story! I've been to the UK many times, no problems. The worst interrogation was by Israeli officials when I departed Tel Aviv. I still don't know why they decided to single me out and search every single article in my checked and carry on luggage. I think it was the Belarusian visa in my passport, which really confused them. :)
(no subject) - fesma94 - Mar. 2nd, 2016 02:07 pm (UTC) - Expand
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maksipes
Mar. 2nd, 2016 02:28 pm (UTC)
it's pretty funny how you're excited about the simple fact - having american passport. russians say - man adorns the place, the place doesn't adorn the man.
peacetraveler22
Mar. 2nd, 2016 02:33 pm (UTC)
It is not excitement, it's about being practical. I don't want to waste time or money getting visas to travel the globe. That's it. It simply provides more opportunity, who doesn't want that?
wwworld
Mar. 2nd, 2016 02:51 pm (UTC)
Totally agree! I can feel it on myself: when I got a Norwegian passport, travels becomes much-much easier all over the world, except... Russia... :(
peacetraveler22
Mar. 2nd, 2016 02:54 pm (UTC)
I will never forget the ridiculous bureaucracy or cost of obtaining a single entry visa for Belarus - $458!! I did not even get to explore the country due to problems at the Belarusian border crossing, so I highly value visa free travel. :) If you don't want to travel, then I guess the passport you hold isn't so important.
(no subject) - wwworld - Mar. 2nd, 2016 02:58 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - Mar. 2nd, 2016 03:00 pm (UTC) - Expand
livejournal
Mar. 2nd, 2016 02:55 pm (UTC)
Most powerful passport in the world
User alla_maria referenced to your post from Most powerful passport in the world saying: [...] русский, как у меня, так это вообще клево. Оригинал взят у в Most powerful passport in the world [...]
noisy_kid
Mar. 2nd, 2016 03:04 pm (UTC)
I'll receive a right to apply for German citizenship next year, but sadly I won't. My whole family lives in Russia, including elder grannies. To get a German passport I have to give up the Russian one, meaning every time I will want visit my relatives I will have to apply for a visa. Last year, as my beloved granddad passed away, I was able to leave on the same day; with a German passport I wouldn't have made it to the funeral. So I'll stick to Russian citizenship as long as the Germans don't introduce dual (as much as I would like to visit UK and US...)

And I'm quite sceptical regarding the argument of your friend related to dual citizenships. In Germany, being caught on that may result in a revocation of the citizenship and extradition.
peacetraveler22
Mar. 2nd, 2016 03:20 pm (UTC)
I would make the same decision as you, because it is imperative I can reach family without hassles if I lived in another country. But I thought Russians could have dual passports? For instance, the popular blogger puerrtto sometimes mentions that he uses his Israeli passport, but rarely his Russian one.
(no subject) - noisy_kid - Mar. 2nd, 2016 03:35 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - (Anonymous) - Mar. 5th, 2016 01:05 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - den_dark - Mar. 3rd, 2016 09:58 am (UTC) - Expand
faultier_sp
Mar. 2nd, 2016 03:11 pm (UTC)

Got it. :)
peacetraveler22
Mar. 2nd, 2016 03:19 pm (UTC)
:))
278200
Mar. 2nd, 2016 03:13 pm (UTC)
I'm surprised! I thought than the most powerfull passeport is american!
Bwt i mooved to France also ))
peacetraveler22
Mar. 2nd, 2016 03:19 pm (UTC)
Where in France? I love this country. So beautiful, and the French have a great mentality and lifestyle. Relaxed and leisurely. :)
(no subject) - 278200 - Mar. 2nd, 2016 03:25 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - theodorexxx - Mar. 2nd, 2016 05:27 pm (UTC) - Expand
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rina_grant
Mar. 2nd, 2016 03:23 pm (UTC)
As someone who lives permanently in France, I'd like to point out that obtaining French nationality isn't at all easy. In order to do that, on top of all the usual formalities like speaking the language and living in the country permanently, you have to produce proof of your professional and financial well-being for the last 3 years prior to applicaion. That is to say, in order to qualify to become a French citizen, you need to prove holding a permanent job for the same employer for the last 3 years that pays 1.5 of the minimum wage, preferably more. That's in the country where almost 50% of all jobs pay the minimum wage, where the concept of "a permanent job" is almost non-existent (most employers choose to hire workers on a temporary basis, then renew their contracts because it costs them less this way) and where unemployment in places reaches up to 50% among young job seekers. Even the French themselves find it almost impossible to meet these demands! :) A couple of years ago, the concept of a "permanent job for the same employer" was finally lifted from the citizenship application list but one is still supposed to work without any interruptions _for an employer_ for the last 3 years prior to citizenship application.

As a freelance translator without an employer nor set wage, I can never qualify for French citizenship, no matter how long I live here :(
278200
Mar. 2nd, 2016 03:30 pm (UTC)
God bless France! I think it's good sign if the obtaining of nationality isn't easy at all. In my eyes it's mark of prestige of the country! Anyway even with all the difficultes of the obtaining of french nationality here are too much people who don't whorth this nationality at all...
(no subject) - fesma94 - Mar. 2nd, 2016 03:53 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - 278200 - Mar. 2nd, 2016 04:10 pm (UTC) - Expand
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juan_gandhi
Mar. 2nd, 2016 04:11 pm (UTC)
Well, yes, with some passports you feel like a slave that should be immediately returned to the owner.

I remember visiting Canada, with a greencard and a Russian passport, and losing my wallet, and figuring, oops, they'll deport me to Russia...
peacetraveler22
Mar. 2nd, 2016 04:40 pm (UTC)
Do you now have American citizenship?
(no subject) - juan_gandhi - Mar. 2nd, 2016 05:28 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - genka8 - Mar. 2nd, 2016 05:12 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - blueswinka - Mar. 3rd, 2016 10:26 am (UTC) - Expand
mat_uc
Mar. 2nd, 2016 04:17 pm (UTC)
Israel? Canada?
peacetraveler22
Mar. 2nd, 2016 04:18 pm (UTC)
Canada is #6, but Israel is further down - #25.
(no subject) - mat_uc - Mar. 2nd, 2016 04:23 pm (UTC) - Expand
andrey_kaminsky
Mar. 2nd, 2016 04:21 pm (UTC)
andrey-i-now-it-all8)
Passports don't have virtues at all. Passport is not a piece of paper that permits but piece of paper that prohibits. Least shitty passports make it difficult to visit of the small number of countries, more shitty passports make it difficult to visit more countries.
theodorexxx
Mar. 2nd, 2016 05:20 pm (UTC)
I'm curious why USA and russian passports have big word PASSPORT COUNTRY_NAME printed on it and German passport doesn't?
ok i know what deutchland and reise mean and it's logical that reisepass means travelpassport but still...why no english? is a US board officer able to read in german?
peacetraveler22
Mar. 2nd, 2016 06:57 pm (UTC)
In airports, I think it will be no problem to find a U.S. customs or border official who speaks German, esp. in major cities. And over 60% of Germans speak English, so it's not a problem. In Russia, I think it is less than 10% of the population. Actually, last time I traveled to Russia I connected through Frankfurt. It was very amusing because the Aeroflot flight from Moscow to Frankfurt was filled with mostly Russians, and at passport control the German officials did not first address the passengers in German, but English instead. Unfortunately, all of the Russians simply stared at them. They were screwed, because they knew neither German nor English. As Americans, we are very spoiled. English is the international language.
(no subject) - theodorexxx - Mar. 2nd, 2016 07:32 pm (UTC) - Expand
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