Canadian Passport Ranked One of the Most Powerful in the World

Published January 19, 2018 at 1:57 am


If you have a Canadian passport, take it out of its safe hiding spot and tell it you appreciate its existence. Then put it back, because losing a passport can be costly and time-consuming.

According to The Passport Index, a platform that ranks how powerful passports are from every country around the world, the Canadian passport is the fourth most powerful passport in the world. 

The Canadian passport has gone up two spots on this list since last year and the previous year (2016 and 2015), when it made sixth place two years in a row.

Joining Canada at ranking number four are Switzerland, Ireland, and the United States.

Germany has taken first place on the power ranking, with such countries as Singapore, Denmark, Sweden, and Finland following behind at number two, and countries such as Austria, Norway, and Portugal in third place. 

The countries with the least powerful passports are currently Somalia, Syria, Pakistan, Iraq, and Afghanistan, ranking from number 90-94 respectively on the survey.

What makes one passport more powerful than another, you ask? 

Well, the more powerful your passport, the more freedom you have to travel. According to The Passport Index, the scoring is based on the countries that grant visa-free access to the passport holder. Of course, positive international diplomatic relations also play a role.

So, the power rating is all about how many countries’ borders you can cross visa-free. At rank number four, Canadians can get into 158 countries without a visa. In comparison, at rank number one, Germans can get into 161 countries, while at number 94, people with passports from Afghanistan can get into 25 countries visa-free.

The Passport Index also ranks countries on how welcoming they are, and despite the common assumption that Canada is very welcoming, we actually rank quite low on that scale.

Canada ranks 76th of 102 spots on the most welcoming countries in the world list, requiring visas from all but 53 countries’ passport holders in the world. We tie with Namibia.

We’re four spots higher than our southern neighbour the United States, though, which pulls in at the 80th most welcoming country in the world. The U.S.A requires visas from all but 43 countries.

Perhaps the Canadian passport will surpass Germany next year. We’ll have to wait and see!

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