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RCG GLOBAL PASSPORT INDEX 2021

The RCG Global Passport Index ranks every country in the world based on the quality of their passport. The ranking weights the visa-free count (VFC) of each passport, the authorized length of stay in each destination, and their popularity. VFC refers to the number of countries that a passport enables the holder to enter visa-free or that provide a visa on arrival, visa on transit, or electronic visas with delivery in less than 24h. Over 200 countries & territories are reviewed in the annual ranking. The index also offers valuable information regarding the number of visa-free destinations, dual citizenship rules, and the estimated market value of the passport.

The RCG Global Passport Index is a free guide of the most powerful passports in the world. The index ranks the world’s passports according to the cross-border access they bring.

The RCG Global Passport Index tries to be the most insightful one available to Global Citizens. With the emergence of Citizenship by Investment programs, many countries have worked on boosting the number of visa-free destinations their passport offers. It’s important to differentiate ‘’high-value’’ destinations from ‘’low-value’’ destinations, and only the RCG Passport Index does that. When compiling the score of each country, we factor in the popularity of each destination by annual touristic arrivals. The purpose is to make sure ‘’high-value’’ destinations are fairly represented, so destinations like France are not given the same points as Palau. The length of authorized stay is also important and is a key factor in our Index. Being allowed to spend 6 months in a destination versus 7 days should not produce the same score.

Based on our research, that two regions are of primary importance when looking for a second passport are the European Union and the USA. Other destinations don’t carry the same weight for global travelers. Countries labeled Gold have a passport providing visa-free travel to both the US and the EU. Silver countries have a passport providing visa-free travel to the EU but not the US. Bronze countries have a passport that provides visa-free travel to the UK but not the EU or the US. Countries in Black do not provide visa-free travel to the US, EU, or the UK. Generally, countries with a visa waiver to the US have an additional 130 visa-free destinations. In practice, if your passport has a visa waiver to the US, it also offers visa-free travel to the European Union.

METHODOLOGY

All the data were collected during the summer of 2020 and include changes scheduled for 2021. Temporary travel bans due to COVID-19 were not considered in our index. The information was taken either from IATA Timatic or/and from official government publications. There are sometimes discrepancies between the two that affect the accuracy of certain information.

As destinations, we have included in our list of countries all the nations recognized by the UN, as well as Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan, and Kosovo.

Visa-Free Count (VFC) includes all destinations accessible by:

The RCG Passport Index  factors in the VFC of a given territory along with its annual touristic arrivals and authorized length of stay.

The number of annual touristic arrivals per country is published annually by UNWTO.

Authorized length of stay may include extensions or extended stays available for purchase on arrival.

Length of stay is normally for tourist reasons unless visa-free access is possible only for business reasons.

Dual Citizenship evaluates the legality of holding multiple citizenships in that jurisdiction. Refer to the notes for a more detailed explanation.

Passport Label

GOLD

Visa-free travel to the US & EU

SILVER

Visa-free travel to the EU

BRONZE

Visa-free travel to the UK

Source

Visa Information was taken from the official government websites and Timatic.

The electronic visa delivery times were taken from each relevant official government website.

The annual number of tourist arrivals per country is published by the UNWTO. http://www.e-unwto.org/

Dual Citizenship information was sourced from each country’s laws related to nationality.

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