The South African passport has ranked 51 out of 111 countries in a new report by Henley & Partners, seven spots down from 2021, where we ranked 58th.
The “Henley & Partners Passport Index for 2022”, which was released on January 11, outlines the number of countries travellers can visit without obtaining a visa prior to take-off. For South Africans, that’s 104 countries, including Brazil, South Korea, Ireland and Fiji.
The index includes 199 passports and 227 travel destinations with information gathered from the International Air Transport Association (IATA), which maintains the world’s largest and most accurate database of travel information.
The scoring system was developed to give users a nuanced, practical, and reliable overview of their passport’s power.
On the list, Japan, Singapore and Germany hold the most powerful passports in the land, with their citizens having access to 192 and 190 countries, respectively.
While Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria and Pakistan hold the bottom four spots on the list, only being able to visit 26, 28, 29 and 31 countries, respectively.
Here is the full list of visa-free access destinations.
* Indicates visa on arrival or eTA (electronic travel authority).
Angola, Benin, Botswana, Cape Verde Islands *, Comores Islands *, Eswatini (Swaziland), Ethiopia *, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana *, Guinea-Bissau *, Kenya, Lesotho, Madagascar *, Malawi, Mauritania *, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria *, Reunion, Rwanda *, Senegal, Seychelles *, Sierra Leone *, Somalia *, St. Helena *, Tanzania, Togo *, Tunisia, Uganda *, Zambia, Zimbabwe.
Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Grenada, Haiti, Jamaica, Montserrat, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tobago, Turks and Caicos Islands.
Cambodia *, Hong Kong (SAR China), Indonesia, Kyrgyzstan *, Laos *, Macao (SAR China), Malaysia, Maldives *, Nepal *, Pakistan **, Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Sri Lanka **, Tajikistan *, Thailand, Timor-Leste *.
Argentina, Belize, Bolivia *, Brazil, Chile, Costa Rica, Ecuador, El Salvador, Falkland Islands, Guatemala, Guyana, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay, Venezuela.
Cook Islands, Fiji, Marshall Islands *, Micronesia, Niue, Palau Islands *, Samoa *, Tuvalu *, Vanuatu.
Armenia *, Iran *, Israel, Jordan *, Oman, Palestinian, Territory, Qatar.
Georgia, Ireland, Kosovo, Russian Federation.