Turkey has dropped two places on a list of countries with the most powerful passports and now ranks 57th, according to the latest Henley Passport Index.
Turkish citizens can travel to 110 countries visa-free compared to 111 in 2020, according to the index.
Each of the 199 passports on the list is checked against all 227 possible travel destinations for which travel restriction information exists in the International Air Transport Association (IATA) database. The score is updated throughout the year as conditions change.
“Japan, which shares top spot on the index with Singapore due to their visa-free/visa-on-arrival score of 192, currently bars almost all foreign nationals from entry. Germany, which sits alongside South Korea in joint-2nd place with a visa-free/visa-on arrival score of 190, currently restricts nearly 100 countries from entry,” according to a Tuesday press release by Henry & Partners, the investment advisory firm that releases the index.
“At the lower end of the index, Egypt, ranked 97th, currently has no travel restrictions in place, yet its citizens can access just 51 destinations around the world without acquiring a visa in advance. Similarly, Kenya, which ranks 77th, has no travel bans in place, yet its passport holders are able to access just 72 destinations visa-free,” it added.
The Henley Passport Index is the original ranking of all the world’s passports according to the number of destinations their holders can access without a prior visa. The ranking is based on exclusive data from the IATA, which maintains the world’s largest and most accurate database of travel information, and is enhanced by ongoing research by the Henley & Partners Research Department.
The rankings come at a time when the travel industry has been among the worst-hit sectors globally amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
On the index, Turkey had ranked 55th in 2020, dropping three places compared to its its ranking of 52nd in 2019.
According to the index, which has been available since 2006, Turkey’s passport peaked in 2014, ranking 38th.
Turks frequently complain about the weakness of the Turkish passport as they have to obtain visas to visit many countries.
Criticism of the declining value of the Turkish passport has occasionally elicited disproportionate action from the Turkish government.
In April, two young people were briefly detained, handcuffed and released on judicial probation including a travel ban for allegedly insulting the value of the Turkish passport in a TikTok video.
On April 25, 23-year-old K.Ö and N.Y. posted a video on TikTok under the title “Areas where the Turkish passport is used.” In the video they are seen using Turkish passports for various purposes other than traveling such as coasters, oven gloves and bookmarks.