The Philippine Passport climbed the ranks in the 2023 Passport Index Q1

The Philippine Passport ranking has been steadily and gradually rising in the world rankings according to the Henley Passport Index. In 2023, the Philippine Passport achieved an impressive ranking of 76th, granting access to a total of 67 countries without the need for a visa prior to entry. This is a significant rise from its ranking of 80th in 2022, showcasing the country’s commitment to international mobility. With the improved Philippine passport ranking, Filipinos now have greater access to more countries and opportunities around the world. As such, BRIA Homes will walk you through the list of countries where Philippines passport holders can enter visa free and to the possible implications of this ranking.

Read Also: How to Renew Philippine Passport Abroad?

The Henley Passport Index is an annual ranking of countries based on the access their citizens have to other countries. It was established in 2006 and is based on exclusive data from the International Air Transport Association (IATA). The index takes into account how many countries can be visited visa-free, on arrival or with an electronic visa.

The ranking is compiled by collating passport data from 199 countries and calculating the number of destinations that citizens of each nation can visit without needing a prior visa. This year’s index was released in January 2021 and uses data from August 2020.

The index is divided into two categories: the overall ranking which takes into account the most powerful passports and the individual passport rankings which look at the strength of individual countries’ passports. The overall ranking is updated twice a year while the individual rankings are updated annually.  The Henley Passport Index is used as a tool to measure international mobility and as a reference for governments, financial institutions and multinational companies. It also helps people decide where to travel and has become a popular reference point for global mobility professionals.

According to the same Index, Asian countries dominated the top spot of the ranking having Japan and Singapore share the rank with access to 193 out of 227 countries and territories followed by South Korea with 192. The third spot was awarded to Spain and Germany with access to 191 countries and Finland, Luxembourg, and Italy with access to 190. The 5th to 10th spots were awarded to first world economies mostly from Europe with the exemptions of New Zealand, USA, Canada, and Australia.

Further to the Index, the least powerful passport in the world is the Afghan passport with access only to 27 destinations. Slightly above it are Iraq and Syria with visa-free access to 29 and 30 countries, respectively.  The Philippine passport ranking at the 76th is minimally better compared to Uganda, an African country, with access to 66 destinations and 1 rank lower compared to The Gambia, a West African country, with better mobility to 68 countries and territories. Below are the enumeration of the countries that Philippine passport holders can enter with a requirement of Visa prior to entry.

Brunei Cambodia Hong Kong (SAR China) Indonesia Kazakhstan Kyrgyzstan * Laos Macao (SAR China) Malaysia Maldives * Mongolia Myanmar Nepal * Pakistan ** Singapore Sri Lanka ** Taiwan (Chinese Taipei) Tajikistan * Thailand Timor-Leste * VietnamArmenia * Iran * Israel Palestinian Territory  Cook Islands Fiji Marshall Islands * Micronesia Niue Palau Islands * Papua New Guinea * Samoa * Tuvalu * VanuatuBurundi * Cape Verde Islands * Comoro Islands * Cote d’Ivoire Guinea-Bissau * Madagascar * Malawi * Mauritania * Mauritius * Morocco Mozambique * Rwanda Senegal Seychelles * Somalia * Tanzania * The Gambia Togo * Uganda *  Bolivia Brazil Colombia Costa Rica Nicaragua * Peru Suriname  Barbados Dominica Haiti St. Lucia * St. Vincent and the Grenadines Trinidad and Tobag  

*visa on arrival


The rise in the Philippine passport ranking on the Henley Passport Index has major implications for its citizens. Most notably, Filipino passport holders will have access to more countries with visa-free travel or visa on arrival. This provides greater flexibility and freedom of movement when traveling abroad. It also signifies a greater international recognition of the Philippine passport and the country’s diplomatic strength.

The improved ranking could lead to more economic opportunities, as it facilitates easier trade and investment in foreign countries. In addition, increased access to other countries may lead to a rise in tourism, which could lead to more jobs, development and income for local businesses. That is why it is interesting to note that the improved ranking could lead to more economic opportunities, as it facilitates easier trade and investment in foreign countries. For instance, the top tier country in the ranking and the country that contributes about 5% of the world’s gross domestic product (GDP) , Japan, with its free access to 193 destinations, already has easier access to 85% of the world’ GDP. With this, its citizens may have wider access to the global supply chain. This is truly significant especially in a highly globalized society we are in now. Aside from freely visiting these countries as a tourist, Japanese passport holders may also explore other opportunities in other countries.

Finally, a higher ranking is also indicative of the nation’s political stability. This could potentially lead to an increase in international aid and investments from other nations, as well as stronger ties in international relations. On the other hand, many of the countries categorized as the least powerful passports are commonly economically challenged and war-stricken countries or have an ongoing civil war. Truly, social and political stability are main contributory factors in the result of this ranking.

All in all, the rise in the Philippine passport ranking in the Henley Passport Index is an important milestone that offers numerous benefits to its citizens. With its strong diplomatic ties, political stability, and growing economy, the Philippine passport is becoming an increasingly sought after asset for Filipino citizens.

What can we expect in the future?

The Philippine passport ranking is on the rise and it is likely to continue to do so in the coming years. The country recently moved up a few spots on the Henley Passport Index, showing signs of continued improvement. With the ever-changing global landscape, it is possible that even more countries will be added to the list of visa-free destinations for Filipino citizens.

As the government works towards improving the Philippines’ international standing, it is important to remember that the impact of the Philippine passport ranking should not be underestimated. It has a direct impact on the lives of Filipinos who want to travel and explore the world. In addition, an increased passport ranking may attract more foreign investors and companies to set up operations in the Philippines. This could potentially lead to an influx of job opportunities and improved economic growth. Ultimately, a higher ranking on the Henley Passport Index will open up many doors for Filipinos around the world. We can expect that in the coming years, more countries will offer visa-free entry for Filipino citizens as our passport ranking continues to improve.

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