The Passport Index Hustle

It all started many moons ago when the passport index was invented for marketing purposes by the Citizenship Investment Industry. Currently, there are five players spreading their index more or less regular. Every one of those has its own evaluation criteria to rank passports. Now there is a new player in town. citizenship cip golden passport 

Why is there a necessity for an additional passport index? The Passport Index Hustle

What truly defines the best passport – is it the one affording the broadest spectrum of visa-free travels across numerous countries, or is it the one facilitating access to your desired destinations? In truth, for the majority of travelers, unhindered entry into the United States holds significantly greater significance than visa-free access to, for instance, Cameroon. Likewise, a passport granting a business professional visa-free passage to China is likely to be of greater utility than one offering unrestricted travel to Ecuador.

The recently introduced 2023 Intelligent Passport Index considers these factors when assessing the effectiveness and utility of each country’s passport as a travel document.

In contrast, other passport indices assign an equal value to every country as a travel destination. Essentially, they provide a straightforward answer to a basic inquiry: how many countries can your passport grant you visa-free access to? Each passport accrues points for enabling visa-free entry to Angola, Armenia, Belize, and the like. However, they overlook a more significant question: where do your actual travel desires lie? The Passport Index Hustle

Notably, travelers discern that not all countries are equal in their appeal, a nuance eloquently captured by Pace’s methodology. For instance, in 2022, a staggering 66.6 million individuals ventured to France, while merely 719,978 explored the landscapes of Sri Lanka. Consequently, the new Passport Index developed ascribes greater worth to a passport that affords unfettered entry to France.

A ranking of Passports, not Citizenship The Passport Index Hustle

The freshly introduced index serves to evaluate passports as instruments for navigating international travel. It is essential to clarify that this index refrains from rating citizenship itself, as its purpose does not extend to ranking the world’s most desirable places to reside. Instead, it scrutinizes the advantages of visa-free travel to specific destinations, meticulously assessing each nation’s merits as a travel target through the lens of factual data and objective criteria. citizenship cip golden passport 

While this approach may not be universally accepted, it remains steadfastly grounded in the principle that the value of each country’s passport should be ascribed in accordance with the actual desires and intentions of its bearers regarding travel destinations.

The countries that secure positions in the top ten of the new Passport Index comprise Japan, Singapore, San Marino, Brunei, South Korea, the Bahamas, New Zealand, Chile, Andorra, and Denmark.

Worth noting is that all passports that grace the upper echelons of this ranking, except the Bahamian passport, are distinguished as “triple threat” passports. This distinction stems from their exceptional capacity to facilitate visa-free voyages not only to the European Union, the United States, and China but also to a multitude of other nations around the globe.

New Index Versus Other Passport Indices: A Comparison The Passport Index Hustle

In the marketing game of passport indices, the conventional approach taken by most other rankings involves assessing each passport’s value solely on the number of nations its holders can visit without the encumbrance of a visa.

This assessment typically draws upon data provided by the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and encompasses a comprehensive array of 199 passports and 227 travel destinations. These indices are frequently updated to accurately mirror evolving visa requirements worldwide. citizenship cip golden passport 

However, it’s vital to discern that these indices employ a straightforward methodology, implicitly assigning equal importance to all destinations by merely tallying the count of countries accessible visa-free for each passport.

This method, while straightforward, does not consider the inherent disparities between destinations. Logically, one might argue that a passport affording visa-free entry to a specific number of developed nations should hold greater value than another that provides the same privilege to a comparable number of developing nations.

In contrast, the new Passport Index takes a more nuanced approach. Within this index, each nation is meticulously assessed and accorded a score out of 10, with the evaluation predominantly influenced by its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) at a weightage of 75%. This factor signifies the nation’s appeal in the context of business and economic activity. Additionally, tourism, representing an informal vote for the most attractive travel destinations, is factored in at 25%. The Passport Index Hustle

It is essential to underscore that the primary objective of the new Index is not to evaluate a nation as a whole, but rather to assess the worth of its passport as a travel document. citizenship cip golden passport 

By concentrating on GDP and tourism as the main determinants, the new Index recognizes that the value of a passport transcends mere accessibility, encapsulating its desirability in both business and leisure pursuits.

5 Takeaways

1. Marketing Origins: The Passport Index originally emerged as a marketing tool for the Citizenship Investment Industry, highlighting its commercial roots.

2. Diverse Evaluation Criteria: Multiple passport indices exist, each employing its own set of criteria to rank passports, leading to varying results and assessments of passport value.

3. The Value of Passport: The central question posed is whether the best passport is one granting access to numerous countries visa-free or one facilitating travel to desired destinations. It’s argued that the latter holds more significance for most travelers.

4. 2023 Intelligent Passport Index: The new Passport Index introduced in 2023 factors in travelers’ actual desires by considering criteria such as GDP and tourism when assessing passport effectiveness and utility.

5. Passport vs. Citizenship: The new Passport Index focuses on evaluating passports as tools for international travel, refraining from rating citizenship itself or ranking places to reside.

Conclusion citizenship cip golden passport 

The world of passport indices is a complex and evolving landscape. It’s evident that the proliferation of passport rankings has resulted in a variety of methodologies and outcomes, making it imperative for individuals and governments to critically assess the relevance and accuracy of these indices. The introduction of the 2023 Intelligent Passport Index adds a nuanced perspective by factoring in criteria like GDP and tourism, recognizing that the value of a passport extends beyond mere accessibility.

However, it’s important to acknowledge the underlying commercial motivation behind these indices, as they primarily serve the purpose of promoting citizenship, residency, or visas. In the end, the choice of which passport to value ultimately depends on the individual traveler’s priorities and destinations of interest.

The Press The Passport Index Hustle

Journalists may not always critically question passport indices for several reasons, although it’s important to note that not all journalists approach these indices uncritically. Here are some factors that may contribute to a lack of critical examination:

A. Lack of Awareness: Some journalists may not be fully aware of the complexities and nuances of passport indices, or may not have the necessary expertise to analyze them critically.

B. Limited Resources: Investigating and critiquing passport indices can be a time-consuming process that requires access to data, expertise in international travel regulations, and the ability to interpret complex methodology. Many newsrooms may not allocate the resources needed for such in-depth analysis. citizenship cip golden passport 

C. Pressures for Quick Reporting: In the fast-paced world of journalism, there is often pressure to produce news quickly. This can lead to a focus on reporting rankings and statistics without delving deeply into the methodologies behind them.

D. Source Credibility: Passport indices are often produced by reputable organizations, and journalists may assume that these organizations have thoroughly vetted their methodologies. As a result, they may not question the credibility of the source.

E. Interest in Clicks and Engagement: Stories related to passport rankings can generate interest and clicks, especially among readers interested in travel and international relations. This may incentivize journalists to report on such indices without critically analyzing them.

F. Lack of Alternative Data: Passport indices are one of the few readily available sources of data on passport strength and travel access. Journalists may use these indices because they lack access to alternative, comprehensive data sources.

G. Complexity of the Subject: Passport indices involve complex methodologies, data analysis, and international relations considerations. Journalists may find it challenging to critically evaluate these indices without specialized knowledge.

Despite these challenges, there are journalists and media outlets that do critically examine passport indices, question their methodologies, and provide a more balanced perspective. However, you will find them rarely asking questions like, “Is there more equality and less unjust when someone can just buy a passport of his desire, while others can not?” or “Is a passport as a commodity desirable?” The Passport Index Hustle

For a broader shift in reporting, it may require greater awareness, resources, and education within the journalism community regarding the intricacies of passport indices and their implications.

What do you think about these indexes, and especially the new one?

Further reading…
Golden Passports and a Professor
Dutch Investigative Video Report (set subtitles to English)