68 countries Ugandans can visit with no visas

Saturday December 15 2018

Launch. The Internal Affairs Minister, Gen

Launch. The Internal Affairs Minister, Gen Jejje Odong (left) launches the first batch of Electronic passports (E-passports), a fortnight after they were announced as the next form of travel document for Ugandan nationals on December 4. FILE PHOTO 

By Isaac Mufumba

Kampala. Ugandans intending to travel abroad have at least 68 countries, 15 of them in Africa, they can travel to without a visa.
The countries in Africa are Benin, Botswana, Burundi, Eritrea, Eswatini (Swaziland), the Gambia, Kenya, Lesotho, Malawi, Mauritius, Rwanda, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
Those outside Africa include Antigua and Barbuda, the Bahamas, Barbados, Belize and Dominica. Others are St Vincent and Grenadines, Vanuatu, St Kitts and Nevis, Jamaica, Granada, Fiji and Micronesia.
Those in other parts of the world are Singapore, the Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia and Hong Kong in China. But some of these free-entry visa countries have limits on the length of stay.
For instance, Malaysia allows one to stay for at least two months, but the Philippines allows only one a months’ stay and Singapore only 15 days.
Zimbabwe, Zambia and Tanzania allow a maximum stay of 90 days, while Eswatini gives a maximum of 30 days, but extendable. There are also at least 14 countries on the African continent where visas can be obtained on arrival.

Conditions vary
However, while the conditions for getting such a visa may vary, most of the countries that issue them on arrival would require a visitor to have a valid passport or travel document, a return air-ticket and confirmation of hotel booking and proof that one has enough money to spend.
Countries that give visas upon arrival are Cape Verde, the Comoros, Ethiopia, Djibouti, Gabon, Guinea Bissau, Madagascar, Mauritania, Mozambique, Senegal, Somalia, South Sudan, Senegal, and Togo.
Others are Bolivia, Cambodia, Cuba, Iran, Laos, Macao, Maldives, Myanmar (Burma), Nepal, Nicaragua, Palau, Qatar, St Lucia, Samoa, Timor-Leste and Tuvalu.
However, Malaysia allows one at least two-months stay. Philippines allows only 15 days and Singapore one month.
Algeria, Angola, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, the Central African Republic, Congo, DR Congo, the Ivory Coast, Egypt, and Equatorial Guinea, require visas before one gets to there. Others are Guinea, Liberia, Libya, Mali, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Sao Tome and Principe, South Africa, Sudan and Tunisia.

Uganda’s passport ranked 11th in Africa

The 2018 Passport Index has placed the Ugandan passport in the 11th position in Africa and 64th among passports of 198 nations of the world.
Uganda and Morocco share a passport power rank of 65, but are below East African neighbours Kenya and Tanzania, who lie in the eighth and ninth positions with respective passport ranked 62 and 63.
The global passport power ranking is arrived at based on an assessment of the visa restrictions or visa-free score.

Neighbouring Kenya
Kenya allows nationals of 39 countries to visit it without a visa and nationals of 32 other countries can obtain visas on arrival.
It is nationals of 127 other countries of the world that require visas to visit Kenya.
Nationals of 42 countries do not require visas to visit Tanzania and those from another 28 countries can get the visas on arrival, while nationals of 128 nations require visas to enter the country.
Uganda is not doing as well as its two neighbours as citizens of 130 countries require visas to enter the country.
It only allows nationals of 35 countries to visit without visas and gives nationals of 33 countries visas on arrival.

Top positions
The top four positions are occupied by Seychelles, Mauritius, South African and Botswana with passport rankings of 27, 44, 57 and 58 respectively.
At 133, Seychelles has the highest number of countries whose nationals it allows to enter its borders without visas.
It also gives nationals of 33 nations visas on arrival and requires nationals from only 62 countries of the world to have visas.
Mauritius, which is in second place requires nationals of 66 countries to have visas, but allows nationals of 99 countries to visit without visas and gives nationals of 33 countries visas on arrival.
South Africa, which is in third place, requires nationals from at least 100 countries to first get visas before visiting, but is visa-free for nationals of 63 countries and gives nationals of 35 countries visas on arrival.
Botswana makes it incumbent upon nationals from 122 nations to have visas before visiting it, but is visa free for nationals of 46 countries and gives nationals of 28 nations visas on arrival.