The Africa Visa Openness Index

The Africa Visa Openness Index measures how open African countries are when it comes to visas by looking at what they ask of citizens from other countries in Africa when they travel.

It aims to show at a glance which countries are facilitating travel for citizens of other countries and how; whether they allow people to travel to their country without a visa, if travellers can get a visa on arrival in the country, or if visitors need to get a visa before travel. Data on visa openness was collected in June and July 2018. The primary source of information was the International Air Transport Association (IATA).

The Africa Visa Openness Index is tracking changes in country scores over time to show which countries are making improvements that support freer movement of people across Africa.

In future editions, the Report will look at how countries are facilitating visa openness by cutting time, reducing costs, or simplifying the visa process as well as how far a visitor’s experience on the ground matches up to the agreements or visa policies in place on paper.


The higher a country’s score in the Index, the more visaopen it is and the higher it ranks. Scores range from 0 – 1 (highest).

Index categories:

  • n Visa required
  • n Visa on arrival
  • n No visa

Each category is weighted based on its degree of openness. For example, a ‘no visa’ result is weighted by 1 (high openness), ‘visa on arrival’ is weighted by 0.8 and a ‘visa required’ by 0.

No need for any visa to visit Benin. The 2018 edition of the African Development Bank’s (AfDB) African Visa Aperture Index Report greets the country for making a spectacular leap, opening without any visa requirements to all African citizens . He is therefore ranked first from 27th place in 2017 to first place in 2018.

The 2018 report of Africa Visa Openness indicates that the country has increased its visa transparency score by 200%. Benin is the best-performing country in the 2018 report of the visa transparency index in Africa with liberal access (visa-free) or visa on arrival to Africans of 100% against 33% in 2017 and 30% in 2016 The first-ever ranking of the visa transparency index in Africa, Benin is the second largest country on the continent, and the first French-speaking country, to offer visa-free access to Africans.

In total, citizens from some 50 countries of the continent can obtain their sesame once they arrive on Beninese soil. “Inspired by the experience of Rwanda, I came to the decision that Benin will no longer require visas to Africans,” President Patrice Talon’s remarks particularly marked the AfDB experts.

This decision of the Head of State suspends the visa for incoming Africans in Benin for a period of 90 days. In addition, in April 2018, he initiated the e-visa reform to simplify the process of visa entry and short-stay visas to non-Africans.

African countries are becoming more open to each other.

The duo Seychelles and Benin are pursued by Rwanda and Togo, who are in 3rd position. Zimbabwe was also in the top 20 by introducing an on-arrival visa policy for SADC members. The report clearly demonstrates the great momentum of the countries of the West African sub-region in the march towards free movement.

In the top 10, 5 countries are West African. The 10 most open countries and the 20 most open visa countries continue to improve their average score, reflecting the more liberal visa policies of countries. In addition, 43 countries improved or maintained their score. This year, according to experts from the Bad, visa access has improved in countries in 2018, with a few more countries offering free access, while the number of countries with visa arrival is in force remained the same.


Source : Africa Visa Openness

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