The red and gold British passport is one of the world’s best travel documents.

According to the Henley Passport Index, a ranking of the world’s 199 passports according to the number of countries offering their holders visa-free entry, the UK passport placed fifth as of March, 2019. This means that UK citizens may choose from among 185 global destinations for travel sans visa.

A World of Choices

With so much of the world open and inviting a convenient, hassle-free visit, how does the lucky UK traveler narrow down the choices?

Much depends on purposes, priorities, and preferences in regard to the planned journey. For the purposes of this brief advisory, let’s assume a trip oriented to pleasure/leisure, beauty and interest point visits, adventure and activity, dining and shopping. Add the desire for a level of safety, economy, convenience, and comfort that allows the trip to be fun, relaxing, and easy.

With these parameters in mind, here are 3 great visa-free travel destinations for UK passport holders:

The United States of America

The USA tops the list with limitless potential for exploration, convenient and economical access from the UK, and relatively low costs within the country. Visa-less entry for UK citizens is easily arranged via the Electronic System for Travel Authorisation (ESTA) program, and professional agencies like Application ESTA are available to make the ESTA application process a breeze.

The USA certainly meets all of our travel criteria. Without going into detail in regard to the many well-known attractions and amenities available there, consider two major advantages that are often overlooked:

  • Besides offering within its own borders huge and incredibly varied geographic and sociocultural terrains for exploration, the USA is a convenient overland gateway to Mexico and points south as well as Canada and the far North.

  • Road trip! No other country offers similar potential for extensive, interesting, safe, cheap, and easy exploration by motor vehicle. The popularity of traveling the USA via a rented recreational vehicle is growing among visitors. Mostly Europeans, they do what so many Americans do – take a home on wheels and hit the highways and byways to experience the real USA.

The Philippines

Perhaps a surprising choice at first glance, but this archipelago of about 7,641 islands has a lot going for it. Visitors to the Philippines find economical travel opportunities, amazing cultural diversity, good seafood and local dishes, and plenty of room to roam. The key is to depart Manila and other such teeming metro areas and get into the provincial regions and outer islands. Two highlights that boost the Philippines’ ranking:

  • The place is extremely exotic – palm trees, jungles, volcanoes, remote beaches, hidden stone-age tribes, and rare creatures. Yet English can be used for nearly all communication and business purposes. This makes for favorable travel conditions, particularly for those wishing to combine an adventurous experience with safety and ease.

  • Incredible ocean and beach activities. Accommodation is cheap, sugar white sand is common, and many areas retain a very natural, nearly unexplored feel. The Southern islands in particular present unrivaled diving and snorkeling; in some areas, the underwater scenery exactly matches the best ocean/coral reef nature films.


British travelers have long familiarity with this North African country. Some might say Morocco scores low on our travel preference checklist, particularly as one departs the beaten path to enter the mountainous regions and fringes of the Sahara. But that can also be viewed as a spicy edge that reminds the traveler that this is indeed Africa.

Morocco makes the list not only because it is interestingly foreign, reasonably priced, blessed with a nice coastline, and long-established as a great destination. It also offers one travel plus no other destination so exotic can claim: You can drive there from the UK. And Morocco can be viewed in the same light as the USA: As the travel gateway to a massive continent.

Take Off

Some travelers may consider these 3 great visa-free destinations as only the beginning. Others can imagine years spent exploring any one of them without running out of things to do and see. Now that you have some good ideas, all that is left to do is pack your bags. Happy visa-free adventuring!

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