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Top 10 most well-travelled countries

13 July 2018

We love to travel and, though we'd hate to assume, we guess that you do too otherwise you probably wouldn't find yourself pursuing these blogs! As this beautiful summer wears on, showing little signs of abating (hurrah!) we find ourselves in the office (boo) looking longingly out of the window and wishing we hadn't used up all our holiday allowance on hibernating under quilts during the never-ending winter of 2017/18. And this made us wonder, which country's citizens make the most of their travel opportunities? In essence, which nation is the most well-travelled? After a little research we have a top ten, and the results may just surprise you as much as they surprised us, as it's not necessarily the countries with the highest GDPs that are the largest international sophisticates; poor America with its measly ten days of annual leave doesn't stand a chance and unfortunately us Brits are missing out too, falling foul of the kind of travel restrictions that come part and parcel with being an island nation. But let's not delay our journey any longer however, it's time to find out who holds the top spot and all the positions before that, beginning with…

10. Albania. That's right, the country with an unfathomable loyalty to Norman Wisdom has edged into 10th place, which is ironic seeing as it's also a destination that's growing in popularity for travellers searching out that famous 'road less travelled' Robert Frost was always going on about. But with 12 public holidays alongside 20 statutory holiday days, it's easy to see where they find the time for the 1.36 international trips each citizen takes on average a year.

9. Denmark. We seem to be on more familiar ground here, with many Scandinavian countries placing highly on other lists such as, 'world's happiest nations' and 'countries with dogs named after them' (ok, so we made that one up, but the first one is definitely true). In Denmark, people take approximately 1.40 foreign holidays, understandable when you consider that only 2% of employees work more than 50 hours per week and dedicate 66% of their days to 'personal care and leisure activities'. Jealous? Yeah, us too.

8. Switzerland. Cuckoo clocks, chocolate, skiing, why would anyone ever want to leave I hear you ask? Well, it's because they can afford it. Household incomes in Switzerland rank way above global averages, and to cap it off the Swiss also get up to four weeks of leave in which to enjoy their 1.42 yearly international holidays.

7. Singapore. Singapore may be small, but don't underestimate it. With the third highest national GDP in the world and water-tight tax secrecy laws, this is another wealthy country making the most of its money. It probably doesn't hurt that Singapore International Airport has been voted the best of its kind in the world either; if the people of Singapore had to experience security at Luton Airport, they might not have made their 1.44 trips a year.

6. Ireland. Irish citizens also travel abroad on average 1.44 times a year. Maybe it's all that rain.

5. Finland. The Finns have a slightly different holiday quota system than we might be familiar with; for every month worked they can earn between two and two and a half holiday days which adds up to between 24-30 days per year and they sure make the most of them. Not only do they take around 1.46 holidays a year, they also only spend an average of £638 for them!

4. Sweden. They might be out of the world cup, (editor's note - so are England now!) but there's still plenty about the Swedish lifestyle for us to be envious of, from six-hour working days to 480 days of shared parental leave. Oh and of course, their designated 25 days of holiday allowing them to jet off on 1.5 foreign holidays a year.

3. Hungary. Not often at the forefront of many social revolutions, Hungarians can show off the holiday snaps from their 1.62 annual trips with pride, and what's even more impressive is just how much they spend on each - approximately £187. The country is renowned for living by the motto, 'work to live not live to work' and takes its work/life balance very seriously, with only 4% of residents working 50 hours a week or more.

2. Luxembourg. This small principality sandwiched between its bigger, bossier cousins Germany, France and Belgium, has something to boast about that its neighbours cannot. 2.56 holidays abroad a year. And the amount they spend is also pretty impressive, with most citizens spending an average of £4,500 per person on travel abroad every year. Its small stature might actually be the route of its success however; a population of under 600,000 means the country enjoys a higher quality of life, higher salaries (which explains those holiday price tags) and longer life expectancy, with bolstered social security measures looking after its citizens well into retirement.

1. Hong Kong. It seems Hong Kong has been doing just fine without us over the past 21 years thank you very much, with residents being the most well-travelled people in the world. Boasting 12 annual bank holidays and one rest day legally required for every seven days worked - across all sectors - the Hong Kongese have enough free time to rack up a sky-high total of 11.4 holidays EVERY YEAR. We're not sure about you, but perhaps it's time to relocate…

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