The 10 Safest Countries in the World
The Institute for Economics and Peace has released its Global Peace Index for 2018, an annual ranking of the world’s safest countries.
level of harmony or discord within a nation; and indicators related to militarization.
Below you’ll find the full top ten safest countries, along with each country’s score (1=most peaceful, 5=least peaceful). You can find it on GPI’s website.
The Republic of Ireland remained in the number ten spot with a 1.393 overall score (slightly more peaceful than last year), netting its marks for low political instability and political terror, and faring well in U.N. peacekeeping funding. Whether you’re just generally into beautiful places, or smaller islands specifically, the Emerald Isle has something for you—and now you know you can sleep easy at night.
Japan jumped up a spot this year with its score of 1.391, getting high marks on the peace index for its low number of homicides and limited access to weapons.
Singapore jumped all the way from its number 27 spot in 2017’s list to land in the top ten this year, earning a score of 1.382. The island city-state earns bragging rights with enviably low scores in domestic and international conflict, plus societal safety.
7. Czech Republic
The country that was home to the Velvet Revolution got 1.381 points for low per-capita military spending and relatively few acts of violent crime. Now, won’t you please start calling it Czechia?
Despite being larger than its neighbor to the south, Canada’s 1.372 score ranks much higher than the United States (we’re at 121st this year…womp). Try visiting one the country’s most friendly cities or checking out Toronto on a stopover with Air Canada.
Denmark regularly ranks among the happiest countries in the world, and its 1.353 score says it’s also one of the safest—other than a minor conflict with Canada over an uninhabited island, that is. These days, the main source of conflict is whether its better to summer on the country’s northern coast or soak up some hygge during the winter.
In 2016, Condé Nast Traveler declared Lisbon the most underrated city in Europe. The Global Peace Index only underlines that point: Portugal’s relative affordability and beauty combined with its safety score of 1.318 make it a must-visit.
Robert Frost wrote that “good fences make good neighbors,” and that’s true of Austria, whose neighbors (including Germany and the Czech Republic) also scored high on the index. Austria scored 1.274, getting points for low weapon imports and consistently peaceful elections.
2. New Zealand
New Zealand may be one of the world’s best destinations for gasp-inducing adventure travel, but you’re more likely to be shocked by stunning beach views than by internal conflict or violence, which contributed to the Kiwis’ score of 1.192.
For the tenth year in a row, Iceland tops the safety index. The Nordic nation scored low points for homicides, number of people in jail, and terror acts, earning a 1.096 overall. Another bonus: Being an island makes it somewhat harder to have border disputes. What more incentive do you need to jump in a thermal bath already?