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The 10 Safest Countries in the World


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By Ryan Craggs, Condé Nast Traveler

The Institute for Economics and Peace has released its Global Peace Index for 2018, an annual ranking of the world's safest countries. Overall, the study found, the world is 0.27 percent less peaceful today than it was at this time last year. In fact, according to the institute, the world is the least peaceful it has been in the past ten years (probably not surprising for anyone who reads the news, like, ever). But while world peace has fluctuated over time, one fact has remained constant: the country that has remained at the top of the rankings for the last decade.

[post_ads]To assemble the list, the Institute for Economics and Peace, with help from the Economist Intelligence Unit, ranks 163 nations on "a country’s level of Negative Peace using three domains of peacefulness." Those include ongoing domestic and international conflict; level of harmony or discord within a nation; and indicators related to militarization. Each domain accounts for a host of factors, such as weapon imports and political stability, to give each nation three scores that average for the overall composite, according to the index's methodology.

Below you'll find the full top ten safest countries, along with each country's score (1=most peaceful, 5=least peaceful). Want to read the entire methodology and report in detail? You can find it on GPI's website.

10. Ireland

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.

9. Japan

© Getty Japan's peacefulness extends beyond its serene landscapes.

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. Beyond safety, the country also makes it very easy for travelers to get around, with high-speed and even invisible trains part of a mission to double the number of visitors by 2020.

8. Singapore

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. That means instead of fretting about your well-being, your energy can go towards picking which hawker centers and museums you want to visit first.

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?

6. Canada

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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.

5. Denmark

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.

4. Portugal

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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. Perhaps that's why more people are visiting the country than ever before?

3. Austria

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.

1. Iceland

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?


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Travel - U.S. Daily News: The 10 Safest Countries in the World
The 10 Safest Countries in the World
Travel - U.S. Daily News
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