The World Factbook

The World Factbook provides basic intelligence on the history, people, government, economy, energy, geography, environment, communications, transportation, military, terrorism, and transnational issues for 266 world entities.

Travel the globe with CIA’s World Factbook.

What's New

In the World entry, the airport traffic numbers in the Transportation category have been updated with preliminary 2020 data and they present a dramatically different scenario due to COVID-19 restrictions. Passenger traffic through the top ten airports declined 45.7% in 2020 and for all airports globally dropped am amazing 64.6%. Atlanta, which had been the busiest passenger airport for more than 20 years, is now number two. Seven of the top ten airports for passenger traffic are in China and the other three are in the US. Most of the new rankings are due to domestic flights in China; when global traffic opens up again the old passenger patterns should reemerge.

In contrast, air cargo traffic in the top ten airports grew by 3% in 2020 and the rank order was largely unchanged. Memphis, TN surpassed Hong Kong to become the busiest cargo airport. All told, the top ten cargo airports handled 28% of global air cargo.

VIEW ALL UPDATES

Explore Countries

Explore All Countries

World Travel Facts

Travel more intelligently with The World Factbook Travel Facts. Here’s what you should know about each country before you go.

One-page Country Summaries

Pressed for time? Check out our one-page summaries for essential information on each country.

Flags of the World

Every flag has a story. View flags of all the world’s countries and territories to learn the symbolism behind each design.

Country Comparisons

Love data? The World Factbook has over 65 rank order pages that compare country data in specific fields.

World Factbook Is Just the Start. Apply for a Job at CIA.

Curious about other cultures? Want to use your knowledge to help keep America safe? Make a career out of learning about the world.

Browse Jobs