Despite the name, the territorial nature of early professional wrestling meant that few promotions could actually claim the "World" part of the title, in the sense that the title could potentially be defended against any challenger anywhere in the world. Thus, few belts are considered to be "world championship" belts.
The presence of a title considered to be a World Tag Team Championship is one of the factors that makes its promotion one of the major promotions in professional wrestling. However, it is to be noted that numerous major promotions have top championships that are not considered world championships, and the presence of a world championship in a promotion's shows does not instantly make a promotion a major one, as a World Tag Team Championship may be shared between several promotions.
Due to the variations of team wrestling other World Tag Team Championships may remove the "Tag Team" and replace it with a more suitable term (as in "Trios" or "Six-Man Tag" to reflect a three-wrestler tag team). The name of the promotion is often prepended to the phrase "World Tag Team Championship" as the championship's complete name (as in the WCW World Tag Team, or ECW World Tag Team Championships) - however some are correctly known simply as the "World Tag Team Championship" without qualification, possibly because they are competed for in promotions where another Tag Team Championship is present (as is the case of World Wrestling Entertainment today).
List of World Tag Team Championships
Numerous promotions have claimed their top tag team title belts as "World Tag Team Championships" but are not considered to be world titles. Just like the Heavyweight versions, there is no official universally accepted method of determining what constitutes a world title, there is no way to determine who truly has world title status.
Meanwhile, other belts have recognition as a "world championship" despite not being a "World Heavyweight/Tag Team Championship". These other world titles often include various other classifications, including other weight classes (e.g., World Cruiserweight Championship) or stipulations (e.g., World Television Championship).
Often, subordinate tag team belts to world tag team titles are designated as national, international, regional or stipulation specific titles. Examples of this include:
- The NWA Canadian Tag Team Championship (national title subordinate to the NWA World Tag Team Championship)
- The WWF International Tag Team Championship (international title subordinate to the WWF World Tag Team Championship)
- The WCW Cruiserweight Tag Team Championship (a cruiserweight title subordinate to the WCW World Tag Team Championship).
Active World Tag Team Championships
Tag team titles that have gained World Status by either being defended world wide, or being awarded the status in another fashion.
- IWGP World Tag Team Championship - the top tag team championship recognized by New Japan Pro Wrestling since 1985's IWGP Tag League.
- NWA World Tag Team Championship - various unsanctioned versions of this title existed between 1950 and early 1990s before a tournament was finally held by the National Wrestling Alliance to produce one fully sanctioned tag team title with official World Status. The title was recently used in Total Nonstop Action Wrestling and although it was stripped of its World Title status by PWI not long after it was officially formed, with the recent success of TNA, PWI restored its World Title status officially in its August 2006 issue.
- ROH World Tag Team Championship - Established in 2002 with the development of the new promotion, the title didn't earn World Status until it was defended overseas by then-champions Austin Aries and Roderick Strong.
- WWE's World Tag Team Championship - originally titled the World Wide Wrestling Federation Tag Team Championship, and later the World Wrestling Federation Tag Team Championship. Since the brand extension, the title has become RAW-exclusive, and has also been renamed to the World Tag Team Championship (without "WWE" in its title) after Stephanie McMahon activated a new WWE Tag Team Championship to be defended on WWE's SmackDown brand.
- WWE Tag Team Championship - Exclusive to the SmackDown! brand. Activated as WWE's second tag team title after the 2002 brand extension.
Active but disputed World Tag Team Titles
Other titles claiming the name:
- AJPW Unified World Tag Team Championship - created in 1988 by the unification of the NWA International Tag Team Championship, and the PWF Tag Team Championship (which until that time was the top tag team championship in All Japan Pro Wrestling). However, this title was only given the World title name due to the unification; leaving some fans, who do not recognize the title as a world title, to call it the Double Cup after the two cup-shaped trophies given to the winners in title matches.
- CMLL World Tag Team Championship - established in 1993, the title is called "World" yet has never been defended outside of Mexico.
- CMLL World Trios Championship - established in 1993, the 3 person team title is called "World" yet has never been defended outside of Mexico.
- CZW World Tag Team Championship – Combat Zone Wrestling's tag team title. Claims its World Status as it was defended in several countries as well as America. The championship also changed hands in Japan twice.
- 1PW World Tag Team Championship - established in 2006, the title is called "World" yet has never been defended outside of the United Kingdom.
- PWG World Tag Team Championship - The tag team championship in the Southern California promotion Pro Wrestling Guerrilla. Claims its status as a World Heavyweight title after it was defended on a European Vacation tour of 2006.
- TNA World Tag Team Championship - The tag team championships in Total Nonstop Action Wrestling, created when the NWA stripped the championships from the TNA wrestlers on May 13, 2007. Since the NWA World Tag Team Championship was re-awarded World Championship status due to TNA's success, it is yet to be seen if the TNA World Tag Team Championship will gain world title status, and if the NWA World Tag Team Title will lose it's world title status.
Defunct/Discontinued World Tag Team Titles
- AWA World Tag Team Championship - the top tag team championship of what many consider to be the leading promotion of the 1960s. Leading wrestling magazine Pro Wrestling Illustrated awarded the title World Title Status until 1991. After being defunct from 1991-1996, the title was revived for AWA Superstars of Wrestling however never regained its World Title status.
- WCW World Tag Team Championship - the belt was unified with the WWF World Tag Team Championship in 2001.
- ECW World Tag Team Championship - the title was contested under this name of a World Title, though it was not officially recognized as such until it was defended and changed hands in Japan, then was granted world title status by PWI in July 1999 due to ECW landing a national TV contract with TNN. It was abandoned when ECW declared bankruptcy in April 2001.
- NWA World Six-Man Tag Team Championship - the Six-Man Tag Title was first defended in the Tennessee Mid-America territory from 1974 to 1981. However, it wasn't until Jim Crockett Promotions revived the title in 1984 that it became a sanctioned World Title. The title was abandoned for the last time just before the year 2000.
- WAR World Six-Man Tag Team Championship - A six man tag title created in the mid 1990's, but never defended outside of Japan. Abandoned when the promotion ended in June 2006.
- WWWA World Tag Team Championship - the World Women's Wrestling Association's top doubles championship in All Japan Women's Pro-Wrestling (AJW) from 1970 until it closed in 2005.
- XPW World Tag Team Championship - established in 2002, the title was never officially made a world title and was abandoned one year later.