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TRAVEL GUIDES #4 - GOING FROM U.S. TO ANY 220/230/240 VOLT COUNTRY

Many appliances are what they call "multi-voltage" or "dual-voltage". If you have an electrical appliance that you want to use in a foreign country (where the voltage can be 220/230/240) and the appliance is multi-voltage (says input 100-240 volts) or dual voltage (says input 125/250 volts) you usually only need a plug adapter. The input voltage (and the watts or amps) information can usually be found on a charger but it could be anywhere on the appliance. It is often on the main body of the appliance in the same color where it can be difficult to see. Some dual voltage appliances have switches and some others are self-sensing and switch to the higher volts for you automatically.


We state that you usually only need plug adapters. We don't say definitely on purpose. There are entirely too many appliances manufactured for us to know if some have limitations or restrictions put on them. If you aren't sure contact a tech rep with the manufacturer or your retailer.


If you determine that you only need plug adapters take a look at our
World Electric Guide. It is a list of all the countries in the world showing their voltage, frequency and, when you click on the country name, it shows which plug adapter(s) are needed there. Many countries have more than one configuration so there are often more than one adapter required.


Dual voltage appliances are extremely convenient when traveling. They allow you to avoid the weight, hassle and having to deal with heavy transformers and voltage converters. They save money also because most are ungrounded and ungrounded plug adapters are less expensive and more compact than grounded adapters. Dual Voltage Appliances can be bought here and a complete set of ungrounded adapters, such as our AK-UNGR Kit, can be had for under ungrounded adapter kit AK-UNGR is available here $20.00. All of the Dual Voltage Appliances that we sell require just ungrounded plug adapters and the ungrounded adapter kit AK-UNGR is available here


If an appliance is not multi or dual voltage but you still want to use it when you travel, you will need a transformer or a combination transformer / solid state voltage converter. Any appliance containing any electronic components such as laptops, chargers, some hair straighteners and curling irons, etc. will require an actual transformer while many non-electronic appliances (most, but not all, hair dryers, travel irons, most curling irons, etc) can just use the solid state voltage converters and don't usually require a transformer. Unfortunately, most appliances (not necessarily hair dryers) have some type of electronic feature. Even automatic shut-off usually requires electronics.


If your appliance is not multi or dual voltage, but you still want to use it when you travel, there are voltage converters like the VCSP or the VCAP that can perform both functions with some restrictions. These voltage converters can handle both electronic appliances up to 50 watts and non-electronic appliances up to 2100 watts. Most small electronic appliances are under 50 watts. Most hair dryers are under 2100 watts. We said most, not all, so be sure to check your appliance or with the manufacturer to be sure. The VCSP and VCAP combination voltage converters all have some limitations on their use. Follow instructions carefully. Usually they can only be used for short time periods and only with ungrounded (2 pin plugs), non-electronic devices or appliances. Transformers usually have no such limitations other than to be sure you don't exceed its watt rating.


If you want to use a surge protector for your appliance while overseas, you definitely want to consider one of these surge protectors most of which are rated up to 250 volts A US surge protector cannot be used since they are designed for maximum voltage of 125 volts. We also have power strips if you just need to provide more outlets than most rooms provide


If your appliance requires a transformer and needs more than the maximum 50 watts available with the VCSP and VCAP you will need one of these Transformer Store transformers. As you can see, these transformers are available in sizes from 100 watts up to 8000 watts and in a variety of types which may or may not apply to you. All appliances have the watts (or sometimes amps) they require posted somewhere on them. The appliance may list the power required as so many amps (for example, .5 A) in which case you can multiply volts times amps to find the watts (V x A = W). In the example .5 A times 120 volts equals 60 watts. It may also show the amps as so many mA (milli-amps). In this example, 50 mA converts (50 divided by 1000 = ..05) to .05 amps. In the same formula, .05 times 120 (volts) = 6 watts.


Differences in international electricity and what it means to you when you travel. This world travel guide covers some of the important issues without overwhelming you with more information than you actually need.
Bahamas, Barbados, Barbuda, Bermuda, Canada, Cayman Islands, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Guam, Haiti, Honduras, Jamaica, Japan, Mexico, Micronesia, Montserrat, Nicaragua, Palau, Puerto Rico, Saba and Saba (St.Eustatius), Taiwan, Trinidad, Tobago, Turks/Caicos Islands, United States of America, Venezuela, and Virgin Islands
Bahamas, Barbados, Barbuda, Bermuda, Canada, Cayman Islands, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Guam, Haiti, Honduras, Jamaica, Japan, Mexico, Micronesia, Montserrat, Nicaragua, Palau, Puerto Rico, Saba and Saba (St.Eustatius), Taiwan, Trinidad, Tobago, Turks/Caicos Islands, United States of America, Venezuela, and Virgin Islands
These travel guides cover problems you might experience in other countries of the world when trying to use your U.S. electrical appliances
You are not alone in your confusion about International Electricity and what it means to you when you travel. This world travel guide contains some very common questions that should prove helpful in determining what you actually may or may not need.
World travel guide you will want to review if moving US/Canada 110/120 volt appliances to a 220/230/240 volt country. This world travel guide covers those issues necessary for you to decide which appliances make sense to be relocated with you.
This world travel guide explains what power converters are and describes the application of the various products available for travel with U.S. electrical appliances.




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