Before taking your next big trip overseas, you must ensure you have a top-of-the-line travel adapter. (And that your passport is up to date!) That’s because each major region uses a different jack to plug devices into outlets. Without a travel adapter, you won’t be able to charge any of the devices you bring. And being able to charge a camera battery or a phone could be the difference that makes a good trip great (or keeps a lousy trip from getting worse).
But before we get into our list of the best travel adapters below, there’s one more thing to know about traveling and charging in another country: Most travel adapters will not adjust the voltage coming from the outlet. That matters because the wrong voltage could damage your devices. That means it’s critical to double-check the expected voltage in a given place before jet setting off into the sunset.
In North America and Central America, outlets typically provide about 110-120 volts, while in Europe, Asia, Australia and Africa, outlets typically put out around 220-240 volts. Thankfully, modern hotels, used to accommodating American travelers, will frequently have places you can charge up (if the outlets in your room aren’t American themselves). Also, most computer chargers can adapt voltage, thanks to that chunky brick part on every computer charger cable.
You’ll likely be OK with only a travel adapter, but the more far-flung you get and the less formal your accommodations become, the more likely you’ll need a converter in addition to an adapter. But don’t sweat it, we’ve included some excellent adapter-converter options too.
Now that you’re armed with the basics of charging and traveling check out a few great travel adapters below.
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1. EPICKA Universal Travel Adapter
The EPICKA Universal Travel Adapter has everything you want and more in a universal adapter. It has different plugs for every outlet and a female jack for any plug. That means you can put any plug into the adapter and adapt it to any outlet, whether you’re an American in Australia or a European in the U.K. It also features four USB ports and 1 USB Type C port, so you can charge six devices simultaneously.
It also comes with a bevy of safety features, including overload protection. Alas, it doesn’t convert voltage, but as we said, most travel adapters don’t do that.
2. JOOMFEEN Travel Adapter
We like the JOOMFEEN Travel Adapter because it’s simple and cheap. If you don’t plan on charging six things at once, there’s no reason to spend money like you are. With three charging ports, including an AC outlet and two USB charging ports, you should easily be able to charge up any necessary devices. It also has some fuse protection and additional safety features, making it a pretty solid adapter with a more trustworthy cheap price because it’s less complicated.
3. Easton Inc Voltage Converter and Universal Travel Adapter
If you want to be extra safe when traveling, pick up a travel adapter/converter like the Easton Inc Voltage Converter and Universal Travel Adapter. You plug the converter into the wall using the included adapters, and voila, you can now safely use heavier-duty items through the three AC ports or the USB and USB-C jacks. It’s fairly compact for handling converting, and the many plugs mean you can plug in once and never have to worry about getting the proper charge during your trip.
4. HYTED Travel Adapter and Converter Combo
MOST COMPACT ADAPTER-CONVERTER
For a converter closer to the size of simple travel adapters, the HYTED Travel Adapter and Converter Combo is as pared down as it gets. That does include some tradeoffs, such as the capability only to accept American-style plugs. But it can be flicked between plain adapting or adapting + converting, so it can safely handle smaller and larger devices. So if you need a converter but only anticipate needing a single plug, go for the HYTED adapter. It won’t let you down or weigh you down.
5. Protege All in One Adapter
This all-in-one adaptor with a USB port is one of the most versatile travel adaptors, offering great value and a travel-friendly compact option since it combines four of the most common adapter plug configurations in one. Safely charge up to four tablets and smartphones with this multifunctional adaptor, whether at home or overseas.
6. Apple World Travel Adapter Set
BEST FOR APPLE PRODUCTS
If you own all Apple everything, you’ll appreciate this World Travel Adapter Kit, which will charge your devices around the world without hassles. With seven AC plugs with prongs that fit different outlets worldwide, these products will directly support outlets everywhere from Japan to Europe. Although it can’t power non-Apple products, one buyer says, “This is one of the things you need for sure if you’re a MacBook user. Definitely useful!”
7. Ceptics World Power Plug Adapter Set
BEST ADAPTOR SET
If you’re looking for a set, consider this comprehensive kit containing all the essentials. Rather than getting a giant brick that’s hard to understand, consider these seven plugs that slide directly over the plug to adapt it. This kit comes with a carrying case, making it even more portable. It can handle up to 240 volts, and one customer reports that it was also effective for hair straighteners and curling irons.
8. FLIGHT 001 5-In-1 Adapter
Even the best travel adaptors can sometimes be confusing, which is why this color-coded 5-in-1 adaptor is the ultimate travel hack. The color-blocking allows you to differentiate adaptors easily, and the box displays a list of colors on the side of the box with corresponding countries. Plus, they all connect, making for a compact solution that takes up minimal space. The most user-friendly adaptor on the market.
9. Twelve South PlugBug Duo Adapter/Charger
BEST FOR MACBOOK OWNERS
Keeping that MacBook powered can be essential. The PlugBug Duo snaps onto a MacBook adaptor and allows you to charge three devices using just one socket. It also powers two additional USB-powered devices, including the iPhone, iPad and Apple Watch. With five of the most popular AC plugs included, the PlugBug helps you ”skinny down the travel kit,” as one reviewer puts it.
10. RapidX Wireless Phone Pods & Adapter
Although its price tag is a little higher, this is one of the best travel adaptors that uses magnetic technology to charge up to two phones. Just place your devices on the pods, which connect. You can connect up to five pods, and it only uses a single cable. Each pod contains a USB-C and charging indicator that lets you know when your device is good to go.
11. Dandelion Travel Adapter
MOST STYLISH PICK
Although most travel adaptors get the job done, many look like an ugly brick. This gold and white one is a bit more polished than many options. It charges up to three devices at once, and there are no fragile slider knobs or minuscule levers — just rotate the face, and the plug prongs will switch. Arrives in an equally stylish pouch.