What Is the Best Travel Adapter for 2024?

Lisa_Shettle
edited February 15 in PC Tech

Whether traveling for business or pleasure, you’ll probably be packing a variety of electronic devices. And if you’re going to another country, chances are the power outlets will be different from the ones you have back home. As a result, you’ll need a travel adapter to plug your devices in while abroad. However, with 15 different plug types in use worldwide and 70 billion travel adapter listings online, it can be hard to know where to start. Here we walk you through the process of finding the right travel adapter and reveal our top picks for 2024.  

What Are Power Plug Types? 

The first step to shopping for a travel adapter is understanding the different power plug types. Simply put, power plugs are devices that draw electricity from a main power supply to the circuitry of an appliance. This happens when the prongs from the appliance are inserted into the holes of the power plug, also known as the outlet. For this to work, the prongs and the outlet need to match, or an adapter needs to be used to make them compatible.  

The configuration of an outlet is determined by the power plug type, as is the voltage. Each plug type is identified by a letter, ranging from A to O, and different types are used in different countries throughout the world.  

Most Common Power Plug Types 

Of the 15 power plug types currently available, types A and C are the most frequently used. Types A and B are used in the United States, while type C is used throughout Europe and type G is used in the UK.  

Let’s take a closer look at the most common plug types: 

Type A 

  • Used in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, and Japan 
  • 2 flat parallel pins 
  • 100–127 volts 
  • 15 amp 
  • Not grounded 

Type B 

  • Used in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, and Japan 
  • 2 flat parallel pins, plus a grounding pin 
  • 100–127 volts 
  • 15 amp 
  • Grounded 

Type C 

  • Used in Europe, Asia, and South America 
  • 2 round pins 
  • 220–240 volts 
  • 2.5 amp 
  • Not grounded 

Type G 

  • Used in the UK, Ireland, Malta, Malaysia, and Singapore 
  • 3 round pins 
  • 220–240 volts 
  • 13 amp 
  • Grounded 

Things to Consider When Choosing a Travel Adapter 

Keeping the plug types in mind, the most important thing to consider when choosing a travel adapter is, of course, your destination. If you travel frequently or will be visiting multiple countries, you can either buy a universal adapter or separate plug adapters for each type. Universal adapters work on multiple plug types, typically the four most common, but they tend to be bulkier than standard adapters. Travel adapters can also be purchased in multi-piece sets, which allow you to bring only the plugs you need but have fewer added features. 

Your destination will also determine if you need a voltage converter. Separate from a travel adapter, a voltage converter changes the electrical current from the plug to match the voltage required for your devices. This generally applies if you are traveling to or from the U.S., which uses a lower voltage than most other countries in the world. 

Other things to consider when choosing a travel adapter include the price, durability, and number of USB ports, as well as the maximum power output and charging speed. You should also think about the devices you will be plugging into the adapter. For example, if you have a smartphone, tablet, or laptop your requirements may be different than if you plan to use high-powered hair tools that you brought from home. 

Best Travel Adapters for 2024 

With those factors in mind, here are the best travel adapters for 2024: 

Epicka Universal Travel Adapter (Best Universal Travel Adapter) 

Featuring the three most common international plugs along with a U.S.-style one, this universal adapter works in more than 200 countries around the world. It has five USB ports (four USB-A and one USB-C) and a total maximum power output of 5.6 amps, meaning it can quickly charge up to six devices simultaneously. It also comes with a replaceable fuse and two spares to use in the event of an accident or short circuit. 

A few things to note: At 2.8 x 2 x 2 inches and 5.1 ounces, the Epicka adapter is relatively compact but still larger than most basic plug adapters. Also, while the maximum voltage is 240V, the adapter was designed for 110V devices and needs a voltage converter for high-powered appliances like hair dryers and flat irons. 

Ceptics International Worldwide Travel Plug Adapter 5-Piece Set (Best Plug Adapter) 

Smaller, simpler, and less expensive than a universal travel adapter, this five-piece set includes separate adapters for the three most common international plugs, a U.S. plug, and an additional plug used in some European countries. Tiny and extremely portable, each adapter can fit easily into a carry-on bag and travelers only need to bring the ones they’ll need. With a maximum power output of six amps, these adapters still pack a bunch. However, a separate multiport charger is needed if you want to plug in several devices at once. Like the Epicka option, this adapter should be paired with a voltage converter when used with 220–240V appliances.  

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About Lisa Shettle: Lisa is a writer, editor, and content product manager with over 15 years of experience. She has a special interest in travel and tech writing, marketing, and AI. She is based in the United States. 

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