10 Best Travel Adapters & Converters for your international trip
You’ll probably agree with me when I say that carrying a growing number of chargers and wires is a pain.
As annoying as it is to forget a charger, it’s probably equally annoying when you need a different type of adapter for each new country.
To top it off, different countries have different voltages and socket types (usually ~120 ~230V).
Since we don’t live in an ideal world, travel adapters are a necessity, and our list will help you choose from the cream of the crop.
A good travel adapter typically works in most, if not all, countries—but a great one enables quick charging, caters to multiple devices, protects those devices, and reduces the number of charging plugs you need to carry.
10 Best Travel Adapters in 2020
To save you time, we’ve done the research, scoured the web, and come up with our list of the best travel power adapters. Please check the comparison table below the list to see which ones convert voltage.
1. EPICKA All in 1 adapter/ USB Charger
Outlets: 1 AC + 4 USB + 1 USB type C
The new design by Epicka is at the top of our list thanks to its versatility with respect to its size.
Weight: 2.8 x 2 x 2 inches
Size: 5.6 ounces
It's not often you find a pocket-sized adapter that caters to six different devices. The Epicka is quite well-designed and will latch onto your wall socket quite well, unlike some other adapters that loosen up the second any weight is applied. This practically weightless option is great for those who like to travel light and travel far. It comes in a small pouch where you can even tuck away small USBs if need be.
The device doesn't offer much in the way of voltage conversion, but hey, it really packs a punch for its size. It has a couple of 2A charging slots which allow for fast charging. For the quickest charge, it's better to plug in no more than two or three devices at the same time. It has four pin types catering to 90% of the countries around the globe. The USB type-C really makes the difference in the newer version compared to the earlier Epicka we previously featured on our list.
- Superbly versatile for its size
- USB type-C
- Inexpensive for its features
- Good build quality
- Doesn't convert voltage
2. BESTEK Universal Travel Adapter/ Converter
Outlets: 3 AC, 4 USB
The first of the two BESTEKs on our list is a feature-packed travel adapter. It has three AC power sockets, which are reasonably well-spaced, along with four USB outlets for charging phones and other devices like smartwatches. In addition to all these routine features, this model has a handy LED light. It also has a cooling fan built in to make sure the device stays cool even when charging a whole host of devices.
Weight: 1.2 pounds
Dimensions: 6 x 3 x 1.6 inches
The kicker with this option is that you only have three converter pins for the UK, AU, and EU. If you are traveling to countries like India which require a rounded pin, you’ll have to buy that separately.
The input voltage is from 90 to 240V, which means it can convert voltage. All the output sockets are at 110V. The Besktek also has surge and short circuit protection features, making it a very safe choice. Because of the heat, users report that this unit can make a bit of noise. It's not a dealbreaker (for us at least) since it's quite mild if you sleep two or more feet away. Overall, this is a well-built travel adapter that comes packed with awesome features. You can easily just make use of the three pins separately too.
- Versatile since you can use the adapters by themselves
- Many ports
- Can convert voltage
- A bit expensive
- Can be slightly noisy
3. Syncwire USB Wall Charger with Adapters
Outlets: 4 USB
The Syncwire is definitely our pick for the best travel adapter for smaller devices like phones and tablets. This lightweight USB charger plug offers some amazing benefits over a simple converter pin.
Weight: 6.72 oz
Dimensions: 2.24” x 1.65” x 2.44”
It has alternate 1A (great for phones) and 2.4A slots, which are perfect for tablets and other devices. What we really liked in testing was the speed with which this was able to charge four devices simultaneously. Technology like the Samsung Rapid Charge doesn’t work with this, but there are plenty of benefits in going with this option from Syncwire. It also comes with a lifetime warranty.
The main advantage is that it significantly reduces the number of charger heads you need. This travel power adapter also makes sure you are not waiting in line to charge your devices one at a time. The convergence keeps you from having a zillion wires all over the room or hostel. This model also has smart IC tech, which ensures the current is adjusted to match the device's requirements for the fastest charge possible. Don’t worry about this device overheating, either, because it has a thermal limit and regulator built in. This ensures that the charger does not overheat and keeps your devices safe. We also noticed that the customer service is great. Voltage adjustment automatically takes place between 100V and 240V and you do not have to worry about your devices getting fried. There are multiple pin styles for every region, making this a great universal adapter.
- Extremely fast charging thanks to the smart IC
- Highly portable
- 3-year warranty
- Great for charging multiple devices when backpacking
- Can be used only with USB charging devices
4. OREI M8+ (Grounded)
Outlets: 1 USB, 1 AC outlet
Note: This device comes in multiple versions. We have reviewed the grounded world adapter with one USB slot.
The M8 by Orei is a popular choice among travelers due to its compact design and ability to switch plug types without having to carry additional pins.
Weight: 9.8 ounces
Dimensions: 2.5 x 2.5 x 2.5 inches
This is certainly an expensive option for a 2USB 1AC design. This is also NOT a voltage converter, and unlike the M8, the M8 plus is grounded. The compromise is there in terms of price and space. This is a lightweight design, and the three-prong pins do take on weight well, unlike two-pronged options (such as the Travel Inspira we discussed earlier). This adapter can be used in most places around the world and the input design is great, accepting all types of pins except those from South Africa.
A con is that, even though there is one 2.1 amp USB port, you can only use it when the AC input is not in use. It can only charge dual voltage devices, so if you have a hair dryer, curler, or iron that requires 110V supply, it will NOT work. The sliders that bring out the different prongs are surprisingly well-made, and they don't tend to break when pushed like some other brands. Orei also has other popular variants with 2-in-1 plugs and other specific types of converters too. However, we think this type of all-in-one solution is the way to go. Overall, this is an extremely reliable solution.
- Super compact
- Very sturdy and durable unlike other all-in-one options
- Works everywhere in the world except two countries(Israel and South Africa)
- Grounding makes it a safe option
- Slightly expensive
- Does not convert voltage
5. Ceptics Adapter Plug Set for World Wide International Travel
Outlets: Separate Type I, E/F, G, B, C. All 1 each
The Ceptics adapter plug set is for those who really like to travel light. If you are looking to go minimalist, then this set of plugs will ensure that you have what you need for specific countries.
Weight: 0.8 ounces
Dimensions: 3 x 3 x 4 inches
The set contains five plug types, which will keep you powered up in pretty much any country on the planet. This is a big plus for those who really like to explore and travel frequently even in remote parts of the world. A major positive is that these even come with a lifetime warranty, which is a testament to their build quality.
Most of the pins come grounded, except for two types, which is not a major issue. A small hiccup that some users did report was that the prongs came loose from the socket very often when using the European pin. The set of plugs come in a pouch that makes it easy to carry around without losing any. It’s also important to keep in mind that these adapters do NOT convert voltage or have surge protection. They are merely adapter plugs. Opt for a power strip if you are looking for surge protection features as well.
- Works everywhere thanks to the different plugs
- Lifetime warranty
- Comes in a nice easy carry pouch
- Not the most compact solution
- Plugs can come loose on some sockets
6. Poweradd 2-Outlet International Travel Adapter/ Charger
Outlets: 2 Wall plugs, 2 USB
The Poweradd is absolutely ideal if you are looking to travel outside of the US. It comes with two AC outputs and two USB outputs, which are great.
Weight: 12 oz
Dimensions: 8.2” x 4.5” x 2.3”
It also comes with easy-to-use adapters for any country. The high-powered 2.4 amp USB outlet will charge your device pretty quickly. It is also impressive in charging laptops and other devices, such as cameras. With four outlets to use, you can conveniently charge all your items at once instead of searching around the hotel room for other sockets.
What we didn't like was that the outlet pins are quite close, so if you want to plug in a big adapter for external hard drives, the side slot would become unusable. The diameter of the two-pronged outlet is a bit big for a few rare outlets in European countries like Switzerland and Italy (which both sometimes use specific wall sockets that differ from the rest of western Europe). It should serve you nicely in most countries, though. It’s best used for smaller devices like phones, tablets etc. If you have a larger device, you need something that has a voltage converter, like the Maxboost Power strip featured further up on our list.
- Works almost everywhere
- Both USB slots are for fast charging
- Comes with an inbuilt USB charger wire
- Socket spacing could be better
- Doesn't convert voltage
7. ElecLead 2000W Converter/ Adapter
Outlets: 1 AC
If you've been searching for an adapter/ converter for your hair dryer, then the ElecLead might be the one for you. This device can handle up to 2000W and can step down voltage from 220V to 110V.
Dimensions: 2.3 x 2.2 x 2 inches
This neat little converter/ adapter by ElecLead is surprisingly light and compact, unlike many other converters you can find on the market. We’d describe this converter as simple but effective. It comes with no USB ports, which has its pros and cons, but it’s primarily aimed at users who would like to use more heavy duty appliances.
The device comes with a clear adapter-to-converter switch, which needs to be changed. Ensure you use the converter only for electrical appliances and not electronic ones, like phones, tablets, etc. This is something to be wary of when using this device. If you have low wattage devices, like a non-electric hair straightener, this won't work.
- Ideal for demanding appliances like steam irons, hair dryers, etc.
- Not too bulky, unlike other converters on the market
- Plug types for almost every country
- No USB ports
8. Ceptics World Travel Adapter Kit
Outlets: 2 AC,2USB, micro USB
The Ceptics world adapter is another outstanding travel adapter with unique features like the smart voltage indicator and surge protection that really makes this one of our favorites. The Ceptics adapter caters to almost every country except South Africa.
Weight: ~5 oz
Dimensions: 2.75" x 3.75" x 1.5”
At first glance, you can see that this looks quite similar to the Poweradd on our list, but the Ceptics has its own positives. The Ceptics is grounded for most connections and has surge protection too, which makes it safe. What really makes this stand out, however, is the voltage indicator, so you know exactly what voltage is in the outlets. This can really help prevent accidents, especially if you aren’t sure if you have a dual voltage device or not.
This adapter comes with a two-year warranty, and Ceptics’ customer service is excellent. You can buy separate plugs too. The Ceptics doesn’t convert voltage, so users need to be especially aware when using hair dryers, electric toothbrushes and the like. A downside with the Ceptics is that the sockets are quite close to each other, so if you have a larger adapter for your device, you might not be able to take advantage of both slots at the same time. Another con that many users noted is that this is a bit bulkier than other options.
- Surge protection built in
- Grounded connection for most countries makes it safer
- Voltage indicator is a great feature
- 2-year warranty
- Highly compact design
- Does not convert voltage
- The AC outlets are very close together (maybe hard to plug two larger adapters in)
- Some users found it to be slightly bulky
9. THZY Voltage Converter/ Adapter
Outlets: 3AC + 4 USB
The THZY voltage converter is another option that is extremely useful when you need the voltage stepped down from 220 to 110V.
Weight: 1.21 lbs
If you or your family travel with a lot of devices, then the THZY is a good choice. The 4 USB slots are rated at 5V and 2.1A for faster charging. Often, the product quality and durability are easily called into question when dealing with converters, but the THZY shines in these departments and is even backed up by a two-year warranty.
Many users have reported that the THZY works extremely well on a regular basis and that the fan function is silent, too. What it can't handle, however, is larger devices that have a higher wattage. The max on this model is just 200W, which we thought was a bit low. The difference between the New generation and the old is the addition of an extra AC socket. The THZY also comes with a 1 year warranty.
- Cooling fan works silently when not heavily loaded
- Can convert voltage (220 to 110V)
- Sleek design and not too bulky to transport
- Works well in most countries
- Can't handle high-watt devices like hair dryers, curling irons, etc.
10. TESSAN European Travel Plug Adapter
Outlets: 1AC + 2USB
Headed to Europe fairly frequently? The TESSAN is a good option as it can be used in most European nations as well as others that utilize the type C plug.
Weight: 3.2 ounces
Dimensions: 2.8" x 2.3" x 2.6"
The TESSAN is one of the sleekest looking travel adapters on our list. From a design, standpoint its well thought out. On many adapters where the USB slots are close to the AC socket, there is a chance that the USBs become completely blocked by the use of a big charger plug, this is certainly not the case with the TESSAN. Weighing at just 3.2 ounces its one of the lightest options along with the Ceptics plugs on our list.
It's important to remember that this model doesn't convert voltage so you need to make sure your device has a range of 240-110V. So even though the capacity is about 2500W you need to make sure your curling irons or hairdryers are dual voltage devices. Another small feature we like is the power indicator button which shows you when the adapter is on/off. The only real downside is to do with the fact that it caters to only 1 plug type. Quality wise this is one of the well-made ones in the market.
- 2500W capacity
- Useful power indicator light
- Elegant & compact design
- Only Type C countries (Can't be used in the UK, Scotland, etc)
Travel Adapters Compared
|Name||Image||Charging Options||Plug Types||Voltage Conversion|
|1. EPICKA - All in 1||1 AC + 5 USB||A, B, C, E/ F, G, I, J, L||No|
|2. BESTEK Universal Travel Adapter||3 AC + 4 USB||B, G, I||Yes|
|3. Syncwire - USB Wall Charger Travel Plug||4 USB||B, G, E/F||N/A|
|4. Orei M8+ (Grounded)||1 AC + 1 USB||B, E/F, G, I, J, L||No|
|5. Ceptics Adapter Plug Set||1 AC||B, C, E/F, G, I||No|
|6. Poweradd Travel Power Adapter Kits||2 AC + 2 USB||A, B, G, E/F, G, I||No|
|7. ElecLead - 2000W Converter/Adapter||1 AC||A, B, C, E/F, G, H, I, J, K, L, N||Yes|
|8. Ceptics World Travel Adapter Kit||2 AC + 2 USB||A, B, C, E/F, G, I||No|
|9. THZY International Travel Adapter||3 AC + 4 USB||A, B, E/F, G, I, L||Yes|
|10. TESSAN European Adapter Plug||1 AC + 2 USB||C||No|
|Note: These adapters (Except the ElecLead) were primarily designed for electronic devices and smaller electrical devices. These should not be used for high wattage devices like flat iron, hair dryer etc.|
How to choose the best travel adapter
There are quite a few considerations you need to take into account before you decide on which adapter best fits your needs. We’ve listed some of the questions that definitely need answering.
Will my travel adapter work in every country?
This is probably the most important factor when making your decision. Which adapter you choose depends on how frequently and where you intend to travel. The ones on our list cover 4-5 of the plug types out there, which should cater to most people’s needs. Some plug types like the L or J aren’t too common, so many universal adapters tend to skip them.
If you are searching for an adapter that minimizes all the wires and plugs you carry, then you also need to make sure the adapter has all the pins necessary to function, regardless of where you are going. We highly recommend you use a travel power adapter with at least three different pin types.
Is it compact?
This might appear like a non-issue in the beginning since one adapter might tick all the boxes for you, but the positioning of the outlets can make things uncomfortable. It’s quite common that you find after checking into a hotel that the power outlet is tucked away under a bed or in a tight gap somewhere. Wall chargers would be hindered in this situation. If this scenario seems familiar to you, opt for an adapter that has a sleeker design or an extender like the Maxboost; that way you don’t have to stretch or move the bed every time you need to connect or disconnect your charger.
Should I opt for an adapter with 2 or 3 prongs? Is the grounding element really important?
It’s normal these days for wall sockets to have three slots, including one for grounding. Your laptop charger, for instance, often has three prongs, not just two. I am sure we’ve all been in a situation where we wondered if it’s okay if the adapter outlet has just two prongs instead of one. The three slots in/two prongs out adapters are generally used for outlets in older homes that don’t have proper grounding. This is not good practice, however. If your device malfunctions, the charge does need proper grounding to escape. Otherwise, it can pass through your body, which can prove to be painful or much worse.
Grounding is definitely important. Having an adapter with a metallic grounding pin, not a plastic one, is definitely better. Having a continuous metallic pathway is key. If the grounding prong is plastic or the wall box is plastic, then the current will have nowhere to escape. New buildings generally come with proper grounding, and the devices themselves are better insulated than in the past, but grounded adapters still add to your safety.
Charging Speed: There is always more to this than meets the eye because of how complex Lithium batteries are. Normally, the more amps, the quicker the charge, but smart devices also regulate the speed at which charging takes place. Opting for an adapter with a smart IC might be better than just choosing a 2.1A over a 1A option. The chip inside your charger also has to match the 2.1A rating if it’s going to have any effect. There are multiple phases and the fast charging process accounts for only about 80% of the total.
What’s the difference between normal USB slots and dedicated charging ports?
The normal ports have a 500mA rating, and the dedicated ports come with a rating of up to 3000mA. As a result, if you take any device that has, let’s say, a 1A charger, you can easily plug it into a 2.1A USB slot. This won’t damage your device and can even ensure faster charging.
I am worried about the different ratings. Is there a chance my phone or tablet will get damaged?
Nope. There’s pretty much no chance of that happening since you can plug in any device into any USB port. You only need to be concerned about the adapter’s voltage conversion capabilities.
Some of the adapters even come with USB type-C, is that faster?
USB type-C chargers are extremely fast—they deliver 100 watts of power at 20V, while a standard USB can only handle 5V. If you happen to have a USB type-C compatible device, this would aid you greatly. Also, this slot is backward compatible, so you can just as easily insert your regular phone charger cable into the USB-C slot.
Voltage Conversion: There are a few items on our list that do not convert voltage. Different countries have different voltage settings. It can be a pain to try to remember the voltage used in every country or region, especially if you are on a relaxing vacation. We recommend you look for an adapter that converts voltage, or simply check to see if your laptop, hairdryer, or whichever device you intend to bring with you works in dual voltages. Voltages typically range between 100 – 240V across all regions.
How do I know if my device is dual voltage?
Typically, newer devices run smoothly on dual voltages. Although the dual voltage support is becoming less and less of an issue on newer devices like hair dryers, smartphones and the like, it’s always best to check. Check the label on your phone charger or whichever device you are looking to take with you.
Make sure you look at the “INPUT:” section. It should read “100-240V,” which means you don’t need a voltage-converting travel adapter. If it reads “120V” or “240V” then ensure you do use a voltage-converting adapter so you don’t damage your device.
Other Factors: Grounded options are preferable as they protect your devices, and most of the time they are also better designed. The three-pin options grasp the wall better than some two-pronged options. Weight and the amount of wires might be something else that matters to you. If you are traveling with family or a group of friends, a power strip type like the Maxboost or even the Syncwire wall charger could be great so no one has to wait around to charge their device.
Pocket-Lint, USB Type-C is here
ExtremeTech, How USB charging works, or how to avoid blowing up your smartphone
The Spruce, Two-slot vs three slot outlets