Travel Tip: Remember to Pack This One Item When Traveling Abroad!
After packing your passport, when traveling abroad, and especially if you're traveling to multiple countries, remember to pack an international universal converter and adapter. This will allow you to keep your electronic devices charged and available at your leisure. I recommend an all-in-one converter/adapter in order to have fewer pieces to manage while traveling (and hopefully save some space in your luggage! - read: have more space for souvenirs). The adapter feature allows the plugs of your devices to fit into differently shaped outlets abroad, and the converter function converts the different voltages in countries to protect your device from frying (literally!). Be sure to read the specs of your converter/adapter to ensure it works for the place(s) you intend to travel and also so that you know what devices are supported (such as phone vs. blow dryer). You surely don't want to ruin a device, appliance or outlet all over a misunderstanding.
Even if you are truly trying to disconnect during your travels (read: dodge your employer, employees, spouse or children) and travel to a remote area with limited connectivity, remember that a charged device can serve many other helpful purposes, such as an alarm, music player, calendar (you wouldn’t want to forget the date of your return flight would you - wink?!) and taking beautiful photos of your travels.
So before you take off, remember to pack your international universal converter and adapter (estimated price $10 to $35) and peace out! (Note: I've noticed that many hotels and Airbnb accommodations offer converter and adapters, but it's always best to have your own just to be sure.)
I personally have two types of adapter/converters. I purchased the BESTEK Universal Travel Adapter (pictured and linked below) when I began my travels. It was quite practical because I had a travel partner and wanted to purchase something we both could use. With the various universal adapters + three separate US three-prong plugs + four USB, it worked wonders! Between two laptops and several mobile devices, the BESTEK Universal Travel Adapter was really an all-star device during my co-travels. In fact, for my first six months abroad, it's the only adapter/converter my travel partner and I used. Those are the key PROS. The only CON is that compared to other adapter/converters, it's quite bulky. And with the way these airlines nickel and dime, lightweight and compact is the way to go. That brings me to my second adapter/converter.
The converter/adapter that I use on solo trips to a single country and/or when I travel with only a few devices is the Samsung Universal Power Adapter (pictured and linked below), which has a front prong in addition to two USB ports on the side. I received it as a Christmas gift after my first six months abroad. I think it was clear that I was about that "travel life", so I received lots of travel-related items -- some of which I will review in later blog posts. Of those items, the one I use the most is my Samsung Universal Power Adapter. One major PRO is that it's compact and can slip right into my purse or carry-on bag. That means it's easy to take on-flight, etc., given that some flights, airports, etc. abroad have only wall sockets (rather than USB ports) that are incompatible with US plugs and devices. The Samsung Universal Power Adapter can easily be plugged into an on-flight socket, although sometimes I have to keep another object (e.g., my leg or carry-on bag) pressed against it to keep it plugged in depending on the angle of the socket or turbulence.
Given that I am officially a "solo" traveller, I tend to travel a lot more with my Samsung Universal Power Adapter versus my BESTEK Universal Travel Adapter. However, if I take a long trip or am traveling with others, I will normally pack my BESTEK Universal Travel Adapter just to be sure. In addition, if I envision having to work while traveling or needing to charge multiple devices, I'll pack my BESTEK Universal Travel Adapter.
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Stay tuned for more travel tips and let me know in the comments below what one item you cannot travel without... and also who you're dodging on vacation (ha!)?
Love, love, love and see yaa soon around the globe...fully charged!