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Tips for Using Voltage Converters for Overseas Trips

Most people don't realize it, but voltage converters can save you money when you travel overseas. In days gone by, traveling overseas usually meant having to buy all new electronics and appliances when you arrived. Since the voltage was different in other countries (usually 220/240v instead of 110/120v), you had to find products that would work with those particular outlets and voltages in hotels, rental homes, etc.

But now, thanks to electronic advancements around the world, you can simply buy inexpensive voltage converters and transformers to convert the voltage to whatever you need. These are easy to find online and can save you the hassle of having to go out and buy all the electronics you need when traveling. Imagine having to purchase new shavers, irons, coffee makers, hair dryers, electric toothbrushes, etc. for traveling out of the country. What if you need to take along your DVD player or TV? If you don't have a multisystem TV, then you'll need to buy a voltage converter for it as well.

Available Voltage Converters

You can buy voltage converters that step up the voltage or that step down the voltage. This depends on the type of electronic or appliance you have and the voltage that's available where you plan to visit. For example, a step up converter will convert the power from 110v to 220 volts. Consumer electronics that are wired for 110 voltage can be used in a 220 outlet when using the converter. A step down converter will do just the opposite.

There are also step up and down voltage converters or transformers...a two-in-one you can have both features when you need them.

Buying Voltage Converters

You'll need to consider the wattage of your electronic device or appliance when buying a converter. For example, a 50-watt converter will usually work just fine for small non-heating electronics, such as electric shavers, electric toothbrushes, battery chargers, etc. For electronics that heat up, however, you will need a 1600-watt converter. These include hair dryers, curling irons, toasters, coffee makers, and other small heating electronics.

Multisystem LCD plasma and LED TVs will not need a voltage converter because they have dual voltage built in. DVD players, regular TVs, computers and laptops, CD players, camcorders and VCRs will likely need a converter. With TVs, DVD players and VHS, however, keep in mind that they may not work with the format that's used to transmit signals in foreign lands. That's why code region free DVD players exist as well as multisystem TVs.

Besides voltage converters, you may also need adapters to be able to fit the electronics or appliances in the outlets that are available. Outlets differ in various countries, with odd shapes that you might not be familiar with. Call ahead of time to find out what type of adapters you'll need so you can order them online in plenty of time.

Check out voltage converters and transformers online to compare pricing, sizes, wattage and more. Make your trip a pleasant one by taking along all your favorite electronics!

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