I am buying some electronic items in the US to give them as gifts to friends and family in India. I wanted to ask if tablets, cameras, laptops bought in the US work fine in India. I mean there is no issue of frequency or volt or anything like that?

I do understand that there is one problem that the charger's plug won't work. Do I need to buy a converter for that? But apart from that, is there any other issue?

I mainly wanted to ask about tablets. Eg. this one https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01M3MYPOO/ref=crt_ewc_title_srh_1?ie=UTF8&psc=1&smid=ATVPDKIKX0DER

3 Answers 3


India has a 220/240V 50Hz electrical supply, while the United States delivers 110/120V 60Hz electricity. However, most electronic devices like laptops and tablets have dual-voltage power supplies, which accept both. You'll want to make sure this is true for the devices you're buying by checking the label to ensure it also accepts 240V 50Hz power. This will be the case for most electronics, though some appliances won't be compatible if you're looking to bring those back as well.

The tablet you linked appears to be dual voltage, so that would be no problem.

As you have surmised, you will need adapters for the physical plugs so they fit in Indian sockets. Devices that charge via USB could also be charged with a USB charger purchased in India.

You should note the rules regarding import duty for items brought to India so that you are not surprised by any taxes you are required to pay on arrival.

  • 1
    Thanks for your answer. Just wanted to confirm one thing regarding import duty. From what I understood is, if the cost of items that I am buying from US to India as gifts is less than 35000 INR, then its fine, right? It would be considered duty free. And if I bought something for myself in US like my laptop, that would not be considered in 35000 INR, right?
    – hatellla
    Nov 6, 2017 at 6:02
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    @hatellla The rules are a bit complicated, but I believe this is the most recent version of them. Your exemptions depend on how long you've been away from India. Nov 6, 2017 at 6:15
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    For a tablet, probably easiest just to buy a new USB charger. Better than using dodgy plug adapters.
    – vclaw
    Nov 6, 2017 at 8:05
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    Mains suply is irrelevant. The tablet is single voltage, 5V. Its charger seems to be dual, but even if it wouldn't, one can use another charger for few $. The issues that matter, because they are baked in the device itself, are cellular (LTE, GSM) bands and support. However, this tablet appears to have none.
    – Agent_L
    Nov 6, 2017 at 18:14

The US-bought WiFi-enabled deviced might face problems connecting to some WiFi networks abroad. The WiFi channels 12 and 13 are forbidden from being used by FCC. As result, some (not all) electronic devices sold in the US are restricted by the manufacturer from operating on those channels.

For more details, see the Wikipedia page.

  • 12 and 13 are overlapping channels with 11 and really shouldn't be used anyway, regardless of region. 1, 6, and 11 are the non-overlapping channels in the 2.4 GHz band (and 14 in Japan.)
    – reirab
    Nov 6, 2017 at 16:43
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    "Shouldn't be used" is different from "aren't used". I have seen these being used outside US.
    – Boris Bukh
    Nov 6, 2017 at 16:59

Most electronics these days support dual 110V/120V and 220V/240V. But, as others mentioned, verify what you are purchasing supports 220V/240V.

You can get two types of adapters (plug style only - not voltage). 1. universal to India-style [Type D] or 2. USA to India-style [Type D]. I would recommend #1. (I've had good experiences with both OREI and Ceptics brands)

The problem that you'll encounter, however, is that electricity goes out sometimes in most parts of India. It's much, much worse in rural areas and NE India, however. I highly recommend a surge protector for the recipients of these gifts.

Unless you are bringing multiple items which are identical (say 3+ tablets, laptops, phones, etc.), you should not have any problems with import duties.

I have traveled multiple times with two video cameras, audio recording devices, my laptop, two phones, a bunch of microphones, and tons of rechargeable batteries (plus the chargers). No problems entering India - leaving with any of this stuff in your carry-on, can be a bit annoying at security sometimes.

Word of warning! I went to India in August (2017) and my LG G3 battery died. There was literally no place which sold these, except some Amazon.in places which all had 1 star ratings. My phone was unusable the entire month I was there. Be warned that if you get a brand that is not serviceable or have replaceable parts in India, any damage will likely cause it to be an expensive paperweight. You might want to seriously consider bringing smaller gifts and offering to buy these electronics while in India to avoid basically all the issues/concerns that you have.

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