Since then you could presumably plug the power strip into the power adapter and then not have to get multiple power adapters?

Or is this unnecessary?

  • 3
    I saw this in Russia on the trains where there's only a couple of working power points per carriage. Absolute genius. The guy with the power strip was hugely popular.
    – Mark Mayo
    Aug 16, 2012 at 20:23
  • 1
    I tried this, bringing a power strip from the USA to Germany. Once plugged in in Germany, there were some crackling noises, smoke came out, and it no longer worked. I guess it had some surge protection circuitry or something that didn't like 220V?
    – nibot
    Aug 20, 2012 at 15:51
  • 1
    I usually take two adapters and one or more travel power strips. I often want to run my own devices both on the bedside table and on the desk. Apr 9, 2016 at 4:00
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    Also useful when the hotel room doesn't have enough plug sockets for all the devices that people tend to travel with these days... May 25, 2016 at 8:15

4 Answers 4


Traveling with a power-strip is an old trick for avoiding to carry multiple plug adaptors, but going from the US to Europe you need to be a little careful.

Electricity in the US is ~110 volts, whilst in much of the rest of the world it's 200-250 volts.

Although power boards/power strips are generally passive, and thus the number of volts should not have any impact, many of them do include various types of fuses or additional circuitry (eg, USB ports) that could potentially have issues with higher voltages. If you were to plug multiple high-current devices into a power board (eg, a hair dryer) it's also possible that you could draw more watts than the board is designed to support.

There are a few products that are specifically designed for travel, and designed to support both 110 and 240 volts, such as the Monster Outlets to Go range (Note: Amazon doesn't say it, but the manufacturer has confirmed that these items are designed for up to 250 volts)

Note that going the other way is far less of a problem - a power board designed for 250 Volts will work fine in the US - I have several where I have taken an Australia power strip, removed the Australian plug and put on a US plug so I don't even need an adapter to use it!

  • I have used the ThinkGeek PowerSquid when abroad, worked fine even on 220 outlets... I think just about anything with a fuse will work. Aug 21, 2012 at 4:31
  • I'm in Norway now and I actually bought a transformer along with the strip - turns out that the transformer solves most of the problems associated with the strip. =) Aug 21, 2012 at 15:12
  • In particular many power strips contain surge protection. Surge protection designed for a 120V system is likely to go bang when plugged into a 240V system. Apr 9, 2016 at 1:40

Rather than a whole power strip which is very bulky, consider bringing two adaptors for the area you are visiting, and two three-way outlet adapters - they are very compact solid blocks that plug in and offer outlets on three sides. Between them in a hotel you have six three-prong outlets you can make use of.

They are also great to have in carry-on for airports, if someone is already plugged into an outlet you can ask if it's OK to unplug them for just a second to open up two more outlets you can use.

  • 1
    There could be some ultra-portable power strips designed just for travel. Possibly with outlets connected by some kind of sturdy cable rather than all mounted on a big chunk of plastic? The kind of outlets they use in Europe and India often have no grip and double adapters can just fall straight out )-: Aug 21, 2012 at 6:10
  • I've not had any problems in Europe using the three-way outlets with plug adaptors - either the UK or Germany/Netherlands. The three-way adaptors are better than most compact power strips because the plugs are totally separated, meaning you can actually use all three outlets even with bulky devices. Aug 21, 2012 at 18:58
  • Ah yes the luxuries of Western Europe! I got mine in Georgia and it's crap ... but still much better than what's on offer in India (-: Aug 21, 2012 at 19:09

That could be a good idea. Be aware that in general Europe has 220v whereas the US has 110v. Most modern laptops support both, but make sure all of your appliances do too.

You might also want to look at this related question, one of the answers there mentions a webshop in the us where this very handy universal powerstrip is for sale.


The Wonpro Nano is a roughly 1"x1"x1.5" cube and you can plug two things into. The ultra small Mogics adapter/power strip is promised for next month. These are not grounded solutins, however and you should only plug ungrounded plugs into them. Finding universal adapters for grounded plugs is not easy. As far as I am aware, only Skross has three pole universal adapters (the Tumi adapter is a relabeled version made by Skross, check the bottom for the Skross logo/label) and then you can use a Voltage Valet PS2 power strip which, being a travel power strip is rather compact.

Be extremely wary of Monster, they are a tax evading patent troll and as such, boycott worthy.

  • 1
    So unearthed plugs that are illegal in many countries - good. Monster - bad. Got it.
    – Doc
    Apr 9, 2016 at 4:41
  • > unearthed plugs that are illegal in many countries -- while Type C sockets are certainly illegal by now almost everywhere in Europe, Type C plugs are legal and have many valid use cases. Since most laptops sell with an ungrounded "figure 8" connector and I have never seen a grounded USB charger supplied with a phone, I truly am curious which country all of these electronics are illegal to use.
    – user4188
    Apr 9, 2016 at 4:45
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    The issue is that they accept a grounded socket. If the socket was 2-pin only, then there would not be a problem, but a 2-pin plug and a 3-pin socket is illegal in several countries including Australia as it allows you to plug in a device that requires earth, without having earth available. I'm not sure if it's illegal in the US, but it certainly won't get UL (or similar) certification, which means at a minimum it's illegal to sell in the US. And one way or another, it's dangerous and potentially an electrocution hazard.
    – Doc
    Apr 9, 2016 at 4:54
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    I edited the answer to warn people to plug in only two prong plug devices. (Most electronics will be such.)
    – user4188
    Apr 9, 2016 at 5:06

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