Which travel adapter do you need for using hair straighteners in Guatemala?

Guatemalan power outlet

Will my hair straighteners work in Guatemala?

First check your hair straighteners can handle the voltage in Guatemala:

If not then:

  • Use a power converter (or voltage transformer) - this will enable you to use your existing hair straighteners and other applicances with a 120 volt Guatemalan power outlet, however this is substantially heavier and more expensive than dedicated travel hair straighteners. A voltage transformer will change the voltage but won't change the actual shape of the plug on your hair straighteners to fit in the types of power outlet used in Guatemala, therefore please check that the power converter includes a suitable power adapter for Guatemala otherwise you will need to purchase another power adapter. Please note - your domestic hair straighteners might not be suited for travelling and you risk potential damage in transit. [7] [AD]
Warning: If your hair straighteners won't handle 120 volts used in Guatemala you run the risk of an electrical fire hazard, blowing a fuse or damage to your hair straighteners. Before using your hair straighteners in Guatemala check the instruction manual to ensure safe operation.

Using hair straighteners in Guatemala

Will my hair straighteners work in Guatemala?

This depends on if your hair straighteners can handle the 120 volt power outlets used in Guatemala. If you're using either dual voltage hair straighteners or your hair straighteners is designed to operate using 120 volts and you have the appropriate plug adapter then you should be able to use the hair straighteners in Guatemala. If not then you will need to consider buying either dual voltage travel hair straighteners [2] or a heavier and more expensive power converter, read our guide on can you use a voltage converter to use domestic hair straighteners in Guatemala for help deciding which option is more suitable. [7] [AD]

Guatemala power outlets and plug sockets

What mains voltage is used in Guatemala?

Power outlets in Guatemala are 120 volts.

What is the electrical frequency used in Guatemala?

The frequency in a Guatemalan power outlet is 60Hz. [8]

Which power adapter do you need to bring to use  hair straighteners in Guatemala?

Type A and B power outlets

Which power adapter do you need to bring to use hair straighteners in Guatemala?

There are two types of power outlets used in Guatemala, these are type B and A with the primary power outlets being type B:

  • Plug Type A - The power socket, technically called a type A power outlet, can be recognised by 2 thin slots next to each other where the two plug socket blades slide into.
  • Plug Type B - You can identify the power socket by the two slots for live and neutral blades with a single hole below for the earth pin.

A Type B plug adapter is suitable for powering 120 volt hair straighteners in Guatemala; read the simple instructions below for full details of how to use a travel adapter for Guatemala. Be aware that unless you that have dual voltage hair straighteners you might also need to use a voltage converter.  [4] [9] [AD]

Dual voltage hair straighteners

How can I tell if my hair straighteners are dual voltage?

Dual voltage hair straighteners

How can I tell if my hair straighteners are dual voltage?

The method to tell if your hair straighteners supports dual voltage is to look for either a sticker or numbers printed on the handle or the plug. The location might vary depending on the make and model of your hair straighteners and should also state on the box or in the instruction manual. Some dual voltage models can change automatically but other models will feature a button which allows you to operate between different regions.

  • Single voltage might say a specific number - such as 110V. If this number matches the 120 volts used in Guatemala then you should be able to use your hair straighteners with a Guatemalan power outlet.
  • Single voltage might also have a small voltage range with a dash to accomodate small voltage fluctuations - such as 100-120V. If the 120 volts used in a Guatemalan power outlet falls within the range shown on your hair straighteners then you should be able to use it in Guatemala.
  • Dual voltage will say a larger voltage range separated with a slash - such as 100/240V. Your hair straighteners will be capable of being used in Guatemala or any other country if these numbers are shown.
 [10] [AD]

Travelling to Guatemala with hair straighteners

Is it safer to bring my travel hair straighteners or domestic hair straighteners to Guatemala?

It is preferable to packing dual voltage travel hair straighteners instead of packing your existing domestic hair straighteners to Guatemala as it is safer to assume that they will operate correctly with the 120 volt power outlets used with a Guatemalan power outlet, as long as you bring the correct power adapter for Guatemala.

Please be aware that packing expensive domestic hair straighteners might place them at risk due to potential loss or damage in your check in luggage by an airport baggage handler in Guatemala. The inconvenience and costs involved in replacing or repairing expensive quality hair straighteners in Guatemala might overshadow the costs of buying cheaper dual voltage travel hair straighteners [2] before setting off. If you intend to bring along your own personal hair straighteners in your suitcase it is recommended to either slide them inside a boot or sneaker to protect from light damage, or use a heat resistant and shockproof hot tools travel case or heat travel mat for hair straighteners and curling irons which will also allow the hair straighteners to be packed whilst hot without risk of burning.   [11] [12] [AD]

Can I pack hair straighteners in my carry on luggage to Guatemala?

Travel hair straighteners with heat protective cap

Can I pack hair straighteners in my carry on luggage to Guatemala?

According to the TSA guidelines for hair straighteners there is no restriction on carrying mains powered hair straighteners in your carry on hand luggage through airport security in the US. The TSA also suggests that you should verify that your airline who is taking you to Guatemala will allow hair straighteners onboard and that they will fit in the overhead bin or underneath the seat of the aircraft. Packing your hair straighteners in a dedicated heat resistant protective hot tools travel case leaves them easily accessible when going through airport security, they can be packed away quickly and should avoid a tangle of wires in your carry on luggage (the TSA advices wrapping wires tightly around electric items such as hair straighteners). If you do intend to pack fragile or expensive hair straighteners in your hand held luggage then it is recommended to use hard carry on luggage as this offers the greatest protection against drops and knocks during transit.    [10] [11] [13] [14] [AD]

Power converters for Guatemala

Do I need a power converter to use hair straighteners in Guatemala?

The correct model of power converter (or voltage transformer) will allow your hair straighteners using a different voltage to work using a 120 volt power outlet used in Guatemala. A power converter is more suited for travellers wishing to bring their own hair straighteners, however it might be more costly to purchase a power converter than it is to buy dedicated dual voltage travel hair straighteners [2]. A power converter is also significantly bulkier and heavier than travel hair straighteners making a power converter less suited for packing compared to travel hair straighteners. [7] [AD]

What is the difference between a voltage converter and a power adapter?

Voltage converter

What is the difference between a voltage converter and a power adapter?

An expensive and heavy power converter will transform a 120 volt Guatemalan power outlet to work with non-120 volt hair straighteners, but a more lightweight and cheaper power adapter (or plug adapter) will change the shape of the plug on your hair straighteners to slot into a power outlet found in Guatemala. [7] [AD]

Hair straightener safety

Are hair straighteners dangerous?

The temperature of the ceramic plates used in hair straighteners can reach over 200 degrees with the potential to burn hair, skin, and even start a fire if not used correctly. According to figures from Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service electrical beauty products have been responsible for an estimated 650,000 fires in the United Kingdom alone.

How can I minimise risk using hair straighteners?

A heat resistant glove

How can I minimise risk using hair straighteners?

  • Skin protection: Wear heat resistant gloves during styling to protect hands from heat.
  • Children's protection: With 10% of children's burns being caused by hair straighteners it is recommended to look for hair straighteners which include a heat resistant end cap to keep the plates closed shut when not in use, making it easier to store out of reach of children.
  • Luggage protection: Placing hair straighteners directly into luggage without allowing them to cool down can risk damage to clothes and heating up combustible or flammable packed items. If your hair straighteners weren't supplied with a heat protective cap then wrap them in a heat mat or use a hot tools travel case to pack them into luggage whilst warm. A travel case will also keep expensive hair straighteners protected from damage during transit.
  • Hair protection: Applying a heat protectant spray prior to using hair straighteners is essential to prevent burning, as well as using the correct technique for your hair type - read our guide on how to use hair straighteners for comprehensive information.
  • Fire protection: It can take up to 40 minutes for hair straighteners to cool down so resting your straighteners on a heat mat could reduce the risk of setting fire to furniture. Forgetting to turn off hot domestic appliances can also cause fires. This risk can be reduced by using a model of straightener with a timer socket which will turn itself off automatically after a certain length of time, you can also add this feature to any basic straighteners by using a timer socket in a power outlet.    [11] [12] [15] [16] [17] [18] [AD]
How can I add a safety timer to my existing hair straighteners?

Hair straighteners connected to a timer power outlet

How can I add a safety timer to my existing hair straighteners?

1 in 12 owners of hair straighteners admit to forgetting to turn them off after use, unless your hair straighteners have a built in automatic timer then leaving them on could potentially start a fire. However you can add this functionality to any model even if it doesn't have an integrated timer:

  1. Add an automatic timer to any hair straighteners by plugging them into a timer socket then plugging the timer into a power outlet.
  2. Turn on the timer and use the hair straighteners as normal.
  3. After you have finishing using the hair straighteners turn off the power at the outlet.
  4. However if you forget to turn the power outlet off then the timer will automatically switch off the straighteners after a pre-set length of time. Depending on the model of timer this could be 15, 30, 60 or 120 minutes - ideally pick the shortest length of time possible.
  5. For added peace of mind use a power outlet splitter to share the outlet from the timer with both your hair straighteners and a lamp. When the timer is running both the straighteners and the lamp will be turned on, making the lamp a clear indicator that the straighteners are still being heated. When leaving a room it is second nature to ensure all lights are turned off, if the lamp is still on then this acts as a reminder to switch off the straighteners.
  [17] [19] [AD]

How to treat a hot iron burn

If you accidentally burn yourself run cold water under your burn and if it is severe it is advised to seek medical attention from a doctor or hospital.

How to use hair straighteners in Guatemala using a type B power adapter

A page showing how to use hair straighteners in Guatemala with a 3 pronged Type B power adapter.

  1. Check that the hair straighteners are either dual voltage travel hair straighteners [2] or works with a 120 volt power outlet but if it doesn't then don't continue because you could blow a fuse, damage your straighteners or create an electrical fire hazard. Some travel hair straighteners usually have a switch to toggle between voltages, before using your straighteners ensure you have set it to the 120 volt setting to use in Guatemala, refer to the manufacturers instructions for more information on how to do this.
  2. You'll need to buy a Type B plug adapter [4] if the shape of plug on your hair straighteners isn't the same type of plug outlet which is used in Guatemala. The Type B plug adapter helps fit different plugs on appliances from other countries for use in a power outlet in Guatemala simply by changing the shape of the plug, but the adapter doesn't change the frequency or voltage of your hair straighteners to work with a 120 volt supply.
  3. Begin the process by plugging the Type B plug adapter into the Guatemalan power outlet. You can identify this plug supply by the two slots next to each other for live and neutral blades with a single semicircular shaped hole below for the earth pin.
  4. Plug in the hair straighteners into the Type B plug adapter.
  5. Switch on the Guatemalan power outlet. You can now turn on your straighteners in Guatemala.
How to use  hair straighteners in Guatemala using a type B power adapter

How to use hair straighteners in Guatemala using a type A power adapter

How to power your hair straighteners in Guatemala with a Type A travel charger.

  1. Check that the hair straighteners are either dual voltage travel hair straighteners [2] or is compatible with a 120 volt power outlet but if it doesn't then don't continue because you could create an electrical fire hazard, blow a fuse or damage your straighteners. Some dual voltage travel hair straighteners will usually have a switch to toggle between voltages, before using your straighteners ensure you have set it to the 120 volt setting to use in Guatemala - consult the user guide for more information on how to do this.
  2. Please check that you don't already own hair straighteners with a Type A plug - if it does then you won't need a power adapter (but still check that your hair straighteners will work with a 120 volt power outlet). You'll need to bring a Type A plug adapter [6] if the shape of the power outlet which is used in Guatemala won't accomodate the plug on your hair straighteners. The plug adapter is designed to convert different plugs on appliances from other countries for use in a power outlet found in Guatemala simply by changing the shape of the plug, however it doesn't change the voltage of the hair straighteners to work with a 120 volt outlet.
  3. First insert the Type A plug adapter in the power outlet. You can recognise this plug supply by the two slots next to each other for live and neutral blades.
  4. After that plug in your hair straighteners into the Type A plug adapter.
  5. Turn on the Guatemalan power outlet.
  6. The straighteners can now be powered on.
How to use  hair straighteners in Guatemala using a type A power adapter

See also

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  1. Wikipedia - Guatemalan country wikipedia page
  2. Amazon - dual voltage travel hair straighteners
  3. iec.ch - Type B power outlet
  4. Type B plug adapter - US and Japanese 3 pinned Type B plug adapters have a single unearthed round pin along with 2 shorter parallel rectangular flat blades containing holes in each blade, £5-£10.
  5. iec.ch - Type A power outlet
  6. Type A plug adapter - There are 2 parallel rectangular flat blades on an unearthed Type A plug adapter with small holes in each blade, £4-£5.
  7. Power converter - A step up step down power converter converts 110-120 volts up to 220-240 volts and 220-240 volts down to 110-120 Volts, estimated cost £100-£110.
  8. Wikipedia - WikiPedia - Mains electricity by country -
  9. iec.ch - IEC World Plugs by location -
  10. Dual voltage travel hair straighteners - Hair straighteners with adjustable temperature and dual voltage for 110 volts and 220 volts suitable for international travel, under £30.
  11. Hard case for hot tools - Hard case designed for storing and protecting a flat irons, curling irons and hair straighteners, £5-£10.
  12. Heat travel mat for hair straighteners and curling irons - Protects surfaces from hot hair irons and wraps around the appliance allowing instant packing into baggage, costs £5-£10.
  13. tsa.gov - TSA guidelines for hair straighteners -
  14. Hard carry on luggage - Example of hard cases, suitcases and luggage suitable for airline carry on, priced around £40.
  15. Heat resistant gloves for hair styling - Heat resistant glove recommended to protect skin against the risk of heat from a curling iron, flat iron or hair dryer, priced at £5-£10.
  16. Heat protectant spray - Thermal protector spray used prior to styling with heated tools such as blow dryers and flat irons, costs £10-£15.
  17. Energy saving outlet with timer - Automatic power shut down of a connected appliance after a preset length of time, costs £20-£25.
  18. Hair straighteners which include a heat resistant end cap - Example of hair straighteners with a protective cap suitable for travel, £220-£230.
  19. Power outlet splitter - Splits a single power outlet to multiple power outlets, allowing multiple appliances to simultaneously use a single wall outlet, under £10.