UK to Vanuatu power adapters - do you need a plug adapter in Vanuatu?

Vanuatuan power outlet

What adapter do I need for Vanuatu?

You will need to pack a Type G plug adapter for Vanuatu if your plug won't fit into a Vanuatuan power outlet.

The type of power adapter, power converter or charger that you'll need when visiting Vanuatu all depend on the voltage and type of device that you're trying to power with a Vanuatuan power outlet. If you're unclear about which voltage your device uses then read the section below about how to find out the voltage of your device before going any further.

  • Certain areas in Vanuatu do not have access to power and suffer from regular blackouts, we suggest bringing a power bank if you wish to keep your cellphone battery charged whilst in an area without power or during a power cut.
  • If you are visiting Vanuatu from the US then you will need to use a suitable power adapter to fit a US plug into a Vanuatuan power outlet. Because the voltage is different in Vanuatu you will also need to bring a power converter for Vanuatu if your device isn't dual voltage and ensure that it can work with a 50hz power outlet.
  • If your device can run on 220 volts or is dual voltage and your plug can fit in a Vanuatuan power outlet then it can work in Vanuatu without needing anything else.
  • If your device can run on 220 volts or is dual voltage but your plug doesn't fit in a Vanuatuan power outlet you'll need to bring a suitable plug adapter for Vanuatu such a Type G plug adapter. Please be aware that a plug adapter for Vanuatu (or power adapter) is designed to change the shape of the plug on your device to fit into a plug outlet found in Vanuatu, but isn't designed to convert the voltage from 220 volts to a different voltage.
  • If your device doesn't run on 220 volts and isn't dual voltage you will also need a power converter for Vanuatu to convert the voltage from 220 volts to the correct voltage for your device. You will still need to bring along a suitable plug adapter for Vanuatu if your power converter doesn't include the correct Type G plug adapter.
  • If you simply need to power one or more USB devices such as cell phones or tablets then a USB travel power adapter is suitable and it should be dual voltage, but make sure that you choose one which includes a Type G plug adapter otherwise you will still need to use a suitable plug adapter for Vanuatu[3]

Warning: If your device won't handle 220 volts you run a risk of an electrical fire hazard, blowing a fuse or damage to your device. Before attempting to use your device in Vanuatu please read the instruction manual to ensure safe operation.

Vanuatu power adapters

Power adapters for Vanuatu

Varying different combinations of frequencies and standards can all cause confusion when planning on visiting a foreign country to the first time traveller. However this isn't as complicated as it first appears, with only a handful of different types of standards used in the world this guide tells you exactly what you'll need in advance to charge your device in Vanuatu. This page contains links to useful instructions showing which power adapters you'll need to charge your devices when visiting Vanuatu by using the standard Type G, C or I 220 volt 50Hz power outlets. You will find that most power adapters will change regionally so we recommend that you read our Wiki Connections travel power adapters guide for a full list showing regions.

What is the best power adapter for Vanuatu?

The best power adapter for Vanuatu is a Type G plug adapter which allows you to use any 220 volt device or appliance. [3]

What is the best power adapter for Vanuatu?

What is a power adapter?

A power adapter for Vanuatu is a small and cheap plastic adapter which permits a Vanuatuan power outlet to accept a different type of power plug from an appliance from another region.

Also known as: an electrical adapter, plug adapter, travel adapter, electrical adaptor, mains travel adapter or power adaptor[5]

What does a power adapter for Vanuatu do?

A power adapter allows a visitor travelling from another location to use their own electronic and electrical devices in Vanuatu by adapting the shape of the power plug to fit the power outlet.

Do I need a plug adapter for Vanuatu?

This depends on the location you are travelling from and the shape of plug you want to use in Vanuatu.

Vanuatu

Does a power adapter change the voltage from a Vanuatuan power outlet?

A power adapter only adapts the shape of a plug to fit into a 220 volt Vanuatuan power outlet and can't convert the power to a higher voltage. Should you wish to safely use a 100, 110 or 120 volt appliance you will also need a step down power converter along with the right type of power adapter.

Where to buy a power adapter for Vanuatu in the UK

Power adapters for sale in an airport

Where to buy a power adapter for Vanuatu in the UK

Vanuatu to UK power adapters will most likely be available to buy in the UK from airports such as Heathrow, Gatwick, Manchester, Stansted, Luton, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Birmingham prior to departure, however the range of adapters might be limited to popular destinations. It is recommended to research the exact type of adapter required prior to shopping at the airport. Look in the travel accessories section of airport newsagents, electronic stores and pharmacists such as WH Smith, Dixons or Boots but expect to pay 50% more than regular prices.

It will be more convenient and cheaper to buy the correct power adapter in advance of your trip. UK high street electrical shops, newsagents and chemists such as Currys PC World, WH Smith or Boots normally typically only sell popular types of travel adapters covering a limited number of countries however for widest choice it is recommended to buy a power adapter online. In January 2019 we checked 2 high street branches of WH Smiths without seeing any power adapters available to purchase and 1 branch of Boots only had a pack of European adapters available.

Electrical adapters for Vanuatu

Power Plug Adapters

An easy to use Type G plug adapter

Power Plug Adapters

British travellers won't need to use a power plug adapter for Vanuatu because a UK power outlet is the same shape as a Vanuatuan power outlet.

Benefits of a power plug adapter

  • Bringing a Type G plug adapter will work in Vanuatu.
  • Simple to use.
  • Cheapest option, prices £5-£10.
  • Small and lightweight.

Disadvantages of a power plug adapter

  • Should you intend on visiting more than just Vanuatu you might need to pack multiple power adapter types.
  • Only alters the actual shape of the plug to fit in a Type G Vanuatuan power outlet but doesn't change the voltage. So if your device doesn't support 220 volts and isn't dual voltage then you will still need to bring a voltage converter.
  • Only 1 plug adapter for each device - for every separate device you will also need to pack a separate power plug adapter.
  • Some hotel rooms in Vanuatu may only have one wall outlet, so you will only be capable of charging a single device at a time.
  • You will also need to bring your separate domestic USB charger as well if you wish to power any USB device. [3]
Universal Travel Power Adapters

A universal travel adapter

Universal Travel Power Adapters

Benefits of a universal travel power adapter

  • Perfect for visiting to multiple countries. Typical models operate in over 150 different countries.
  • An all in one compact design, lightweight and small, under £20.
  • There are some models which include multiple USB charging ports built in.
  • Easy to use.
  • There are some universal travel power adapters that include a surge protector built in which will protect your electronics from being overpowered by unstable power grids.
  • Retractable pins won't catch against other items when packed in your baggage.
  • When you return to the UK the power strip should still work as a USB charger.
  • Changes shape to Types A/B, E/F, G and I plugs so should fit into a Vanuatuan power outlet.

Disadvantages of a universal travel power adapter

  • Universal adapters will overload when used with a high power appliance such as hair straighteners, kettles, hair dryers or curling irons.
  • The internal moving parts such as shutters and pins could be fragile on some universal travel power adapters which might make them likely to jam.
  • Only charges a single plug.
  • Might not work in some countries - models might not cover some countries with less popular power outlets.
  • Missing a built in power converter means it won't be suitable for non-220 volt devices. [6]
Travel USB Wall Chargers

A compact travel USB wall charger

Travel USB Wall Chargers

Benefits of a travel USB wall charger

  • Ideal in situations when you only want to charge devices which use USB.
  • You only need to bring one charger instead of packing multiple domestic power chargers which costs on average under £15.
  • Supplied with interchangeable adapter heads which make them useful in a large number of locations. Interchangeable adapter heads supplied with travel USB wall chargers are usually lightweight and small which makes them easy to pack in hand luggage.
  • Travel USB wall chargers will include a surge protector built in.
  • The charger could still be functional domestically.
  • The interchangeable plugs fit in Types A/B, E/F, G and I outlets so will work with a Vanuatuan power outlet.

Disadvantages of a travel USB wall charger

  • They only have USB ports so you can't charge any electrical appliances, just USB powered ones. [7]
Travel Power Strips

A travel power strip including adapters

Travel Power Strips

Benefits of a travel power strip

  • Capable of charging multiple appliances and devices concurrently using only one Vanuatuan power outlet, costing £35-£40.
  • You will find certain models are able to convert voltage for lower wattage electronics. Even if your appliance isn't dual voltage it can still work with a Vanuatuan power outlet when using just a travel power strip. This makes a travel power strip a cheaper lightweight substitute for a voltage converter.
  • Some travel power strips should also include multiple USB ports.
  • The voltage from power outlets in certain areas might be tempremental, a surge in power can damage delicate electronics. There are some models which include a built in surge protector to protect any device from being overpowered by unstable power grids.
  • The power strip can be functional domestically.

Disadvantages of a travel power strip

  • Unlike a dedicated power converter, the voltage converter on a travel power strip won't support high wattage appliances such as curling irons and hair dryers.
  • Because of their size travel power strips might be too heavy for hand luggage.
  • Travel power strips might be excessive for some travellers only bringing a small number of appliances which need powering. [8]
  • Power strip models for sale in the UK only include type B, F, G and I plug adapters so you may need to use it along with an additional plug adapter to work in some countries.
Plug Adapter Sets

Cost effective plug adapter set

Plug Adapter Sets

Benefits of a plug adapter set

  • With prices roughly £5-£10 a set works out more cost-effective than purchasing individual power plug adapters costing almost £10 each.
  • Covers all plug outlet types and not just a Vanuatuan power outlet.
  • If you are visiting different countries this is the most flexible option.
  • Each plug adapter set includes Type A, B, C, D, E/F, G, H, I, J, L, M and N plugs so should be compatible with a Vanuatuan power outlet.

Disadvantages of a plug adapter set

  • Will involve planning - before any trip you'll have to choose which plug adapters to pack, if you don't know every country you'll be visiting you'll need to bring each power adapter in the set with you.
  • Means lots of individual items to pack.
  • The remaining power adapters will be useless and using up packing space.
  • Not all plug adapter types are typically included in the set (and especially rarer ones), so ensure that your set has an adapter which is compatible with a Vanuatuan power outlet.
  • Only modifies the shape of the plug to fit in a Vanuatuan power outlet but won't change the voltage. [9]
Voltage Converters

Larger voltage converters

Voltage Converters

Those originating from The United Kingdom will not need to bring a voltage converter as the voltage from a Vanuatuan power outlet is 220 volts.

Benefits of a voltage converter

Disadvantages of a voltage converter

  • It will only change the 220 volts in Vanuatu and not the shape of the plug to slot into a Vanuatuan power outlet, therefore you will still be required to pack a suitable power adapter for Vanuatu.
  • The typical size and weight of most models makes them way too bulky and heavy for hand baggage.
  • Redundant after your visit to Vanuatu.
  • Usually less expensive and more practical to buy a dual voltage travel appliance than to buy a much more expensive voltage converter just to use your existing single voltage domestic appliance in Vanuatu.
  • Expensive; £30-£35.

Comparison of electrical adapters for Vanuatu

Type G Power Plug Adapter
Power Plug Adapter
Universal Travel Power Adapter
Universal Travel Power Adapter
Travel USB Wall Charger
Travel USB Wall Charger
Travel Power Strip
Travel Power Strip
Plug Adapter Set
Plug Adapter Set
Voltage Converter
Voltage Converter
Can be used in Vanuatu Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Types of plug included G A/B, E/F, G and I A/B, E/F, G and I A, B, D, E/F, G, H, I, L and N A, B, C, D, E/F, G, H, I, J, L, M and N B
Compatible number of countries (A) 50+ 150+ 150+ 200+ 230+ 230+
Fits in a Type G Vanuatuan power outlet Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Additional Type G plug adapter required to fit in a Vanuatuan power outlet Yes
Useful when you return to the UK Yes Yes Yes
Typical combined number of USB ports and AC outlets 1 3 4 7 1 2
Powers USB devices Yes Yes Yes
Typical number of USB ports 0 2 4 4 0 0
Powers a 220 volt AC appliance in Vanuatu Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Typical number of AC outlets 1 1 0 3 (B) 2
Converts voltage (?) Yes (C) Yes
Surge protection Yes Yes Yes Yes
Typical dimensions 2.6 x 1.9 x 1.4 inches 3 x 2.1 x 2.1 inches 4.3 x 3.4 x 1.3 inches 6.6 x 3.6 x 1.5 inches 7.1 x 3.9 x 2.8 inches 11.7 x 8.1 x 6.7 inches
Typical weight 4.5 ounces 4 ounces 4.5 ounces 1.6 pounds 13 ounces 20 pounds
Typical number of items to carry (D) 1 1 5 8 12 2
Suitable for hand luggage Yes Yes Yes • (E) • (F)
Estimated price under £10 £15-£20 £10-£15 £35-£40 £5-£10 almost £110
Buy Buy Buy Buy Buy Buy

Vanuatu power outlets and plug sockets

What plug sockets are used in Vanuatu?

Type C, G and I power outlets

What plug sockets are used in Vanuatu?

There are three types of power outlets used in Vanuatu, types G, C and I with the primary power supply being type G:

  • Plug Type C - The plug socket (technically known as the Europlug) can be identified by 2 holes next to each other for live and neutral.
  • Plug Type G - You can recognise the power outlet by three vertical rectangular holes in a triangle shape for live, neutral and earth pins.
  • Plug Type I - The power outlet, also called a type I power outlet, can be recognised by the three thin slots forming an upside-down triangle configuration with a single vertical pin at the base and the top pair of slots sloping upwards for the live, neutral and ground. [3]

How do I use a 110 volt appliance in Vanuatu?

To use a 110V appliance in a Vanuatuan power outlet you need a step down power converter.

Vanuatu

What is the frequency used in Vanuatu?

The frequency of the current from a Vanuatuan power outlet is 50Hz. [11]

Vanuatu
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mains_electricity_by_country

What is access to electrical power in Vanuatu like?

Less than 50% of the population has access to electrical power in Vanuatu.

Vanuatu

Does Vanuatu have power outages?

It is reported that there are potentially monthly power cuts in parts of Vanuatu.

Vanuatu
Should I use a portable charger in Vanuatu?

Portable charger for charging cell phone

Should I use a portable charger in Vanuatu?

As power isn't available in all areas of Vanuatu alongside the lack of a stable power grid, visitors should bring alternative charging options if they need to continue using devices such as mobile phones or eReaders.

  • Whilst travelling increased reliance on cell phones for storing calendars, taking photographs, getting directions, social network sharing and staying entertained will syphon off power more excessively than normal. A flat mobile phone battery could possibly leave you stranded without sufficient power to make an emergency call or being able to use a sat nav app to get directions to your accommodation. By packing a 10,000mAh power bank alleviates those concerns as it means you can keep your smart phone charged on the go, especially when travelling to a country with limited access to electricity and power cuts in some areas.
  • A typical 10,000mAh portable charger can store enough energy to cover over three full days of mobile phone use while a 20,000mAh power bank should keep a typical mobile phone powered for around seven days depending on the model of phone and usage. The mAh rating describes the capacity of the battery and gives an indication of the number of charge cycles the portable charger can achieve, therefore a higher number will be better for travellers.
  • Providing that your laptop supports USB-C charging then a portable charger for a laptop marked with PD (power delivery) that supplies at least 20Wh can be used to extend the battery life of the laptop. Please note that some airlines don't allow you bring power banks on an aircraft with more than 100 Wh of power and must be kept in carry-on luggage only.
  • Consumer portable chargers won't work with high powered items that generate heat, although a rechargeable hair dryer or gas hair straighteners are designed for travelling to areas with power cuts and limited access to electricity like Vanuatu.    [12] [12] [13] [14] [15] [16]
How well do solar battery chargers work in Vanuatu?

Solar backpacks are ideal in hot countries

How well do solar battery chargers work in Vanuatu?

The sunshine in Vanuatu should be adequate enough to charge solar power bank dependably, however it will need to be exposed to strong daylight to produce enough power for a single charge cycle. It may prove inconvenient to constantly unpack a solar power bank then wait for it to recharge in sunny spells.

  • The much larger solar cells used on a solar backpack will give the bag the ability to generate more power within a faster period of time, making them ideal for the climate in Vanuatu.
  • A device that has been directly plugged into the USB port of a backpack should gradually top up the power during sunny spells in Vanuatu, however might be inconvenient to have it constantly tethered in the bag during the day if it is to be used frequently. A regular power bank plugged in a solar backpack can be continuously powered up inside the bag during sunlight, afterwards you can power up the phone from the power bank at any time without being attached to the bag.
  • Although the climate in Vanuatu is suitable for solar power, a bag should have a solar cell efficiency of 22% or more, be able to generate at least 6 watts of energy and can be used with a power bank of 10,000mAH or stronger. The flexible and durable solar panels used in solar powered bags are designed to survive scratches and bending, unlike normal solid solar panels. They are found in backpack, messenger and rucksack styles making them perfect for domestic, work and travel.  [4] [17] [18]

Sources

  • International Electrotechnical Commission - World plugs by location (cited August 2014)
  • Wikipedia - Mains electricity by country (cited July 2014)
  • Index Mundi - Power outages in a typical month (cited May 2018, data collected between 2006 to 2017)
  • Index Mundi - Access to electricity (cited May 2018, latest data collected 2010)
  • WikiPedia - List of countries by average yearly temperature (cited May 2018, data averaged between 1961 to 1990)

Vanuatu chargers

What is a USB travel power charger?

A USB travel charger is a dual voltage charger with interchangeable plugs and multiple USB ports, suitable for charging multiple USB powered devices when travelling abroad.

What USB charger do I need for Vanuatu?

If you are travelling with more than just one device then the best international travel charger for Vanuatu is a multiple USB charger which includes compatible plugs such as a 4 port USB travel charger. Ni-Vanuatu use three different types of plug sockets (types G, C and I) and bringing this will ensure that you are covered for both types C and G. Because these chargers are supplied with interchangeable plugs and can handle from 100 volts to 240 volts it makes them ideal for multiple countries around the world just by changing the supplied heads. If your device is compatible with Fast Charge (note that not all USB devices do) then you will benefit from quicker charging times with one of these USB travel adapters, and support for certain power demanding devices like tablets.

Unlike other travel adapters having a 4 port charger will also allow you to charge multiple devices at once without needing to pack seperate power adapters. Only needing to pack a single lightweight travel charger will help keep the size down, making it ideal to fold up in hand luggage as well as being on hand for charging your devices at the airport or on the plane. Due to their flexibility these types of adapters can be used at home as well as abroad so when you're not travelling they can be used overnight charging multiple smartphones, tablets and e-readers without needing an additional power outlet.

We suggest buying a versatile travel adapter like this at an electronics retailer - the multipurpose travel adapter illustrated here is the 4 Port USB Wall Charger which has been successfully tested with multiple USB devices in numerous different countries around the world on a daily basis. [7]

What USB charger do I need for Vanuatu?

Why use a travel USB charger for Vanuatu?

  • Most travel USB chargers include multiple USB charger ports, this means that you should only need to bring a single charger to charge all your devices. Instead of bringing 4 individual power chargers you only need to pack a single 4 port USB wall charger and power up to 4 separate devices, thereby cutting down on the size and weight of your baggage.
  • All travel USB power chargers should include interchangeable plug heads for different power outlet types. This is ideal if visiting other countries which will probably use a different standard to Vanuatu.
  • Good chargers are lightweight, compact and rugged; perfect for the rigors of travel instead of than risking bringing a domestic charger which might be hard to replace or repair in Vanuatu.
  • USB travel chargers can accept both the 220 volts used in Vanuatu power outlets and different voltage standards across the world.
  • It's possible that some hotels in Vanuatu only have one power outlet, by using a travel charger with multiple USB ports means you can share out the single power supply with family or other traveler instead of waiting to charge one device at a time.
  • Due to their flexible nature they take the worry out of travelling to an unknown country as they are guaranteed to work almost anywhere on the planet.
  • Power outlets found in airports can be scant and demand for charging multiple devices before a flight can be high, so a USB travel charger with multiple ports and the capability to fast charge is perfect.
  • The power grid in some countries can be unstable, a travel charger allows for unexpected spikes and will help prevent damage to any devices attached to it. Attempting to repair an overloaded mobile phone in Vanuatu might prove inconvenient and costly.
  • Premium USB travel chargers will also incorporate power outlet strips to power low wattage domestic appliances such as laptops, however these are unsuitable for high wattage appliances such as hair dryers or clothes irons. Read the guide on using travel appliances in Vanuatu for advice and guidelines on the best power adapter for using a high powered appliances in a Vanuatuan power outlet.
  • Certain mobile phones could require more than the normal 500 mA produced from a standard 5 volt USB power adapter to charge or provide fast charge. Ensure that the USB power adapter can support fast charging should any of your devices need extra power.
  • On returning home travel USB power chargers can still be used by charging multiple mobile phones on a daily basis using only a single power outlet. [7]

What is the best USB charger for Vanuatu?

A 4 port USB travel charger is the most compact option for travellers from any country who only have USB devices, but for visitors also wanting to use their domestic plugs these power converters provide larger but more versatile solutions. All 3 power adapters offer surge protection which can be useful for visitors of regions with unstable power grids to prevent damage to any connected devices from voltage spikes. These power adapters come with interchangeable type C, I and G plugs covering Europe, America, Australia, United Kingdom, Japan, China and over 150 destinations:

  • BESTEK Portable International Travel Voltage Converter - The BESTEK international travel converter has 4 USB charging ports with 3 AC power outlets and is the most popular portable power converter for travellers originating from America going to Vanuatu using 3 pinned type B US plug sockets.
  • ORICO Traveling Outlet Surge Protector Power Strip - Likewise having 4 USB ports but only 2 AC power outlets the travel adapter from Orico is also aimed at travellers from North America using type B plugs. This is a more cost effective alternative to the BESTEK with only 1 less AC outlet at almost half the price.
  • BESTEK International USB Travel Power Strip - This power strip has 2 AC outlets but offers 5 USB charging ports. This versatile power strip is compatible with both American plugs and popular plug types A, D,E/F, G, H, I, L and N making it perfect for a majority of travellers from around the world visiting Vanuatu. [7]

Power converters for Vanuatu

What is a power converter for a Vanuatuan power outlet?

A power converter enables travellers to use a 100-120 volt electric device with a 220 volt Vanuatuan power outlet.

Also known as: electrical converter, electrical transformer, voltage converter, power transformer or voltage transformer.

What is the difference between a power converter and a power adapter for Vanuatu?

An expensive and heavy power converter converts a 220 volt Vanuatuan power outlet to work with a non-220 volt appliance, whereas a more lightweight and smaller power adapter (or plug adapter) will change the shape of the plug on your device to fit into a power outlet found in Vanuatu. [19]

Do I need a power converter for Vanuatu?

When you are visiting Vanuatu from a different region please ensure the device can be charged using a 220 volt power supply.

  • A step down power converter is needed if you are travelling to Vanuatu from a country that uses 100-120 volts and your device or appliance won't support 220 volts. Read our WikiConnections world power outlets guide to discover which voltage your country uses.
  • You shouldn't need a power converter if you are already using either a single voltage device that works with 220 volts or one that is dual voltage.
  • Devices designed to use a lower voltage (such as 110 volts) and used in a 220 volt outlet run the risk of an electrical fire hazard, a blown fuse or damage to your device.
  • You won't need a converter if you need to charge a smaller electrical device such as a mobile phone or laptop as these are normally designed for international use and dual voltage, however you should always always check the device for dual voltage support first.
  • For supplying power to appliances which draw more power or generate heat (for example clothes irons and hair dryers) then you will need to use a more expensive higher wattage heavy duty power converter.
  • Buying a smaller robust dual voltage travel appliance could be more practical and cost effective than bringing a much heavier power converter just to use your existing domestic appliance.
  • For more information read these comprehensive travel guides on using curling wands, clothes irons, hair straighteners and hair dryers in Vanuatu , along with guides for some affordable dual voltage alternatives.  [10] [20]

What converter do I need for Vanuatu?

You will need to use a step down power converter in order to use any 100-120 volt appliance in a 220 volt Vanuatuan power outlet. [10]

What voltage is used in Vanuatu?

Vanuatu uses 220 volts in their normal power outlets. [2]

Vanuatu
https://www.iec.ch/worldplugs/

How to convert 220 volts to 110 volts

  1. Use a step down power converter to allow you to use a 110 or 120 volt appliance with a 220 volt Vanuatuan power outlet.
  2. If the power converter doesn't include the correct shaped plug then it will also be necessary to plug in the power cord from the power converter into a power adapter for Vanuatu before plugging that into a Vanuatuan power outlet.
  3. Some power converters include the ability to perform both step up and step down voltage conversions, therefore it may be necessary to manually switch the converter to output the voltage to the 110-120 volt range.
  4. Plug your appliance into the converter and turn the power on, your 110-120 volt appliance can now be used with a 220 volt Vanuatuan power outlet. [10]
What is the difference between a transformer and a converter?

Voltage converter

What is the difference between a transformer and a converter?

Converters and transformers are both used to change one voltage to another, but this ambiguity can cause confusion as their purposes are different:

  • Power converters are designed for simple electrical appliances which typically generate heat or use motors such as clothes irons, shavers or hair dryers. Transformers are designed for more complex electronic items such as televisions or games consoles.
  • Buying a power converter is cheaper than buying a power transformer.
  • Power transformers are larger and heavier making them more suited for permanent residential use; for example an expat wishing to use an imported television would need to use a transformer for this purpose.
  • Power converters are more suitable for travellers wishing to bring domestic appliances abroad such as hair dryers or flat irons. However, it is more practical and cost effective to purchase a dual voltage appliance designed for travel rather than a heavier power converter.
  • Power converters are suitable for 2 pin ungrounded appliances, it could be harder to find a converter if you want to use a grounded 3 pin appliance.
  • Transformers can be used constantly however it is recommended that converters are used for no longer than a couple of hours at a time.
  • Shops may sell transformers under the name of converters, for the purposes this guide we will be referring to both converters and transformers as converters.
What voltage is my appliance?

Single voltage hair straighteners

What voltage is my appliance?

The best method to tell if your device is dual voltage is to look for a sticker on the supplied charger or on the unit itself, typically on the rear or near to where the power cord goes. This location might depend on the make or model of your unit but could also be written on the box or in the instruction manual.

  • Single voltage devices might have a specific number - such as 240V.
  • Single voltage devices could also have a small voltage range (around 20 volts) with a dash to accomodate small voltage fluctuations - such as 100-120V.
  • Dual voltage devices will say a large voltage range separated with a slash - such as 100/240V.

Substantiations

See the power adapter substantions section for more information on how we compared travel adapters (October 2018).

What type of adapter do you need for Vanuatu?

Which type of plug adapter do you need for Vanuatu?

The power converter or plug adapter which is suitable for Vanuatu depends on various requirements. Prior to deciding which one to bring we suggest using the following checklist:

How many electrical items will you be taking to Vanuatu?

How many electrical devices are you packing

How many electrical items will you be taking to Vanuatu?

  • List how many items you want to bring to Vanuatu (including phones, laptops, eReaders, hair straighteners or clothes irons).
    • Remember to take into account that you might own more electrical devices in the future. Do you intend on buying a new tablet computer next year for example?
    • There is a growing number of rechargeable devices such as electric shavers that use a USB port for their power source. Therefore next time you buy a new device it could need a USB power adapter so remember to check that your travel adapter has enough spare ports to support these too.
  • Will you be travelling with a partner who might need to charge their iPads too?
What different types of electrical items do you need to use in Vanuatu?

A travel shaver

What different types of electrical items do you need to use in Vanuatu?

  • There are 3 types of electrical devices or appliances:
    • Low wattage electrical devices which can be plugged into a power outlet - for example cameras and laptops.
    • High wattage appliances that can be plugged into a power outlet - for example clothes irons and hair dryers.
    • USB powered electrical devices which plug into a USB port - for example cellphones.
  • If you only have to bring along just USB powered devices to Vanuatu then you'll find that a travel USB charger is ideal as you will only have to pack one compact charger plus your charging cables.
  • Travel power strips are built for providing power and voltage conversion for many low wattage devices of any voltage, however unsuitable for high wattage appliances (such as clothes irons) which need voltage conversion.
How many wall outlets are available in Vanuatu?

Are multiple outlets available

How many wall outlets are available in Vanuatu?

  • The accommodation in Vanuatu may have only a single power outlet, this will present an inconvenience if charging up multiple electronic devices such as phones, tablet computers and cameras overnight as you will only be able to recharge a single device at a time every few hours.
  • Should you wish to recharge multiple devices simultaneously then we recommend packing either a travel power strip or USB wall charger which are capable of charging multiple USB ports and outlets. [8]

Will your devices and appliances only work with a 220 volt power outlet?

Will you only be charging USB devices in Vanuatu?

Will you only need USB items

Will you only be charging USB devices in Vanuatu?

  • Should you only plan on packing devices such as phones or tablets to use in Vanuatu then we suggest just packing a travel USB wall charger.
  • If you only use a simple power plug adapter you will still need to bring the USB power charger that was supplied with your device too. [7]

What is your budget?

  • Basic power adapters start from under £10 to power only one single device in Vanuatu (providing that works with 220 volts or it is dual voltage) but paying roughly £15-£20 means you can power multiple devices at once and use them in multiple countries.

Are you planning to visit anywhere abroad in the future?

Does your trip include visits to countries other than Vanuatu?

Will you always have good access to electricity?

  • Power in Vanuatu can occasionally fluctuate which could possibly cause damage to your devices, so you will need to look for a power adapter which offers surge protection such as a travel power strip.
  • Due to Vanuatu suffering from power cuts or having limited coverage of power in certain regions you might find that whichever power adapter you bring to the country doesn't work anyway. You can prepare for limited electricity access or power cuts by bringing a portable charger and a solar backpack.  [4] [4] [17]
Will it take you a long time to fly to Vanuatu?

Using a phone after a long haul flight

Will it take you a long time to fly to Vanuatu?

  • If you're taking an extended flight to get to Vanuatu think about an appropriate airport-friendly power charger that works in different outlet types, one that can be carried in hand luggage and can be used to quickly top up phones and tablets prior to a long haul journey.
  • As not all planes and airports have power outlets please think about bringing a battery portable charger for recharging on the go. When you land you could have to rely on a mobile phone for making calls, sending texts, using mapping or recalling an itinerary; therefore it is recommended that your phone has ample power left. [4]

Would you like to use your charger when returning to the UK?

Do you bringing just hand luggage to Vanuatu?

Are you only using hand luggage

Do you bringing just hand luggage to Vanuatu?

What can I connect to a Vanuatuan power outlet

Travel appliances that can connect to a Vanuatuan power outlet

Beats Pill speakers which can connect to a Vanuatuan power outlet

Jabra Bluetooth speakers which are compatible with a Vanuatuan power outlet

Mobile phones which work with the Vanuatuan power outlet

Apple iPhones which can be connected to a Vanuatuan power outlet

Samsung Galaxy phones that can connect to a Vanuatuan power outlet

A list of Amazon Kindle tablets which can connect to a Vanuatuan power outlet

A list of Apple iPads which are compatible with a Vanuatuan power outlet

Corrections

We endeavor to ensure all details on this page are correct and relevant to travellers visiting Vanuatu, if you wish to contribute any useful information or feedback please email travel@wikiconnections.org. For more comprehensive technical details visit the Wikipedia page on AC power plugs and sockets[21]

Disclaimer

WikiConnections is not responsible for any injury or damage caused due to using any type of suggested product with any other electrical device or appliance in any location, full details are available on the disclaimer page. All functions and capabilities should be checked prior to purchasing or using any power adapter. Assumptions on if any power adapter, charger, converter or power strip works in any location is based on data from publicly available sources and if it fits the primary power outlet used in that country. WikiConnections has not taken into consideration other less common power outlets which might be found as these might only be used in certain areas or in the process of being phased out.

Where possible, WikiConnections only recommends the type of product as being suitable along with alternatives and does not make any endorsement for any specific brand or product. Always check with the manufacturer to ensure full compatibility prior to attempting to use any device. Always check the reputation of the manufacturer and product to ensure the quality and safety of any electrical device being used.

  1. Wikipedia - Vanuatu country Wiki page.
  2. iec.ch - International Electrotechnical Commission World Plugs
  3. Type G plug adapter - A Type G power adapter has three thick rectangular blades in a triangular shape with the longer top blade acting as the earthing pin, under £10.
  4. Portable charger - A power bank is a portable charger which can recharge USB powered devices such as mobile phones and tablets on the go, estimated cost under £35.
  5. Wikipedia - power adaptor
  6. Universal travel power adapter - A typical universal travel power adapter can be used in over 150 different countries for use with appliances and USB devices, costs under £20.
  7. 4 Port USB Wall Charger - A universal USB charger capable of charging up to 4 USB devices with swappable international adapters, £10-£15.
  8. Travel power strip - A travel power strip includes surge protectors, AC power outlets, USB ports and swappable plug adapters for use in multiple countries, £35-£40.
  9. Plug adapter set - Plug adapter set containing a number of different power plug adapters for use in different countries, costing around £5.
  10. Step down power converter - A step down power converter allows a 100-120 volt appliance to be used in a 220-240 volt power outlet, estimated price under £35.
  11. Wikipedia - WikiPedia - Mains electricity by country -
  12. 10,000mAh portable charger - Lightweight 10000mAh high-speed portable USB charger suitable for mobile phone charging, around £20.
  13. Rechargeable hair dryer - Rechargeable battery powered cordless blow dryer suitable for travelling, priced at £140-£150.
  14. Gas hair straighteners - Cordless ceramic hair straighteners powered by gas cartridges, costing around £30.
  15. 20,000mAh portable charger - High capacity 20000mAh high-speed portable USB charger suitable for charging mobile phones and some tablets for several days, costing under £35.
  16. USB-C PD power bank - Power Delivery charger suitable for charging laptops with USB-C support, £100-£110.
  17. Solar backpack - A solar backpack will charge USB devices or an internal power bank when left in sunlight, costing £110-£120.
  18. Solar power bank - Portable power bank with solar cells which can recharge when placed in sunlight and power any USB powered device, £20-£25.
  19. 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, costs £100-£110.
  20. Heavy duty power converter - A 5000 watt heavy duty step up and step down power converter used to convert voltages for domestic appliances, power tools, televisions, heating appliances and motors, under £110.
  21. Wikipedia - AC power plugs and sockets -