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What adapters do I need to buy for my France, Italy, Greece Vacation?

I am going on a muli-week trip where I'll be staying in: Rome, Athens, Santorini, and Paris. I am taking a dual-voltage hair dryer (with a manual 220 switch) and several electronic devices (cell phone, ipad, camera battery charger). My question is: do I need grounded adapters for my hairdryer AND regular European 2-prong adapters? I'm going crazy with all of the options out there! Help!!

Posted by
26 posts

Hi, I bought an adapter through my local AAA for my BOE 21 day tour since we went to multiple countries. AAA had it for $18.00 but Travel Smith has it for MUCH more. It was $48 and now $35.
Travelon Dual-Voltage USB Adapter Plug----Charge USB Devices in More Than 150 Countries. Travel with your smartphone, tablet, MP3 player and e-reader—and charge them two at a time with this handy dual-voltage adapter. Lightweight and compact, it has two USB ports and comes with interchangeable plugs for the four most common sockets in more than 150 countries, including the U.S., U.K., Australia and all EU nations. Works with nongrounded, polarized and nonpolarized plugs.
Have a wonderful trip!

Posted by
2948 posts

If your appliances are all dual voltage then all you need is a plug end adapter to change from 2 flat prongs to 2 round prongs.

Posted by
18371 posts

For the electronic devices, you probably only need a type C, Europlug adapter. However, the Europlug is only legal for less than 2½ amps (about 575 watts), and it is non-polarizing. If the US plug is polarized (1 blade wider, so it only goes into our receptacle one way), then, by code, you shouldn't use that devise on the Continent.

As for the hair dryer, it will draw more than 2½ amps and should not be used with a Europlug adapter. And, if it has a polarized plug, important safety protection can be lost by using it with a Europlug. If you insist on using it, always unplug it when not in use.

Posted by
1940 posts

Almost every place we have stayed in Europe (even 30 euro/night pensions) have supplied a hairdryer ... either in the room or available by contacting the owner/manager. So you could probably leave yours home and eliminate some weight plus avoid the adapter dilemma.

To make certain, you could contact your hotels and verify this.

Posted by
16883 posts

For a few years, now, I guess I could have used this adaptor set that Rick carries and which includes one USB port to allow you to charge two things at once. (I get a good price on them, after all.) But in reality, when I'm carrying two or three devices, I just bring a couple of these simple adaptors that Rick sells for $1 each. Younger, more tech-oriented staff than I also do the same.

Posted by
2 posts

Thank you Charlene, however, I don't travel without a hairdryer.. ever. Hotels may offer what they call a hairdryer; but it may be so low powered that air drying might be faster. I have been to France with this dryer (it is very small, light weight, but powerful). It goes where I go.

Posted by
5788 posts

The RS cheap two prong adapter worked for me in France and Italy. Note that if you need a grounded outlet, the french like to be different. See:

French Plugs & Sockets: Hermaphroditic! In most of the world,
electrical plugs and sockets (outlets, points) are termed male and
female: the male is the one with the prongs, the female with the
receptacles for the prongs.

In France, plugs and outlets are hermaphroditic ("both sexes in one"),
meaning that both plugs and sockets have prongs and receptacles (like

Note that you can also use the flat 2-prong adapter [e.g the cheap one
that Rick sells] with standard large 2-prong Euro plugs that would not
otherwise fit in, and connect to, a French hermaphroditic socket
because of the France-only ground prong coming out of the outlet...