After getting back to Buenos Aires, I plugged that sucker right in, ready for a caffeine jolt to the system. Instead, I got a strong to quite strong electric shock to the body when trying to plug in my smuggled machinery from the States. I immediately decided to 1) do some reading up on electricity in foreign countries and if I was dying (seriously) 2) let my boyfriend figure the damn thing out because I sure as hell wasn’t touching it again and 3) guzzle some café con leche elsewhere.
Here’s a great opportunity to learn from my mistakes. What should’ve been at the top of my packing list: the correct adapter (and transformer) for my precious electronics. Not only could I have brewed the perfect Veranda Blonde roast, but a full battery is necessary to accompany my iPhone for google maps, FIFA World Cup updates, my Spanish translator app and Instagram. How else are you supposed to navigate the nearest sports bar for the Argentina game, order a beer (“Te pido una cerveza?” Nailed it.) and make your friends green with envy if you’re not fully charged with power? Allow me to do some educating…
Things you may need:
Adapter: The connector that changes the plug shape to match the outlet. They do not convert voltage or electricity.
Voltage converter/transformer: Converters are smaller, travel sized and used for shorter periods of time for electric items with heating devices and motors such as hair dryers, curlers, irons, shavers, etc. Transformers are bigger, heavier, more expensive and typically used for electronic devices for up to hours at a time.
-BOLIVIA: 220V (SAME OUTLET AS THE U.S.)
-BRAZIL: THE ONLY COUNTRY THAT USES DUAL VOLTAGE. DEPENDING ON THE REGION, YOU COULD FIND 115V, 127V OR 220V (AMERICAN PLUGS ARE VERY COMMON IN BRAZIL AS WELL.)
-COLOMBIA: 120V (SAME OUTLETS AS U.S.)
-ECUADOR: 120V (SAME OUTLET AS THE U.S.)
-VENEZUELA: 120V (SAME OUTLET AS THE U.S.)
If you’re planning on hitting up various destinations while in sunny South America or beyond, may I suggest an all-in-one universal adapter that allows you to power up in over 150 different countries. Fancy, right?