Travel adapter for Cuba

Posted by Martin Parker on

Travel adapter for Cuba

Cuba is one of those iconic places that’s on many peoples bucket list, and now with the USA making traveling there easier, it’s become more popular. But what travel adapter should you take?

Travel adapter for Cuba

Located just 90 miles south of Key West in Florida, Cuba has adopted an odd mixture of electrical systems, making it important to research before traveling. Apart from 4 different plug and socket combinations, Cuba also uses 2 different power supply voltages! 

Electrical supply in Cuba

Unlike most countries that use a single electricity supply voltage, Cuba has provided two! While in the majority of the country the electrical voltage is 110V at 60Hz, the newer hotels also provide sockets with a voltage of 220V at 60Hz.

To avoid damage to your equipment, it is essential to check what the local voltage is before connecting your device. 

Will I need a power converter in Cuba?

Since Cuba offers 2 different voltage supplies, it’s very important to confirm the voltage your device will accept. Many modern devices are multi-voltage and will work in Cuba with no issues. Some are dual-voltage and you will need to move a switch on the device to allow it to work. 

So how can you tell?

On dual-voltage devices, it will be obvious. There will be a switch with markings for 110V or 220V (or similar). Just make sure your device is set up correctly before plugging it in.

Multi-Voltage device

Multi-voltage devices are even easier. On the side of the device or in the manual, look for a statement such as “INPUT: 110V to 240V”. If you see this, there is no need to check before connecting your device. 

What about the electrical frequency?

In most cases, connecting a device designed for 50Hz into a 60Hz supply will probably be okay. The main issue is if the item contains timing devices that use the electricity supply as these may not work correctly. It is probably best to keep the use of such items to a minimum. 

And finally, the plug type in Cuba

Being so close to America, it’s not surprising that they use the same plug and socket types in Cuba. However, you will also find two European type sockets, so a travel adapter is essential. 

So, type A is the standard American non-earthed plug that has two flat prongs. Type B adds a third, round pin that gives an earth connection for devices that require it.

Type A plug and socket used in Cuba

The two European plugs are type C and type L. Type C is a standard across much of Europe and is a two, round pronged plug. Type L is predominantly used in Italy and has three round prongs, providing an earth connection along with live and negative. Type C plugs will fit a type L socket. 

With 4 different sockets being used on the island, it makes sense to bring a travel adapter just in case! 

USB socket and the travel adapter

Many of our modern devices now use USB connections to charge, which makes life much simpler and is also another benefit of taking a travel adapter. 

One of the big advantages of USB connections is that the voltage is always the same wherever you are in the world. The USB socket supplies 5Vdc whether the input voltage is 120V or 240V. This is an even more compelling reason to take a travel adapter to Cuba!

Travel adapter with USB connectors

Your smartphone, tablet and maybe your camera can all be charged via the USB and travel adapters with USB connections are available. For example, the SublimeWare Multi-Country Travel Adapter offers 4 USB connections, so you can simultaneously charge all your devices. 

Advice

If you are traveling to Cuba and you can charge all your devices by USB, then take a travel adapter with multiple USB connections and don’t worry about voltage or socket problems. 

For equipment that needs a mains power supply connection, take the same travel adapter, but make sure the socket you are connecting to has the correct voltage.


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