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We’re all guilty of having way more electronic devices than we need.  We find that no trip is complete without taking along our tablets, cell phones, cameras, reading devices, iPods, and on and on.  American hotels are usually quite generous with the number of power outlets provided for their guest.  In Europe, it’s more hit-or-miss.

When there are only two outlets in the entire hotel room (and one in the bathroom if you’re lucky), how’s a power-hungry American supposed to charge all of his or her superfluous needed electronics?  A grounded, universal, travel power strip is the answer.

Why a grounded power strip instead of a regular power strip?  I like to use a grounded power strip because in case of a power surge, my electronics won’t get fried.  Why a universal power strip?  It accepts plugs compatible with many different countries with no need to buy an adapter before plugging other countries’ electronics into the power strip.  That means that, theoretically, you can plug into it a device with a plug compatible with the UK’s electrical system at the same time that you plug into it a device compatible with the US’s electrical system.  The outlets on the universal power strip are designed to take just about any country’s plug.  However, I have never attempted to use electronics with varying countries’ plugs in the power strip at the same time.  If you do, proceed with caution.

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Besides its safety and convenience, a travel power strip is just a good idea, period.  It’s small and compact, and packs easily.  The power strip extends a single wall outlet into a way to charge three or four electronic devices.  Some power strips even have a USB port on them so that you may charge other types of devices.  I’ve personally used the Simran SM-60 universal power strip with three outlets overseas and in the Caribbean with on issues.  I used a dual voltage flat iron with the power strip and had zero issues.

One caveat to using a travel power strip:  your travel power strip’s three-prong  grounded plug must be compatible with the receiving outlet.  You will likely need an adapter for the plug, to adapt it to the country’s electrical system.  Without the adapter, the plug won’t fit into the outlet.  Need help figuring out which adapter you might need?  Check out a handy site here.

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