US to Kenya power adapters - what electrical adapter is needed for Kenya?

Kenyan power outlet

What adapter do I need for Kenya?

Bring a Type G plug adapter [3] to Kenya if the plug you intend on using doesn't fit into a Kenyan power outlet.

The type of plug adapter, power converter or charger that's needed when visiting Kenya all depends on the voltage and type of device that you're attempting to charge with a Kenyan power outlet. If you're not sure what voltage your device uses then read the section below on how can you tell if you have a dual voltage or single voltage device before going any further.

  • Expect frequent power outages and limited access to electricity in certain areas of Kenya, we suggest packing a portable charger [4] if you need to keep your phone battery charged whilst staying in an area without power or during a blackout.
  • If you are from America travelling to Kenya you will need to use a plug adapter to fit a US plug into a Kenyan power outlet. As the voltage is different in Kenya bring a power converter if your device or appliance isn't dual voltage and ensure that it is compatible with a 50hz power outlet.
  • If your device is 240 volts or is dual voltage and your plug can fit in a Kenyan power outlet then you can use it in Kenya.
  • If your device is 240 volts or is dual voltage but your plug doesn't fit in a Kenyan power outlet then you'll need to bring a suitable plug adapter for Kenya such a Type G plug adapter [3]. Please Note that a plug adapter for Kenya (or power adapter) is designed to change the actual shape of the plug on your device to fit into a plug outlet found in Kenya, but can't change the voltage from 240 volts to use with another voltage.
  • If your device is unable to run on 240 volts and isn't dual voltage then you will also need a power converter for Kenya to convert the voltage from 240 volts to the correct voltage on your device. You'll still need to pack a suitable plug adapter for Kenya if the power converter doesn't have the correct Type G plug adapter.
  • If you want to bring USB devices such as tablets or cellphones then a USB travel power adapter is recommended and it should be dual voltage, however ensure that you choose a USB travel adapter which includes a Type G plug adapter otherwise you will still need to use a suitable plug adapter for Kenya.

Warning: If your device won't handle 240 volts you run the potential risk of a blown fuse, damage to your device or even an electrical fire hazard. Prior to using your device in Kenya please read the instruction manual first to ensure safe operation.

Kenya power adapters

Power adapters for Kenya

When organizing to travel it is helpful to know in advance if you'll be able to charge all your indispensable electrical devices at your hotel. But by not knowing which plug socket is used you are likely to bring the wrong charger, leaving you having to purchase a suitable power adaptor on arrival that might be incompatible and cause damage to your device. Varying different standards and voltages can all be confusing when planning on staying in another country especially if you've never been there before. However this isn't as complex as it first appears, with only a handful of different types of common standards being used in the world this article shows exactly what you'll need in advance to power your device in Kenya. This page contains links to useful instructions showing you exactly which power adapters you'll need to power your devices when you're visiting Kenya by using a 240 volt 50Hz Type G wall outlet, the Kenyans will use 13 amp plugs for charging. Power adapters will change regionally therefore we recommend reading our Wiki Connections global power adapters list where you'll find a full list of destinations.

What is the best power adapter for Kenya?

The best power adapter for Kenya will be a Type G plug adapter [3] which is suitable for powering any 240 volt device or appliance.

What is the best power adapter for Kenya?

What is a power adapter?

Power adapters are compact and lightweight plastic adapters which allow a Kenyan power outlet to accept a power plug from an appliance from a foreign country.

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 a Kenyan power outlet do?

A power adapter enables visitors from another country to use their electronic and electrical appliances in Kenya simply by altering the shape of the power plug to fit the power socket.

Do I need a power adapter for Kenya?

If the type of Kenyan power outlet is different to the power outlet in your home country then you will need a power adapter.

Do I need a plug adapter for Kenya if I'm from America?

American plugs won't physically fit into a Kenyan power outlet therefore you will need to bring a power adapter for Kenya, and as the voltage is much higher you will also need to use a power converter for Kenya if your appliance or charger isn't dual voltage to prevent damage or overheating.

Does a power adapter change the voltage in Kenya?

Power adapters can only adapt the shape of a plug to fit into a 240 volt Kenyan power outlet and can't convert to a different voltage. Should you wish to safely use any 100, 110 or 120 volt device then you also need to bring a more expensive step down power converter for Kenya.

Where to buy a power adapter for Kenya in the US

Power adapters for sale in an airport

Where to buy a power adapter for Kenya in the US

Kenya to US power adapters will most likely be available in most major US International airports 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 Hudson News or Brookstone, but expect to pay more than regular prices. Airports will be your last chance to buy a power adapter before departure, always check the returns policy to ensure you can easily exchange or refund a faulty or unsuitable product in an airside shop.

It will be more convenient and cheaper to buy the correct power adapter in advance of your trip. High street electrical stores such as Best Buy, Walmart, Target, Home Depot or Fry's normally sell a limited range of travel adapters to popular locations but for widest choice it is recommended to buy a power adapter online.

Where to buy a power adapter in Kenya

Arriving at an airport

Where to buy a power adapter in Kenya

On arrival power adapters could be found in local electrical high street shops and drug stores, but always check the build quality first as safety standards might be different in a foreign country as this is important when dealing with electrical goods. Keep in mind that a shopping trip searching for power adapters in an unknown location might be impractical, especially as this needs to happen quickly before batteries run out.

Hotel receptions could have a power adapter for sale, hire or as a complimentary extra for guests; however, availability is normally limited and a hotel might not have the exact type required for your country. If in doubt, call ahead to the hotel first and request a reservation as it is unlikely that an adapter will be found in your room on arrival.

Electrical adapters for Kenya

Power Plug Adapters

An easy to use Type G plug adapter

Power Plug Adapters

Benefits of a power plug adapter

  • Bringing a Type G plug adapter [3] will be ideal for Kenya.
  • Straightforward design makes it easy to use.
  • Cheapest option, prices under $10.
  • Small and light.

Disadvantages of a power plug adapter

  • If you intend to visit more than just one country you might need to pack more than one type of power adapter.
  • Only alters the actual shape of the plug to fit in a Type G Kenyan power outlet and not the actual voltage used in Kenya. So if your appliance doesn't support a 240 volt power outlet and isn't dual voltage you will still need to pack a voltage converter.
  • A single plug adapter per device - for each separate device you'll also need to pack a separate power adapter.
  • Hotel rooms may only have one power outlet available, so you will only be able to charge one appliance at a time.
  • If you wish to charge any USB device then you also still need to bring a USB charger as well.
Universal Travel Power Adapters

Universal adapters work in multiple countries

Universal Travel Power Adapters

Benefits of a universal travel power adapter

  • Useful for travelling to multiple countries. Typical models will operate in around 150 countries.
  • An all in one design. Both lightweight and small, under $20.
  • Some universal travel adapters include multiple charging ports for USB devices built in.
  • Straightforward operation.
  • There are some universal travel adapters that have a surge protector which will prevent any electronics from being overpowered by an unstable power grid in some countries.
  • The pins retract so don't catch against other items in baggage.
  • When you return home the power strip should still be functional as a USB charger.
  • Changes shape to Types A/B, E/F, G and I plugs so should work with a Kenyan power outlet.

Disadvantages of a universal travel power adapter

  • Cannot be used with any high power appliances such as clothes irons, microwaves, kettles, curling irons or hair dryers.
  • The internal moving parts might be fragile on some models making them prone to breaking.
  • Only provide power to one plug.
  • Not completely universal - some models might not work in some countries with less popular power outlet types.
  • Missing a voltage converter means it won't be suitable for appliances which aren't 240 volts.
Travel Power Strips

Travel power strips including adapters

Travel Power Strips

Benefits of a travel power strip

  • A travel power strip is able to power more than one electronic appliance or device at once using just one power outlet, costing under $35.
  • You will find some travel power strips will convert voltage for low wattage devices (for example laptops). So even if your appliance isn't dual voltage it should still function in Kenya when using a travel power strip, making them a cheaper and lightweight alternative to a power converter.
  • Typical models should include a number of USB ports.
  • Offers surge protection. The voltage from power grids in certain countries might fluctuate, a sudden power surge can damage your electronics. Some models will have a surge protector, this will protect any electronics from being overpowered.
  • When you return home the power strip will still work as a USB charger and power strip.
  • US and Canadian power strips include Type A, B, D, E/F, G, H, I, L and N plug adapters so should work in Kenya.

Disadvantages of a travel power strip

  • The power converter on a travel power strip won't convert higher wattage appliances such as curling irons and hair straighteners.
  • Due to their size power strips might be too heavy for packing in hand luggage.
  • A travel power strip might be considered excessive if you only bring a small number of devices and appliances that need powering.
Travel USB Wall Chargers

A USB travel charger with changable heads

Travel USB Wall Chargers

Benefits of a travel USB wall charger

  • Perfect if you only want to power devices which use USB, for example tablet computers, cell phones and Kindles.
  • Instead of bringing multiple domestic USB power chargers you only have to pack a single charger which costs on average between $10 to $15.
  • Supplied with swappable heads making them useful in a large number of countries. The interchangeable adapter heads are usually small and lightweight making them easy to store.
  • Has a built in surge protector.
  • When you return to America the charger will still be useful.
  • Interchangeable plugs will fit into Types A/B, E/F, G and I outlets so will work in Kenya.

Disadvantages of a travel USB wall charger

  • Restricted to USB outputs so you can't power any appliances, just USB devices.
Plug Adapter Sets

A comprehensive plug adapter set

Plug Adapter Sets

Benefits of a plug adapter set

  • As prices are roughly between $15 to $20 a set will typically work out cheaper than purchasing multiple individual plug adapters for multiple countries costing almost $10 each.
  • Ensures you are covered for all countries.
  • The most flexible option if you are travelling to different locations.
  • Set includes Type A, B, C, D, E/F, G, H, I, J, L, M and N plugs so will be suitable with a Kenyan power outlet.

Disadvantages of a plug adapter set

  • Will involve some planning; you'll have to decide which plug adapters to bring, or alternatively pack each plug adapter type along.
  • Means lots of individual items to bring along.
  • With just one functioning plug adapter working in Kenya the remaining plug adapters will be redundant and using up space.
  • Not all power adapter types are typically included with the set (especially the less common adapters) - so ensure that your set has an adapter that is compatible in Kenya.
  • Only alters the shape of the plug to allow it to fit in a Kenyan power outlet but doesn't alter the voltage.
Voltage Converters

Larger voltage converters

Voltage Converters

Benefits of a voltage converter

Disadvantages of a voltage converter

  • A power converter only converts the 240 volts from a Kenyan power outlet and not the shape of the plug to slot in a Kenyan power outlet, therefore you'll still be required to bring the right type of power adapter for Kenya.
  • The normal size of most models makes them too heavy for packing in carry-on luggage.
  • Useless after your trip to Kenya.
  • Often cheaper to buy a dual voltage travel appliance than to purchase an expensive voltage converter simply to use your existing single voltage appliance in an incompatible country.
  • Expensive - between $90 to $100.
  • When you travel from America visiting Kenya then you will need a voltage converter as the voltage is 240 volts.

Comparison of electrical adapters for Kenya

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 Kenya 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 Kenyan power outlet Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Additional Type G plug adapter required to fit in a Kenyan power outlet Yes
Useful when you return to America 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 240 volt AC appliance in Kenya 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 between $15 to $20 between $10 to $15 between $30 to $35 between $15 to $20 almost $100
Buy Buy Buy Buy Buy Buy

Kenya power outlets and plug sockets

What plug sockets are used in Kenya?

Type G power sockets are used in Kenya. You can identify the power outlet by the three holes forming a triangular configuration for live, neutral and earth.

What plug sockets are used in Kenya?

Do US plugs work in Kenya?

No - a US plug won't work in Kenya because it won't fit in a Kenyan power outlet without using a power adapter. Also, the voltage is 240 volts therefore you need to use a power converter if your device isn't dual voltage and check that your device or appliance will work with a 50hz power outlet.

What electrical frequency is used in a Kenyan power outlet?

The frequency in a Kenyan power outlet is 50Hz.

Are plug sockets in Kenya the same as US?

An American plug won't fit in a Kenyan power outlet so you will need to use a plug adapter for Kenya. Both the voltage and frequency are different so if your charger or appliance isn't dual voltage you need to use a power converter for Kenya and check that it works with 50hz.

How do I use a 110 volt appliance in Kenya?

To use a 110V appliance in Kenya you need to bring a step down power converter.

Is the voltage in Kenya the same as in the US?

The voltage in Kenya is 240 volts, whereas 120 volts is used in America. If your US appliance or power charger can't handle dual voltage then you should use a suitable power converter for a Kenyan power outlet which can change the voltage from a 220-240 volt power outlet to 120 volts.

What percentage of Kenya has access to electrical power?

In Kenya less than 50% of the population has access to electricity.

Does Kenya have many power outages?

Typically Kenya suffers power outages several times a month and with this high level of unpredictability it is recommended to prepare accordingly.

Should I use a power bank in Kenya?

A USB power bank for charging cell phones

Should I use a power bank in Kenya?

Because the power grid isn't available to 100% of the population of Kenya combined with the lack of a reliable power grid, travellers should bring alternate charging solutions if they need to continue charging devices such as mobile phones or cameras.

  • During a trip increased reliance on smart phones for storing itineraries, taking pictures, social network sharing, GPS and web browsing will syphon off power more excessively than normal. A flat smart phone battery can potentially leave you stranded without adequate power to make emergency calls or being able to use a GPS app to get directions to your hotel or accommodation. Bringing a portable charger [4] lowers that risk as it allows you to power up your mobile phone on the move, especially when visiting a country with a lack of access to electricity and power outages in some areas.
  • A 10,000mAh portable charger [4] will supply enough energy to power around three full charges whilst a 20,000mAh power bank [14] should keep an average mobile phone charged for around 7 days. The mAh rating (or milli ampere-hours) shows the capacity of the battery and gives an indication of how many cycles the portable charger can do.
  • If you need to charge your laptop in Kenya and your laptop it supports USB-C charging then bring a portable charger for a laptop [15] marked with PD (power delivery) which supplies at least 20 Wh. However be aware that some airlines won't allow you take power banks on an aircraft with more than 100Wh of power and must not be left in checked-in luggage so always ahead with the airline.
  • Average consumer portable chargers aren't powerful enough for use with high powered items, but a rechargeable hair dryer [12] or gas hair straighteners [13] are available for travelling to areas with both power cuts and limited access to electricity like Kenya.
Will a solar battery charger work in Kenya?

Solar backpacks are ideal for hot climates

Will a solar battery charger work in Kenya?

The sunlight in Kenya will be adequate enough to recharge solar power bank [17] reliability, however it needs to be left in strong sunlight to provide enough energy for a single charge cycle. This may prove inconvenient to continually unpack a solar power bank then wait whilst it recharges in sunny spells.

  • Instead, the much larger durable panels used on a solar backpack [16] give the backpack the ability to generate more electricity within a shorter period of time and might still generate power when overcast, meaning they should perform well in Kenya.
  • Phones that have been directly plugged into a USB charging port of a backpack will trickle charge the power during sunny periods in Kenya, however could be inconvenient to have a phone continuously tethered to the bag during the day if it is to be used constantly. Therefore it is recommended to plug in a battery power bank [4] into a solar backpack which can then be continuously powered up during sunlight, afterwards you can recharge your phone using the power bank at any time without daylight.
  • Even though the sunlight in Kenya is strong, a bag should have a solar cell efficiency of 22% or greater, be able to generate a minimum of 6 watts of power and includes a compatible power bank of 10,000mAH or greater.
  • The durable and flexible solar panels used in solar powered bags have been built to survive scratching and bending, unlike regular firm solar panels. Solar bags are found in rucksack, backpack and laptop messenger styles making them perfect for work, domestic and travel use.

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)

Kenya 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 Kenya?

When travelling to more than one country then the best travel charger for Kenya is a multiple USB port charger which includes compatible plugs like a 4 port USB travel charger [8].

As these chargers come with interchangeable pins and can handle 100 to 240 volts will mean you can travel to multiple countries in Europe, Asia, North America and Africa simply by changing the heads. If your type of device is compatible with Fast Charge then you will benefit from much quicker recharging times by using one of these USB power adapters and additional support for more power demanding devices like tablets.

Unlike other adapters having a four port adapter will allow you to charge multiple devices at the same time without needing to pack individual travel chargers or using up additional power sockets. Because you are only bringing a single international travel charger will also keep the size down, making it ideal to fold up and store in hand baggage whilst travelling. Because of their flexibility these types of power adapters can be used at home not just abroad so when you're not travelling they can sit overnight charging multiple tablets, phones and e-readers with just a single power outlet.

We recommend buying a versatile power adapter like this at your preferred electronics retailer. The travel charger illustrated below is the 4 Port USB Wall Charger [8] which has been successfully tested with multiple USB devices in numerous foreign countries with good reliably.

What USB charger do I need for Kenya?

Why use a travel USB charger for Kenya?

  • Most travel USB chargers include 4 or more USB charger ports, meaning you now only need to bring a single charger to charge multiple devices. Instead of bringing 4 individual power chargers you only need to pack a single 4 port USB wall charger to power up to 4 devices, thereby cutting down on the weight and size of your baggage.
  • Most travel USB power chargers should include interchangeable plug heads for various regions making them ideal when visiting different countries across Africa which will probably use different outlets to Kenya.
  • A good power charger is lightweight, compact and rugged - perfect for rigors of travel instead of than risking bringing a domestic charger which could be hard to repair or replace in Kenya.
  • USB chargers will accept both the 240 volt power outlets in Kenya along with different voltage standards in other countries.
  • It is possible that hotel bedrooms or accommodation in Kenya only have a single power outlet, by using a travel charger with multiple USB ports means you can share the single power supply with all your devices rather than waiting to charge one device at a time.
  • Because of their versatile nature they take the uncertainty out of visiting an unknown country as they are guaranteed to work practically anywhere around the world.
  • Power outlets found in airports are often sparse and demand for charging multiple cell phones and tablets from other passengers before a flight can be high, therefore a USB charger with multiple ports and the capability to fast charge is ideal.
  • Sometimes the power grid in a country can be unstable, a quality travel charger allows for unexpected spikes and prevents damage to any devices attached to it. Trying to repair an overloaded mobile phone or tablet in Kenya might prove to be problematic and costly.
  • Larger USB chargers will also feature a power outlet strip to use multiple low powered domestic appliances such as laptops, however these are unsuitable for high powered appliances such as hair dryers or clothes irons. Read our guide on using travel appliances in Kenya for useful advice on the best power adapter for a Kenyan power outlet for high wattage devices.
  • Certain cellphones and tablets could pull more than the usual 500 milliamps supplied by a standard 5 volt USB adapter to charge or provide fast charge. More expensive USB travel chargers will support fast charging should some of your devices need additional power.
  • On back at home travel USB power chargers can also be used by recharging multiple mobile phones and tablets on an overnight basis using one power outlet.

What is the best USB charger for Kenya?

The is the most compact option for travellers from around the world who only have USB devices, but for visitors also wishing to use their domestic plugs these power adapters provide larger but more versatile solutions. All three power converters offer surge protection which can be crucial when visiting regions with unreliable or unstable power grids. These power converters are supplied with interchangeable type C, I and G plugs covering Continental Europe, America, Australia, United Kingdom, Japan, China and over 150 destinations:

  • BESTEK Portable International Travel Voltage Converter - The BESTEK travel converter has 4 USB charging ports with 3 AC power outlets and is the best selling compact power converter for travellers originating from North America visiting Kenya using type B American plug sockets.
  • ORICO Traveling Outlet Surge Protector Power Strip - Also having 4 USB ports but only 2 AC power outlets the travel adapter from Orico is also aimed at travellers originating from the US using type B plugs. This is a much cheaper alternative to the BESTEK with just one less AC outlet at almost half the price.
  • BESTEK International USB Travel Power Strip - This power strip has just 2 AC outlets but offers a more flexible 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 ideal for a majority of travellers from around the world visiting Kenya.

Power converters for Kenya

What is a power converter for Kenya?

A power converter for Kenya allows you to use a 100-120 volt electrical appliance with a 240 volt Kenyan 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 Kenya?

A heavy and bulky power converter [18] will convert a 240 volt Kenyan power outlet to work with a non-240 volt appliance, but a more lightweight and cheaper power adapter (or plug adapter) will change the shape of the plug on your appliance to fit into a power outlet found in Kenya.

Do I need a power converter for Kenya?

When travelling to Kenya from a different region ensure your device will accept a 240 volt power supply.

  • You will need a step down power converter [10] if you are travelling to Kenya from a country that uses 100-120 volts and your appliance doesn't support 240 volts. See the WikiConnections world power outlets page to find out which voltage is used in your country.
  • You won't need a power converter if you are already using either a single voltage appliance that works with 240 volts or one that supports dual voltage.
  • Devices which are designed to use a lower voltage such as 120 volts and used with 240 volts run a risk of blowing a fuse, damage to your device or even an electrical fire hazard unless a step down power converter [10] is used.
  • You won't need a power converter if you wish to charge a smaller electrical device such as a tablet as these are typically designed for international use and support dual voltage, however please always check the device for dual voltage support prior to your journey.
  • When supplying power to high wattage appliances or generate heat (for example clothes irons or hair dryers) then you will need to use a bulkier higher wattage heavy duty power converter [19] to allow it to be used with a 240 volt Kenyan power outlet.
  • Investing a smaller lightweight dual voltage travel appliance will be more practical and cost effective than trying to carry a heavier high wattage power converter just to use your existing domestic appliance in Kenya.
  • For more information read these travel guides on travelling with curling wands, clothes irons, hair straighteners and hair dryers in Kenyan power outlets which includes guides on some affordable dual voltage alternatives.

Will I need a power converter if I'm travelling to Kenya from America?

The 240 volts from a electric outlet in Kenya is different to a 110 volt US outlet, therefore you will need to use a step down power converter [10] if your charger or appliance doesn't support dual voltage.

What kind of converter do I need for Kenya?

You will need to buy a step down power converter [10] to use any 100-120 volt appliance in Kenya.

What voltage does Kenya use?

Kenya uses 240 volts in their standard power outlets.

How to convert 240 volts to 110 volts

  1. Use a step down power converter [10] to allow you to use a 110 or 120 volt appliance with a 240 volt Kenyan 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 Kenya before plugging that into a Kenyan 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 240 volt Kenyan power outlet.
What is the difference between a power transformer and a converter?

Voltage converter

What is the difference between a power 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.
How can I tell if I have a dual voltage device?

Dual voltage hair straighteners

How can I tell if I have a dual voltage device?

The best method to tell if a device is dual voltage or single voltage is to look for either a sticker or numbers printed on the existing charger or on the appliance itself, typically near to where the power cord goes. The location might depend on the make or model of your device but should also state in the instruction manual or on the box.

  • Single voltage devices might have a specific number - such as 120V.
  • Single voltage devices might also have a small voltage range (around 20 volts) with a dash to accomodate small voltage fluctuations - such as 220-240V.
  • Dual voltage devices will say a larger range separated with a slash - such as 110/240V.

Substantiations

How we compared products

Typical figures based on top 5 popular electrical adapters for each form-factor from different manufacturers with prices as of October 2018.

  • Power Plug Adapters - Ceptics Grounded Universal Plug Adapter, TESSAN Grounded Universal Travel Power Plug Adapter, Tmvel Universal International Power Adapter Plug, EnriQ Plug Adapter, Ckitze Travel Power Plug Adapter.
  • Universal Travel Power Adapters - BESTEK Universal Travel Adapter, NEWVANGA International Universal All in One Worldwide Travel Adapter, Bluegogo Universal All in One Worldwide Travel Adapter, HAOZI All-in-one International Power Adapter, UROPHYLLA Universal European Adapter Dual Fuses.
  • Travel USB Wall Chargers - iKits 4-Port USB Wall/International Charger, LENCENT 4 Port USB Travel Adapter, PISEN USB Wall Charger, Anker 27W 4-Port USB Wall Charger PowerPort 4 Lite, USB Plug Travel Charger Adaptor, Turata 4 Port Universal World Wall Charger.
  • Travel Power Strips - BESTEK International USB Travel Power Strip, TESSAN 3 Outlet Surge Protector travel Power Strip, Portable Travel Adapter Power Strip Charging Station, GR-8 Power Compact & Slim Travel Charging Station, NTONPOWER Portable Charging Station.
  • Plug Adapter Sets - Ceptics GP-12PK International Travel Worldwide Grounded Universal Plug Adapter Set, Ceptics World Travel Adapter Set - 11 Pack, BESTEK Grounded Universal Plug Set, OREI 7 World Travel Adapter Plug Set, Ceptics Adapter Plug Set for World Wide International Travel Use.
  • Voltage Converters - Power Bright VC2000W Voltage Transformer Step Up/Down converter, LiteFuze LT-3000 3000 Watt Voltage Converter Transformer - Step Up/Down, SEYAS 1000W Auto Step Up & Step Down Voltage Transformer Converter, Rockstone Power 5000 Watt Heavy Duty Step Up/Down Voltage Transformer Converter, KRIEGER 1700 Watt Voltage Transformer Step up/down 120V / 230V AC outlet American European Converter.

Weight, dimensions, number of AC outlets and number of USB powers were all based by calculating and rounding an average figure for each attribute where known.

Key to electrical adapter comparison

  1. Compatible number of countries based on data from the International Electrotechnical Commission World Plugs page (cited November 2018).
  2. Assuming only a single plug adapter from the plug adapter set will be used at any one time in a compatible location.
  3. Depending on if the power strip supports voltage conversion for low wattage items. All travel power strips tested do not convert voltage for high wattage appliances.
  4. Including the device itself, any supplied plug heads and power cords.
  5. Some travel power strips featuring less AC outlets may be small and lightweight enough to be suitable for hand luggage.
  6. Number of items if bringing an entire set of plug adapters for use in multiple locations to cover all eventualities (unless bringing only the necessary single plug adapter).

What type of adapter do you need for Kenya?

Which type of plug adapter do I need for Kenya?

The type of power converter which is best to use in Kenya will depend on various requirements, so before deciding which adapter to use we suggest using this checklist:

How many devices will you be taking to Kenya?

How many electrical devices are you packing

How many devices will you be taking to Kenya?

  • Add up how many items you intended on bringing with you to Kenya (such as tablets, mobile phones, eReaders, hair dryers or curling irons).
    • Remember to take into account that you might own more devices at a later date. Do you intend on buying a new mobile phone computer soon?
    • There is a growing number of smaller rechargeable devices such as electric shavers which use USB charging for their power charging source. The next time you have to replace a device it could need a USB adapter so please check that your travel adapter has enough spare ports to power these also.
  • Are you bringing children along who might need to recharge their devices as well?
What different types of devices do you need to charge in Kenya?

A USB powered phone

What different types of devices do you need to charge in Kenya?

  • There are three types of electrical devices:
    • Low wattage electronic devices which plug into a power outlet - for example laptops and cameras.
    • High wattage appliances which plug into a power outlet - for example hair dryers and curling irons.
    • USB powered devices which charge with a USB port - for example mobile phones and iPads.
  • When you only want to take just USB powered devices to Kenya then a simple travel USB charger is perfect as you'll only have to bring one charger and your existing charging cables and leave your domestic chargers at home.
  • Travel power strips are designed for powering and converting voltage for many low wattage devices (such as cameras), but unsuitable for high wattage appliances that need voltage conversion.
How many Kenyan power outlets are available?

Are multiple outlets available

How many Kenyan power outlets are available?

  • Hotels in Kenya might only offer one power outlet. This will be an inconvenience when charging up the batteries of more than one device overnight because you will only be able to charge one device at a time.
  • To recharge multiple devices at the same time we suggest using a travel USB wall charger or a travel power strip which can power multiple USB ports or power outlets.

Do your appliances and devices work with a 240 volt power outlet?

Are you only charging USB devices in Kenya?

Will you only bring USB electronics

Are you only charging USB devices in Kenya?

Are you planning to visit anywhere else abroad in the future?

What is your budget?

  • A basic power adapter starts from around under $10 which powers one device from a Kenyan power outlet (providing that works with 240 volts or is dual voltage), but investing in anywhere between $15 to $20 means you can charge multiple devices at once and be able to use them in multiple different countries.

Do you intend on visiting countries other than Kenya?

Will the area of Kenya you are visiting have good access to electrical power?

  • The voltage in Kenya will often fluctuate and this might cause damage to your devices, so look for an adapter which offers surge protection built in such as a travel power strip.
  • Because Kenya suffers from power outages and having limited access to electricity you might find that whichever power charger you pack won't function anyway. Be prepared for a power cut and limited electricity by using a portable charger [4] or a solar backpack [16].

Do you still need use your charger when returning to America?

Are you flying long haul to travel to Kenya?

Making a call after a long haul flight

Are you flying long haul to travel to Kenya?

  • If you are embarking on an extended trip to get to Kenya it's worth considering an airport-suitable charger that works in different power outlet types, one that can be packed in hand luggage and can be used to power phones and tablets.
  • As not all flights actually have power outlets for customers please consider bringing a portable charger [4] which will recharge on the go. After landing in Kenya you might have to use a mobile phone for making a telephone call, messenging, using mapping to locate accomodation or recalling itineraries; therefore it is recommended that your phone will have ample battery power remaining.
Are you only bringing hand luggage?

Are you only using hand luggage

Are you only bringing hand luggage?

What can I connect to a Kenyan power outlet

Travel appliances that can connect to a Kenyan power outlet

Beats Pill speakers which can connect to a Kenyan power outlet

Jabra Bluetooth speakers which are compatible with a Kenyan power outlet

Mobile phones which can be connected to the Kenyan power outlet

Apple iPhones that can connect to the Kenyan power outlet

Samsung Galaxy phones that can connect to a Kenyan power outlet

A list of Amazon Kindle tablets which work with a Kenyan power outlet

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

Corrections

We endeavor to ensure all details on this page are correct and relevant to travellers visiting Kenya, 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 [20].

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. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kenya - Kenya Wikipedia page.
  2. http://www.iec.ch/worldplugs/ - International Electrotechnical Commission World Plugs
  3. Type G plug adapter - Allows appliances to connect to Type G power outlets without converting voltage, priced between $5 to $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, priced under $35.
  5. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adapter - 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, between $15 to $20.
  7. Travel power strip - A travel power strip includes surge protectors, AC power outlets, USB ports and swappable plug adapters for use in multiple countries, priced at under $35.
  8. 4 Port USB Wall Charger - A universal USB charger capable of charging up to 4 USB devices with swappable international adapters, between $10 to $15.
  9. Plug adapter set - Plug adapter set containing a number of different power plug adapters for use in different countries, estimated cost around $15.
  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 cost between $90 to $100.
  11. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mains_electricity_by_country - WikiPedia - Mains electricity by country
  12. Rechargeable hair dryer - Rechargeable battery powered blow dryer suitable for travelling, costs between $150 to $160.
  13. Gas hair straighteners - Cordless ceramic hair straighteners powered by gas cartridges, between $20 to $25.
  14. 20,000mAh portable charger - High capacity 20000mAh high-speed portable USB charger suitable for charging mobile phones and some tablets for several days, under $130.
  15. USB-C PD power bank - Power Delivery charger suitable for charging laptops with USB-C support, under $130.
  16. Solar backpack - A solar backpack will charge USB devices or an internal power bank when left in sunlight, priced at under $90.
  17. Solar power bank - Portable power bank with solar cells which can recharge when placed in sunlight and power any USB powered device, estimated price between $20 to $25.
  18. 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, under $100.
  19. 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, between $140 to $150.
  20. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AC_power_plugs_and_sockets - AC power plugs and sockets