How do I use my clothes iron in French Guiana?

French Guianese power outlet

Summary

First check your clothes iron can work in French Guiana:

If not then either:

  • Use a dual voltage travel iron [2] - you might still need an appropriate power adapter for French Guiana but these cheap lightweight accessories are designed specifically for travel.
  • Use a power converter [9] (or voltage transformer) - this enables you to use your existing clothes iron and other applicances with a 220 volt French Guianese power outlet, however this is noticeably bulkier, heavier and more expensive than a dedicated travel clothes iron. A power converter changes the voltage but won't change the actual shape of the plug on your clothes iron to fit in the wall outlet used in French Guiana, therefore please check that your voltage transformer comes with an appropriate power adapter for French Guiana otherwise you will need to purchase a seperate power adapter. Also worth noting that your own existing clothes iron might not be suited for travelling and you risk damage in your luggage.

Warning: If your clothes iron won't handle 220 volts used in French Guiana you run a risk of an electrical fire hazard, a blown fuse or damage to your clothes iron. Prior to using your clothes iron in French Guiana please check the instruction manual to ensure safe operation.

Using a clothes iron in French Guiana

Can I use my US clothes iron in French Guiana?

The instructions on this page assume that you're an America reader visiting French Guiana and will provide advice on using your US clothes iron with a French Guianese power outlet.

Will my clothes iron work in French Guiana?

It depends on if your clothes iron can handle the 220 volts which are used in French Guiana:

French Guiana power outlets and plug sockets

What is the mains voltage in French Guiana?

The normal voltage used in French Guiana is 220 volts.

What frequency is used in French Guiana?

The frequency used in a French Guianese power outlet is 50Hz.

Which plug adapter will you need to bring to use a clothes iron in French Guiana?

Type C, D and E power outlets

Which plug adapter will you need to bring to use a clothes iron in French Guiana?

There are three different types of power outlets used in French Guiana, types D, C and E with the primary power outlets being type D:

  • Plug Type C - You can identify the power outlet by the 2 circular adjacent holes for live and neutral.
  • Plug Type D - You can identify the wall outlet by the three round holes in a triangular shape for live, neutral and ground pins.
  • Plug Type E - This recessed round wall socket (technically known as a CEE 7/7 plug) can be identified by the two round holes 19mm adjacent to each other where the twin plug socket pins sit plus a metal earth pin protruding the top forming a triangular configuration.

A Type D plug adapter [6] allows you to use a 220 volt clothes iron in French Guiana; read the step by step instructions below for full details of how to use a travel adapter for French Guiana. Please note that unless you that have a dual voltage clothes iron you might also have to bring a power converter.

Dual voltage travel irons

Is my clothes iron dual voltage?

One method to tell if your clothes iron supports a dual voltage outlet is to check for either a sticker or numbers printed on the plug, handle or the base of your clothes iron. This location will depend on the make and model of your clothes iron and should also be written in the instruction manual or on the box. Some dual voltage models will change automatically, however other models will feature a switch which allows you to change between different voltage ranges.

  • Single voltage might say a specific number - such as 110V. If this number matches the 220 volts used in French Guiana then you should be able to use your clothes iron with a French Guianese power outlet.
  • Single voltage might also have a small voltage range with a dash to accomodate small voltage fluctuations - such as 100-120V. If the 220 volts used in a French Guianese power outlet falls within the range shown on your clothes iron then you should be able to use it in French Guiana.
  • Dual voltage will say a large range separated with a slash - such as 100/240V. Your clothes iron will be capable of being used in French Guiana or any other country if these numbers are shown.

Travelling to French Guiana with a clothes iron

Can a clothes iron go in carry on luggage to French Guiana?

According to the TSA guidelines for clothes irons [12] there is no restriction on carrying a mains powered clothes iron in your carry on luggage through airport security in the US. The TSA also recommends that you should check that the airline that is taking you to French Guiana will allow a clothes iron onboard and that it will fit in the overhead bin or underneath the seat of the airplane. The TSA also advices wrapping wires tightly around electric items such as clothes irons. If you do intend to pack a fragile or expensive clothes iron in your hand held luggage then it is advisable to use hard carry on luggage [13] as this offers the greatest protection against knocks and drops during transit.

Power converters for French Guiana

What is the difference between a power converter and a plug adapter?

Voltage converter

What is the difference between a power converter and a plug adapter?

An expensive and heavy power converter [9] will convert the voltage of 220 volts from a French Guianese power outlet to work with a non-220 volt clothes iron, whereas a smaller and more lightweight power adapter (or plug adapter) changes the shape of the plug on your clothes iron to slot into a power outlet found in French Guiana.

Will a voltage converter work with my clothes iron in French Guiana?

The correct model of power converter [9] (or voltage transformer) allows a clothes iron using a different voltage to operate using a 220 volt power outlet used in French Guiana. A power converter is more suitable for travellers who wish to bring their own domestic clothes iron, however it might be more expensive to buy a power converter than it is to purchase a dedicated dual voltage travel iron [2]. Also, a power converter is substantially bulkier than a travel clothes iron making a power converter less suited for packing.

How to use a clothes iron in French Guiana using a type C power adapter

How to power a clothes iron in French Guiana using a Type C travel charger.

  1. Please check that your iron is either a dual voltage travel iron [2] or can work with a 220 volt power supply; if not then don't continue because you might create an electrical fire hazard, damage your iron or blow a fuse. Before using a travel iron make sure you have set it to the 220 volt setting; please refer to the owners manual for more details on where the switch is located.
  2. You'll need to use a Type C plug adapter [4] if the shape of plug used on your clothes iron isn't the same shape as the power outlet which is used in French Guiana. The power adapter is designed to convert plugs from other countries into a power outlet in French Guiana simply by changing the shape of the plug, however it doesn't change the voltage of your clothes iron to work with a 220 volt supply.
  3. Start the process by plugging the Type C plug adapter in the French Guianese power outlet. You can recognise the wall outlet by the two round holes next to each other.
  4. Plug in the clothes iron into the Type C plug adapter.
  5. Turn on the French Guianese power outlet. The clothes iron can now be used in French Guiana.
How to use a clothes iron in French Guiana using a type C power adapter

How to use a clothes iron in French Guiana using a type D power adapter

How to power your clothes iron in French Guiana using a three pronged Type D travel charger.

  1. Check that the iron is either a dual voltage travel iron [2] or can work with a 220 volt power outlet - if it doesn't then don't attempt these instructions as you may create an electrical fire hazard, damage your iron or blow a fuse. Some travel irons usually have a switch to toggle between voltages, before using the iron ensure you have set it to accept 220 volts, consult the user guide for more information on where this switch is.
  2. You'll need to bring a Type D plug adapter [6] if the type of power outlet used in French Guiana doesn't accomodate the plug shape on your clothes iron. This plug adapter helps adapt plugs from other countries for use in a power outlet used in French Guiana by changing the shape of the plug, however the adapter doesn't change the frequency or voltage of your clothes iron to work with a 220 volt outlet.
  3. Begin the process by taking the Type D plug adapter and inserting it in the power outlet. The power supply, technically called a Type D power outlet [5], can be identified by the 3 round holes in a triangle pattern for live, neutral and ground.
  4. Plug in the clothes iron into the Type D plug adapter.
  5. Switch on the French Guianese power outlet. Your iron can now be used in French Guiana.
How to use a clothes iron in French Guiana using a type D power adapter

How to use a clothes iron in French Guiana using a type E power adapter

Instructions on how to use a clothes iron in French Guiana with a Type E power adapter.

  1. Check that your iron is either a dual voltage travel iron [2] or is compatible with a 220 volt power outlet but if it doesn't then do not proceed as you might damage your iron, blow a fuse or create an electrical fire hazard. Some travel irons might sometimes have a switch to toggle between voltages, before operating the iron make sure the switch is set to accept 220 volts for use in French Guiana - refer to the manufacturers instructions to find out how to do this.
  2. If the plug on your clothes iron isn't the same type of outlet which is used in French Guiana you will need to use a Type E plug adapter [8]. This Type E plug adapter will fit different plugs on appliances from other countries for an electrical outlet used in French Guiana simply by changing the shape of the plug, but the adapter doesn't change the frequency or voltage of the clothes iron to work with a 220 volt outlet.
  3. First insert the Type E plug adapter into the power outlet. This recessed round power outlet (sometimes known as a CEE 7/7 plug) can be identified by the two round adjacent holes next to each other for live and neutral plus one metal earth pin protruding from the top forming a triangular configuration.
  4. Next plug in your clothes iron into the Type E plug adapter.
  5. Turn on the French Guianese power outlet.
  6. You can now turn on your iron for use in French Guiana.
How to use a clothes iron in French Guiana using a type E power adapter

See also

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_Guiana - French Guianese Wikipedia page
  2. https://www.amazon.com/Small-Mini-Iron-Non-Stick-Extra-Long/dp/B01AK9ZUGO/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&qid=1483620272&sr=8-4&keywords=dual+voltage+travel+iron&refinements=p_72:2661618011&linkCode=ll1&tag=wikiconnections-20&linkId=2f036aaac07e425cbd203ec0166146cb - dual voltage travel iron
  3. http://www.iec.ch/worldplugs/typeC.htm - Type C power outlet
  4. Type C plug adapter - Allows appliances to connect to Type C power outlets without converting voltage
  5. http://www.iec.ch/worldplugs/typeD.htm - Type D power outlet
  6. Type D plug adapter - Allows appliances to connect to Type D power outlets without converting voltage
  7. http://www.iec.ch/worldplugs/typeE.htm - Type E power outlet
  8. Type E plug adapter - Allows appliances to connect to Type E power outlets without converting voltage
  9. 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
  10. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mains_electricity_by_country - WikiPedia - Mains electricity by country
  11. http://www.iec.ch/worldplugs/list_bylocation.htm - IEC World Plugs by location
  12. https://apps.tsa.dhs.gov/mytsa/cib_results.aspx?search=clothes%20iron - TSA guidelines for clothes irons
  13. Hard carry on luggage - Example of hard cases, suitcases and luggage suitable for airline carry on.