Power converters for Cape Verde - Do I need a converter for Cape Verde?

What is a power converter for a Cape Verdean power outlet?

Power converters for Cape Verde allow travellers to use a 100-120 volt electrical device with a 220 volt Cape Verdean power outlet.

Also known as: electrical converter, electrical transformer, voltage converter, power transformer or voltage transformer.

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

A small, cheap and lightweight power adapter (or plug adapter) changes the shape of the plug on your device to fit into a power outlet in Cape Verde, however a heavier and more expensive power converter converts a 220 volt Cape Verdean power outlet to work with a non-220 volt appliance. [3] [AD]

Do I need a power converter for Cape Verde?

When you are travelling to Cape Verde from another country make sure the device can be used with a 220 volt power supply.

  • A step down power converter is needed if you are visiting Cape Verde from a country that uses 100-120 volts and your device or appliance doesn't support 220 volts. See our WikiConnections world power outlets page to find out which voltage is used in your country.
  • You won't need a power converter if you already use either a single voltage appliance that works with 220 volts or one that is dual voltage.
  • Typically, devices designed to use a lower voltage such as 110 volts and used in a 220 volt power outlet run the risk of blowing a fuse, damage to your device or even an electrical fire hazard unless a step down power converter is used.
  • You don't need a converter if you are attempting to power a smaller electrical device such as a laptop as these are normally designed for international use and dual voltage, however you should always check the device for dual voltage support first.
  • For supplying power to high wattage appliances or generate heat (for example hair straighteners and curling irons) then you will need to use a bulkier higher wattage heavy duty power converter.
  • It might be more cost effective to purchase a robust lightweight dual voltage travel appliance than carrying a much heavier power converter to Cape Verde just to use your existing domestic appliance.
  • Read our comprehensive guides on how to use clothes irons, curling irons, hair straighteners and hair dryers in Cape Verdean power outlets , along with recommendations on some affordable dual voltage alternatives.  [3] [4] [AD]

Will I need a power converter for Cape Verde if I'm visiting from Canada?

The 220 volts from a wall outlet in Cape Verde is different to an Canadian supply so please bring a if your appliance or charger isn't dual voltage.

What kind of converter do I need for Cape Verde?

You need to buy a step down power converter in order to use any 100, 110 or 120 volt appliance in Cape Verde. [3] [AD]

What is the difference between a power converter and a power transformer?

Voltage converter

What is the difference between a power converter and a power transformer?

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 to convert 220 volts to 110 volts

  1. Use a step down power converter to allow you to use a 110 or 120 volt appliance with a 220 volt Cape Verdean 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 Cape Verde before plugging that into a Cape Verdean 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 220 volt Cape Verdean power outlet. [3] [AD]

What voltage does Cape Verde use?

Cape Verde uses 220 volts in their power outlets. [2]

How to tell the voltage of your device

Single voltage hair straighteners

How to tell the voltage of your device

The easiest way to tell if a device is either single or dual voltage is to check for numbers printed on the supplied power adapter, or on the unit itself, typically on the rear or near to where the power cord sits. The location might vary depending on the make or model of your device but should also be written on the box.

  • Single voltage devices could say a specific number - such as 240V.
  • Single voltage devices could also say a small voltage range (20 volts difference) with a dash to accomodate small voltage fluctuations - such as 100-120V.
  • Dual voltage devices will typically say a larger voltage range separated with a slash - such as 100/240V.

  1. Wikipedia - Cape Verdean Wikipedia page.
  2. iec.ch - International Electrotechnical Commission World Plugs
  3. 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.
  4. 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.