Using your clothes iron in Barbados

Barbadian power outlet

Summary

First check your clothes iron can handle the voltage in Barbados:

  • If your clothes iron can run on 115 volts or can support dual voltage (how you can tell) then you'll only need to use a suitable power adapter listed on this page if the plug on your clothes iron won't fit in the outlet.

If not then either:

  • Use a dual voltage travel iron [2] - you may still need to use a power adapter for Barbados but these cheap lightweight accessories are designed specifically for travel.
  • Use a power converter (or voltage transformer) - this enables you to use your existing clothes iron and other applicances with a 115 volt Barbadian power outlet, however this is substantially heavier and more expensive than a dedicated travel clothes iron. A voltage transformer will change the voltage but won't change the actual shape of the plug on your clothes iron to fit in the types of power outlet used in Barbados, so check that your voltage transformer has a power adapter for Barbados otherwise you will also need to bring a seperate power adapter. Please be aware your domestic clothes iron might not be suited for travelling and you risk potential damage in a suitcase. [7] [AD]
Warning: If your clothes iron won't handle 115 volts used in Barbados you run the risk of blowing a fuse, damage to your clothes iron or even an electrical fire hazard. Prior to using your clothes iron in Barbados please read the instruction manual first to ensure safe operation.

Using a clothes iron in Barbados

Will my clothes iron work in Barbados?

That will depend on if your clothes iron is designed to operate using the 115 volts as used in Barbados:

Barbados power outlets and plug sockets

What is the mains voltage in Barbados?

The common residential voltage in Barbados is 115 volts.

What is the electrical frequency used in Barbados?

The frequency of the current from a Barbadian power outlet is 50 Hz. [8]

Which power adapter do you need to bring for using a clothes iron in Barbados?

Type A and B power outlets

Which power adapter do you need to bring for using a clothes iron in Barbados?

There are two types of power outlets used in Barbados, these are type B and A with the primary power outlets being type B:

  • Plug Type A - You can recognise this power outlet by the two slots adjacent to each other for live and neutral blades.
  • Plug Type B - You can recognise this plug outlet by the two slots adjacent to each other with a semicircle hole below for the earth pin.

A Type B plug adapter is suitable for powering a 115 volt clothes iron in Barbados - read the step-by-step guide below for full details of how to use a clothes iron in Barbados. Please note that unless you that have a dual voltage clothes iron you might also have to bring a power converter.  [4] [9] [AD]

Dual voltage travel irons

Is my clothes iron dual voltage?

An easy way how to tell if your clothes iron supports dual voltage is to look for either a sticker or numbers printed on the handle, base or the plug. This location will depend on the make or model of your clothes iron, it could also be written in the instruction manual or on the box. Some dual voltage clothes irons might change automatically but other models will feature a button which allows you to operate between different regions.

  • A specific number such as 110V indicates a single voltage clothes iron. If this number matches the 115 volts used in Barbados then you should be able to use your clothes iron with a Barbadian power outlet.
  • A small voltage range with a dash such as 100-120V also indicates a single voltage clothes iron which can accomodate small voltage fluctuations. If the 115 volts used in a Barbadian power outlet falls within the range shown on your clothes iron then you can use it in Barbados.
  • A larger voltage range separated with a slash such as 100/240V indicates a dual voltage clothes iron capable of being used in Barbados or any other country.

Travelling to Barbados with a clothes iron

Can I carry on a clothes iron to Barbados?

According to the TSA guidelines for clothes irons there is no restriction on carrying a mains powered clothes iron in your hand luggage through airport security in the United States. The TSA recommends that you should check that the airline which is flying you to Barbados will allow clothes irons onboard and that it will fit in the overhead bin or underneath the seat of the aircraft. The TSA also advices wrapping wires tightly around electric items such as clothes irons.

If you intend to bring a fragile or expensive clothes iron in your hand held luggage then it is recommended to use hard carry on luggage as this offers the greatest protection against drops and knocks during transit.   [10] [11] [AD]

Power converters for Barbados

Do I need a voltage converter in Barbados to use my clothes iron?

The correct power converter (or voltage transformer) will allow your clothes iron using a different voltage to work with the 115 volt power outlet used in Barbados. A power converter is more suited for travellers who wish to use their existing domestic clothes iron, however it might be considerably less expensive to purchase a dedicated dual voltage travel iron [2] than it is to purchase a power converter. Also worth noting, a power converter is substantially heavier than a travel clothes iron making a power converter less suitable for packing in luggage. [7] [AD]

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

Voltage converter

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

An expensive and bulky power converter will convert a 115 volt Barbadian power outlet to work with a non-115 volt clothes iron, however a more lightweight and smaller power adapter (or plug adapter) will change the shape of the plug on your clothes iron to slot into a power outlet found in Barbados. [7] [AD]

How to use a clothes iron in Barbados using a type B power adapter

A page showing how to use a clothes iron in Barbados using a Type B travel charger.

  1. Please check that your iron is either a dual voltage travel iron [2] or is compatible with a 115 volt power outlet - if not then do not proceed as you may create an electrical fire hazard, damage your iron or blow a fuse. Some dual voltage irons might typically have a switch to toggle between voltages, before using the iron ensure you have set it to the 115 volt setting to use in Barbados, consult the user guide for more information on how to do this.
  2. If the plug on your clothes iron isn't the same type of outlet used in Barbados you'll need to buy a Type B plug adapter [4]. This plug adapter is designed to convert different plugs on appliances from other countries for use in a power outlet in Barbados simply by changing the shape of the plug, but the adapter doesn't change the frequency or voltage of your clothes iron to work with a 115 volt supply.
  3. Start by taking the Type B plug adapter and plugging it in the Barbadian power outlet. You can recognise this power supply by the two slots next to each other where the twin plug outlet blades slide into with a single hole below for the slightly long grounded pin.
  4. After that plug in your clothes iron into the Type B plug adapter.
  5. Turn on the Barbadian power outlet.
  6. Your clothes iron should now be ready to use.
How to use a clothes iron in Barbados using a type B power adapter

How to use a clothes iron in Barbados using a type A power adapter

How to power your clothes iron in Barbados with a 2 pronged Type A power charger.

  1. Please check that your iron is either a dual voltage travel iron [2] or is compatible with a 115 volt power outlet - if not then do not attempt these instructions as you might create an electrical fire hazard, blow a fuse or damage your iron. Before using a dual voltage travel iron make sure the switch is set to accept 115 volts, please refer to the user guide for more information on how to do this.
  2. Please check that you don't already own a clothes iron with a Type A plug - if it does then you won't need a power adapter (but still check that your clothes iron will work with a 115 volt power outlet). So, if the plug on your clothes iron isn't the same type of outlet used in Barbados you'll need to bring a Type A plug adapter [6]. This plug adapter is designed to convert different plugs on appliances from other countries for use in a power outlet in Barbados simply by changing the shape of the plug, but the adapter doesn't change the frequency or voltage of your clothes iron to work with a 115 volt supply.
  3. Start by taking the Type A plug adapter and plugging it in the Barbadian power outlet. This power supply (sometimes called the Type A power outlet [5]) is identified by the 2 thin slots next to each other for live and neutral blades.
  4. Plug in the clothes iron into the Type A plug adapter.
  5. Switch on the Barbadian power outlet. The clothes iron can now be used in Barbados.
How to use a clothes iron in Barbados using a type A power adapter

See also

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  1. Wikipedia - Wikipedia.org web page about Barbados
  2. Amazon - dual voltage travel iron
  3. iec.ch - Type B power outlet
  4. Type B plug adapter - US and Japanese 3 pinned Type B plug adapters have a single unearthed round pin along with 2 shorter parallel rectangular flat blades containing holes in each blade, costs around C$45.
  5. iec.ch - Type A power outlet
  6. Type A plug adapter - There are 2 parallel rectangular flat blades on an unearthed Type A plug adapter with small holes in each blade, priced C$10-C$15.
  7. 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, C$80-C$90.
  8. Wikipedia - WikiPedia - Mains electricity by country -
  9. iec.ch - IEC World Plugs by location -
  10. tsa.gov - TSA guidelines for clothes irons -
  11. Hard carry on luggage - Example of hard cases, suitcases and luggage suitable for airline carry on, costing around C$70.