How to charge the iPhone 5 when planning a trip to Cuba

A step by step guide showing how to recharge your iPhone 5 from a Cuban power outlet by using the Apple Lightning cable and a double pinned Type C Europlug power charger, charging the iPhone 5 using a Type A power charger and charging the iPhone 5 using a Type B USB adapter

Cuban power outlet

If you are packing for a vacation to Cuba it's useful to know in advance if you can power all your essential electronics like mobile phones and tablets when you arrive. But, by not knowing which power socket is used in Cuba you could end up either weighing your luggage down with unnecessary spare adaptors or pack the wrong charger, therefore needing to purchase a suitable charger on arrival which might be incompatible. Varying different combinations of standards and plugs can often cause confusion when planning to stay in a different country especially if you've never been there before. If you're going to Cuba this page has instructions showing how to supply power to your iPhone 5 by using the standard C, A or B type 110 volt 60Hz plug outlets, a majority of Cubans normally use the Type C plugs in their power outlets. If your iPhone 5 charges slowly or does not power up when you are travelling to Cuba from a different country check that it is compatible with a 110 volt power supply. Typically electrical devices which originated from a different country which use a higher voltage (for example 240 volts) sometimes take longer to charge or won't turn on, so check that your device is dual-voltage (usually marked with a 100-240 volt notation) otherwise you may need to use an additional transformer to ensure proper use. These instructions assume that you have installed Apple iOS 7 or greater on the iPhone 5.

Charging the iPhone 5 in Cuba

Can you use the iPhone 5 in Cuba?

Yes, you can use the iPhone 5 in Cuba.

What is the best power charger for recharging the iPhone 5 in Cuba?

When you are travelling with more than your iPhone 5 and visiting more than one country then the best travel adapter for Cuba to buy is a multiple USB port charger which includes swappable plugs like a 4 port USB travel charger. There are three different standards of wall outlets that Cubans use (types C, A and B) and using a travel charger like this will ensure that you are covered for both types A and C.

Because these chargers are supplied with interchangeable plugs and can handle from 100 - 240 volts will mean you can travel to over 100 countries around the world simply by changing the supplied heads. If your type of iPhone 5 can support Fast Charge (not all USB devices will) then you'll benefit from much faster charging times with one of these types of USB travel chargers and additional compatibility with certain power demanding devices.

Having a 4 port adapter will allow you to recharge more than one device at once without needing to pack individual travel adapters for your Cuban trip. Only bringing a single travel charger will also keep the overall size down, making it perfect to fold up and store in hand luggage as well as being convenient for recharging your iPhone 5 at the airport or on a flight. Because of their space saving flexibility these types of chargers can be used at home so when you're not on holiday they can sit under your bedside table charging multiple tablets, smartphones and e-readers using just a single plug socket.

For those travelling frequently we suggest buying this type of versatile travel adapter at your preferred electronics retailer; the multipurpose travel charger illustrated is the 4 Port USB Wall Charger which has been successfully tested with multiple USB devices in numerous countries on a daily basis.

Alternative travel adapter for Cuba

The 4 port USB travel charger is the most compact option for travellers from any country who only have USB devices such as the iPhone 5, however for visitors also wanting to use their domestic plugs these power adapters provide larger but more versatile solutions. All 3 power converters offer surge protection which is crucial for visitors of counties with unreliable or unstable power grids to prevent damage to any connected devices. These power converters come with interchangeable type C, I and G plugs which cover both Cuba and over 150 countries around the world:

  • BESTEK Portable International Travel Voltage Converter - The BESTEK travel converter has 4 USB charging ports with 3 AC power outlets and is the most popular portable power converter for travellers originating from North America going to Cuba using type B plug sockets.
  • ORICO Traveling Outlet Surge Protector Power Strip - Similarly having 4 USB ports but only 2 AC power outlets the travel adapter from Orico is also aimed at travellers from America using type B plugs. This offers the same functionality as the BESTEK with one less AC outlet for almost half the price.
  • BESTEK International USB Travel Power Strip - This power strip has 2 AC outlets but offers 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 wide range of travellers from around the world visiting Cuba. [10] [AD]
What is the best power charger for recharging the iPhone 5 in Cuba?

Powering the iPhone 5 with a Cuban power outlet by using a 2 pinned Type A USB adapter

Using the Lightning Apple cable with a Type A USB adapter to recharge your iPhone 5 from a Cuban power outlet.

  1. In order to power the iPhone 5 using the Cuban power outlet you'll need to buy a Type A USB power adapter [4] and a USB to Apple Lightning cable [5], Apple will usually supply the USB cable when you purchase the iPhone 5.
  2. Start the process by inserting the Type A USB power adapter in the wall outlet. You can identify this power outlet by the 2 adjacent slots next to each other where the pins go.
  3. Plug in one end of the USB to Apple Lightning cable into the bottom of the mains power charger and the other end into the Lightning connector on the iPhone 5. The iPhone 5 Lightning connector is situated at bottom of your iPhone 5 under the home button.
  4. Switch on the Cuban power outlet.
  5. The battery icon that appears in the top right corner of your mobile will display a charging icon to indicate that the iPhone is powering up, typically taking roughly 1-4 hours to completely recharge.
Powering the iPhone 5 with a Cuban power outlet by using a 2 pinned Type A USB adapter

Powering the iPhone 5 with a Cuban power outlet by using a 3 pinned Type B USB adapter

A guide on how to recharge the iPhone 5 with a Cuban power outlet with a Lightning Apple connector with a Type B power adapter.

  1. If you want to supply power to the iPhone 5 from the Cuban power outlet you'll need to buy a Type B USB power adapter [7] and a USB to Apple Lightning cable [5], Apple should usually supply the USB cable when you first purchase your iPhone 5.
  2. Start the process by inserting the Type B USB power adapter into the wall outlet. The plug supply (technically known as a Type B power outlet [6]) is recognised by the 2 slots next to each other where the short twin blades sit with a single semicircular hole below for the ground pin.
  3. Then connect one end of the USB to Apple Lightning cable into the USB mains adapter and the other end into the Lightning connector on the iPhone 5. The iPhone 5 Lightning connector can be found at bottom of your iPhone 5 under the home button.
  4. Switch on the Cuban power outlet.
  5. The battery icon that you'll find in the top right corner of your iPhone 5 will display a charge icon to indicate that the phone is powering up taking between one to four hours to recharge to full capacity.
Powering the iPhone 5 with a Cuban power outlet by using a 3 pinned Type B USB adapter

Powering the iPhone 5 with a Cuban power outlet by using a 2 pinned Type C Europlug USB adapter

Using a USB Lightning Apple connector with a Type C power adapter to charge your iPhone 5 from a Cuban power outlet.

  1. In order to power the iPhone 5 using the Cuban power outlet you'll need to use a Type C USB power adapter [9] and a USB to Apple Lightning cable [5], Apple will usually supply the USB cable when you purchase the iPhone 5.
  2. Begin the process by inserting the Type C USB power adapter in the power outlet. You can identify the plug supply by two circular adjacent holes where the twin plug outlet pins go.
  3. Plug in one end of the Apple USB cord into the bottom of the mains power charger and the other end into the Lightning connector on the iPhone 5. The iPhone 5 Lightning connector is situated at bottom of your iPhone 5 under the home button.
  4. Turn on the Cuban power outlet.
  5. The battery icon that appears in the top right corner of your mobile will display a charging icon to indicate that the iPhone is powering up, typically taking roughly 1-4 hours to completely recharge.
Powering the iPhone 5 with a Cuban power outlet by using a 2 pinned Type C Europlug USB adapter

See also

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  1. Wikipedia - Cuba Wikipedia web page
  2. Apple - official iPhone user guide
  3. iec.ch - Type A power outlet
  4. Type A USB power adapter - An unearthed Type A USB charger has 2 parallel rectangular flat blades with small holes near the tip of each blade, costs under C$60.
  5. USB to Apple Lightning cable - The Apple Lightning cable is a charging and syncing cable for more recent Apple devices and connects compatible iPhones and iPads to a USB port, estimated price C$20-C$25.
  6. iec.ch - Type B power outlet
  7. Type B USB power adapter - 3 pinned Type B USB chargers have a single unearthed round pin along with 2 shorter parallel rectangular flat blades with small holes in the end of each blade, estimated cost under C$25.
  8. iec.ch - Type C power outlet
  9. Type C USB power adapter - European Type C USB chargers are unearthed and have two 4mm rounded pins spaced 19mm apart, costing C$15-C$20.
  10. 4 Port USB Wall Charger - A universal USB charger capable of charging up to 4 USB devices with swappable international adapters, costing under C$20.