Which travel adapter do I need for using a curling iron in Guatemala?

Guatemalan power outlet

Summary

Check your curling iron can handle the voltage in Guatemala:

If not then either:

  • Use a dual voltage travel curling iron [2] - you might still need to use the correct power adapter for Guatemala however these cheap lightweight accessories are designed specifically for travel.
  • Use a power converter (or voltage transformer) - this enables you to use your existing curling iron and other applicances with a 120 volt Guatemalan power outlet, however this is significantly bulkier and more expensive than a dedicated travel curling iron. A voltage transformer changes the voltage but not the actual physical shape of the plug on your curling iron to fit in the power outlet used in Guatemala, therefore please check that your power converter comes with a power adapter for Guatemala otherwise you will still need to purchase a seperate power adapter. Please note - your own domestic curling iron might not be suitable for travel and you risk damage in transit. [7] [AD]
Warning: If your curling iron won't handle 120 volts you run a risk of a blown fuse, damage to your curling iron or even an electrical fire hazard. Prior to using your curling iron in Guatemala please check the instruction manual first to ensure safe operation.

Using a curling iron in Guatemala

Will my curling iron work in Guatemala?

That will depend on if your curling iron can operate using the 120 volts as used in Guatemala:

Guatemala power outlets and plug sockets

What is the frequency used with a Guatemalan power outlet?

The frequency of the alternating current from a Guatemalan power outlet is 60Hz. [8]

What is the voltage in Guatemala?

Power outlets in Guatemala are 120 volts.

Which travel adapter will you need to use a curling iron in Guatemala?

Type A and B power outlets

Which travel adapter will you need to use a curling iron in Guatemala?

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

  • Plug Type A - You can identify the plug socket by 2 thin adjacent slots next to each other where the pins go.
  • Plug Type B - You can identify this plug socket by the 2 slots adjacent to each other where the short twin blades sit with a single hole below for the slightly longer ground pin.

A recommended power adapter to bring to use a 120 volt curling iron in Guatemala is a Type B power adapter, read the step-by-step guide below for full details of using a power adapter for Guatemala. Note that unless you that have a dual voltage curling iron you might also have to use a power converter.  [4] [9] [AD]

Dual voltage curling irons

How can you tell if your curling iron is dual voltage?

A simple method to tell if your curling iron will handle dual voltage is to check for either a sticker or numbers printed on the plug or handle of the curling iron. This location will vary depending on the make or model of your curling iron, it should also be written in the instruction manual. Some dual voltage curling irons will change automatically but other models will have a button which allows you to change between different regions depending on which country you are in.

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

Travelling to Guatemala with a curling iron

Can you pack a curling iron in your carry on?

According to the TSA guidelines for curling irons there is no restriction on carrying a mains powered curling iron in your carry on luggage through airport security in the United States. The TSA suggests that you should check that the airline who is flying you to Guatemala will allow curling irons onboard and that it will fit in the overhead bin or underneath the seat of the airplane. Packing your curling irons in a dedicated heat resistant protective hot tools travel case leaves it easily accessible when going through airport security checks, it can be packed away quickly and should avoid a tangle of power wires in your carry on luggage (the TSA suggests wrapping cords tightly around electronic items such as curling irons). If you do intend to bring fragile or expensive curling irons in your hand held luggage then it is advisable to bring hard carry on luggage as this offers the most protection against knocks and drops during your journey.   [10] [11] [12] [AD]

Is it safe to bring my curling iron to Guatemala?

It is preferable to packing a dual voltage curling iron instead of bringing your existing domestic curling iron to Guatemala as it is safer to assume that it will operate correctly with the 120 volt power outlets used with a Guatemalan power outlet, provided that you use the correct power adapter for Guatemala. It is also worth concidering that packing expensive domestic curling iron could place it at risk due to potential damage or loss in your check in luggage by a baggage handlers in Guatemala. The costs of replacing or repairing an expensive quality domestic curling iron in Guatemala might overshadow the cost of buying a cheap dual voltage travel curling iron [2] before travelling to bring along with you. If you intend to pack your own curling iron in your suitcase either slot it inside a sneaker or boot to protect from light damage, alternatively use a shockproof and heat resistant hot tools travel case which will also allow the curling iron to be transported whilst hot without risk of burning.  [11] [AD]

Power converters for Guatemala

Can you use a curling iron with a power converter in Guatemala?

The correct model of power converter (or voltage transformer) allows your curling iron using a different voltage to work using a 120 volt power outlet used in Guatemala. A power converter is more suitable for travellers wishing to use their own domestic curling iron, but it can be more costly to buy a power converter than it is to purchase a dedicated dual voltage travel curling iron [2]. A power converter is also substantially heavier and bulkier than a travel curling iron making a power converter less suitable when packing compared to a travel curling iron. [7] [AD]

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

Voltage converter

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

A lightweight, small and cheap power adapter (or plug adapter) changes the shape of the plug on your curling iron to slot into a power outlet found in Guatemala, but a heavier and more expensive power converter transforms the voltage of 120 volts from a Guatemalan power outlet to work with a non-120 volt curling iron. [7] [AD]

How to use a curling iron in Guatemala using a type B power adapter

A step-by-step guide showing how to use your curling iron in Guatemala by using a 3 prong Type B travel adapter.

  1. Please make sure that your curling iron is either a dual voltage travel curling iron [2] or can work with a 120 volt power outlet - but if not then don't attempt these instructions as you could create an electrical fire hazard, blow a fuse or damage your iron. Before using a travel curling iron which can toggle between different voltages make sure you have set it to accept 120 volts for use in Guatemala, please consult the manufacturers instructions for more details on how to do this.
  2. If the plug on your curling iron isn't the same shape as the outlet which is used in Guatemala you'll need to use a Type B plug adapter [4]. This power adapter will help adapt different plugs on appliances from other countries into a power outlet used in Guatemala simply by changing the shape of the plug, but it doesn't change the frequency or voltage of your curling iron to work with a 120 volt outlet.
  3. First plug the Type B plug adapter into the wall outlet. The plug outlet (technically known as a Type B power outlet [3]) can be recognised by the two slots with a single hole below for the long earthed pin.
  4. Plug in your curling iron into the Type B plug adapter.
  5. Turn on the Guatemalan power outlet.
  6. Your hair curling iron can now be used in Guatemala.
How to use a curling iron in Guatemala using a type B power adapter

How to use a curling iron in Guatemala using a type A power adapter

A page on how to power a curling iron in Guatemala with a Type A power charger.

  1. Make sure that your curling iron is either a dual voltage travel curling iron [2] or can work with a 120 volt power outlet but if not then don't attempt these instructions as you could blow a fuse, damage your curling iron or create an electrical fire hazard. Before using a travel curling iron which can toggle between different voltages make sure you have set it to accept 120 volts for use in Guatemala, please consult the instructions to find out where the switch is.
  2. Please check that you are not already using a curling iron with a Type A plug - if it does then you won't need a power adapter (but still check that your curling iron can work with a 120 volt power supply). If the shape of the power outlet used in Guatemala doesn't accomodate the plug on your curling iron you will need to buy a Type A plug adapter [6]. This Type A plug adapter is designed to adapt plugs on appliances from other countries into a power outlet used in Guatemala by changing the shape of the plug, but it doesn't change the voltage of your curling iron to work with a 120 volt outlet.
  3. First plug the Type A plug adapter in the Guatemalan power outlet. The plug supply (technically known as a Type A power outlet [5]) can be recognised by the 2 slots next to each other.
  4. Next plug in the curling iron into the Type A plug adapter.
  5. Switch on the Guatemalan power outlet. The curling iron can now be used in Guatemala.
How to use a curling iron in Guatemala using a type A power adapter

See also

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  1. Wikipedia - Wikipedia page about Guatemala
  2. Amazon - dual voltage travel curling 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, estimated cost C$5-C$10.
  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, estimated price C$35-C$40.
  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, around C$170.
  8. Wikipedia - WikiPedia - Mains electricity by country -
  9. iec.ch - IEC World Plugs by location -
  10. tsa.gov - TSA guidelines for curling irons -
  11. Hard case for hot tools - Hard case designed for storing and protecting a flat irons, curling irons and hair straighteners, estimated price under C$25.
  12. Hard carry on luggage - Example of hard cases, suitcases and luggage suitable for airline carry on, priced at around C$110.