How to charge the iPhone 3GS when planning a trip to Panama

Instructions on how to charge the iPhone 3GS from a Panamanian power outlet using a USB 30-pin Apple connector with a Type A power adapter and recharging the iPhone 3GS using a three pin Type B USB charger.

Panamanian power outlet

Varying different voltages and standards can all be confusing when planning to travel to another country especially to the first time traveller. These guidelines have been written to prevent travellers needing to worry if they can charge their iPhone 3GS abroad.The following step by step instructions will show you exactly how to supply power to your iPhone 3GS when going to Panama by using their Type B or A Panamanian 120 volt 60Hz wall outlets. If your iPhone 3GS does not power up or charges slowly when you are visiting Panama from a different country then check that it is compatible with a 110 volt power supply. Typically devices which originate from another country which use a higher voltage (for example 240 volts) may take longer to charge or won't power up, check your iPhone 3GS is a dual voltage device (you'll find these are usually indicated by 100-240 volts) else you may need to use an additional power converter to ensure proper use. If you plan on taking a trip to a place like Panama City we also recommend reading the Panama wikipedia page [1] for more indepth information. These instructions assume you are running Apple iOS 6 or greater on the iPhone 3GS.

Charging the iPhone 3GS in Panama

Can the iPhone 3GS be used in Panama?

You can use the iPhone 3GS in Panama by using the correct power convertor.

What is the best travel charger for the iPhone 3GS in Panama?

When you are travelling with more than just your iPhone 3GS and visiting more than one country then the best travel adapter for Panama to buy is a multiple USB charger which includes swappable plugs such as a 4 port USB travel charger. Panamanians use two different standards of power outlets (B and A) and bringing this ensures that you are covered for type A. As these types of chargers come with interchangeable pins and handle from 100 volts to 240 volts it makes them ideal for over 100 countries in North America, Europe, Asia and Africa simply by switching the supplied heads. If your iPhone 3GS can support Fast Charge (not all USB devices will) then you'll benefit from much quicker charging times with one of these types of USB power chargers along with additional support for certain power hungry devices like tablets.

Unlike other chargers this means you can power more than one device at the same time without needing to buy seperate power adapters. Only bringing a single USB travel charger will also keep the overall weight down, making it perfect to fold up in hand luggage. Due to their versatility these types of power adapters can be used when back at home not just abroad so when you're not travelling they can be used overnight charging multiple tablets and smartphones without needing an additional plug socket.

For those travelling frequently we suggest buying an adaptable power adapter of this nature at an electronics retailer, the power charger illustrated below is the 4 Port USB Wall Charger which has been tested successfully for powering multiple USB devices in numerous foreign countries around the world.

Alternative travel adapter for Panama

The 4 port USB travel charger is the most compact option for travellers from any country wanting to recharge devices via USB, however for those also wishing to use their domestic plugs these power strips provide larger but more versatile solutions. All 3 power adapters offer surge protection which can be crucial for travellers to 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 Panama and over 150 countries around the world:

  • BESTEK Portable International Travel Voltage Converter - The BESTEK international travel converter has 4 USB charging ports with 3 AC power outlets and is the best selling portable option for travellers originating from North America visiting Panama using 3 pin type B US plug sockets.
  • ORICO Traveling Outlet Surge Protector Power Strip - Also having 4 USB ports but only 2 AC power outlets the Orico is also aimed at travellers originating from the US using type B plugs and offers almost the same functionality as the BESTEK with just one less AC outlet for almost half 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 Panama. [8] [AD]
What is the best travel charger for the iPhone 3GS in Panama?

Powering the iPhone 3GS with a Panamanian power outlet by using a 2 pinned Type A USB adapter

Instructions on how to charge the iPhone 3GS from a Panamanian power outlet using a USB 30-pin Apple connector with a Type A power adapter.

  1. If you want to supply power to the iPhone 3GS from the Panamanian power outlet you will need a Type A USB power adapter [4] and a USB to Apple 30 pin cable [5] - Apple usually supply the USB cable when you purchase your iPhone 3GS.
  2. Plug in the Type A USB power adapter in the Panamanian power outlet. You can identify this power outlet by the 2 slots adjacent to each other where the two pins go.
  3. Then connect one end of the Apple 30 pin cord into the bottom of the mains power charger and the other end into the dock connector on the iPhone 3GS. The iPhone 3GS dock connector can be found at bottom of the iPhone 3GS.
  4. Switch on the Panamanian power outlet.
  5. The battery icon that appears in the top right corner of your iPhone will display a charging icon to indicate that the phone is powering up taking between 60 to 240 minutes to recharge to 100% capacity.
Powering the iPhone 3GS with a Panamanian power outlet by using a 2 pinned Type A USB adapter

Powering the iPhone 3GS with a Panamanian power outlet by using a 3 pinned Type B USB adapter

A guide showing you how to charge your iPhone 3GS from a Panamanian power outlet using a USB 30 pin Apple connector with a Type B USB adapter.

  1. In order to power the iPhone 3GS using the Panamanian power outlet you'll need a Type B USB power adapter [7] and a USB to Apple 30 pin cable [5] - Apple typically supply this USB cable when you buy the iPhone 3GS.
  2. Firstly you'll need to insert the Type B USB power adapter in the Panamanian power outlet. This wall supply, technically known as a Type B power outlet [6], can be identified by the two slots parallel to each other with a semicircular hole below for the grounded pin.
  3. Then connect one end of the USB to Apple 30 pin cable into the bottom of the mains power charger and the other end into the dock connector on the iPhone 3GS. The iPhone 3GS dock connector can be found at bottom of the iPhone 3GS.
  4. Switch on the Panamanian power outlet.
  5. The battery icon that you'll find in the top right corner of your iPhone 3GS will display a charge icon to indicate that the phone is charging and takes roughly 60-240 minutes to completely recharge to 100% capacity.
Powering the iPhone 3GS with a Panamanian power outlet by using a 3 pinned Type B USB adapter

See also

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  1. Wikipedia - Panama wikipedia page
  2. Apple - official iPhone 3GS 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, estimated cost around C$50.
  5. USB to Apple 30 pin cable - This connects compatible iPhones, iPods and iPads to a USB port for charging, syncing and playing music, estimated cost C$10-C$15.
  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, costs under C$25.
  8. 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.