Sierra Leone power adapters - what plugs are used in Sierra Leone?

Sierra Leonean power outlet

What adapter do I need for Sierra Leone?

You'll need to pack a Type G plug adapter [3] for Sierra Leone if your plug won't fit into a Sierra Leonean power outlet.

The type of plug adapter, converter or charger that you'll need when visiting Sierra Leone will all depend on the voltage and type of device that you're attempting to power with a Sierra Leonean power outlet. If you don't know which voltage your device can use then please read the section on how can you tell if you have a dual voltage or single voltage device before going any further.

  • Be prepared for regular power blackouts and limited access to power in certain areas of Sierra Leone, it is advised to bring a power bank [4] if you wish to keep your phone battery charged whilst in a region without access to electricity or during a power cut.
  • If you are from the US and travelling to Sierra Leone then you will need to use a plug adapter for Sierra Leone to fit a US plug into a Sierra Leonean power outlet. Because the voltage is different in Sierra Leone pack a power converter if your device isn't dual voltage and check that it is compatible with a 50hz power outlet.
  • If your device can run on 230 volts or is dual voltage and the plug can fit in a Sierra Leonean power outlet then it will work in Sierra Leone.
  • If your device is 230 volts or is dual voltage but the plug doesn't fit in a Sierra Leonean power outlet you will need a suitable plug adapter for Sierra Leone such a Type G plug adapter [3]. Note that a plug adapter for Sierra Leone (or power adapter) only changes the shape of the plug on your device to fit into a plug outlet found in Sierra Leone, but won't convert the voltage from 230 volts to a different voltage.
  • If your device doesn't run on 230 volts and isn't dual voltage then you will also need a power converter for Sierra Leone to convert the voltage from 230 volts to the correct voltage for your device. You will still need to use a suitable plug adapter for Sierra Leone if your power converter doesn't include the correct Type G plug adapter.
  • If you want to power one or more USB devices such as a cellphone or tablet then a USB travel power adapter will be ideal and it should be dual voltage, however ensure that you bring one which has a Type G plug adapter otherwise you'll also need to use a suitable plug adapter for Sierra Leone.

Warning: If your device won't handle 230 volts you run the potential risk of blowing a fuse, damage to your device or even an electrical fire hazard. Before using your device in Sierra Leone read the instruction manual first to ensure safe operation.

Sierra Leone power adapters

Power adapters for Sierra Leone

Various frequencies and standards can often be daunting when planning to travel to another country if you've never been there before. With only a handful of different types of plug sockets used in the world this article tells you exactly what you'll need in advance to power your device in Sierra Leone. This page has links to step-by-step instructions telling you which power adapters you'll need to power your devices when you're in Sierra Leone using the G or D type Sierra Leonean 230 volt 50Hz plug outlets. Power sockets will change from region to region therefore we suggest reading the power adapters list for a full list of countries.

What is the best power adapter for Sierra Leone?

The best power adapter for Sierra Leone is a Type G plug adapter [3] which will allow you to use any 230 volt appliance or device.

What is the best power adapter for Sierra Leone?

What is a power adapter?

A power adapter for Sierra Leone is a compact, cheap and lightweight plastic adapter that permits a different type of power plug on an appliance from a foreign country to correctly slot into a wall outlet in Sierra Leone.

Can a power adapter convert the voltage in Sierra Leone?

No; a power adapter only adapts the shape of a plug to fit into a 230 volt Sierra Leonean power outlet and doesn't convert to a higher voltage. Should you wish to safely use a 100-120 volt appliance you will also need to bring a step down power converter for Sierra Leone.

Do I need a power adapter in Sierra Leone?

This will depend on the shape of plug you are using and the country you are travelling from.

Will I need a power adapter for Sierra Leone if I'm from America?

If you are travelling from the US then use a plug adapter for Sierra Leone as American plugs won't physically fit into a Sierra Leonean power outlet, and because the voltage is different you will also need to use a power converter for Sierra Leone to prevent overheating or damage to your appliance or device if it isn't dual voltage.

What does a power adapter do?

A power adapter for Sierra Leone allows a visitor travelling from a different location to use their electronic and electrical appliances in Sierra Leone simply by altering the shape of the plug from one shape to another.

Sierra Leone power outlets and plug sockets

What plug sockets are used in Sierra Leone?

Type D and G power outlets

What plug sockets are used in Sierra Leone?

There are two different types of power outlets used in Sierra Leone, types G and D with the primary power supply being type G:

  • Plug Type D - You can identify the wall outlet by the 3 round holes forming a triangle pattern for live, neutral and earth.
  • Plug Type G - The wall outlet (known as a type G power outlet) can be identified by the 3 rectangular slots containing plastic shutters in a triangular shape for live, neutral and ground pins.

Do US plugs work in Sierra Leone?

No - an American plug won't work in Sierra Leone because it doesn't fit into a Sierra Leonean power outlet without using a plug adapter. The voltage is 230 volts therefore you will need to use a power converter if your device isn't dual voltage and check that your appliance is compatible with a 50hz power outlet.

Is the voltage in Sierra Leone the same as in the US?

The voltage which comes from a Sierra Leonean power outlet is 230 volts, however Americans use 120 volts. If your US charger or appliance doesn't support dual voltage then you should use a power converter for Sierra Leone which allows a 120 volt US appliance to work with a 220-240 volt outlet.

Is a plug socket in Sierra Leone the same as in the US?

An American plug won't fit in a Sierra Leonean power outlet therefore use a plug adapter for Sierra Leone. Both the voltage and frequency are different so if your charger or appliance isn't dual voltage you need to use a power converter for Sierra Leone and check that it works with a 50hz supply.

What frequency is used in a Sierra Leonean power outlet?

The frequency from a Sierra Leonean power outlet is 50Hz.

How do I use a 110 volt appliance in Sierra Leone?

A step down power converter will allow you to use a 110V appliance in a Sierra Leonean power outlet.

Does Sierra Leone have power outages?

Typically Sierra Leone suffers power blackouts several times every month and with this high level of unreliability it is recommended to prepare accordingly.

What proportion of Sierra Leone has access to electrical power?

Less than a quarter of the population of the country has access to electrical power.

Should I use a power bank in Sierra Leone?

Because electrical power isn't available in all areas of Sierra Leone alongside the lack of a reliable power grid, travellers are advised to use alternative charging options if they wish to continue charging devices such as cellphones or cameras.

  • During a trip to Sierra Leone increased use of smart phones for storing calendars, taking pictures, sat nav, social networks and playing games could syphon off power excessively. A flat smart phone battery can potentially leave you without sufficient power to make an emergency call or being able to use a satellite navigation app to find your way back to hotel or accommodation. Using a power bank [4] in Sierra Leone alleviates those concerns as it allows you to power up your cell phone without needing a Sierra Leonean power outlet, especially when travelling to a country with limited access to power and power outages in some areas.
  • We recommend using at least a 10,000mAh portable charger [4] which can store enough power to cover around three full charging cycles whilst a 20,000mAh portable charger [9] should keep a typical cell phone charged for almost a week.
  • If you need to charge your laptop in Sierra Leone and your laptop has a USB-C charging port then bring a portable charger for a laptop [10] marked with PD (power delivery) and a model supplying at least 20 Wh.
  • Be aware that some airlines don't let you bring portable chargers on an aircraft with more than 100Wh of power and must be kept in hand luggage onlyso always ahead with the carrier first.
  • Average consumer power banks won't work with high wattage items, but a rechargeable hair dryer [7] or gas hair straighteners [8] are designed for travelling to locations with both power cuts and limited access to electricity such as Sierra Leone.
Should I use a power bank in Sierra Leone?
Will a solar battery charger work in Sierra Leone?

Solar backpacks are ideal in hot weather

Will a solar battery charger work in Sierra Leone?

The climate in Sierra Leone will be suitable enough to charge solar power bank [12] dependably, however it needs to be exposed to strong sunlight to produce suitable power for a single charge. It could prove inconvenient to continually unpack a solar power bank then wait whilst it recharges in sunny spells.

  • Instead, the bigger solar cells found on a solar backpack [11] give the backpack the ability to generate more power within a shorter period of time, meaning they should perform well in Sierra Leone.
  • A phone which has been plugged directly into a USB charging port of a backpack should gradually recharge the battery during sunny spells in Sierra Leone, but this could be inconvenient to have the phone continually connected in the bag if it is to be needed constantly. Unlike a handheld solar power bank which requires unpacking facing sunlight, a backback with solar panels is continuously exposed to daylight therefore can be powering up a regular power bank [4] during the day.
  • Even though the sunlight in Sierra Leone is strong, a bag should ideally have a solar cell efficiency of at least 22%, be able to generate a minimum of 6 watts of energy and includes a 10,000mAH power bank or stronger. The durable and flexible solar panels used in solar powered bags are made to survive scratches and bending, unlike regular solid solar panels. Solar bags are available in backpack, rucksack and messenger styles which makes them ideal for domestic, work and travel use.

Sources

  • International Electrotechnical Commission - World plugs by location (cited August 2014)
  • Wikipedia - Mains electricity by country (cited July 2014)
  • Index Mundi - Power outages in a typical month (cited May 2018, data collected between 2006 to 2017)
  • Index Mundi - Access to electricity (cited May 2018, latest data collected 2010)
  • WikiPedia - List of countries by average yearly temperature (cited May 2018, data averaged between 1961 to 1990)

Sierra Leone chargers

What is a USB travel power charger?

A USB travel charger is a dual voltage charger with interchangeable plugs and multiple USB ports, suitable for charging multiple USB powered devices when travelling abroad.

What USB charger do I need for Sierra Leone?

When you are travelling with more than one device the best international travel charger for Sierra Leone to buy is a multiple USB port charger which includes swappable plugs such as a 4 port USB travel charger [13]. There are two types of power outlets that Sierra Leoneans use (G and D) and using a power adapter like this will ensure that you are covered for type G.

Because these chargers come with interchangeable pins and handle from 100 - 240 volts will mean that you can travel to multiple countries in North America, Europe, Asia and Africa simply by changing the supplied plugs. If your device supports Fast Charge (not all USB devices do) then you will benefit from faster recharging times with one of these types of USB power chargers, plus compatibility with certain power demanding devices like tablets.

Unlike other adapters this means you can recharge multiple devices at once without needing to bring individual power adapters on your trip. Only bringing a single international USB travel charger will help keep the overall weight and size down, making it perfect to fold up in hand baggage while travelling. Because of their space saving flexibility these types of travel chargers can be used when back at home as well as abroad so when you're not on holiday they can sit overnight charging multiple tablets, smartphones and e-readers without using up an additional plug socket.

We recommend buying this type of flexible travel adapter at your preferred electronics retailer - the power adapter illustrated here is the 4 Port USB Wall Charger [13] which has been successfully tested with multiple USB devices in numerous different countries around the world with perfect reliably.

What USB charger do I need for Sierra Leone?

Why use a travel USB charger for Sierra Leone?

  • Typically travel USB chargers include multiple USB charger ports, this means that you now only need to bring one charger to charge all your devices. It helps reduce the size and weight of your baggage by only packing one USB wall charger instead of bringing multiple power chargers with you.
  • All travel USB power chargers include swappable plug heads for various countries thereby making them perfect if visiting multiple countries which will probably use a different outlet to Sierra Leone.
  • Good USB travel chargers are rugged, lightweight and compact - ideal for the rigors of travel rather than risking packing a domestic charger which could be hard to repair or replace in Sierra Leone.
  • USB travel chargers will accept both the 230 volts used in Sierra Leone power outlets plus different voltage standards in other countries.
  • It's possible that hotels in Sierra Leone might only have a single power outlet, by using a travel charger with multiple USB ports means you can share the single wall outlet with family or other traveler instead of waiting to charge each device one by one.
  • Due to their versatile nature they take the worry out of visiting an unknown destination as they are guaranteed to work almost anywhere in the world.
  • Power outlets in airports are often scarce and the demand for charging multiple cell phones and tablets during departure can be high, so a USB charger with multiple ports and the capability to fast charge is ideal.
  • The power grid in some countries can be unstable, a good travel USB charger allows for unexpected surges to prevent damage to any devices attached to it. Trying to repair an overloaded smartphone or tablet in Sierra Leone might prove difficult and costly.
  • Higher priced USB travel chargers will also feature a power outlet strip to allow you to power low wattage devices such as laptops, but note these are unsuitable for high powered domestic such as hair dryers or clothes irons. For further information read the guide on using travel appliances in Sierra Leone for useful guidelines and advice on the best power adapter to use with a Sierra Leonean power outlet for high powered appliances.
  • Some mobile phones and tablets could pull more than the normal 500 mA (milliamps) produced from a normal 5 volt USB power adapter to charge or provide fast charge. More expensive USB travel chargers will support fast charging incase any of your devices draw additional power.
  • Travel USB power chargers can also be useful when returning home by recharging multiple mobile phones and tablets every day using only one power outlet.

What is the best USB charger for Sierra Leone?

The is the most compact option for travellers from any country who only have USB devices, but for visitors also wishing to use their domestic plugs these power strips provide larger but more versatile solutions. All 3 power converters offer surge protection which is necessary when visiting regions with unreliable power supplies to prevent damage to any connected devices. These travel converters come with interchangeable type C, I and G plugs covering both Sierra Leone and over 150 destinations:

  • BESTEK Portable International Travel Voltage Converter - The BESTEK international travel adaptor has 4 USB charging ports with 3 AC power outlets and is the most popular compact power converter for travellers originating from North America visiting Sierra Leone.
  • 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 originating from the US using type B plugs. This is a much more cost effective alternative to the BESTEK with just one less AC outlet for almost half the price.
  • BESTEK International USB Travel Power Strip - This power strip has 2 AC outlets but offers a generous 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 perfect for a wide range of travellers from around the world visiting Sierra Leone.

Power converters for Sierra Leone

What is a power converter for Sierra Leone?

Power converters for Sierra Leone enable travellers to use a 100-120 volt electrical device with a 230 volt Sierra Leonean 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?

An expensive and bulky power converter [14] transforms the voltage of 230 volts from a Sierra Leonean power outlet to work with a non-230 volt appliance, whereas a smaller and more lightweight power adapter (or plug adapter) will change the shape of the plug on your appliance to fit into a power outlet found in Sierra Leone.

Do I need a power converter for Sierra Leone?

When travelling to Sierra Leone from a different region ensure that the device can be used with a 230 volt power supply.

  • A step down power converter [15] is needed if you are travelling from a country that uses 100-120 volts and your appliance isn't compatible with 230 volts. Read the list of world power outlets guide to discover the voltage your country uses.
  • You won't need a power converter if you are already using either a 230 volt single voltage device or one that is dual voltage.
  • Normally devices which are designed to work with a lower voltage (such as 120 volts) and then used in a 230 volt outlet run the potential risk of an electrical fire hazard, a blown fuse or damage to your device unless a step down power converter [15] is used.
  • You shouldn't need a converter if you wish to recharge a smaller electrical device such as a tablet or cell phone as these are typically support dual voltage and designed for international use, however you should always check the device for dual voltage support first.
  • When supplying power to appliances which draw more power or generate heat (such as hair straighteners or clothes irons) then you will need to use a more expensive higher wattage heavy duty power converter [16].
  • It should be more cost effective to purchase a robust lightweight dual voltage travel appliance than trying to carry a much heavier power converter in order to use your existing domestic appliance.
  • Read our comprehensive guides on travelling with curling wands, clothes irons, hair straighteners and hairdryers with Sierra Leonean power outlets , along with recommendations on affordable dual voltage alternatives.

Do I need a power converter if I'm visiting Sierra Leone from the US?

The 230 volts used in a plug outlet in Sierra Leone is different to a 110 volt US supply so you need to bring a step down power converter if your charger or appliance doesn't support dual voltage.

What converter do I need for Sierra Leone?

If you need to use any 100-120 volt appliance with a 230 volt Sierra Leonean power outlet you will need to use a step down power converter [15].

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

Voltage converter

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

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 230 volts to 110 volts

  1. Use a step down power converter [15] to allow you to use a 110 or 120 volt appliance with a 230 volt Sierra Leonean 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 Sierra Leone before plugging that into a Sierra Leonean 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 230 volt Sierra Leonean power outlet.

What voltage is used in Sierra Leone?

Sierra Leone uses 230 volts in their power outlets.

What voltage is my device?

Dual voltage hair dryer

What voltage is my device?

The best way to see if a device is dual voltage is to check for either a sticker or numbers printed on the charger or on the device itself, normally on the rear or near to where the power cord sits. The location might depend on the make or model of your appliance, it could also be written in the instruction manual.

  • Single voltage devices might have a specific number - such as 240V.
  • Single voltage devices might also have 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 110/240V.

What can I connect to a Sierra Leonean power outlet?

Travel appliances which can connect to a Sierra Leonean power outlet

Beats Pill speakers which can connect to a Sierra Leonean power outlet

Jabra Bluetooth speakers which are compatible with a Sierra Leonean power outlet

Mobile phones that work with the Sierra Leonean power outlet

Apple iPhones that work with the Sierra Leonean power outlet

Samsung Galaxy phones that can connect to a Sierra Leonean power outlet

A list of Amazon Kindle tablets which work with a Sierra Leonean power outlet

A list of Apple iPads which are compatible with a Sierra Leonean power outlet

Corrections

We endeavor to ensure all details on this page are correct and relevant to travelers visiting Sierra Leone, if you wish to contribute any useful information or feedback please email travel@wikiconnections.org. For more comprehensive technical details visit the Wikipedia page on AC power plugs and sockets [17].

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sierra_Leone - Sierra Leonean country entry on wikipedia.
  2. http://www.iec.ch/worldplugs/ - International Electrotechnical Commission World Plugs
  3. Type G plug adapter - Allows appliances to connect to Type G power outlets without converting voltage.
  4. Portable charger - A power bank is a portable charger which can recharge USB powered devices such as mobile phones and tablets on the go.
  5. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adapter - power adaptor
  6. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mains_electricity_by_country - WikiPedia - Mains electricity by country
  7. Rechargeable hair dryer - Rechargeable battery powered blow dryer suitable for travelling.
  8. Gas hair straighteners - Cordless ceramic hair straighteners powered by gas cartridges.
  9. 20,000mAh portable charger - High capacity 20000mAh high-speed portable USB charger suitable for charging mobile phones and some tablets for several days.
  10. USB-C PD power bank - Power Delivery charger suitable for charging laptops with USB-C support.
  11. Solar backpack - A solar backpack will charge USB devices or an internal power bank when left in sunlight.
  12. Solar power bank - Portable power bank with solar cells which can recharge when placed in sunlight and power any USB powered device.
  13. 4 Port USB Wall Charger - A universal USB charger capable of charging up to 4 USB devices with swappable international adapters.
  14. 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.
  15. Step down power converter - A step down power converter allows a 100-120 volt appliance to be used in a 220-240 volt power outlet.
  16. 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.
  17. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AC_power_plugs_and_sockets - AC power plugs and sockets