How to charge any mobile phone when planning a trip to China

Using USB type B connector and a three pinned Type A power charger to recharge any mobile phone with a Chinese power outlet, recharging any mobile phone using a double pinned Europlug Type C power plug and charging any mobile phone using a Type I USB adapter

Chinese power outlet

Differing combinations of standards and voltages can often cause confusion when planning to stay in a different country, especially if you've never visited before. This guide was specifically written to prevent you having to worry if you'll be able to charge your mobile phone abroad.When visiting China these instructions show how to power the mobile phone using their standard Type I, A or C 220 volt 50Hz power outlets, Type I power outlets will be typically used by a majority of Chinese. When travelling to China from another country check your mobile phone can be charged using a 240 volt supply. If it came from a country which uses a lower voltage such as 110 volts make sure that your device is dual voltage (marked with a 100-240 volt notation) else you may need to use an additional transformer to avoid the device from being damaged whilst powering it. If you plan on travelling to places like Shanghai or Beijing we also recommend referring to the China Wikipedia web page [1] for further information on the location.

This how-to guide is for a generic mobile phone and assume the phone has a standard micro USB port, Bluetooth connectivity and a headphone socket. For a specific mobile phone visit the Mobile phones page for a full list of makes and models.

Charging any mobile phone in China

Can the mobile phone be used in China?

You can use any mobile phone in China by using the correct power convertor.

What is the best travel adapter for any mobile phone in China?

If you are travelling with more than just your mobile phone then the best travel adapter for China to buy is a multiple USB charger which includes swappable plugs such as a 4 port USB travel charger [9]. Chinese use three different standards of wall outlets (I, A and C) and using a power adapter like this ensures that you are covered for both types A and C. As these types of chargers are supplied with interchangeable pins and can handle from 100 volts - 240 volts will mean you can travel to over 100 countries around the world simply by changing the supplied plugs. If your type of mobile phone supports Fast Charge (note not all USB devices do) then you'll benefit from quicker recharging times by using one of these power adapters, plus compatibility with more power hungry devices. Having a 4 port adapter will also allow you to charge multiple devices at once without needing to bring multiple power chargers or using up additional power outlets. Because you are only needing to bring a single lightweight travel charger will keep the overall size and weight down, making it perfect to fold up and store in hand luggage as well as being convenient for recharging your mobile phone at an airport or on a plane. Due to their versatility these types of power chargers 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.

We suggest buying an adaptable travel adapter like this online. The power adapter illustrated below is the iKits 4 Port USB Wall Charger [9] which has been successfully tested for charging multiple USB devices in numerous different countries on a daily basis.

Alternative travel adapter for China

The 4 port USB travel charger [9] is the most compact option for travellers from any country who only have USB devices such as the mobile phone, however for visitors also wanting to use their domestic plugs the following power adapters provide larger but more versatile solutions. All 3 power strips offer surge protection which is necessary when visiting regions with unstable power grids. These travel adapters come supplied with interchangeable type C, I and G plugs covering Europe, North America, Australia, United Kingdom, Japan, China and over 150 countries around the world:

  • BESTEK Portable International Travel Voltage Converter - The BESTEK travel adaptor has 4 USB charging ports with 3 AC power outlets and is the most popular compact power converter for travellers originating from America going to China 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 North America using type B plugs and is a much more cost effective alternative to the BESTEK with only 1 less AC outlet at almost half price.
  • Yubi Universal Power Strip Kit - The Yobi has just 2 USB charging ports but offers 6 AC outlets. This versatile power strip is compatible with both American plugs and popular plug types A, B, E, F, G and I making it perfect for a majority of travellers from around the world visiting China.
What is the best travel adapter for any mobile phone in China?

Powering any mobile phone with a Chinese power outlet by using a 2 pinned Type A USB adapter

Using USB type B connector and a three pinned Type A power charger to recharge any mobile phone with a Chinese power outlet.

  1. If you want to supply power to your mobile phone from the Chinese power outlet you will need a Type A USB power adapter [3] and a USB 2.0 A Male to Micro B cable [4].
  2. Plug in the Type A USB power adapter in the power supply. You can identify this plug outlet by two thin slots adjacent to each other.
  3. Plug in the USB end of the Micro USB type B cable into the mains USB adapter and the other end into the USB charging port on any mobile phone. These instructions assume your phone uses a Micro USB type B port. Please refer to the instructions supplied with your mobile to check this is correct and visit the mobile phones page to see if your model is listed (please note you can usually connect the cable supplied with your mobile phone for charging with any USB charger).
  4. The USB charging port is typically located either on along one side or on the bottom of the mobile.
  5. Turn on the Chinese power outlet.
  6. The battery indicator on your mobile phone should indicate that the device is charging, refer to the phone`s instruction manual to find out how long it will typically take.
Powering any mobile phone with a Chinese power outlet by using a 2 pinned Type A USB adapter

How to use a Type C power charger for recharging your mobile phone from a Chinese power outlet

Simple instructions showing you how to charge your mobile phone from a Chinese power outlet using Type B USB micro cord and a Type C USB adapter.

  1. If you want to charge the mobile phone using a Chinese power outlet you'll need to use a Type C USB power adapter [6] and a USB 2.0 A Male to Micro B cable [4].
  2. Start by taking the Type C USB power adapter and inserting it in the wall outlet. You can identify this power outlet by the 2 circular adjacent holes.
  3. Connect one end of the USB 2.0 A Male to Micro B cable into the bottom of the USB mains adapter and the other end into the USB charging port on any mobile phone. These instructions assume your phone uses a Micro USB type B port. Please refer to the instructions supplied with your mobile to check this is correct and visit the mobile phones page to see if your model is listed (note you can usually connect the cable which came with your mobile phone to charge with any USB adapter).
  4. The USB charging port can normally be found either on the side or bottom of the mobile phone.
  5. Turn on the Chinese power outlet.
  6. The battery indicator on the mobile phone will indicate that the phone is charging, refer to your phone`s instruction manual to find out how long it will take.
How to use a Type C power charger for recharging your mobile phone from a Chinese power outlet

Charging any mobile phone from a Chinese power outlet by using a 3 pinned Type I USB adapter

Using Type B USB micro cord and a Type I power adapter to charge any mobile phone from a Chinese power outlet.

  1. In order to power any mobile phone using the Chinese power outlet you'll need to buy a Type I USB power adapter [8] and a USB 2.0 A Male to Micro B cable [4].
  2. Firstly you'll need to insert the Type I USB power adapter into the Chinese power outlet. The wall supply, technically known as a Type I power outlet [7], can be identified by 3 slots for the live, neutral and earth blades. Please note that the neutral and live pins are configured reversed compared to Argentinian plug outlets, please check that your Type I power adaptor is compatible in China.
  3. Plug in one end of the USB type B cord into the bottom of the mains USB charger and the other end into the USB charging port on any mobile phone. These instructions assume your phone uses a Micro USB type B port. Please refer to the instructions supplied with your mobile to check this is correct and visit the mobile phones page to see if your model is listed (note you can usually connect the cable supplied with your mobile phone to charge with any USB charger).
  4. The USB charging port can normally be found either on along one side or on the bottom of the mobile phone.
  5. Turn on the Chinese power outlet.
  6. The battery indicator on your mobile phone will indicate that the device is charging, refer to your phone`s instruction manual to find out how long it will typically take.
Charging any mobile phone from a Chinese power outlet by using a 3 pinned Type I USB adapter

See also

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/China - China Wikipedia web page
  2. http://www.iec.ch/worldplugs/typeA.htm - Type A power outlet
  3. Type A USB power adapter - Provides USB power from a type A mains power outlet
  4. USB 2.0 A Male to Micro B cable - Used to connect USB devices which have a USB Mini-B port to computers, power supplies and other devices
  5. http://www.iec.ch/worldplugs/typeC.htm - Type C power outlet
  6. Type C USB power adapter - Provides USB power from a type C mains power outlet
  7. http://www.iec.ch/worldplugs/typeI.htm - Type I power outlet
  8. Type I USB power adapter - Provides USB power from a type I mains power outlet
  9. IKits 4 Port USB Wall Charger - A universal USB charger capable of charging up to 4 USB devices with swappable international adapters