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

Simple instructions showing you how to charge your iPhone 5 from a Chinese power outlet by using a USB Lightning Apple connector with a Europlug Type C USB adapter, how to charge the iPhone 5 using a two pinned Type A power plug and powering the iPhone 5 using a Type I power adapter

Chinese power outlet

Varying different combinations of voltages and standards can all be confusing when planning to travel to another country especially to the first time traveller. This page was specifically written to prevent you worrying if you'll be able to charge your iPhone 5 abroad.When you're visiting China this page has useful instructions showing how to charge your iPhone 5 by using the I, A or C type Chinese 220 volt 50Hz wall outlets, you'll find a majority of Chinese will use Type I plug outlets. If travelling to China from another region check that the iPhone 5 can be charged using a 240v supply. If your iPhone 5 originated in a country which uses a lower voltage (for example 110 volts) check your iPhone 5 is dual voltage (indicated by 100-240 volts) else you may need to use an additional voltage converter to prevent the device from overloading when charging it. These instructions assume you are running Apple iOS 7 or greater on the iPhone 5.

Charging the iPhone 5 in China

Can the iPhone 5 be used in China?

Yes, you can use the iPhone 5 in China by using the correct power convertor.

What is the best travel adapter for the iPhone 5 in China?

If you are travelling with more than just your iPhone 5 and visiting more than one country the best travel power adapter for China is a multiple USB charger which includes compatible plugs such as a 4 port USB travel charger [10]. Chinese use three different types of plug sockets (types I, A and C) and using a power charger like this will ensure that you are covered for both types A and C.

Because these chargers come with interchangeable plugs and can handle 100 to 240 volts it makes them ideal for multiple countries in Europe, Asia, North America and Africa just by switching the included heads over. If your iPhone 5 supports Fast Charge (not all USB devices will) then you'll benefit from much quicker charging times by using one of these types of power chargers, along with support for more power hungry devices. Having a 4 port adapter will allow you to charge multiple devices at once without needing to bring multiple power chargers. Because you are only packing a single travel charger will also keep the overall size down, making it perfect to fold up in hand luggage. Due to their space saving versatility these types of adapters can be used back at home so when you're not on holiday they can sit under your bedside table charging multiple smartphones, tablets and e-readers without using up an additional power outlet.

For those travelling often we recommend buying this type of flexible travel adapter at an electronics retailer, the power adapter illustrated below is the iKits 4 Port USB Wall Charger [10] which has been tested successfully for powering multiple USB devices in numerous foreign countries with perfect reliably.

Alternative travel adapter for China

The 4 port USB travel charger [10] 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 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 supplies. These travel adapters come with interchangeable type C, I and G plugs covering both China 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 option for travellers originating from North America visiting China using 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. This offers practically the same functionality as the BESTEK with only one less AC outlet at almost half the price.
  • BESTEK International USB Travel Power Strip - This power strip has 2 AC outlets but offers a flexible 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 suitable for most travellers from around the world visiting China.
What is the best travel adapter for the iPhone 5 in China?

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

Instructions showing how to power your iPhone 5 with a Chinese power outlet with a Lightning Apple cable with a two pin Type A USB adapter.

  1. To supply power to your iPhone 5 from a Chinese power outlet you will need to buy a Type A USB power adapter [4] and a USB to Apple Lightning cable [5], Apple normally supply this USB cable when you purchase the iPhone 5.
  2. Start the process by taking the Type A USB power adapter and inserting it into the power outlet. The power supply, sometimes known as the Type A power outlet [3], can be identified by 2 slots next to each other for live and neutral pins.
  3. Then connect the USB end of the USB Lightning power cord into the bottom of the USB mains adapter and the other end into the Lightning connector on the iPhone 5. You can find the Lightning connector on the iPhone 5 situated at the bottom of your iPhone 5.
  4. Switch on the Chinese power outlet.
  5. The battery icon which you'll find in the top right hand corner of the mobile screen will display a charging icon to indicate that the iPhone 5 is charging, typically taking roughly 1-4 hours to completely recharge.
Powering the iPhone 5 with a Chinese power outlet by using a 2 pinned Type A USB adapter

Charging the iPhone 5 from a Chinese power outlet by using a two pinned Europlug Type C USB adapter

Simple instructions showing you how to charge your iPhone 5 from a Chinese power outlet by using a USB Lightning Apple connector with a Europlug Type C USB adapter.

  1. To supply power to the iPhone 5 from a Chinese power outlet you will need to buy a Type C USB power adapter [7] and a USB to Apple Lightning cable [5], Apple typically supply this USB cable when you purchase your iPhone 5.
  2. Start the process by taking the Type C USB power adapter and inserting it into the power outlet. You can identify this plug outlet by two circular holes adjacent to each other.
  3. Then connect the USB end of the USB Lightning power cord into the bottom of the USB mains adapter and the other end into the Lightning connector on the iPhone 5. You can find the Lightning connector on the iPhone 5 situated at the bottom of your iPhone 5.
  4. Switch on the Chinese power outlet.
  5. The battery icon which you'll find in the top right hand corner of the mobile screen will display a charging icon to indicate that the iPhone 5 is charging, typically taking roughly 1-4 hours to completely recharge to full capacity.
Charging the iPhone 5 from a Chinese power outlet by using a two pinned Europlug Type C USB adapter

Powering the iPhone 5 with a Chinese power outlet by using a 3 pinned Type I USB adapter

Using a USB Lightning cable and a three pin Type I USB charger to power the iPhone 5 with a Chinese power outlet.

  1. In order to power the iPhone 5 from the Chinese power outlet you'll need a Type I USB power adapter [9] and a USB to Apple Lightning cable [5], typically already included with your device by Apple.
  2. Plug in the Type I USB power adapter in the power supply. You can identify this plug outlet by three thin slots for the live, neutral and ground. Be aware that the neutral and live blades are configured reversed compared to Argentinian power outlets so check that your Type I travel adaptor is compatible with a Chinese power supply.
  3. Plug in the USB end of the USB to Apple Lightning cable into the USB mains charger and the other end into the Lightning connector on the iPhone 5. The iPhone 5 Lightning connector can be found at bottom of the iPhone 5 under the home button.
  4. Turn on the Chinese power outlet.
  5. The battery icon which appears in the top right hand corner of your phone will display a charging icon to indicate that the mobile is powering up which should take between 60 to 240 minutes to recharge to 100% capacity.
Powering the iPhone 5 with a Chinese power outlet by using a 3 pinned Type I USB adapter

See also

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/China - China country Wiki page
  2. https://manuals.info.apple.com/MANUALS/1000/MA1565/en_US/iphone_user_guide.pdf - Official iPhone user guide
  3. http://www.iec.ch/worldplugs/typeA.htm - Type A power outlet
  4. Type A USB power adapter - Provides USB power from a type A mains power outlet
  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
  6. http://www.iec.ch/worldplugs/typeC.htm - Type C power outlet
  7. Type C USB power adapter - Provides USB power from a type C mains power outlet
  8. http://www.iec.ch/worldplugs/typeI.htm - Type I power outlet
  9. Type I USB power adapter - Provides USB power from a type I mains power outlet
  10. IKits 4 Port USB Wall Charger - A universal USB charger capable of charging up to 4 USB devices with swappable international adapters