Which travel adapter do you need when using a curling iron in Belgium?

Don't know which travel adapter to use abroad? A guide for those going to Belgium and bringing a curling iron.

Belgian power outlet

Summary

Check that your curling iron can work in Belgium:

If not then either:

  • Use a dual voltage travel curling iron [2] - you may still need to use a power adapter for Belgium but these cheap lightweight accessories are designed specifically for travel.
  • Use a power converter [7] (or voltage transformer) - this enables you to use your existing curling iron and other applicances with a 230 volt Belgian power outlet, however this is substantially heavier and more expensive than a dedicated travel curling iron. A voltage transformer will change the voltage but not the physical shape of the plug on your curling iron to fit in the wall outlet used in Belgium, therefore please check that the power converter [7] includes an appropriate power adapter for Belgium otherwise you will still need to bring a seperate power adapter. Be aware that your domestic curling iron might not be suited for travelling and you risk potential damage in a suitcase.

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

Using a curling iron in Belgium

Will my American curling iron work in Belgium?

The instructions on this page assume that you are a reader from the US travelling to Belgium and will provide advice on using your US curling iron with a Belgian power outlet.

Will my curling iron work in Belgium?

This depends on if your curling iron can handle the 230 volt power outlets used in Belgium. If you're using either a dual voltage curling iron or your curling iron is designed to operate using 230 volts and you have the appropriate plug adapter then you should be able to use the curling iron in Belgium. If not then then you will need to consider buying either a dual voltage travel curling iron [2] or a heavier and more expensive power converter [7], read our guide on can you use a power converter to use a domestic curling iron in Belgium for help deciding which option is more suitable.

Belgium power outlets

What mains voltage is used in Belgium?

Power outlets in Belgium are 230 volts.

What is the electrical frequency used in Belgium?

The frequency in a Belgian power outlet is 50Hz.

Which plug adapter will you need when using a curling iron in Belgium?

Type C and E power outlets

Which plug adapter will you need when using a curling iron in Belgium?

There are two different types of power outlets used in Belgium, types E and C with the primary power outlets being type E:

  • Plug Type C - You can identify the power outlet by the two adjacent holes next to each other for live and neutral pins.
  • Plug Type E - You can recognise this plug outlet by the two large round adjacent holes where the plug socket pins sit with a long metal grounding pin protruding the top to form a triangle shape.

A Type E power adapter [6] will allow you to use a 230 volt curling iron in Belgium - read the step-by-step guide below for full details of how to use a travel adapter for Belgium. Be aware that unless you that have a dual voltage curling iron you might also need to use a voltage converter.

Dual voltage curling irons

Is my curling iron dual voltage?

An easy way how to tell if your curling iron will handle a dual voltage power outlet is to check for either a sticker or numbers printed on the plug or the handle of your curling iron. The location might depend on the make or model of your curling iron, it could also be written in the instruction manual or on the box. Some dual voltage curling irons might change automatically but other models will have a button or switch which allows you to change between different voltage ranges depending on which country you are in.

  • A specific number such as 110V indicates a single voltage curling iron. If this number matches the 230 volts used in Belgium then you should be able to use your curling iron with a Belgian 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 230 volts used in a Belgian power outlet falls within the range shown on your curling iron then you can use it in Belgium.
  • A larger voltage range separated with a slash such as 100/240V indicates a dual voltage curling iron capable of being used in Belgium or any other country.

Travelling to Belgium with a curling iron

Can curling irons go in my hand luggage?

According to the TSA guidelines for curling irons [10] there is no restriction on carrying a mains powered curling iron in your hand luggage through airport security in the United States. The TSA recommends that you should check that the airline which is flying you to Belgium will allow curling irons onboard and that it will fit in the overhead bin or underneath the seat of the airplane.

Packing the curling irons in a dedicated heat resistant protective hot tools travel case [11] leaves it easily accessible by airport security, it can be packed away quickly and should avoid a tangle of wires in your carry on luggage (the TSA advices wrapping cables tightly around curling irons). If you intend to bring fragile or expensive curling irons in your hand held luggage then it is recommended to use hard carry on luggage as this offers the greatest protection against drops and knocks during transit.

Power converters for Belgium

Will a voltage converter work with my curling iron in Belgium?

A suitable voltage transformer [7] (or power converter) allows a curling iron using a different voltage to operate using a 230 volt power outlet used in Belgium. A power converter is suitable for travellers wishing to bring their existing domestic curling iron, however it might be more costly to purchase a power converter than it is to purchase a dedicated dual voltage travel curling iron [2]. A power converter is also considerably heavier and bulkier than a travel curling iron making a power converter less suitable for packing in luggage.

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

Voltage converter

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

An expensive and heavy power converter [7] converts the voltage of 230 volts from a Belgian power outlet to work with a non-230 volt curling iron, however a more lightweight and smaller power adapter [12] (or plug adapter) will change the shape of the plug on your curling iron to slot into a power outlet found in Belgium.

Travelling to Belgium with a curling iron

Is it safe to bring my curling iron to Belgium?

It is preferable to packing a dual voltage curling iron rather than packing your existing domestic curling iron to Belgium as it is safer to assume that it will operate correctly with the 230 volt power outlets used with a Belgian power outlet, as long as you bring the correct power adapter for Belgium.

It is also worth bearing in mind that bringing your expensive domestic curling iron could put it at risk because of potential damage or loss in your check in luggage by airline baggage handlers. The cost and inconvenience of repairing an expensive specialised domestic curling iron in Belgium could overshadow the costs of purchasing a cheap dual voltage travel curling iron [2] beforehand to bring along with you. If you intend to pack your own curling iron in your suitcase it is recommended to either slide it inside a sneaker or boot to protect from light knocks, alternatively use a heat resistant and shockproof hot tools travel case [11] which will also allow the curling iron to be packed whilst hot without risk of burning.

How to use a curling iron in Belgium using a type C power adapter

The WikiConnections page showing how to use a curling iron in Belgium using a two prong Type C power adapter.

  1. Check that the curling iron is either a dual voltage travel curling iron [2] or can work with a 230 volt power supply but if not then do not proceed as you may create an electrical fire hazard, damage your iron or blow a fuse. Before using a dual voltage travel curling iron make sure the switch is set to accept 230 volts; please refer to the user guide to find out where this switch is.
  2. If the plug shape on your curling iron isn't the same shape as the outlet which is used in Belgium you will need to buy a Type C plug adapter [4]. This plug adapter is designed to convert different plugs on appliances from other countries into an electrical outlet found in Belgium by changing the shape of the plug, however it doesn't change the voltage of the curling iron to work with a 230 volt outlet.
  3. Insert the Type C plug adapter into the power outlet. You can identify the wall outlet by two adjacent holes next to each other for live and neutral.
  4. Plug in the curling iron into the Type C plug adapter.
  5. Switch on the Belgian power outlet. The hair curling iron can now be used in Belgium.
How to use a curling iron in Belgium using a type C power adapter

How to use a curling iron in Belgium using a type E power adapter

The WikiConnections page showing how to use a curling iron in Belgium using a 2 pronged Type E power adapter.

  1. Please check that your curling iron is either a dual voltage travel curling iron [2] or is compatible with a 230 volt power outlet - if not then do not attempt these instructions because you might damage your iron, blow a fuse or create an electrical fire hazard. Travel curling irons sometimes have a switch to toggle between voltages, before operating the iron ensure you have set it to the 230 volt setting to use in Belgium - consult the user guide for more information on how to do this.
  2. You will need to use a Type E plug adapter [6] if the type of power outlet used in Belgium won't accomodate the plug shape of your curling iron. The Type E plug adapter will adapt plugs from other countries for an electrical outlet found in Belgium simply by changing the shape of the plug, but the adapter doesn't change the frequency or voltage of your curling iron to work with a 230 volt supply.
  3. Begin the process by plugging the Type E plug adapter into the Belgian power outlet. This recessed round plug supply can be recognised by two circular holes 19mm apart from each other where the two plug outlet pins slide into plus one long metal earth pin protruding in the top in a triangular configuration.
  4. Plug in the curling iron into the Type E plug adapter.
  5. Switch on the Belgian power outlet.
  6. You can now switch on the curling iron to use in Belgium.
How to use a curling iron in Belgium using a type E power adapter

See also

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Belgium - Wikipedia.org web page about Belgium
  2. https://www.amazon.com/Travel-Smart-Conair-Ceramic-Curling/dp/B002WQ93F8/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&qid=1484157133&sr=8-3&keywords=dual+voltage+curling+iron&linkCode=ll1&tag=wikiconnections-20&linkId=9539dbabb2cd76a0541c75b1e59576ba - dual voltage travel curling iron
  3. http://www.iec.ch/worldplugs/typeC.htm - Type C power outlet
  4. Type C plug adapter - Allows appliances to connect to Type C power outlets without converting voltage
  5. http://www.iec.ch/worldplugs/typeE.htm - Type E power outlet
  6. Type E plug adapter - Allows appliances to connect to Type E power outlets without converting voltage
  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
  8. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mains_electricity_by_country - WikiPedia - Mains electricity by country
  9. http://www.iec.ch/worldplugs/list_bylocation.htm - IEC World Plugs by location
  10. https://apps.tsa.dhs.gov/mytsa/cib_results.aspx?search=curling%20iron - 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.
  12. https://www.amazon.com/Ceptics-GP-12PK-International-Worldwide-Universal/dp/B01DJEBLQU/ref=as_li_ss_tl?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=CFDDSXZJ59CH648AVQ0H&linkCode=ll1&tag=wikiconnections-20&linkId=b865b6ca5e535d710bf1e1b3a790f622 - power adapter