How do I use a curling iron in Antigua?

Antiguan power outlet

Summary

First check that your curling iron can handle the voltage in Antigua:

If not then you can either:

  • Use a dual voltage travel curling iron [2] - you might still need to use a suitable power adapter for Antigua but these cheap lightweight accessories are designed specifically for the rigors of travel.
  • Use a power converter (or voltage transformer) - this enables you to use your existing curling iron and other applicances with an 230 volt Antiguan power outlet, however this is significantly heavier and more expensive than a dedicated travel curling iron. A power converter will change the voltage but not the actual physical shape of the plug on your curling iron to fit in the types of power outlet used in Antigua, therefore check that the voltage transformer includes the correct power adapter for Antigua otherwise you will need to bring another power adapter. Also worth noting that your personal curling iron might not be suited for travel and you risk damage in your luggage. [7]
Warning: If your curling iron won't handle 230 volts you run the risk of blowing a fuse, damage to your curling iron or even an electrical fire hazard. Before attempting to use your curling iron in Antigua please check the instruction manual first to ensure safe operation.

Using a curling iron in Antigua

Will my curling iron work in Antigua?

This depends on if your curling iron is designed to operate using the 230 volt power outlets in Antigua. If you're using either a dual voltage curling iron or your curling iron can operate using 230 volts and you have the correct plug adapter then you can use your curling iron in Antigua. If not then you will need to consider purchasing either a power converter or a dual voltage travel curling iron [2], read the guide on will a voltage converter work with a curling iron in Antigua for help deciding which solution is more suitable. [7]

Antigua power outlets and plug sockets

What is the mains voltage in Antigua?

The normal residential voltage used in Antigua is 230 volts.

What electrical frequency is used with an Antiguan power outlet?

The frequency of the alternating current found in an Antiguan power outlet is 60Hz. [8]

Which travel adapter will you need to bring when using a curling iron in Antigua?

Type A and B power outlets

Which travel adapter will you need to bring when using a curling iron in Antigua?

There are two different types of power outlets used in Antigua, these are type B and A with the primary power outlets being type B:

  • Plug Type A - You can identify this power outlet by 2 adjacent slots.
  • Plug Type B - This power outlet, also known as a type B power outlet, is recognised by the two thin slots adjacent to each other for live and neutral blades with a single hole below for the ground pin.

A suitable plug adapter to bring to use a 230 volt curling iron in Antigua is a Type B power adapter - read the step by step guide below for full details of how to use a curling iron in Antigua. Please note that unless you that have a dual voltage curling iron you might also need to bring a power converter.  [4] [9]

Dual voltage curling irons

Is my curling iron dual voltage?

The way to tell if your curling iron supports dual voltage is to check for either a sticker or numbers printed on the handle or the plug. The location will vary depending on the make or model of your curling iron and could also state in the instruction manual. Some dual voltage models might change automatically, however other models will have a switch which allows you to operate between different regions.

  • Single voltage could say a specific number - such as 110V. If this number matches the 230 volts used in Antigua then you should be able to use your curling iron with an Antiguan power outlet.
  • Single voltage could also have a small voltage range with a dash to accomodate small voltage fluctuations - such as 100-120V. If the 230 volts used in an Antiguan power outlet falls within the range shown on your curling iron then you should be able to use it in Antigua.
  • Dual voltage will typically say a larger voltage range separated with a slash - such as 100/240V. Your curling iron will be capable of being used in Antigua or any other country if these numbers are shown.

Travelling to Antigua with a curling iron

Is it better to bring your domestic curling iron or dual voltage curling iron to Antigua?

Packing a dual voltage travel curling iron is preferable to packing your existing curling iron as it is safer to assume that it will operate correctly with the 230 volt power outlets used with an Antiguan power outlet, provided that you bring the correct plug adapter for Antigua.

It is also worth concidering that packing your expensive domestic curling iron might put it at risk due to potential damage or loss in transit by airport baggage handlers in Antigua. The cost of repairing or replacing an expensive specialised curling iron in Antigua could be more than purchasing a cheap dual voltage travel curling iron [2] before setting off. If you intend to bring your own curling iron in your suitcase either slide it inside a boot or sneaker to protect from light knocks, alternatively use a shockproof and heat resistant hot tools travel case which will also allow the curling iron to be transported right after use without waiting to cool down.  [10]

Can you bring a curling iron in your carry on hand luggage to Antigua?

According to the TSA guidelines for curling irons there is no restriction on bringing a mains powered curling iron in your hand luggage through airport security in the US. The TSA suggests that you should check that your airline which is taking you to Antigua 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 leaves it easily accessible by airport security checks, it can be packed away quickly avoiding a tangle of cables in your carry on luggage (the TSA suggests wrapping cables tightly around curling irons). If you do intend to bring fragile or expensive curling irons in your hand held luggage then it is advisable to use hard carry on luggage as this provides the greatest protection against knocks and drops during transit.   [10] [11] [12]

Power converters for Antigua

Do you need a converter in Antigua to use a curling iron?

The correct type voltage transformer (or power converter) will allow a curling iron using a different voltage to work using a 230 volt power outlet used in Antigua. A power converter is more suited for travellers wishing to bring along their existing curling iron, but it might be more expensive to purchase a power converter than it is to purchase a dedicated dual voltage travel curling iron [2]. In addition, a travel curling iron can be substantially smaller and lighter than a power converter making a travel curling iron more suited for packing in luggage. [7]

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

Voltage converter

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

A heavy and expensive power converter will convert a 230 volt Antiguan power outlet to work with a non-230 volt curling iron, however a more lightweight and smaller power adapter (or plug adapter) changes the shape of the plug on your curling iron to slot into a power outlet in Antigua. [7]

How to use a curling iron in Antigua using a type B power adapter

How to power a curling iron in Antigua by using a 3 pinned Type B travel adapter.

  1. Check that your curling iron is either a dual voltage travel curling iron [2] or can work with a 230 volt power outlet but if not then don't proceed because you may damage your iron, blow a fuse or create an electrical fire hazard. Before using a travel curling iron which can toggle between different voltages ensure the switch is set to the 230 volt setting for use in Antigua; refer to the instructions for more details on where this switch is located.
  2. If the shape of the power outlet used in Antigua isn't the same shape as the plug shape on your curling iron you'll need to buy a Type B plug adapter [4]. The Type B plug adapter helps fit plugs on appliances from other countries for use with an electrical outlet in Antigua by changing the shape of the plug, but it doesn't change the frequency or voltage of the curling iron to work with a 230 volt supply.
  3. Begin by inserting the Type B plug adapter in the Antiguan power outlet. The plug outlet, technically known as the Type B power outlet [3], is recognised by the two thin slots with a hole below for the ground pin.
  4. Plug in your curling iron into the Type B plug adapter.
  5. Switch on the Antiguan power outlet. Your curling iron should now be ready to be turned on.
How to use a curling iron in Antigua using a type B power adapter

How to use a curling iron in Antigua using a type A power adapter

How to use your curling iron in Antigua with a three blade Type A travel adapter.

  1. Check that your curling iron is either a dual voltage travel curling iron [2] or can work with a 230 volt power outlet but if not then don't proceed because you may damage your iron, blow a fuse or create an electrical fire hazard. Some dual voltage travel curling irons might sometimes have a switch to toggle between voltages, before using the iron ensure the switch is set to the 230 volt setting for use in Antigua; refer to the instructions for more details on where this switch is located.
  2. Please check that you don't already own a curling iron with a Type A plug - if it does then you won't need a power adapter (but you will still need to check that your curling iron will work with a 230 volt power supply). If the shape of the power outlet which is used in Antigua isn't the same shape as the plug shape on your curling iron you'll need to use a Type A plug adapter [6]. The power adapter helps fit plugs on appliances from other countries for use with an electrical outlet in Antigua by changing the shape of the plug, but it doesn't change the frequency or voltage of the curling iron to work with a 230 volt supply.
  3. Begin by inserting the Type A plug adapter in the Antiguan power outlet. The plug outlet, technically known as the Type A power outlet [5], is recognised by the two slots.
  4. Plug in your curling iron into the Type A plug adapter.
  5. Switch on the Antiguan power outlet. You can now turn on the curling iron for use in Antigua.
How to use a curling iron in Antigua using a type A power adapter

See also

  1. Wikipedia - Wikipedia entry about Antigua
  2. Amazon - dual voltage travel curling iron
  3. iec.ch - Type B power outlet
  4. Type B plug adapter - US and Japanese 3 pinned Type B plug adapters have a single unearthed round pin along with 2 shorter parallel rectangular flat blades containing holes in each blade, priced at between $5 to $10 USD (under £10 GBP / under C$5).
  5. iec.ch - Type A power outlet
  6. Type A plug adapter - There are 2 parallel rectangular flat blades on an unearthed Type A plug adapter with small holes in each blade, estimated cost between $10 to $15 USD (under £4 GBP / under C$5).
  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, costing between $90 to $100 USD (£100-£110 GBP / around C$60).
  8. Wikipedia - WikiPedia - Mains electricity by country -
  9. iec.ch - IEC World Plugs by location -
  10. Hard case for hot tools - Hard case designed for storing and protecting a flat irons, curling irons and hair straighteners, between $10 to $15 USD (£10-£15 GBP / under C$25).
  11. tsa.gov - TSA guidelines for curling irons -
  12. Hard carry on luggage - Example of hard cases, suitcases and luggage suitable for airline carry on, between $45 to $50 USD (under £45 GBP / under C$10).