I love to travel and what I hate about it sometimes is figuring out what travel adapter plug I will need for what country. Because I don’t have total recall and really don’t visit overseas as much as I would like to, I really can’t remember what type of plug is needed in England, Germany, France and even China and Japan.
So, when I saw the Nomadplug at CES in January 2019, and was getting ready for trips that never materialized this past year, I was really interested in seeing it work.
Of course, their tag line hooked me and I had to take a look.
The nomadplug is the last universal travel adapter you will ever buy!
Now, a quick search on Amazon will show you hundreds of plugs you can buy for individual countries as you travel and if all you need is to go back and forth to one country, you can buy something much smaller and more convenient but if you are a globe trotter, like I have been in the past, you need a bag full of them and in the past nearly 50 years of traveling, I have collected a bunch of them.
So the first impression is that it is pretty cool and surprisingly large, standing 8 ½ inches tall. The package comes with all of the charger plugs for 195 countries in a tower column that is easy to pack away and travel with and a pretty simple user guide.
It packs together in a tower format that is quite clever and easy to deal with. If you are just traveling to one country, you can certainly remove the blocks that don’t apply and have a smaller package to carry. The users guide will tell you which plug goes to which country that you need to carry with you.
One of the blocks is a very handy USB-C type power charger good for up to 18 watts of power for fast charging a smartphone or tablet with a USA type plug at one end so you can use it around the house as well as traveling.
I like this design and it appears that is well put together. One thing I like is that the base unit is hinged so that you don’t have the unit sticking out too far from a wall outlet. Since it is just a plug converter and not a voltage converter, you need to make sure that what ever you plug into it is suitable for both 120V and 220V and fortunately, nearly every modern electronic device you might plug into it should have it written in tiny print on it.
There were some points of interest as I look through the trifold user guide that brought up all sorts of questions about traveling with electronics. The first was the little red dot that tells you it is not suitable for 3-Pole (earthed) Devices; ie, no grounding. This hopefully won’t be a problem as in most places, you have the option of either grounded or not. For a better discussion on that, go to skross.com via this link.
Also, it is not suitable for tropical climates nor above 2000 meters elevation. Does this mean I shouldn’t use it in Tahiti or in the Himalayas? And most important, it is intended for use with information technology equipment only, no hair dryers as there is a maximum of 360 watts at 120V.
I like the quality and design and the assurance that it will work in any of the 195 countries that I might visit and having the USB-C charger is also quite handy. It is well put together and all snaps together in a single easy to handle package. It is available directly from nomadplug for around $76. I am really looking forward to a next trip overseas.
Having said that, adding something this size to an ever-growing electronics packing list does make me pause. By comparison, below is an image of the plugs that I have been traveling with since the mid-70s compared to what the nomadplug is unpacked. I suppose I could have taken a Sharpie and written the country names on each plug to make it easier when packing for a particular country and especially in the past few years, I have just traveled to a single country in a trip but if you are wandering around Europe or Asia, having the whole package will be quite convenient.