Interesting stuff about Germany: culture, travel, news and everyday life

German power plugs

One of the little hassles when travelling is figuring out how to use your electronic devices abroad. This is particularly true today, because it has become so much easier to bring digital cameras, netbooks and cellphones on the road. I’ve taken a few pictures of German power plugs for you, so you know what to expect when you travel to Germany.

German power plugs: socket and the two types of plugs

This is first of all what a regular wall socket looks like:

german-electric-plug-socket a regular wall socket for German electric plugs

And these are the two different types of German power plugs that exist:

the two types of German electric plugs

the two different types of German electric plugs

The difference between these two is simply that one is grounded/earthed (the left one), while the other (the right one) is not. They obviously both fit in the socket above, although there are smaller sockets that only allow the smaller, ungrounded, plug. Those sockets are very rare, however.

Adapters to German power plug sockets

In order to use or charge your electric equipment you will need some kind of adapter that allows you to fit your electric plug into the German sockets. Below is an example of what one of those adapters looks like. This one is to fit a US plug into a German power plug socket.

An adapter for electric plugs from US to Germany a US to German adapter An adapter for electric plugs from US to Germany this side fits the US plug An adapter for electric plugs from US to Germany this side allows you to plug into the German socket

These kinds of adapters come in various shapes and sizes. There are also universal ones that you can use in different countries. What you are looking for is ideally a so called Europlug (plug type CEE 7/16), because that one can be used throughout most of Europe and in many other countries.

Here are a few adapters available on Amazon that will work for you:

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You can also find a great variety of German power plugs by simply doing an Amazon search for “power plug adapter germany”. Most of these nowadays also come with a handy USB port, so you can simply use your regular USB cable to charge your phone while abroad.

German power plugs and voltage

It is important to remember that these kinds of adapters do not convert or change the voltage itself! The voltage in Germany is 230V, so be sure to check if your electronic devices support this kind of AC input. If they don’t, you might cause them some damage.

8 thoughts on “German power plugs”
  1. I am a Korean and would like to inform you that we are using German Standard wall outlet in Korea and since of it all adapters for German wall outlet fit to Korean wall outlet.
    Just difference is the voltage and frequency, 220V 60Hz.

  2. The power plug/socket adapter picture, “this side fits the US plug”, does not fit US electrical equipment. Rather it looks like an adapter for a UK type G plug.

    1. Hey Frank,

      The adapter shown is compatible with different plugs, both for “input” and “output”. For the “output” you can flip out different combinations (very handy for travelling in different countries). For the “input” I have marked the three relevant holes for US electrical equipment in the picture in green, so hopefully it is more clear now. My friends from the US have used this particular adapter for their equipment when visiting me in Germany, so I can confirm that it works :)

      Kind regards,

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