Electrical Outlet and Voltage Information for Tanzania
In Tanzania, which is located in East Africa, the standard voltage used by electronic gadgets and appliances is 220-240 volts with a frequency of 50 Hz. On the other hand, the primary types of electrical outlet and plug in Tanzania are the Type D Indian BS-546 and the Type G British BS-1363. For a tourist who will spend time in Tanzania, knowing this information would help them use their electronic gadgets and appliances more conveniently.
Additional things that might be handy for a tourist in Tanzania are the adapters and voltage converters. Adapters are used when the shape of the plug is not compatible with the shape of electrical outlet present in Tanzania while the voltage converters are used to make different voltages between electronic gadgets and appliances work together with the electrical outlet present in Tanzania.
Type D Indian BS-546 Adapter Plug and Electrical Outlet
In this Type D Indian BS-546 Plug Adapter, the live and neutral pins are 5mm in diameter, spaced 22mm apart, and the grounding pin is 7mm in diameter with the plug being polarized and grounded. It is an old British standard electrical outlet which is still the primary household electrical outlet in countries like Tanzania, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Namibia, and Hong Kong. The Type D Indian BS-546 electrical outlet is most compatible with the Type D Old British Plug Adapter that is sometimes used in Tanzania. The receptacle end of this Type D Indian BS-546 plug is also compatible with common household plugs except the Type M South African SABS1661 (Old British BS-546 Large) plug. Although the Type D Indian BS-546 electrical outlet and plug is not the standard in Tanzania and other countries, it is still used in various households. In terms of design and appearance, the Type D Indian BS-546 electrical outlet and plug is often confused with the Type M South African electrical outlet and plug. However, as similar as the Type M South African SABS1661 (Old British BS-546 Large) and Type D Indian BS-546 may seem, they are not compatible and must not be used together in Tanzania or even in other countries. If a tourist would want to use an electronic gadget or appliance that has a plug that is not compatible with the Type D Indian BS-546 electrical outlet used in Tanzania, he or she could always opt for the adapter specific for this type or the universal adapter.
Type G British BS-1363 Plug, Electrical Outlet, and Adapter
The Type G electrical outlet and plug is a Type G British BS-1363 rectangular blade used widely in Tanzania that has a protective fuse inside to protect cords from high-current circuits and, most of the time, the Type G British BS-1363 electrical outlet includes a safety switch. The Type G British BS-1363 plug also has a receptacle end that is compatible with most household plug types, except the Type M South African SABS1661 (Old British BS-546 Large) plug. The plug end is a British BS-1363 13-amp type. For the adapter, the live and neutral pins are 4 x 6 x 18 mm apart, with the grounding pin measuring 4 x 8 x 23mm. Also, through the Type G British BS-1363 adapter, a tourist could use his or her appliance or electronic gadget in Tanzania. The plug of this Type G British BS-1363 is polarized and grounded but not fused.
Another name for the Type G British BS-1363 plug is the 13-amp plug and for safety reasons the Tanzania requires electrical outlets in households that use the Type G British BS-1363 to have shutters over the live and neutral connections of the electrical outlet. In the insertion of the longer earth pin from the plug, the safety shutters of the Type G British BS-1363 are opened. The shutters are also present to prevent the use of incompatible plugs made to other standards in Tanzania. However, there are cases wherein the safety shutters of this electrical outlet could be opened through a screwdriver in order to insert Type C plugs. The usage of the Type G British BS-1363 outlet along with another kind of plug is not recommended because these plugs do not have a fuse.
The regulation about the safety shutters and fuse is then followed in Tanzania and all the other countries that use the Type G British BS-1363 electrical outlet and plug like the Tanzania, United Kingdom, Oman, Ghana, Grenada, Macau, Malta, Malaysia, Qatar, Saint Vincent, Saudi Arabia, Scotland, Maldives and Kuwait. In terms of compatibility, the Type G British 3-pin electrical outlet will work together with the Type G British BS-1363 plug and adapter in Tanzania.
With all the safety measures and features of this plug and outlet, it is considered as one of the safest in Tanzania, even the world. However, with all its features, this type of plug is bulky and cumbersome.Some people claim that the Type G British BS-1363 plug is mostly bigger than the appliances they are connected to but if tourists would want to use their electronic gadget or appliance in Tanzania, then they must have a Type G British BS-1363 adapter. Although the adapter would not change the voltage used, it will enable the plug of the appliance or electronic gadget to be inserted to the electrical outlet used in Tanzania. For the electrical outlet, the Type G British BS-1363 sockets are not compatible with other types of electrical outlet in Tanzania.
Voltage Converters and Adapters
Most appliances and electronic gadgets made in the United States of America (USA) have a voltage of 110-120 and using it directly on a 220-240 electrical outlet in Tanzania would cause damage to the appliance or electronic gadget, to the extent that it might be totally fried out or might even cause a fire. If a tourist wants to use his or her gadget in Tanzania, the best way is by using voltage converters such as resistor-network converters, transformers, and in some cases the combination of both. The resistor-network converters to be used in Tanzania are usually advertised to support as much as 50-1600 Watts and are just ideal to use for short periods of time. The resistor-network converter is also not recommended for digital devices like laptop computers however it is great for lightweight electronics like hair dryers and irons.
If a tourist would want to use a laptop computer or charge batteries for camera, mp3 players, camcorders, and radios in Tanzania, the ideal voltage converter is a transformer which lowers maximum watt rating. It could be used for long periods of time but is a little bit heavy because of the large iron rods and copper wires. The last kind of voltage converter in order to use electronics in Tanzania that are not compatible with the electrical outlet present in Tanzania is the combination of resistor-network converters and transformer.