Electrical Outlet and Voltage Information for the Czech Republic
Any traveler who is visiting another country like Czech Republic must be prepared enough to bring necessary items trip and must know what to expect when they get there. Example of this is the kind of electrical outlet, plug, or adapter that might be needed. Most travelers bring along their laptop computers with them as well as other electronic gadgets and appliances like hair dryers, cameras, mp3 players, battery chargers, ipods, and mobile phones. All these would need to be plugged in an electrical outlet once in a while for maximum use, so knowing the kinds of electrical outlet and plug present in the Czech Republic will spare travelers some unimportant hassle and delay.
In the Czech Republic, the primary sockets are the Europlug and the Schuko (Type F CEE 7/5 Schuko, Type E European CEE 7/4 or Type C European CEE 7/16 Europlug). In terms of voltage, Czech Republic uses 220-240 volts in its appliances and electronic gadgets. In comparison to the European 220-240 volts, most American-made appliance and electronic gadgets use a 110-120 volts so in order to use this in Czech Republic, a traveler must have a plug adapter and a step-down transformer. For other electronics like curling irons and hair dryers–plug adapter and voltage converter. Some kinds of voltage converters are the network-resistor converter, transformer, and the combination of these two.
Type F Schuko Electrical Outlet, Plug, and Adapter
Commonly known as the Schuko plug, the Type F Schuko plug and electrical outlet was derived from the German word “Schukostecker” which means “protective contact plug.” This electrical outlet in the Czech Republic is also similar to the Type E with the difference being its two earth clips on the side instead of the female earth contact. On the other hand, the plug end of Type F CEE 7/7 Schuko is compatible with the variations of the Schuko electrical outlet for France and Germany. The pins of this adapter are 4.8mm in diameter, 19mm long, and spaced 19mm apart. They have both side-grounding clips and a receptacle for the male grounding pin which is found in Schuko sockets of France. The Type F CEE 7/7 Schuko is used for the “Type F” CEE 7/4 Schuko style electrical socket of Germany or to a “Type E” CEE 7/5 socket of France. The receptacle end of Type F CEE 7/7 Schuko is compatible with most sockets except the “Type M” South African SABS1661 (Old British BS-546) plug and the non-grounded CEE 7/16 Europlug Socket because of its 4.0mm pin receptacles that are too small for the 4.8mm pins of the Type F CEE 7/7 Schuko.
If the appliance or electronic gadget to be used in the Czech Republic is already a Schuko, there would be no need to use the Type F CEE 7/7 Schuko adapter for the electrical outlet. This Schuko plug and receptacle in the Czech Republic also has side grounding contacts which allow symmetrical connection system for live and neutral to be reversed. The Type F CEE 7/7 Schuko is the standard in countries part of the European Union as well as those which adhere to CENELEC (Comité Européen de Normalisation Electrotechnique) standards. Most European countries including Czech Republic use the Type F CEE 7/7 Schuko except Denmark, Italy, England, Ireland, Northern Ireland, Malta, and Cyprus that have their own standard electrical outlet.
Type E French 2-Pin Schuko Electrical Adapter Plug and Electrical Outlet
The Type E electrical outlet and plug is the standard in France, Denmark, Poland, Belgium, and other western countries including the Czech Republic. For the electrical outlet and plug of the Type E, the male pin is installed upwards in the electrical outlet, with the live connection on the left and neutral connection on the right.
The Type E plugs used in the Czech Republic have two round pins spaced 19mm apart with a hole for the male grounding pin in the electrical socket. The Type E electrical outlet could also be used with Type C plugs while the Type E plugs will work along with Type F electrical outlet in Czech Republic. However, the Type E is not compatible with the Type F of Germany, the Netherlands, and other continental countries of Europe because of the round male pin in the socket. In addition, people who are going to the Czech Republic would need a voltage converter and plug adapters for their appliance and electronic gadgets if they do not run on 220-240 volts.
Type C Europlug Electrical Outlet and Adapter
The Type C Europlug is also known as the CEE 7/16 (Europlug 2.5 A/250 V unearthed), which is a bit similar, but slightly smaller, to the CEE 7/17. It is one of the most commonly used electrical outlet and plug types in Czech Republic. The Type C Europlug alters the shape of the appliance’s plug so that it could be used into a “Type C” European CEE 7/16 Class II non-grounded Europlug socket or a Soviet-era Russian GOST 7396 Class II non-grounded socket often used in Czech Republic. Also, the receptacle end of the adapter is usually compatible with any standard electronic household plug from any country, aside from the “Type M” South African SABS1661 (Old British BS-546 Large) plug. Moreover, the plug end of the Type C Europlug is compatible as well with the other types of sockets used in Europe, like that of the grounded “Type F” German and “Type E” French Schuko socket, “Type L” Italian socket, “Type H” Israeli socket, “Type J” Swiss socket, and “Type K” Danish socket, although connections to some of these sockets are non-grounded. The pins of this Type C Europlug are 4.0mm in diameter, 19mm long and are spaced apart by 19mm.
In using appliances and gadgets in the Czech Republic, the Type C Europlug could also be safely used along with the Type C, Type E, Type F, and some Type L electrical outlets. This plug is also non-polarized and non-grounded. In most developing countries where modern electrical structure is lacking, the usual electrical outlet used is the Type C Europlug. Aside from Czech Republic, there are also countries in Middle East, Southeast Asia, Pacific Rim region, Central and South America, and the Caribbean that use this kind of adapter.
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 the Czech Republic 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 from the USA (or any other country that uses 110-120 volts) wants to use his or her gadget in the Czech Republic, the best way would be 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 the Czech Republic 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 Czech Republic, the ideal voltage converter would be 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 foreign-made electronic gadgets in the Czech Republic that are not compatible with the electrical outlet present in the Czech Republic is the combination of resistor-network converters and transformer.
Most of the time, there is a switch that enables the changing of modes from resistor-network converter to transformer, depending on the tourist’s needs in Czech Republic These voltage converters and adapters will be very handy if you plan a trip to Czech Republic and you intend to bring along some gadgets that require a particular voltage.