Travel Gear We Use: Eagle Creek USB Universal Travel Adaptor

Twenty-five years ago, I went on my first international trip on my own. One of my first purchases for my journey through Europe was a travel adaptor. It came in a big bag with lots of various-sized plug adaptors. A few months ago, I finally upgraded. As it turns out, gone are the clunky, multi-piece travel adaptors. Instead, adaptors now come in one sleek unit, and include USB ports.

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I chose to purchase my new travel adaptor from Eagle Creek, because apart from one item*, I’ve always found their travel products to be high quality, practical, and affordable. In fact, we love their wheeled luggage lines so much, we were all carrying Eagle Creek bags through France and Italy.

Eagle Creek offers three travel adaptors, ranging from a bare bones model for $25 to a pro model for $65. I chose the one in the middle, the USB Universal Travel Adaptor for $50. Like it’s ‘pro’ counterpart, this adaptor comes with a detachable USB section with two ports. It’s a two-prong design that works in 150 countries. We appreciated that you simply slide the appropriate prongs in or out as needed. This way, in France we could use one adaptor type and in Italy another, all on the same unit, without needing to remember which types to pack. Because it’s a two-prong design, it accommodates US plug-ins directly. In other words, I can plug my US appliance directly into the adaptor, then plug the adaptor into the wall, using the appropriate prong type.

The whole unit is smaller than my fist, and I had no trouble with its durability, stashing it in various places in my carry on and in my day pack. It comes with surge overload protection, which is good insurance just in case your US devices aren’t approved for use at higher voltage.

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The USB port section slides right into the main unit; you can take it on or off. I found that we used the USB unit at night to recharge our phones, then I’d just slide that section off  (with the USB cables still attached) and use the adaptor solo for items like my hair dryer or my laptop. I debated getting the cheaper model without the USB ports; after all, it’s possible to simply bring a US plug for the USB cables and charge the phones one at a time. However, I’m so glad I splurged. If anything, we could have used more USB ports, not less!

Pick up the USB Universal Travel Adaptor on Eagle Creek, or save a few bucks and buy on Amazon.

*The only Eagle Creek product I’d avoid: their $6 travel sacks (3-1-1 bags) are not durable. We bought five, and four ripped before we’d even left the US.

About the author

Amy Whitley AUTHOR: Amy Whitley is the founding editor of Pit Stops for Kids and content editor of Trekaroo. She writes on staff monthly as a family travel expert at Go Green Travel Green and Practical Travel Gear, and contributes to Outdoors NW as an outdoor adventure traveler. Find Amy at Google.

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