I just returned from a short trip to Taipei, and while it was really fun, it’s nice to be back home. Taipei is surprisingly not very different from Singapore, except the mild winter’s there currently is a welcome change from Singapore’s all-year-round tropical climate.
Another difference that got me was the power sockets — Taiwan uses a 2-pin blade socket configuration that’s different from Singapore’s 3-pin rectangular configuration.
I brought a 2-pin converter, but with one small problem. My converter was of the round-pin variety. Urgh. You can see a picture of said converter here:
I didn’t check the power sockets Taiwan uses properly, so I ended up having to use my digital camera REALLY sparingly to make sure it lasted the whole trip. I’m going to get myself one of these truly universal plug adapters though, so such a situation won’t happen to me again. I did my research around, and this is a pretty recent product by Belkin, released around mid 2007, and is apparently one of the best — if not the best — universal plug adapters around. Caveat though, this doesn’t do anything to transform (step up or step down) the voltage. This is just making sure your plug will fit the socket, almost anywhere in the world.
If you need to transform, convert, step up or step down the power, then you’re looking for a Power Converter (or transformer). These devices converts between 220v to 110 volts so that your appliances will operate on the country’s current. Take note that you need to check that the power rating (in watts) exceeds the rating of all appliances you expect to plug in at one time. Your appliance should have a sticker or label with its power rating clearly stated on it. Amazon has some good universal power converters.
Last I checked, Amazon seemed to have the best price for this Belkin plug adapter at around $14 (Amazon: Belkin plug adapter).