How power sockets are made in Italy, types and travel adapters

white adapter on pink surface

Electrical standards around the world are not all the same as they differ based on two primary factors that characterize the electricity grid: voltage and voltage and to the differences that concern them the shape, size and number of contacts of the spines.

Here is all the information you need to be able to operate electronic devices with electrical outlets in the city.

Voltage and frequency

The voltage of electrical sockets in Italy is equal to 220-240V with frequency of 50Hz. On average, the voltage of the home network is of 230V and this is the most common standard throughout the world, excluding the USA, North America, Central America and Japan which instead have a voltage of 110-120 volts at 60Hz.

How electrical sockets are made in Italy

Electrical sockets in Italy are of a European type and they have two or three holes, but the most widespread are the second ones. There are three types of sockets used in Italy: C, F and L.

L-type socket

It's the trap to 3 poles, the most used in the country, especially the double socket type which has both small and large holes. Over time its use is progressively reduced depending on the Schuko socket.

L-type electrical socket

In Italy, the taking of Type L can show up in two main variants which differ in size and maximum supported current: one version bigger, designed to support up to 16A, and a smaller, designed for currents up to 10A. Both versions have three pins: two for phase and neutral, and a longer one for ground.

10 and 16 amp L-type electrical sockets
10 and 16 amp L-type electrical sockets

Type-C socket

It is very similar to the L but is only 2 poles and only 10 amps, therefore without the "central hole" for "grounding". In Italy it is now very uncommon because it has been replaced by the L type.

Repair of the socket, socket. Tools, voltage measuring devices. selective focus.

F-type socket, Schuko

It is the commonly called outlet Schuko and it is a German standard with two central poles and a lateral earth connection (the two tabs at the top and bottom) although sometimes there is also a central "earth" hole. It is generally used for large household appliances but is slowly taking the place of the L socket, often with Schuko/L hybrids.

Vimar Schuko socket
Vimar Schuko/L hybrid socket with USB

Adapters travel bags, which ones to buy?

Modern adapters make the plugs of one country compatible with the sockets of another nation and adapt voltage and frequency of electrical devices, while the older ones only adapt the plugs without adjusting the voltage.

In Italy, if you have an appliance with a European-style two or three-pin plug, there will be no problems with sockets in homes and hotels. Otherwise, it will be sufficient to equip yourself with a adapter which, depending on the necessity, reduces or increases the poles or adapts those of other world standards.

With regard to voltage and frequency, modern devices and power supplies are almost all multi-voltage, with a voltage that goes from 100 to 240V. In any case, to understand if you need an adapter, simply read its characteristics.

If the voltage is different you will need a transformer suitable for this task if your adapter does not convert the voltage independently, if it is the frequency that varies you will need a travel inverter.

In general buying a modern universal travel adapter you don't need to buy anything else, Various models are available on Amazon but you can purchase them wherever you deem appropriate. The link provided it is not an affiliate link, but merely advice for a product tested by us in Italy and abroad..

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Written by Gennaro Marchesi
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