In order to use your 3 prong plugs with Japan’s 2 prong outlets, you simply need to purchase a 2 Prong to 3 prong outlet adapter, which you will plug all of your devices into directly, which you will then plug directly into the 2 prong outlet. While the slightly lower voltage may slightly affect charging times and device performance in a very minor way, I have personally never noticed a difference noticeable enough to bother me in any significant way. This is a really simple fix, and I will show you exactly what you need to do, and what you need to buy to use these kinds of devices in Japan.
Which 3 prong to 2 prong adaptor should you purchase?
While there are many 2 to 3 prong adapter power strips and power banks, I personally have never taken the adaptor off any of my devices in my 7 years of living in Japan. A lot of that is because…well… I live here! For portability and convenience sake, I would suggest buying individual adapters, and just leaving them on your 3 prong plugs for as long as you are in Japan.
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I have done it now for 7 years, so you should have absolutely no issues. Trust me…you really don’t want to face the situation below.
Avoid this situation
There’s nothing worse than getting off the plane, riding out to your hotel, jet-lagged and exhausted beyond measure you fumble your way through checking into your Tokyo hotel, take the elevator up to your room, and you finally get to your oh-so refreshing washiki traditional Japanese futon set-up. You sit down, ready to unwind and look into your itinerary for the next few days. You pull out your laptop, go to plug it in, look at the 3 prong plug and Japan’s 2 prong outlets, die inside a little bit, and then shout to the heavens in rage.
“Why!? Why have you forsaken me!? Sweet gods of juice and tech!”
Then the hotel staff will probably come to your room, passive-aggressively beg for you to please consider the feelings and situation of those around you who are currently getting the full inside-scoop on your little tantrum, and then cry yourself to sleep…on a very comfortable futon.
Hey, just because you’re wrapped in silk sheets doesn’t mean you can’t go through some serious 1st-world trauma for the ages. But…wait…could I even use my devices in Japan, even if I could somehow connect them? Is it safe to use electronics manufactured outside of Japan with Japan’s 2 prong outlets? This…was something that bothered me as well, so I thought I would provide you with some cold, hard facts regarding Japan’s power outlet voltage, and how you can adapt your devices for use w
Is voltage the same in Japan as it is in the US? Is it safe to use US devices in Japan?
The voltage in Japan is 100V, which is the lowest in the world and different from the United States (110-120V). Put simply, it is completely safe to products manufactured for the US in Japan, although there are rare instances where you may run into problems in the opposite situation. Using some products that are manufactured in Japan with US outlets can cause issues in some cases. The difference in voltage is mostly negligible, but the the safest way to use Japanese products in the US is to use a step-down transformer to convert 120-volt electric to the 100-volt electricity needed by the appliance. However, if you are reading this article, you’re probably more concerned with using American products in Japan, so let’s go over how you can do that.
If you are looking into this issue, chances are you are heading to Japan soon? If you are heading to Tokyo for a trip, I have laid out my recommendation for a first night’s itinerary full of awesome activities, that I have chosen based on my own personal experiences showing friends around Japan over the years. If you are interested in exploring Japan (with your new fancy 2 to 3 prong adaptor!), and exploring some cool locations and experiences relatively off the beaten-path, you should check out the article I have linked below!