A Travel Power Adapter Is a Domestic Flight Must-Have Accessory

Key Takeaways

  • Packing a travel power adapter for a domestic flight is an underrated hack. It ensures a secure connection with loose airplane outlets.
  • Using an international adapter with a different prong configuration, like the Type G/UK configuration, provides a snug fit and more stable connection.
  • Investing in a premium travel adapter offers a solution for loose outlets, a robust charger with multiple ports, and flexibility for both domestic and international trips.

You only need an international power adapter if you’re flying out of the country, right? Not so fast, packing one in your carry-on for your next domestic flight is an unbelievably underrated travel hack.

Why Pack a Travel Power Adapter for a Domestic Flight?

A travel, or international, power adapter seems like a strange thing to pack if you’re not leaving the country. But this travel hack comes to us by way of Justin Duino—the Valnet Reviews Director and one of my favorite work travel buddies—and after trying it on several flights I’m confident you’ll want to use it too.

First, the problem. Airline seats have power outlets for you to plug in your electronics like your laptop or chargers to keep your iPad and other in-flight accessories charged up. On U.S.-based airlines the U.S. power outlet configuration is the most frequently used, naturally. Any given power outlet on a U.S. domestic flight has likely had a U.S.-style plug inserted thousands, if not tens of thousands, of times over the life of the outlet.

As a result, the 2-prong U.S. outlet (known as the Type A outlet configuration, if you’re curious about such things) is typically quite loose. Plug a heavy charger into the outlet and there’s a good chance as the planes vibrates in flight, it’ll wiggle its way free—if it wasn’t already sagging the second you plugged it in. The unbelievably simple solution? Plug an international travel adapter into the universal outlet in the plane using a different prong configuration.

A power adapter brick, showing the Type G British prong configuration
Jason Fitzpatrick / How-To Geek

Type G, used in England and seen in the photo above, is a plug configuration that is rarely used on U.S. domestic flights and is a far beefier and more stable connection than a simple 2-prong Type A outlet configuration. Switch your power adapter to the Type G/UK configuration and you’re sure to find a snug fit.

Here’s Our Favorite Travel Power Adapter

To get the advantage of a secure plug with no wobble you could buy any old international power adapter for around fifteen to twenty bucks. But we’d recommend your treat yourself to a little upgrade that will not only make in-flight charging more pleasant (and streamlined!) but will also be useful at home, too.

You can find combination travel adapter/chargers, and if you opt to buy a premium model like the Epicka 75W GaN charger seen in the photos here (and that I personally use while traveling) you get not just a solution to the loose airplane outlets problem, but a robust charger with three USB-C ports and a USB-A port too.

Epicka 75W GaN International Travel Charger

Epicka GaN 75W Travel Adapter

The Epicka 75W GaN univeral travel adapter is compatible with outlets in over 200 countries and includes an integrated 75W charger with 4 USB ports to ensure you can charge your gadgets on the go.

On my trip to Berlin for IFA 2023, for example, my Epicka travel adapter was not only super useful on the plane to enable a secure connection with the in-flight power outlets, but it served as my one and only charger for the duration of the trip in Germany providing enough power for my laptop, travel router, and other devices, too. Remember, the travel adapter works just as well with U.S. outlets, so I pack it with me for domestic work and personal trips to cut down on charger clutter.

Even if you’re just using it on domestic flights, the four USB ports should be more than enough to charge your devices as well as the devices of a travel companion or two. And when you’re back home, you can use it as a handle pass-through charger to fast charge your devices while still keeping a standard outlet open for use. By upgrading to a premium GaN charger travel adapter you’ll squeeze a lot of utility out of a single purchase.

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