The electric outlets in India can look baffling but are rather simple once you know which hole is what. You can even take along a simple European adapter (this trick works for Americans as well) and save the expense and space of a European/US to Indian outlet adapter.

The three things you’ll need are a plastic pen, plug adapter, and a voltage converter (for Americans).

One of the first things you’ll notice is the two vertical holes (locks) on top and the 4 horizontal buttons (electric outlets) just below. The switch to the left is a safety and serves to cut the power on and off to the outlet.

First Turn Off The Power

The switch on the left of the outlet turns power on and off. Turn the power off by flicking the switch down, so that the top of the switch is showing three red bars.

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indian power outlet

Use The Plastic Pen To Release The Outlet Saftey

Although you’ve turned power off to the outlet, don’t think about using anything other than a plastic pen. Use the plastic pen and insert it in the lower of the two vertical holes. This will release the locks on the holes below, allowing you to plug in your European adapter into the lower of the two horizontal holes. (Don’t worry, they’re the only two holes the adapter will fit into).

Remove The Pen and Switch The Power Back On – You’re Now Ready To Go

Now you’ll be able to plug in all of your European gadgets and appliances. Americans will need a voltage converter however. You’re best bet is to bring an all-in-one converter that has European, UK, and Australian adapters. Insert the European adapter into the Indian outlet, then plug in your US gadgets.

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A Few Things To Keep In Mind

Even if you are using a European plug, it may still be a good idea to bring a voltage adapter to protect your electronic devices. Laptops already come built-in with voltage converters (the thick brick on the cable) as well as most cell phone chargers, electric razors, and anything else with a thick brick on the cord itself.