Mexico Power Outlet Guide (2023): Do You Need a Travel Adapter?

Not sure if you need a plug adapter for your trip? Check out this Mexico power outlet guide!  

If you’re heading to Cancun or another Mexican destination for vacation, you might be wondering about the Mexico power outlet.

Since many countries around the world use different outlets and plugs, you need to check if you will need to pack a travel adapter before heading to Mexico. 

Depending on your devices, you might also need a voltage converter to protect the gadgets you’re bringing from home. 

This guide will answer your most-asked questions about the electricity and outlet situation in Mexico!

Do I Need a Travel Plug for Mexico?

Mexico uses the same power plug as North America. So, you will not need a travel adapter if you are from Canada or the USA. 

Travelers from the rest of the world will need a North American travel adapter. The Mexico plug type is a two-pin flat adapter. 

Mexico also uses Type A and Type B plugs. Type A is what you will see most often as it’s two flat pins. Type B has two flat pins and one round pin. 

mexico power outlet
Type A plug

You can use type A plugs in type B outlets, but you can’t use type B plugs in type A outlets.

Some travelers like to bring a power strip to Mexico just in case they can’t find both plugs available in their place of accommodation. 

One thing to note is that many outlets in Mexico are not polarized.

This means the two slots on the outlet are the same size, whereas your charger might have one prong slightly bigger than the other. 

Since polarized plugs cannot be used in nonpolarized outlets, you must check your cables before coming to Mexico.

You can usually see whether a charger is polarized by checking the user manual or the specs online. 

So you are coming from a country that has a different plug type, you should definitely include a travel adapter in your Mexico packing list.

Mexico Power Outlet & Plug Types

If you’re planning a Mexican vacation, you’ll need to make sure you have travel adapters for the Mexico power plug.

If you don’t bring the correct Mexico travel plug, you’ll have to buy one after you arrive at your destination. 

Travel adapters are often sold at a higher price in tourist cities like Cancun, so you can save money and time by getting one at a store in your home country. 

🔌 What Plugs Do They Use in Mexico?

Mexico uses two main plugs.

They are the same as the ones used in the USA and Canada, so you might already be familiar with them if you’ve traveled around North America. 

Mexico has type A and type B plugs. Type A plugs have two flat parallel pins. Your hotel room or place of accommodation should have many of these. 

The type B plug has the same parallel flat pins as the type A plug, but there is also a round pin below the other pins. 

Cancun beach at sunset

A Mexico electrical outlet might be type A or type B, depending on where you’re staying. Some hotels have both types of plugs, while some only have one or the other. 

Voltage and Frequency in Mexico

Mexico uses a voltage of 127V and a frequency of 60Hz, just like the rest of North America.

You’ll need to check the recommended voltage of all your electronics before heading to Mexico to see what voltage they operate on. 

⚡ Dual and Single Voltage Rated Appliances

Some electronics are dual voltage, which means they can operate on 110-120V and 220-240V.

All these gadgets can be used in Mexico without worrying about the electrical current damaging your devices. 

If you have a single voltage device that is 110-120V, you can use them in Mexico as this is the standard voltage from Mexican plugs. 

However, if you have a single voltage device that is 220-240V, it cannot be used in Mexico. Plugging it into Mexico power outlets can ruin the device. 

Using the wrong voltage can also cause your device to overheat and not work as efficiently, which can cause short-term or long-term damage. 

If you use a device that is already dual voltage, but you use a converter anyway, you can also harm your devices.

This is why it’s extremely important to know if your electronics are single-voltage or dual-voltage. 

Luckily, most devices you’ll bring on vacation are dual voltage, including phones, computers, cameras, and tablets.

San José del Cabo nightime street views

Always check your specific device, though, before assuming it’s dual voltage. 

Hairdryers and hair straighteners are not usually dual voltage, but some brands are compatible with 110-120V and 220-240V. 

If you’re moving to Mexico and planning to bring appliances, they might not be dual voltage.

Many people that want to bring electronics from home, like coffee makers, streaming devices, or kitchen appliances, find that they don’t work in Mexico because of the voltage difference. 

Sometimes it can be cheaper to buy new devices in Mexico rather than bringing everything when moving from abroad.

You’ll have to pay shipping fees and buy an expensive step-down converter for the voltage differences. 

❓ Do I Need a Voltage Converter in Mexico?

Whether you need a voltage converter depends on the appliances you want to use and where you are traveling from.

The standard voltage in Mexico is 127V with a frequency of 60Hz. 

This is the same voltage as the USA and Canada. So, if you’re coming from another place in North America, you shouldn’t need a voltage converter. 

If you’re coming from another continent, you might need a voltage converter if you own appliances that are not dual voltage.

El Arco de Cabo San Lucas

Many other places in the world use electronics with a voltage of 220V.

If you use a gadget that only works on 127V, your appliance or electronic could overheat and become damaged. 

Luckily, many companies make their electronics dual voltage, so you don’t need a voltage converter. 

Before coming to Mexico, check the items you want to bring and see if they are dual voltage. You should look at the voltage information in the user manual. 

If your devices are not dual voltage, make sure to buy a voltage converter before heading to Mexico. 

🆚 The Difference Between a Voltage Converter and a Travel Adapter

Many people think that voltage converters and travel adapters are the same, but they are actually different. 

Travel adapters allow your devices to fit into the needed outlet by making your current plug compatible with the plugs in Mexico. 

A voltage converter makes the electricity passing through the plug compatible with your device. 

If you have devices that are dual voltage, you will be able to travel to Mexico with only an adapter.

If you check your devices and they are not dual voltage, you will need to bring a converter. 

Guanajuato Street in the historical center

Best Travel Adapter

If you’ve determined you need a travel adapter for Mexico, here are some recommendations on which one to pick up before leaving home.

Adapters can range in price from a few dollars to higher-end ones that are more expensive. 

If you’re a regular traveler, you might want to buy a universal travel adapter rather than only getting one that works in Mexico. 

Universal travel adapters can be used in outlets all over the world so they are a more cost-effective and useful choice for those planning to travel to many different continents. 

The best travel adapters have different ports for charging. In Mexico, you can plug your laptop, phone, and other devices into the same outlet. 

This also makes charging numerous devices super easy if you’re traveling with many people and your accommodation is limited in outlets. 

  • EPICKA Travel Adapter: This is a universal travel adapter with 6 different ports. The prongs are retractable, so you can change which one you’re using based on which country you’re visiting, including Mexico! ► BUY IT AT WALMART
  • Bonazza 2000W: If you need an adapter and a voltage converter, this is a great 2-in-1 option. Just make sure to remember to put it in converter mode before using a hairdryer or other device that is not dual voltage. ► BUY IT AT WALMART
Mazatlan Mexico Colorful old city

Frequently Asked Questions for Mexico Power Outlets

Here are the most asked questions about Mexico power outlets to help you decide whether you need a travel adapter!

🇺🇸 Does Mexico Use US Outlets?

Yes, Mexico uses the same outlets as the US.

These are also the same outlets used in Canada. All of North America uses the Mexico outlet type. 

🇪🇺 Do EU Plugs Work in Mexico?

No, EU plugs are a different shape than the ones in Mexico.

You will need to bring a travel adapter with you so that your EU plugs are compatible with the type A and type B outlets found in Mexico. 

Puerto Vallarta Bay

📱 Can I Plug in My Cell Phone in Mexico?

You will need to buy a Mexico travel plug to charge your cell phone in Mexico. You should also check if your phone is dual voltage or not.

Most cell phones including iPhones and many Androids are dual voltage but always double-check before plugging your phone into outlets in Mexico. 

🔋 Do I Need a Special Adapter to Charge My Phone in Mexico?

You will need a special travel adapter to charge your phone in Mexico if you’re coming from a country other than Canada or the USA.

The adapter will make your current charger compatible with the plugs in Mexico. 

🔌Do I Need an Adapter in Cancun?

When traveling to Cancun, make sure you have a Type A or Type B plug adapter. The type A plug is the most common in Mexico. It has two flat parallel pins. 

They are the same outlets used in the rest of North America. Travelers from Europe, Asia, and other places will need an adapter to use their electronics in Cancun.

San Jose del Cabo beach

♨️ Will My Hairdryer Work in Mexico?

If you’re coming from the USA or Canada with a hairdryer, it will work normally in Mexico without needing a voltage converter. 

If you’re coming from another country outside of  North America, make sure your hairdryer is dual voltage before using it in Mexico. 

Hair dryers are one of the top electronics that can be quickly ruined when used on the wrong voltage.

If you need to use a hairdryer, make sure to buy one that is dual voltage or ask your accommodation if they have hairdryers in the rooms.

♨️ Will My Curling Iron Work in Mexico?

Like other electronics you’re thinking of bringing to Mexico, a curling iron needs to work on 127V to be used in Mexico.

If your curling iron is made only for 220V, you will need to bring a voltage converter. 

scenic view of the sea in Cabo San Lucas

💻 Will My Laptop Charger Work in Mexico?

If your laptop charger was made to be used in the USA or Canada, you would not need an adaptor or voltage converter for your charger.
When coming from other places around the world, you’ll need a travel adapter so your laptop can charge in Mexico. 

Many laptops, including Macs, are dual voltage, so you will not need a voltage converter when charging in Mexico.

Always make sure to check your laptop’s user manual, though, so you know for sure if you need a converter or not. 

Final Thoughts: Mexico Power Outlet

The Mexico power outlet has two flat parallel pins.

If you are coming from a destination outside North America, you will need a travel adapter that can be used in type A and type B plugs. 

Travel adapters can be found cheaply in travel stores and online, so picking one up should be easy.

If you own any devices that are not dual voltage, make sure also to pick up a voltage converter so you can safely use all your gadgets while on your Mexican holiday! 

Before You Go…

Here are some useful posts that you may be interested in…

✨ Mexico Travel Planning Guide ✨

👉 Do I Need Travel Insurance to Travel to Mexico?

I would do it if I were you. You never know what can happen and know that no matter what, you will be covered with any expenses will give you peace of mind, and make your travel worry-free. You can check out SafetyWing which I have used and find it affordable and comprehensive and also Travel Insurance Master which is great because you can insert all your information and what kind of insurance you need and their system will pull out the best insurance for your need.

🚰 Can I Drink Tap Water in Mexico?

No, you can’t! Maybe in some areas or in some homes where they have installed water filters but to be on the safe side, I would say, never drink tap water in Mexico. Carry a water bottle with you and fill it up where you find available potable water sources. Most of the hotels have those.

🚗 Is It Safe to Drive in Mexico?

The short answer is: depending on where you are. Although in general if you stick to the main roads and don’t drive at night you should probably be safe. In lesser tourist areas you should probably check the local news to stay up to date. Driving in the Yucatan Peninsula is easy everywhere, even at night, although I would still avoid it. I recommend Discover Cars because the site offers the option to compare prices among different car rentals and you can add their own full coverage.

Read more on my guide on Renting a car in Mexico.

📱 Will My Phone Work in Mexico?

It will probably work, especially if you have a European or US phone, but your roaming rates may be to the stars (check with your SIM provider). Even if have an affordable international rate, you will be much better off by buying a Mexican SIM Card. It’s cheap, easy to set up, and it will keep you connected with your friends, family, and, more important, google Maps so you will never get lost!

🤕 Is It Safe to Travel to Mexico Right Now?

The short answer is, yes it is. However, there are parts of Mexico that are indeed troubled and you should avoid for now, and others that are super safe and easy to travel around.

Regardless of where you are you should always use some common sense rules such as, never flaunting expensive clothing, accessories, electronics, or money and keeping a low profile.

Read more on my detailed guide on safety in Mexico. If you are traveling to a specific destination I have got you covered as well:

💉 Do I Need Any Vaccine to Travel to Mexico?

No, there is no vaccine requirement (of any kind) to travel to Mexico

🇲🇽 Do I Need a Visa to Travel to Mexico?

If you are coming from the US or Europe you don’t need a VISA to enter Mexico. Once you get in you need to fill out a form that you need to keep with you until you leave. If you don’t have it you will pay a fine.

Although the tourist visa for US and European travelers used to be 6 months long which you could easily renew by leaving the country for a couple of days and going back, nowadays they have been stricter. You may be asked how you would sustain your living and other similar questions. Sometimes they even ask you to show your credit cards.

It seems odd but they can do that. If you intend to stay longer than a usual couple of weeks’ vacation time, just be honest and explain your plans. If you are not from the US, check this site to see if you need a visa

💸 Where Do I Find the Best Travel Deals for Mexico? 💸

A trip to Mexico can be expensive if you love to travel with all the comforts (like I do). There are a few tricks that will help you find the best deals. Here are my tips:

👉 DON’T travel in the high season, which is Holy week, Christmas and winter in general, and August.
👉 Book months in advance to find early booking discounts
👉 Use aggregators such as Discover Cars to find price comparisons and VRBO for vacation rentals!
👉 Look for packages flights+hotels on Expedia.
👉 Check on or for hotel deals

Happy travels!!