Phone batteries have only grown in size over the years. And, charging speed has also gone up to accommodate that change. Nowadays, mobile phones support up to 120W of fast charging. In our opinion, a more reasonable charging standard is 30W, typically found in newer iPhones. This begs the question, do faster-charging phone chargers work in the USA?
Fast-charging phone chargers work in the USA for all mobile phones if you use an adapter with a US plug when traveling from the EU. This is because an adapter ensures you are inherently getting the same amount of voltage and current from the outlet, which is needed for fast charging.
This article will cover exactly how fast charging works when traveling, whether it is worth it, and if it affects your battery in the long run.
Fast Charging: What Exactly Is It?
Chargers have increased their overall power output as phone batteries have gotten bigger. This allows your charger to charge your newer phone’s larger battery much quicker than an ordinary charger. If your phone supports it, you can go up to 30-120W compared to older chargers that clocked out at 5-10W.
In essence, you can expect your phone to go from about 0-80% in 15-35 minutes, depending on the wattage supported. This is achieved with the help of fast chargers. These chargers do not operate in a different way compared to conventional chargers. Their only difference is that they can support a higher power output.
Contrary to popular belief, you won’t be harming your phone by plugging a fast charger in, even if your phone doesn’t support fast charging. Your phone is smart enough to take in only the amount of power it can handle. So, if you have an older iPhone with a newer, fast-charging capable one – one charger will do for both.
To help put things in perspective, here’s a quick table that helps you identify the difference in charging speeds depending on your wattage.
Note: We’re using an iPhone 14 for this experiment which supports a maximum of 30W fast charging. Some Android phones support much faster charging.
|5W Charging||4 Hours|
|20W Charging||3 Hours|
|30W Charging (Fast Charger)||2 Hours|
Does Fast Charging Work When Traveling Using An Adapter?
Yes, fast charging works when traveling when you use an adapter. An adapter does not affect your charging speed. It merely acts as an intermediate between the metal plugs found within the outlet compared to your charger.
So, while an EU plug and a US plug may appear different, they transfer the same electricity. An adapter merely has an inlet and an outlet that adheres to the difference in shape and lets you plug in your charger, amongst other appliances freely. So, as soon as an adapter is plugged in, your foreign charger will behave exactly the same way it did back home.
Does Wireless Fast Charging Work When Traveling Using An Adapter?
Yes, wireless fast charging also works when using an adapter. This is because an adapter merely acts as a medium to transfer current from your charger to the inlet while adhering to the difference in structure between a US and UK plug.
Other than that, they’re bound to operate in the same manner.
In fact, we recommend using wireless chargers when traveling instead of wired ones. This is because you can’t always be sure of what kind of voltage fluctuations a hotel or your temporary place of residence may have.
In these cases, plugging your phone in wired can prove to be dangerous. While yes, you’ll most likely fry your charger instead of harming your phone, an extreme voltage fluctuation might end up damaging your device.
Check out this YouTube video for further information.
With a wireless charger, though, there’s no physical transfer of current between your phone and the charger. It is all done through electromagnetic induction.
So, while the overall charging speed is about 30-50% slower, depending on your device, it is also much safer.
The only factor you need to take into account is ensuring that your device doesn’t get too heated up when wireless charging, as this method of juicing up your mobile phone is more inefficient.
Is Fast Charging Beneficial When Traveling?
Yes, wireless charging is extremely beneficial when traveling. This is because you’ll have the liberty to plug in your device for a few minutes and get enough juice to last you through an entire day of traveling.
Battery anxiety when traveling is a very real thing, especially if you are traveling to remote areas where you may not always have an electrical connection in handy.
Plus, even if you do – you might be heading to an area where the electric supply isn’t all that stable and may be bound to fluctuations.
In these cases, we recommend fast charging your device in your hotel (where you know the supply is stable) and avoiding unstable outlets altogether as they can harm your device/charger.
Moreover, we recommend investing in a fast charging supported power bank. This is because it helps you juice your device up quickly on the fly and lets you charge an entire set of mobile phones or devices much more quickly than a conventional power bank.
Bonus Tip: If you do not have multiple fast chargers with you but need to charge multiple devices, you can plug your fast charger into your power bank and then use it as an intermediate to charge multiple devices. It also is a safer way to charge since your power bank will be harmed first if there are any voltage fluctuations rather than your expensive devices.
A fast charger is an essential purchase when traveling.
Thankfully, you don’t need to worry much about its usage given that you also have an appropriate adapter depending on the country or region you are traveling to.
We’ve been using them ourselves on every trip, and they’ve been an absolute lifesaver especially when we need to charge on a whim.