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The electrical current in Italy is 220 volts, 50 cycles alternating current (AC); wall outlets take Continental-type plugs, with two or three round prongs.
Consider the purchase of a universal adapter, which has several types of plugs in one lightweight, compact unit, available at travel specialty stores and online. You can pick up plug adapters in Italy in any electric supply store for about €2 each. You'll likely not need a converter, however: most portable devices are dual voltage (i.e., they operate equally well on 110 and 220 volts), so require only an adapter; just check label specifications and manufacturer instructions to be sure. Don't use 110-volt outlets marked "for shavers only" for high-wattage appliances such as hair dryers.
Steve Kropla's Help for World Travelers has information on electrical and telephone plugs around the world. www.kropla.com.
Walkabout Travel Gear has a good coverage of electricity under "adapters." www.walkabouttravelgear.com.
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