Two-prong power plugs in Switzerland?

Old Jan 20th, 2007, 11:35 PM
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Two-prong power plugs in Switzerland?

According to Wikipedia, they use the "C" type plug, also used in Spain, Italy, France.

But they also show a 3 prong plug with the third (probably ground) plug close to the other two.

So what have people found at various hotels? Is there some regional variation?
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Old Jan 21st, 2007, 12:42 AM
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I have found that hotels vary, play safe and buy an international tavel adapter and carry it with you, mine stays in my camera bag, or wait until you arrive and buy it in Switzerland. I wouldn't say that there are regional variations. Also remember Wikipedia can be incorrect. Hope this helps
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Old Jan 21st, 2007, 02:08 AM
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The Swiss plugs I saw were three round prongs in a triangular pettern. You can buy adapter plugs for European to Swiss in local stores.
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Old Jan 21st, 2007, 03:19 AM
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You need the two-prong round pin "Continental plug" adaptor which will fit into any three-prong receptacle. You could also buy a three prong adaptor which wouldn't really be grounding anything if used with a two-blade North American plug.
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Old Jan 21st, 2007, 04:53 AM
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Three prongs in a triangle arrangement? In Switzerland? Really? Is that new?
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Old Jan 21st, 2007, 04:59 AM
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Yes, any 3 prong adapter for Switzerland will have the 3 prongs in a triangle arrangement.

I don't think I've ever seen any 3 prong adapter anywhere in the world where the prongs did NOT form a triangle.
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Old Jan 21st, 2007, 06:01 AM
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Huh? I have a couple of adapters and have used them often in France or italy, where there are three round prongs in a straight line. They are quite common, so you must not be looking, ipod_robbie.

Usually a two prong plug will work, but some (apparently newer) outlets have a third hole as well -- a ground. Even in those, normally the two prong plug will work in them (just like in the US, using a two prong plug in a three prong outlet), but I think every adapter kit these days will include a three prongs in a straight line adapter, as those are particularly common in Italy.

In my international kit of five or six adapters, the only thing I have in a triangle pattern is the big one for the UK. I've used the two prong straight lined one many times in Switzerland.

Meanwhile, I know there is a plug that has three pins with the center one (a ground) slightly offset (but I wouldn't really call that a triangle -- maybe you do?), but I'm pretty sure the two prong plug worked fine in those outlets. No?
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Old Jan 21st, 2007, 06:04 AM
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Hmm. Should have googled first. I just found this googling "European electrical plugs":

"Newer facilities in Switzerland have another kind of plug. This one has three round prongs in a triangular pattern. You can buy adapters in Switzerland to convert the standard European safety plug to the Swiss outlet. The adapters are expensive."

Guess I haven't stayed in any "newer" facilities in Switzerland!
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Old Jan 30th, 2007, 10:42 AM
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OK the first couple of hotels I've stayed in, I've not had too many problems using the two-prong plugs.

They are both using the triangular design. In a couple of the cases, the prong holes are recessed and the recess is shaped like a flat hexagon.

In those cases, my plug adapter has a squarish plastic housing which won't fit in the hex.

Fortunately, not all plugs have this weird recessed shape.
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Old Jan 30th, 2007, 01:03 PM
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Just walked around my house and looked at all my plugs. The sockets are all three pronged. Appliance plugs are three or two pronged. The CD player is two pronged but the coffee machine is three. Obviously, both work.

I can imagine those appliances that require more electricity need three prongs but it's just a guess. I'd ask my husband but he'll make a snide remark about my posting on a forum to strange people.
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Old Jan 30th, 2007, 01:30 PM
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The third prong is a ground. We have the same thing in the US. Many small appliances have three prong plugs, but if your appliance only has two prongs it will still work in a three prong (grounded) outlet.
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Old Jan 30th, 2007, 01:40 PM
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We use the C type plug here. The two round pin plugs for normal things and then there's the three-prong round pin in the triangle shape. When I moved here, I was able to get Dell to send me a "Swiss plug" so I didn't have to get an adaptor for the laptop- this saves me from knocking the power out in my house. It was $12USD. (I know you didn't ask about laptops, but I figured I would throw that in just in case- I thought the new plug would cost $50, I was pleasantly surprised. As far as I know, there should be no regional (Swiss) difference.
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