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UK Nintendo Switch VS US Switch (What’s The Difference?)

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Have you ever wondered what would happen if you purchased a Nintendo Switch and tried to use it outside the United States? Maybe you heard that because it is portable you can use it in any country.

Well, in this article we will go over everything you need to know about a UK Switch working in the USA and a US Switch working in the UK.

So will a Nintendo Switch from the US work in the UK and vice versa?

A UK Switch will work in the US and a US Switch will work in the UK. The only difference in a Nintendo Switch that is purchased in either of those countries is the power cord.

Because the Nintendo Switch is not a region-locked console, it will work in any place no matter where you purchase the device. This would be the same if you purchased the device from China, and wanted to use it here in the United States. 

All Nintendo Switches are region-free which means that all Switch games from all regions of the world will work and play just fine on a Switch from any other part of the world. The only difference between a Switch purchased in the UK and one purchased in America is the power cord that plugs into the wall will be slightly different (since the UK has different power outlets than the US does).

If you want to know more about the Switch not being region locked and how it works, you will want to keep reading. You can also check out the video below to learn more about the Switch not being region locked. 

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Will a Nintendo Switch From The US Work In The UK?

Maybe you are vacationing or taking a trip in the US, and you have purchased the Nintendo Switch in that region, and you may worry that it may not work if you return to the UK.

Thankfully, the Nintendo Switch is considered region-free. In other words, you can play the Nintendo Switch regardless of the region of the world where you purchased it at.

Gamers rejoice! However, there are some minor details that you should know. These will help you in understanding a few aspects so that you can make a well-informed decision.

Differences Between a UK Switch and US Switch

As I mentioned above the only major difference between a UK Switch and a US Switch is the power cord. The Switch console itself will be identical but the electrical cord will be slightly different. Let’s take a deeper look at that as well as one other important difference to keep in mind.

Different Power Adapters

The chargers or the adapters for the Nintendo Switch may vary depending on the region it is sold in. This is mostly due to the fact that voltage requirements in wall outlets may be different in a different country.

For instance, many fellow Nintendo Switch users have reported that the voltages in their homes can average 220V in the UK. At the same time, it is 120V in the US. That is why the power adapter will be different depending on where you purchase your Switch at.

There are a couple of different solutions that you can try if you are only traveling overseas for a trip. I will cover those below.

Purchase a power adapter for your Switch.

The first solution that you can use is to buy an adapter that suits the country where you want to charge your Switch. The adapter will then be attached to the outlet and convert the voltage to the normal voltage of your Switch charger cord.

This is a simple and effective resolution to your problem as you can easily find an extensive catalog of adapters online. Try searching on the Nintendo online store, Amazon, Walmart, and Gamestop, and select the one that suits your needs.

Use a power bank

A power bank is a device that you charge with an outlet and which can later be used to give a charge to a different device. This is another simple tactic that you can use to avoid damaging your Switch because of the difference in voltages.

You can purchase a power bank that has a plug for the country that you are visiting and then use that power bank to charge your Switch console.

A power bank is an easily available device that is sold online via popular websites, such as Walmart, Amazon, and eBay. Simply, charge the power bank fully then use it to charge your Nintendo Switch.

Having a power bank is helpful if you are on the go quite a bit but otherwise, you will normally be better off just buying a power adapter.

Switch Region Warranties

Since the Nintendo Switch is a relatively expensive device, if any unfortunate events occur and it is damaged, you would like to be able to repair the device. A warranty is a guarantee to consumers that the manufacturer, Nintendo, will repair or even replace the device within a particular time period after the original purchase.

One other difference between a UK Switch and a US one is where the warranty is valid at. For example, your UK Switch might only have warranty coverage in the UK or that region of the world. So if you have an issue with your Switch while you are in the USA they might deny your warranty claim.

Nintendo has stated that your limited warranty is only applicable in the country where the Switch console was sold by retailers.

So if you purchase a Switch in the UK and then take it to the USA or vice versa you might have issues trying to get your console fixed under warranty. However, this should rarely be an issue.

The Switch console is built to be incredibly durable and although sometimes a Switch console will be defective it is rare. So as long as you use the Switch for a while in the country where you purchased it to make sure that it works properly you likely won’t ever have to use the Switch warranty anyway.

Are Nintendo Switch Games also region-free?

So you know that the Switch console is region-free and a Switch from the US will work anywhere else in the world just like a Switch from anywhere in the world will work in the USA. But what about Switch games?

Are the Nintendo Switch’s games region-free?

All the Nintendo Switch games are region-free, meaning that they can be played anywhere without any issues. However, you should note that if you are purchasing the DLC, it has to fit the region of the game.

So if you purchase Switch games in the USA they will work just fine on a UK Switch. The same is true for UK Switch games that you want to play on your USA Switch. They will all work just fine.

An issue that can arise when purchasing games from another region of the world however is the language of the game might not be able to change. Most first-party Switch games (such as Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, Animal Crossing: New Horizons, Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Super Mario Odyssey, etc.) will have multiple language options that you can choose from.

However, not all third-party games will have multiple language options.

Now purchasing Switch games in the UK and playing them in the US won’t cause any language issues but if you purchase Japanese Switch games and they don’t have English as an option you might miss out on a lot of dialog from the game.

So before buying any Switch games from another country where you don’t live or speak the language, be sure that the Switch game you are purchasing has a language option for the language that you speak.

Can You Access The Nintendo eShop From Another Region?

If you purchase a Switch from one region of the world will you be able to change the region when you go back to your home country? What about if you just want to change eShop regions so you can purchase games from another country?

Can you change your Switch’s eShop region?

You can change the eShop region on your Switch by simply going to the Account Settings and changing your location. So if you moved or simply want to buy a game from another part of the world you can easily do that.

If you are looking to purchase an item or game from the Nintendo eShop, your eShop country is determined by the country you have set in your Account Settings. Therefore, if you have moved and relocated and want to access the Nintendo eShop for that new country, simply, go into your Account Settings and change your location.

I should mention that your country of residence doesn’t matter when it comes to your Nintendo eShop country. You can live in the USA and have a Nintendo account country of Japan if you find yourself wanting to purchase games from that eShop or they seem to always have the best prices for games.

Doing that is not against Nintendo’s terms and you aren’t breaking any rules.

One thing that you should keep in mind when changing the region of your Switch’s eShop is that your eShop balance will not be carried over if you make this change. So if you have a Nintendo eShop card you will want to use that before you change to a new region on your Nintendo Switch, Nintendo Switch Lite, or Nintendo Switch OLED.

You should also know that when you change the region of your Switch console for the Nintendo store it will also change it for Nintendo Switch Online. That means your online multiplayer will be against people in that region.

Although that might not be a big deal to you, if you enjoy playing Splatoon 2 with your friends you might not be able to if you change the region on your Nintendo account settings.

Can You Use Switch Accessories That Were Purchased Overseas?

If you purchase accessories (such as Joy-Cons) for your Switch in another region of the world will those accessories still work when you travel back to your home country? Are Switch accessories region-free as well?

All Switch accessories are region-free so you can feel free to purchase them anywhere in the world and they will work just fine with your Switch. However, if those Switch accessories have power cords you will have to purchase an adapter or different cords to use them in another region of the world.

Say, for example, you purchase a Nintendo Switch Pro controller in Japan. Although it will work perfectly fine with your US Switch the power cord for that Switch Pro controller will be designed to work with the power outlets in Japan.

So to be able to charge that Switch Pro controller when you travel back to the USA you would need to either purchase a power adapter or purchase a new power cord entirely.

As with a Switch that is purchased in another country you also will have issues trying to use your warranty on Switch accessories that you purchase overseas once you travel back to the USA (or whatever country that you live in).

Again, the Switch accessories are designed to be incredibly durable so you likely won’t need to use the warranty but you should be aware that trying to use it in a different region than where you purchased the accessories could be difficult if not impossible.

When purchasing overseas Switch accessories you will want to watch out for third-party accessories. The use of unlicensed accessories on your Switch could damage it and if that happens you not only won’t get a refund for the accessories but will be out of luck trying to get a refund for your game cards, Joy-Con controllers, or anything else that was damaged.

Although retailer prices can be cheaper in some places overseas just make sure that you are buying original Nintendo Switch accessories and not knock-offs that could damage your console. If the prices are too good to be true… they probably are.

Will My Nintendo Switch Work Overseas?

If you are from the USA and you travel a lot you might be wondering if your Nintendo Switch will continue to work when you are overseas or not. Is there anything that will limit it or cause it not to work in another part of the world?

All Switch models (including the new OLED model) will work in any region of the world. If you move from one country to another you can easily change the region in your eShop to your new location.

The only thing that you will have to watch out for when taking your Switch overseas is the power outlets. Most countries will have different power outlet types so you will likely have to get a power adapter for your Switch so you can charge it in whatever country that you are visiting.

That is not just an issue with the Nintendo Switch however as you will have to buy or borrow power adapters for any electronics that you intend to plug in when you are overseas.


Nintendo is one of the largest producers of video games and consoles worldwide. Founded in 1889 by Fusajiro Yamauchi in Kyoto, Japan, Nintendo had its beginning in playing card manufacturing. After the realization that the trading card business may be a little limited in growth, Nintendo later branched out into other domains of gaming such as the home use console called the “TV Game 15” and “TV Game 6”.

With this head start, Nintendo was able to gain a start in the video game industry with the manufacturing of consoles and the development of a vast host of memorable video games. On March 17, 2015, Nintendo announced the latest member of their video game console lineup, the Nintendo Switch.

The Nintendo Switch gained notoriety due to it being a hybrid console, that is, it features both a handheld and home console. This feature has been proven to be innovative, as the console later sold about 18 million copies worldwide in its year of release.


The Nintendo Switch Console has swept the market and has appealed to many gamers and enthusiasts due to its myriad features and capabilities. However, due to the constant movement of people, many players can have purchased the console in one country and then play it in a different region.

This then begs the question, will a Nintendo Switch from the US work in the UK?

Thankfully, the answer is yes, in addition to the games and accessories being practically region-free as well. However, it is important to be aware of the possibility of voided warranties and damage to your console due to differences in voltages.

Despite this, there are a few solutions that you can use to solve these minor issues so that you can sit back and enjoy your favorite games.