I am not a computer electronics expert, but I have been a traveling road warrior for 13 years.
The computer bricks also contain circuitry for charging the battery and nominal surge protection. I once forgot my adapter and had to buy a Belkin universal adapter that is even bigger than my OEM one. So, IMO, the adapters are not universal but are designed for each manufacturer's computer. I would use the one that came with your computer.
Also, my comment on nominal surge protection, means that the surge protection for such things as lightning strikes should be accomplished by the building's own infrastructure... which probably is not going to happen in a lot of places.
So I would keep the OEM adapter, and probably purchase some sort of surge protection. I would not leave the computer plugged in unattended while traveling abroad. And I definitely would not use it in a thunderstorm.
With most laptops, it is best to let the battery discharge frequently, and then charge it up. My company has had a lot of premature battery failures, even with the new technology batteries. Dell recommends a discharge/recharge routine, and not constantly using the AC adapter.
Just in case, I would plan on some sort of backup of data while traveling. It could be an online service or hardware.