The Escapology Guide To UK Bed & Mattress Sizes

The Escapology Guide To UK Bed & Mattress Sizes

What Size Bed Should You Choose?

Is deciding on the what size bed you need vexing you? If so, our guide is here to help.

Pug lying on bed with owner

Pay Attention To The Length Of Bed

Buy a bed that is at least 10cm longer than the tallest person that will be using it. Dangling over the end of the mattress or having to curl your legs up isn't conducive to a good nights' sleep.

The length of a standard UK double bed is 190cm (6ft 3"), so anyone taller than 5ft 11" (180cm) should really opt for a king-size bed. King size beds are 200cm (6ft 6") in length. In the UK a king-size bed measures 200cm in length so does a super king, so either of these options would be a better choice than a double bed.

If you are a particularly tall person, some bed manufacturers make products that are 215cm (7ft 0") in length, but you may need to hunt around to find one.

Sometimes The Secret To Couples Getting A Great Night's Sleep Is The Width Of Bed

The majority of British couples still sleep in a standard double size bed which is only 135cm (4ft 6") wide. This provides just 67.5cm (or about 2ft 3") of space for each of you. That is less than we give a baby in a cot! With so little room to move, you are more likely to disturb your partner every time you change position, resulting in a miserable night's sleep.

Two people sharing a small double (120cm or 4ft wide) bed, isn't a great way to sleep. It is okay as an occasional bed for two people, but not for every night.

UK Bed Sizes (Imperial & Metric)

Small Single Bed Size  2’6″ x 6’3″ 75 x 190 cm

Single Bed Size 3′ x 6’3″ 90 x 190 cm

Small Double Bed Size 4′ x 6’3″ 120 x 190 cm

Double Bed Size 4’6″ x 6’3″ 135 x 190 cm

Kingsize Bed Size 5′ x 6’6″ 150 x 200 cm

Super King Bed Size 6′ x 6′6" 180 x 200 cm

Some furniture retailers, such as IKEA, sell European bed sizes that are 200cm (6'6") in length across all sizes.

With partner disturbance being a significant cause of poor sleep, buying a bigger bed is the best way to help ensure a better night's sleep.

Bed Size Frequently Asked Questions

What size is a double bed?

A UK standard double bed is 135cm wide and 190cm long. That's 4 feet 6 inches wide and 6 feet 3 inches long. It is still the most common size for a bed in the UK. They’re okay for two people, especially when bedroom space is at a premium, but ago for a king-size if you can.

What size is a king-size bed?

A UK standard king size bed is 150cm wide and 200cm long. This is 5 feet wide and 6 feet 6 inches long. King size beds are longer than doubles, making them perfect for taller people who need longer legroom.

What size is a super king bed?

A UK standard super king bed is 180cm wide and 200cm long. That's 6 feet wide and 6 feet 6 inches long. A super king bed is an ideal size if you want more sleeping space.

UK Bed Size Infographic : How UK Bed Sizes Compare

UK Bed Size Infographic

A Quick Test To Check For The Perfect Size When Buying A Bed

When trying out a bed for size, lie next to your partner on your backs and put your hands behind your head with your elbows sticking out. If your elbows don't touch your partners', then you have enough space to sleep comfortably.

Eight Reasons Why A Bigger Bed Is Better:

  1. A standard double bed (135cm/4ft 6in) only gives each person just 2ft 3in of space – less than a baby in a cot.
  2. Ergonomic studies show that couples sleep better in a bigger bed. Before the trials, only 15% said they would buy a larger than standard bed. Afterwards, 50% said they would. (Ergonomic pilot study by the National Bed Federation, 1995.)
  3. You spend a third of your life in bed! By the time we are 50, we'll each have spent some 16 years in bed.
  4. It doesn't cost a significant amount more to move up in size. 
  5. It's common in other countries to sleep in a bigger average bed size than in Britain. Top of the league is Belgium, Greece, Holland, Iceland, Finland and Switzerland where most people sleep in a 160cm by 200cm bed. By comparison, we Brits still buy more 135cm by 190cm beds.
  6. Although two-thirds of us still opt for the standard size, more extensive beds are becoming ever more popular. 33% of double divan and bedstead sales are now 5ft (king-size) or larger. (GfK NOP Consumer Scope Beds and Mattresses Market Monitor, December 2010).
  7. The average person wriggles and turns some 60 to 70 times a night – so you want to put as much space between you and your partner as possible to reduce disturbance.
  8. Once you have slept in a king-size, you will never want to sleep in a smaller bed again!