What is the difference between a US and UK king size mattress?

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In the UK, you walk on the pavement, in the US, it’s a sidewalk. You’ll throw your mattress packaging in the garbage in the US, and in the rubbish in the UK. And if you’re buying a mattress, the king you order in the US might turn out to be a super king in the UK – wait, what?

US king size and UK king size are different mattress sizes with the same name, and the US king is longer and wider than the UK king. To make matters even more complex, the UK king is closer in size to the US queen (which is different again from the seldom-seen UK queen size). Confusing, right? We’ve put together this guide to help you understand exactly what’s going on when you order one of the best king size mattresses.

No matter where in the world you call home, everyone wants a comfortable bed to fall asleep in. Our best mattress and best pillow guides can help you find the perfect sleep setup for you.

US sizes tend to be a bit larger than their closest UK equivalent, and the difference between a US king and a UK king is significant. If you’re ordering a bed from an international brand, make sure to check the actual dimensions – don’t just pick a size based on name, or you might find your mattress is hanging off the frame.

King size mattresses are among the bigger sizes in both the US and UK sizing range. So, who should buy a king size mattress? They’re great for couples, particularly those who like their own space in bed (and don’t want to consider a sleep divorce).

They’re also good for families with kids who sometimes like to snuggle up with their parents. Although, if you’re in the UK, you might prefer to go for the super king, while US families should be comfortable enough with the king (sorry, it got confusing again).

If you’re not sure what size you want, make sure to look for a bed with a good mattress trial. A mattress trial is a risk free period to test the bed and decide whether it works for you. This also gives you an opportunity to see if the size is right (and send it back if it isn’t).

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