10 Weird Bed Types from Around the World

Whether at home or travelling, getting a good night’s sleep is essential to get the most out of the day. Many hotels are pretty serious about the matter, providing signature beds to ensure their guests snooze well during their stay. But a bed in the UK can be very different to a bed in a country as close as Germany. Ahead of World Sleep Day on 18 March, we’ve uncovered some of the weirdest, wackiest and downright strange facts about beds from around the world and gathered expert tips on how to catch some zzz’s away from home.



Three’s not a crowd in the UK
Forget a queen and two singles, triple rooms in the UK come fitted out with three-person beds, along with exotic names such as Eastern King, Emperor or Caesar. Measuring 245cm wide and 220 cm long, these spacious beds allow three guests to have sweet dreams side by side. It’s a great way to save money, if you don’t mind spooning your mates.

Bonne nuit in ‘French’ beds
In Austria, Switzerland, Germany and Greece, a small double bed is known as a “French Bed” – perhaps because the French are known for romance and it forces occupants to snuggle up! Commonly these beds are also smaller than standard-sized double beds, so it can get quite cozy for two people.

Conservative sleeping time
At the conservative end of the bed name spectrum, hotels in Italy and Poland use the moniker “Matrimonial” for double bed types, making the reference to the marital status of a couple. If you want to sleep soundly in this bed, you best put a ring on it.

Everything is bigger in the USA
In the spirit of all things USA, bigger is always better and when it comes to hotel bedding, they stick to this reputation by being home to the biggest beds around. The Grand King Bed is one of the longest double width beds available at 250cm. If you’re  looking for a bed of even grander proportions, request a custom oversized bed which measures an impressive 360cm x 300cm.

Mind the gap
If you’re looking forward to a comfortable stay on a double bed when heading to Germany, Austria or Switzerland should check with their hotel ahead of time, as a ‘double bed’ in these countries often consists of two single beds pushed together. There’s nothing worse than falling between the cracks.

Bed types unlimited
When heading for a stay in the USA or Japan, a vast array of bed options awaits, with a choice of up to 11 bed types, depending on hotel offers and availability.  

Spacious single beds Down Under
Beds in Australia and New Zealand are all about comfort for the solo traveller, with King Singles coming in at a spacious 107cm wide and up to 204cm long.

Compact single beds
Hotels in Britain join those in Norway, Sweden and Ireland in offering the world’s narrowest single beds, measuring at a width of just 75cm.

California Dreaming
In the USA and Canada you can rest up on a curiously named ‘California Bed’, or ’California King Bed’. Why California? The name harks back to the bed’s origins in 1960s LA. These days a ‘California King’ can be found as far afield as Australia and New Zealand.  

No name bed types
Heading further East beds in China are a functional affair. You won’t find any ‘California’s’ or ‘French beds’ here – hotels simply list their beds by width alone.


Professor David Hillman, Chair, Sleep Health Foundation says, “Make the most of your trip away by trying to stick to your regular sleep routine where possible. Drinking tea, coffee or alcohol before bed might help you relax but will make it harder for you to stay asleep,”

Hotel rooms are usually well soundproofed to help you sleep well. Use the “do not disturb sign” to prevent unwanted interruptions and take care with the time you set on your alarm clock for the morning. Earplugs may help if you have a noisy partner.”

A good night’s sleep is at the top of the list for many travellers when choosing a hotel. Whether a holiday is about relaxation or adventure, a rejuvenating sleep is a must. Here at KAYAK.co.uk we like to use our insight to help you plan and manage your trips better, including finding the right bed at your preferred hotel, wherever your trip may take you in the world.


Information displayed is based on desktop research and facts from the following countries: Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, China, Japan, Poland, Russia, Italy, Spain, Germany, France, Switzerland, Austria, UK, Ireland, USA, Portugal, Iceland, Norway, Finland and Sweden. Sizes may vary and fun facts are based on the size of beds only.


Main image credit: ©GlebStock/shutterstock.com