Shopping for a
Bed Buyers’ Guide
Before you go shopping for a new bed, think about what you want from your bed. Here are a few general points to consider:
Type of bed
What sort of style do you prefer? What do you like or dislike about your current bed? Do you prefer a firmer or softer feel?
The price is right
Always shop for the best value not the lowest price. Of course, there are some perfectly acceptable, lower priced beds available (far preferable to an unhygienic second hand bed shaped to someone else’s body), but the better the construction, the better the support and comfort and the longer the bed will last.
With a larger bed you are less likely to disturb your partner. You should be able to lie side by side, with your arms behind your head and your elbows out, without touching. Your bed should also be 4-6in (10-15cm) longer than the tallest partner – anyone over 6ft (1.8m) tall should consider a bed longer than standard.
Many manufacturers make beds up to 7ft square as a matter of course; others will make special sizes. Also consider the bed’s height – many contemporary styles are low, while those with storage drawers may be much higher.
Typical UK Bed Sizes
Metric Size: 75 x 190 cm
Metric Size: 90 x 190 cm
Metric Size: 120 x 190 cm
Metric Size: 135 x 190 cm
Metric Size: 150 x 200 cm
Metric Size: 180 x 200 cm
– Check dimensions
Bed sizes are not standardised and even if they have the same name (e.g. King size) they may not be the same – especially if the mattress and base are not from the same manufacturer. European common sizes are different and many imported bedsteads come in European sizes.
Buy the base and mattress together
At the very least, make sure you try mattresses on a similar type of base. The two are designed to work together and a change of base will affect the feel and performance of the mattress.
It can be a false economy to change only the mattress and keep the original base, especially if you are buying a divan set. The old base could reduce the useful life of the new mattress as well as the support and comfort it can offer. It could also invalidate manufacturers’ warranties or guarantees.
Access All Areas
If you are worried about getting the bed upstairs, remember most divans have split bases; while many bedsteads are actually delivered in pieces for assembly in situ. To avoid problems with delivery, you should tell the retailer about potential access problems (narrow staircases, tight corners etc.) before you buy. Check the retailer’s terms and conditions.
After sales service
Can’t decide between two or three equally suitable products?
Think about the retailer’s service – e.g. quick delivery; guarantee or warranty offered; free disposal of your old bed; special offers; or even just the chemistry between yourself and the salesman.
Watch our video on how to choose the right bed for you
Do you need a new bed?
Buying a bed that’s right for you