California King Beds vs. King Beds

California King Beds vs. King Beds

King bed in bedroom
The biggest difference between a king size bed and a California king bed is that one bed is shorter and wider, while the other is longer and narrower. A king size bed is 76 inches wide and 80 inches long. A California king is just a few inches narrower than a king bed at 72 inches wide, but it’s longer at 84 inches. Let us walk you through the pros and cons of each mattress size and get thinking about what to consider before you make your final purchase.
King bed in bedroom

Comparing California King Beds to King Beds

 

Comparison of King and California King measurements

Size Comparisons and Dimensions

A California king bed is 72 inches wide by 84 inches long, making it 4 inches longer than a king-size bed and the longest bed available. The allowable width per person is 36 inches.

King beds measure 76 inches wide by 80 inches long, or 4 inches wider than a California king bed. Look for sheets labeled “king” to fit this size bed.

Bed Size Mattress Dimensions (Inches) Mattress Dimensions (Centimeters)
California King Beds 72 in x 84 in 183 cm x 213 cm
King Beds 76 in x 80 in 193 cm x 203 cm

King size bed in bedroom

Lifestyle

Maybe you’re looking for a bigger bed because you and your partner want more sleeping space. Or perhaps you have kids who end up snuggling in bed next to you on those sleepy Sunday mornings. Or maybe your pet has mattress privileges and your current bed just isn’t going to cut it anymore. Whatever the reason, getting a king bed is the best route for gaining extra sleeping space. The 72-inch to 76-inch width, depending on which you choose, gives each person a section of bed that is roughly the same size as a twin bed.


California king size bed in bedroom

Available Bedroom Space

Grab that measuring tape and take the time to get the dimensions of your room. You’ll want to leave enough space to comfortably walk around the bed, so consider making an outline of the bed with painter’s tape so you can visualize the actual size. Don’t forget to measure out the hallways, doors, and stairs to make sure you can move the mattress of your choice into your home.


Contemporary style king size bed

Cost

Typically there isn’t much of a price difference between a California king and a king mattress. However, when you are upgrading your mattress size, be mindful that you will need to purchase new sheets, along with a comforter, bed frame, and headboard.


Colonial style king size bed

Body Type

If you are going to invest in a new bed, make sure you buy a mattress that fits your body type. If you or your partner is taller than 6 feet, you may prefer the extra 4 inches of length that come with the California king. But if you like to spread out when you sleep, you may prefer that wide open space found in a king-size bed. Either way, it’s all about getting the good night’s rest you deserve.


Now that you know the different benefits and drawbacks of these two bed sizes, you can choose the perfect one for you. If you still haven’t found the size you’re looking for, hop over to our Bed Size Fact Sheet to learn about all the other sizes.