Split King vs King: What Is the Difference?

7 min read
7 min read
Split King vs King Mattress Size Comparison Illustration

Imagine finally getting the sleep you deserve. You wake up feeling refreshed, with no sore muscles and no clogged sinuses. Isn’t this a fantastic feeling! The key to this happiness may be as close as a Split King bed. However, a King size bed can do equally good to you and your partner, But how?

In this article, we will unfold the differences between Split King vs King mattresses and help you make a decision that’s worth an investment for the two of you.

Split King vs King Mattress Comparison

There’s not that much difference between Split King vs King mattresses, aka Eastern King beds. Split King and King mattresses are 76″ x 80″, and are about the same size as an average twin XL mattress, with 38 inches on each side. However, the split king mattress is downright split from the middle. Its price range starts from $1000-$1200. Whereas King size mattress ranges between $1100-$1300. Both the beds are ideal for couples as they offer more space and comfort.

Before you choose a bed and a mattress for you and your family, we would suggest you go through the following elements to make an informed decision before investing in one. Below is a comparison chart that would simplify the differences between the two.

Know the Difference

Even though the dimensions are the same, both king vs split king have some unique features to offer. This table will help you with the same.

Parameters
King Mattress
Split King Mattress
Length
76 inches
38 inches
Width
80 inches
80 inches
Surface Area
6080 sq. inches
6080 sq. inches combinedly
Bed Size (Inches)
76″ x 79″
76″ x 79″
Ideal Room size (Feet)
12′ x 12′
12′ x 12′
Best Suited For
Couples with a child or a pet / Adults who like space
Couples with different sleeping preferences / Tall people
Price
$800- $1199
$700- $1299

Though a king size bed is a great option to accommodate family needs, a California king bed is ideal for tall sleepers. The dimension of a standard king size mattress or the adjustable split king mattress is 76 x 80 inches. And the dimension of a California king mattress is 72 x 84 inches, as Cal king beds focus more on accommodating the tall sleepers comfortably.

Many individuals prefer a split California king bed as it gives them the option of extra space while eliminating motion transfer between the two mattresses, allowing both partners a good night’s sleep along with their personal preference of bed firmness. 

If you or your family members are about 7 feet tall, then buying a California king bed or a split California king bed would be the ideal choice. Such a bed with extra length will allow you to comfortably sleep or laze around in the bed while not having the discomfort of your feet dangling out of bed. 


However, the only problem with a California king bed or a split California king bed is that these beds and mattresses are a bit expensive as compared to the standard king size beds. However, you are the best judge of your requirements, so choose wisely and meet your comfort and convenience requirements.

What Is a Split King Bed?

A split king bed comprises two twin XL mattresses stacked in a single bed frame. In other words, it is a king size mattress that has been split longitudinally into two halves. The dimensions of a king mattress are 76 x 80 inches which are also the same in the case of two split king mattresses put together. So this means that a split king bed is the same size as that of a king size bed. 

The primary difference between king vs split king beds is that a split bed allows the sleeping partners to prioritize their sleep health while still sharing the bed. One partner may opt for a different elevation by tilting the adjustable bed frame and control their personal sleep setup.

Split King Bed: Pros and Cons

Let us discuss the benefits of a split king bed along with its drawbacks to help you make an informed decision while buying a mattress for your home. 

Split King Bed Pros

  • It offers a lot of space 
  • Ideal for couples with different sleeping preferences
  • You can have different bed firmness
  • Motion transfer is almost negligible
  • Convenient to move around two smaller (XL size – 38×80 inches) mattresses 

Split King Bed Cons

  • Not ideal for couples sleeping with children or pets
  • More expensive than a standard king mattress
  • Need separate bed sheets and covers
  • The visible line between the split mattress are aesthetically not so appealing
  • The split line offers discomfort to either partner if they roll over to the middle

What Is a King Bed?

A king bed, also known as eastern king bed, has a mattress size of 76×80 inches and is ideal for rooms with 12×12 feet dimensions. These are among the largest beds and are ideal for couples sharing their bed or cuddle with their children or pets. 

Buying a bed is a long-term investment, so you must know the features, comfort, and other specifications of a mattress before buying one. 

Many individuals find it confusing to choose between a king and split king bed. However, a thorough understanding of the difference between a split king vs king will help them make the right choice.  

King Bed: Pros and Cons

Let us discuss the benefits and drawbacks of a king bed to help you understand the difference in their specifications and also help you to choose the right bed and mattress for yourself. 

King Bed Pros

  • Largest standard size bed
  • Ideal for couples who love more personal space
  • Can accommodate children and pets 
  • Can use it on single and adjustable bed frames

King Bed Cons

  • Difficult to move the mattress due to its size and weight
  • Not a good choice for rooms smaller than 12 x12 feet as the bed will take up a lot of space
  • Expensive compared to smaller variants

Factors to Consider While Deciding Between a Split King vs King?

Before buying a mattress, one must question themselves and ensure if the mattress of their choice lives upto these certain and unmissable factors. Here are some of them for you consider. Have a look: 

  • Room Dimensions

Split King vs King Room Layout Comparison Illustration

As much as a bed can add beauty and comfort to a bedroom, it can go wrong for you if the room size is not measured well. Therefore, room dimensions play a crucial role in mattress picking. A standard King Size and Split King size mattress, needs a minimum room space of 12 x 12 ft. Therefore, one must ensure that the room has a 3 ft open area from all the three sides of the bed. It is necessary to have that extra space to roam around in your room and add furniture if need be.

  • Cost

When it comes to the cost of Spilt King and King mattresses, the difference is barely there. Given that both the beds are alike only with a distinction of separation in Split King that is downright divided, one ought to choose from the features and the specification of these two. Elsewise, pricing shouldn’t be an aspect to consider regarding the Split king and King size beds. 

  • Height

Provided that both the mattresses are the same, be it a taller or a medium heightened person, both the beds offer their users the best of themselves. Taller people can have a sleeping retreat on the split king and king-size beds because of their size. In contrast, couples with a baby or a pet can even sleep comfortably without feeling cramped length or width-wise. Especially, duos with different sleeping needs will love Split King.

  • Room Partner

If you and your partner share the bed, then it’s necessary to have a mattress that caters to the need of both individuals. This is exactly where Split King, unlike the traditional King mattress, takes the cake. Split king, because the split downright adjusts according to the sleeping preferences of different sleeping partners without having to switch the bed or the room.

Is Split King Better Than King?

Many individuals wonder if a split king is better than a standard eastern king bed. We would suggest they understand and analyze the difference between a king and a split king before investing. As we have discussed already that a king size mattress is the same size as that of a split king mattress, the differences are mainly on finer points. 

If your priority is to have a large bed in a spacious bedroom, then you can opt for either a king mattress or a split king mattress. However, if your sleeping partner prefers a different level of bed firmness and other personal preference while sleeping or relaxing, then buying a split king mattress would be a good decision.

A split king measures 76 by 80 inches in width and length, respectively. On the other hand, a California king measures 72 by 84 inches, and hence, a split king bed has 4 inches of extra width and 4 inches of lesser length than a California king bed.

A split California king mattress measures the same as a California mattress, i.e. 72 inches in width and 84 inches in length. However, it is split from the middle into two to offer more motion control and customization for sleepers

Unlike a regular king size mattress, split king mattresses require two separate sheets. You would also need a single big sheet for the top, and this might come out as more expensive than a regular bed sheet.

Yes, two twin XLs make a king as the length of a twin XL is the same as that of a king, but it is half in width compared to a king.

You can use a bed bridge or foam to fill the space between two split king mattresses and keep them together.

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Meet Our Review Board

Each week our team researches, writes and collaborates with industry leaders to bring you simple easy-to-read sleep information.

David Bridge

Sleep Coach

Siddhesh Tiwatne

Sleep Coach

Authored by health experts and journalists

Fact checked and science-backed

Medically reviewed by physicians

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Meet Our Review Board

Each week our team researches, writes and collaborates with industry leaders to bring you simple easy-to-read sleep information.

David Bridge

Sleep Coach

Siddhesh Tiwatne

Sleep Coach

Authored by health experts and journalists

Fact checked and science-backed

Medically reviewed by physicians

Meet Our Review Board

Each week our team researches, writes and collaborates with industry leaders to bring you simple easy-to-read sleep information.

David Bridge

Sleep Coach

Siddhesh Tiwatne

Sleep Coach

Authored by health experts and journalists

Fact checked and science-backed

Medically reviewed by physicians