Bunk Bed Vs. Trundle Bed – Which You Should Choose

Both bunk beds and trundle beds are great space-saving pieces of furniture that can transform the usable areas in a room and create additional sleeping options.

The main difference between a bunk bed and a trundle bed is the number of sleeping spaces. Bunk beds have two or more beds stacked on top of each other, making them an excellent option for families with multiple children or for hosting guests. On the other hand, trundle beds have a hidden pull-out bed underneath the main bed, making them ideal for smaller rooms or for those who need an extra bed occasionally

If you’re debating between getting a bunk bed or a trundle bed, consider how the pros and cons of each type of bed would affect your family in order to decide which would work best in your home.

Bunk Beds

Bunk Beds

A bunk bed consists of two beds stacked on top of each other to make one solid piece of furniture, and as a result, are a great space-saving solution for families who lack space because they provide two sleeping spaces while only taking up the same amount of floor space as one twin bed.

Bunk beds are a popular choice among young families for this very reason, and they offer a wide range of benefits you may not have considered. However, bunk beds aren’t for everyone and they do also come with a few drawbacks.


More Usable Floor Space

The main reason most people turn to bunk beds is they help free up floor space in a bedroom. If you have twin beds in your children’s bedroom you’ll be amazed at how much bigger the room feels when you change them out for bunk beds. Not only does the room feel larger, but bunk beds use half the floor space of twin beds so there’s more usable floor space available.

You could leave the floor space clear as an area where children can sit and play, or you could utilize some extra storage furniture to help keep toys tidied away.


If you need new beds for two children, then buying a bunk bed will typically cost less than buying two twin beds, so it can be a good way to save a few dollars. If you’re on a strict budget, there is also a wide selection of low-cost bunk beds available.

Additional Storage Options

Many types of bunk beds will come with storage options, such as drawers underneath the lower bed or at the end next to the ladder. Choosing a bunk bed with additional storage is another great way to free up space in the bedroom as it will minimize the amount of other storage furniture you need.

Can Disassemble

One of the best things about bunk beds is their longevity. Once your children have outgrown sleeping in bunk beds and want to have their own bedrooms, many types of bunk beds can be disassembled and transformed into two separate twin beds. This makes them excellent value for money as they’ll be useful to a growing family from a young age right through to the teenage years.

Separate Personal Spaces

One thing that a bunk bed offers that a trundle bed doesn’t is personal space for each child using the bed. As the bunk bed doesn’t get put away, and the beds remain as they are at all times, they can be personalized for each child and used as a place for them to sit and read during the day or spend time lounging.

You can let your child choose their own comforter and select soft toys to keep on their bunks, making them a safe place for each child to feel secure and like they belong.

Size Options

Bunk beds come in a huge amount of size options which can make them work for almost any situation. Some bunk beds have a twin-sized bed on the top bunk and a full-sized bed on the bottom bunk, which makes them useful for adults as well as children.

In this instance, the full-sized bottom bunk could be a permanent bed for an older child or teenager, or it could be used as an occasional bed for guests. If you have three children and are short on space, then there are also bunk beds available with a pull-out trundle to accommodate three people.

Fun Factor

A lot of kids want a bunk bed because they are a little different and have a novelty factor. The lower bunk can be made to feel like a den because the bed over the top of it providing a kind of roof, which can make the lower bunk a fun and cozy place to hang out. The top bunk being near the ceiling of the room can feel like a castle or a secluded spot away from the rest of the room.


Safety Concerns

Some parents have concerns about the safety of their children while using bunk beds. Even though bunk beds for children will have safety bars along the edges to prevent them from falling out while asleep, children can have a habit of pushing the boundaries and mess about, which can result in accidents. Some children might try to jump from the top bunk or hang out of the side and fall out.

Also, if the top bunk is very close to the ceiling, the child might bang their head if they sit up suddenly and forget it’s there. Usually, a family will choose the top bunk for an older child and the lower bunk for a younger child, but the lure of the ladder leading to the top bunk can be too tempting for little ones, and they could injure themselves by trying to climb to the top before they’re old enough to do so.

The ladder on a bunk bed can even be difficult for an older child to navigate if they need to get out of bed in the middle of the night and can’t see the rungs of the ladder.

Difficult to Tidy

One of the most annoying things about bunk beds from a parent’s perspective is that they are so difficult to keep tidy. Changing the sheets or making the bed for the top bunk is a time-consuming and frustrating process, which will usually involve a parent having to climb onto the top bunk themselves.

Difficult to Reach Top Bunk

When a child is in the top bunk, it is difficult to reach them. This can make it hard to check on them during the night or tend to them when they’re sick.

Trundle Beds

Trundle Beds

A trundle bed is a standard twin bed with an extra roll-out bed that can be tucked underneath it. The lower bed will be low to the ground and fitted with castors so that it can slide out, providing sleeping space for two people in total. These beds are most commonly used for guests and aren’t ideal for multiple children to use every night. If you’re thinking of investing in a trundle bed, consider these pros and cons first.


Space Saving

Trundle beds are a great space-saving solution as they can simply be pulled out when needed and then easily stored away when not in use to free up the floor space. They make a great alternative to a permanent guest bed which can take up a lot of space in spite of only being used occasionally.

Instant Guest Bed

A trundle bed is very easy to quickly pull out, making it an instant proper bed for guests to sleep on. This makes it a convenient alternative to blowing up an air mattress or asking a guest to sleep in an uncomfortable sleeping bag on the floor.

Easy Tidy Up

Trundle beds are super quick and easy to tidy away; they can simply be rolled underneath the main bed, and they can no longer be seen.

Trundle Can Be Removed

When you no longer need additional sleeping space, you can sell the trundle or pass it on to a friend, but keep the main twin bed. This makes it a long-lasting option that can be used in various ways.


Take Up Floor Space

A trundle bed, when being used, requires double the space of a twin bed, so you need to have adequate floor space available for this. If you have a nightstand or a chest of drawers close by, these will need to be moved before you can roll out the trundle. In a children’s bedroom, you’ll have to clear the floor of any toys or other belongings before you can use the bed, which can be very annoying if you need to use it frequently.

No Separate Personal Space

A trundle bed doesn’t make a great permanent bed for children for many reasons, and one of these is that because the trundle is slid underneath the twin when not in use, it deprives one child of having their own personal space during the day.

Difficult Access to Main Bed

When the lower trundle bed is in use, it blocks access to the twin bed. This means that anybody getting out of the main bed will have to carefully step over the person sleeping beside them if they need to get out of bed and again to get back into bed.