If you are new to the world of cruising, you may not know the answer to “What is a Pullman Bed on a cruise ship?” is rife with terms that will be unfamiliar at first. However, a quick explanation will, in most cases, equip you with an understanding that will allow you to go through your cruise experience with all the necessary knowledge. A Pullman bed may be one such term, but the answer is simple.
A Pullman bed is simply an extra bed in a ship’s cabin tucked away in a wall or ceiling. These beds allow the maximum number of people to share a cabin while using up the least amount of space possible.
While Pullman beds were initially designed for use in the cabins of trains, the invention has proven extremely useful in cruise ship cabin design. These beds allow for an excellent degree of space-saving and versatility within cabins, creating the opportunity to change the cabin’s configuration as and when required.
What Is A Pullman Bed On A Cruise Ship?
Pullman beds are an invention by the late George M Pullman. He sought to create a space-saving sleeping solution in train cabins. One that afforded train passengers the ultimate luxury of a spacious cabin during the day and that boasted a full-sized comfortable bed to use at night.
This was considered a significant luxury at the time of implementation (during the late 1850s). The idea soon spread to cruise ships as a space-saving solution for small ship cabins.
Because cruise ship cabins are usually tiny, space-saving techniques are essential wherever possible. Pullman beds allow for the highest number of people to be accommodated within the least amount of space.
Pullman beds on cruise ships are usually stowed away, either on the cabin walls or concealed in the ceiling. The beds are pulled down into place only when needed, freeing up space in the cabin during the day.
These beds are situated above the other bed (or beds) in the cabin, instantly transforming a 2-sleeper cabin into a 4-sleeper. This is the ideal solution for families with children to be accommodated in a single cabin, saving money and allowing the parents to keep a close eye on their children.
When choosing a cruise cabin, Pullman beds are also highly beneficial for travelers on a tight budget. Four friends can happily share a single cabin, ultimately keeping costs down while allowing them to enjoy all the perks of a cruise ship holiday.
Why Are Pullman Beds Used?
Pullman beds are mainly used as a space-saving measure in small cruise ship cabins. They allow for the highest number of people to be accommodated in the smallest amount of space, especially when compared to alternative bedding options such as pullouts or sleeper couches.
Because Pullman beds can be stowed away when not in use, the cabin will be much easier for guests to move around in. Because they won’t have to navigate around multiple beds in one room. This also saves a significant amount of floor space.
Pullout beds and sleeper couches are used in some ship cabins. These are especially useful for passengers who can’t climb up ladders. Still, because these beds are situated on the floor, they take up valuable floor space in the cabin, potentially making it difficult for fellow cabin mates to move around the space.
This means that cabins can essentially be made as small as possible while still accommodating as many as four guests. If cabins are smaller, the ship can include higher numbers of cabins, ultimately increasing the ship’s carrying capacity.
How To Use A Pullman Bed
As part of the turndown service usually included on cruises, cabin stewards will lower the bed while the cabin’s occupants are out for the evening. They will ensure that the Pullman bed is secured correctly and prepared for its guest.
Once you have left your cabin in the morning, cabin stewards will stow the Pullman beds away to free up space in the cabin. You can do this yourself, but it’s usually best when left to the professionals.
If there is a child making use of the Pullman bed, ensure that the railing has been lifted to ensure they do not roll off the bed in the middle of the night.
Pros & Cons Of Using Pullman Beds vs. Regular Beds
While Pullman beds are an excellent space-saver, they can be unpleasant for some people to make use of.
Pullman beds are usually no different from regular single beds in terms of size and comfort. They are certainly more comfortable than sofa beds as they use regular mattresses.
There is, however, a small amount of space between the bed & the ceiling. So this can be particularly frustrating for tall people. If passengers require getting up multiple times during the night, a Pullman bed can potentially cause difficulties for them.
Tips For Sleeping Well On A Pullman
In most circumstances, sleeping on a Pullman bed is no different from sleeping on a regular bed. However, suppose you want to ensure that the person sleeping on the Pullman (as well as the other guests in the cabin) can have a good night’s sleep. In that case, you should ensure that the person sleeping on the Pullman is well-suited to do so.
If somebody needs to get up often during the night, they may wake up all the other cabin occupants every time they climb down the ladder. This type of person is best suited to the flower beds in the cabin.
Ensure that the guard rail is up and that your child sleeping on the Pullman is sufficiently protected from falling. If you fear your child may fall off the bed in the middle of the night, it’ll be best for somebody else to make use of this bed to ensure everybody gets a good night’s rest.
While Pullman beds are usually just as comfortable as regular beds, it’s understandable to have some reservations regarding using one of these beds. It’s always best to check your cruise booking to ensure that your cabin contains the sleeping arrangements you prefer.
Pullman beds are best suited to children and young adults comfortable with climbing ladders. Elderly passengers and those with mobility issues will most likely not be able to use a Pullman bed, so you must consider these factors when choosing your cabin. A simple inquiry will put your mind at ease if you are unsure whether your cabin will have Pullman beds.