Is a "convertible bed" different than a fold out couch like we have here in the states?
No one?? I just know that pull out couches seem to be really uncomfortable. I'm looking for an apartment in Paris for 3 people. Most places I can afford are studio apartments with one bed and a "fold out bed" (sleeper sofa?) or stated as a "convertible bed". I'm just wondering if it is the same thing? Or do the French/Europeans have a different type of couch that maybe more comfortable than our typical sleeper sofa?
From my experience I would say that you can't tell what kind of convertible bed you may be getting. In Italy in the same apartment, there were two different kinds of fold out couches. One was a type I had never seen before and we had a bit of a time figuring out how to turn it into a bed. It was wonderful and just as comfortable as a bed. The other was the same as I see here with the horrible lumpy mattress and the bar down the middle and it was so uncomfortable my son ended up putting the mattress on the floor. There are some where the back just flips down and makes a flat surface which can be hard and then there are others where the whole thing unfolds. I would recommend checking the reviews to see if anyone has commented on using the convertible bed. The other thing is to specifically ask about the convertible bed and what type it is and to see if the landlord will send you the email addresses of former renters that you can write to directly for references. I've found that many landlords are quite willing to do this.
Thank you Shirley, good advice!
In my experience, they are generally what I (Australian, living in Spain) would call a sofa bed. Unless they are the very expensive ones which you may find in high end apartments, they will not be very comfortable as a bed nor will they be comfortable as a normal sofa - at least in my opinion. I assume they are the same as what you would call a fold out couch. For one person, small and light, they might be fine but for a couple much less so.