Difference between a Bar Stool and a Counter Stool
By Theydiffer - April 25, 2017

Have you ever chosen a piece of furniture for your home only to discover that it does not fit once you got it home? You will be surprised how many people go through this type of disappointment. For example, one of the most common mistakes people make is to choose a counter stool for a bar top. They see a taller chair and they assume it will go great at the bar. But here is why the two are not interchangeable.


Getty Images/Westend61/Westend61

A bar stool is a chair you use to sit comfortably at a bar. The standard height of a bar top is 40-42 inches from the floor. This means that a good bar stool’s seat should be somewhere at 29 – 31 inches from the floor. The difference of 11 inches is for your legs to rest comfortably without being squashed under the bar.

However, chances are that you might end up with a bar top at a different height than the standard ones. This is where the 11 inches difference gives you enough wiggle room.

Getty Images/DigitalVision/Justin Paget

A counter stool is a chair on which you can sit comfortably at a counter. This is a kitchen work space and dining area which must be accessible to someone cooking while standing as well as to someone who is sitting. Therefore, you can expect the chair to be higher than that of a regular table.

Since a standard counter height is 36 inches from the ground, the counter stool will be 24-26 inches high.

Bar Stool vs Counter Stool

So what is the difference between a bar stool and a counter stool?

A bar stool is taller than a counter stool. A bar stool is 29-32 inches high, while a counter stool is 24-26 inches high. They are both higher than regular dinner table chairs.

Comparison Chart

Bar stoolCounter stool
Is usually 29-32 inches highIs usually 24-26 inches high