Picnic tables are a classic option for outdoor furniture. They not only facilitate outdoor meals, but also serve as a call to action for parties, barbecues, and other social events. However, while looking to purchase or construct one, the issue of “what size is a standard picnic table?” naturally arises. The size of picnic tables and the best practices for protecting them from the elements through sealing and weatherproofing will be discussed in detail.

Dimensions of a Typical Picnic Table

Adult Picnic Tables

Adult picnic tables come in various sizes to accommodate different seating capacities and spaces. Here are the typical dimensions for adult picnic tables:

  • Length: The standard length for adult picnic tables ranges from 6 to 8 feet. This length provides ample seating for 6 to 8 adults comfortably. Longer tables can accommodate more people, making them suitable for larger gatherings;
  • Width: When asking “how wide is a picnic table?”, most answers will range between 28 to 34 inches for the tabletop. The width of the table provides enough space for dishes, food, and drinks, ensuring a comfortable dining experience;
  • Height: Generally, the height of a picnic table varies between 28 to 30 inches. This height is designed to allow adults to sit comfortably and eat without feeling cramped. It also ensures that people of various heights can enjoy their meal without straining.

Children’s Picnic Tables

Children’s tables are made to a different scale to accommodate their smaller stature and special requirements. Children can use picnic tables for eating, playing, and crafting. Children’s picnic tables often have these dimensions:

  • Length: Children’s picnic tables typically range between 3 to 4.5 feet in length. This shorter length is perfect for kids, allowing them to reach across the table easily and sit comfortably with their friends;
  • Width: The width of children’s picnic tables is usually around 20 to 24 inches. This narrower width is suitable for children’s activities and meals, making it easier for them to access their food and craft supplies;
  • Height: The height of children’s picnic tables is between 18 to 21 inches. This lower height ensures that children can sit comfortably and safely, with their feet touching the ground. It promotes a secure and enjoyable seating experience for kids.

Commercial Picnic Tables

For venues and businesses that offer outdoor seating areas such as parks, eateries, and community centers, commercial picnic tables are a must-have. They are designed to be durable and withstand heavy use and outdoor elements. Here are the typical dimensions for commercial picnic tables:

  • Length: Commercial picnic tables usually have a length that ranges from 6 to 10 feet. Given that they are often used for gatherings or public venues, they need to accommodate more people. Some larger tables are designed for 10 or more adults;
  • Width: The width of commercial picnic tables typically falls between 30 to 40 inches. This ensures ample space for communal dishes, larger plates, or even promotional materials and flyers often found in public places;
  • Height: The standard height of commercial picnic tables lies between 29 to 31 inches. This is slightly taller than regular adult tables to factor in the potential for heavy-duty chairs or benches that might accompany them.

Spacing and Seating

When setting up a picnic area or selecting a picnic table, it’s essential to consider the spacing and seating arrangements to ensure comfort and convenience for everyone. Let’s delve into seating capacity, legroom, and bench dimensions, providing valuable information for planning outdoor gatherings.

Seating Capacity

Seating capacity is an important factor to think about when picking out a picnic table. The length of the table is a major factor in determining how many people can sit at it.

  • A 6-foot table usually accommodates 6 people;
  • An 8-foot table can seat 8 people comfortably.

These guidelines are based on providing enough space for each person to sit and enjoy their meal without feeling cramped. However, it’s essential to consider the size and comfort of the seats, as well as the number of people you expect to host at your picnic.


Legroom is a crucial aspect of picnic table comfort. Insufficient legroom can lead to discomfort during meals and gatherings. To ensure that there’s enough space for comfortable legroom, follow these guidelines:

  • Allow at least 12 inches of space from the bottom of the table to the top of the seat.

This space allows people to sit comfortably with their legs under the table without feeling restricted. It’s essential to check the design of the table and benches to confirm that they provide adequate legroom.

Bench Dimensions

Picnic table benches are integral to the seating experience, and their dimensions impact comfort. Here are the typical dimensions for picnic table benches:

  • Bench Width: Benches are generally about 9 to 11 inches wide. This width provides enough space for individuals to sit comfortably without feeling cramped;
  • Bench Height: Picnic table benches typically have a height of 17 to 19 inches. This height ensures that people can sit down and get up from the bench without difficulty. It also promotes proper alignment with the table’s surface for comfortable dining.

These bench dimensions are designed to strike a balance between comfort and space efficiency. They allow people to sit comfortably and enjoy their meals while optimizing the use of available space.

Types of Picnic Tables

Rounded picnic table

While dimensions play a key role, the type of table you choose is also pivotal:

Rectangular Picnic Tables

The standard and most widely used shape for picnic tables is the rectangular table. They come in a range of sizes and are typically long and rectangular in form. Rectangular picnic tables typically have these dimensions:

Length6 to 8 feet
Width2.5 to 3 feet
Height28 to 32 inches

These dimensions provide ample seating space for a larger group of people. Rectangular tables are versatile and can comfortably accommodate 6 to 8 adults or more if benches are placed on both sides. They are ideal for family gatherings, picnics in parks, and outdoor events where larger groups need to be seated.

Round or Oval Picnic Tables

Round and oval picnic tables have a circular or elliptical shape. They provide a more communal and intimate dining experience. The dimensions of round or oval picnic tables typically range from:

Diameter3 to 6 feet
Height28 to 32 inches

Round and oval tables are well-suited for smaller groups or couples looking for a cozy picnic setting. They encourage conversation and are perfect for enjoying a meal outdoors with friends or family. These tables are also a great choice for outdoor patios and garden areas.

Square Picnic Tables

Square picnic tables are characterized by their equal-length sides, forming a square shape. They are compact and provide a space-efficient seating solution. The standard dimensions for square picnic tables are:

Length of Each Side4 to 5 feet
Height28 to 32 inches

Square tables typically seat 4 to 8 people, depending on their size. They are an excellent choice for smaller outdoor spaces, such as balconies, decks, or intimate backyard gatherings. Square picnic tables are also commonly used in commercial settings like restaurants with outdoor dining areas.

Weatherproofing and Sealing Your Picnic Table

Weatherproofing a picnic table

Now that we’ve answered the question, “What is the size of a picnic table?”, let’s delve into how to ensure your table stands the test of time.

Weatherproofing Steps

Weatherproofing involves protecting your picnic table from the effects of weather, including rain, sun, and moisture. Here are the steps to weatherproof your picnic table:

  • Clean: Before applying any treatments, clean the table thoroughly to ensure no dirt or debris remains. Use a mild detergent and water or a dedicated wood cleaner for wooden picnic tables. For metal tables, you can use a gentle metal cleaner or warm soapy water. Scrub the surface with a soft brush or sponge, rinse, and allow it to dry completely;
  • Choose a Sealant: When pondering how to weatherproof a picnic table, choose a sealant that provides UV protection and is waterproof. Selecting the right sealant is crucial for protecting the table’s material effectively. For wood picnic tables, consider using a quality outdoor wood sealer. For metal tables, look for a rust-resistant and weatherproof sealant;
  • Apply: Using a brush, roller, or sprayer, apply the sealant evenly over the entire surface of the picnic table. Ensure that all exposed areas, including the tabletop, seats, and legs, are thoroughly covered. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions regarding the application method and drying time;
  • Dry: Allow the picnic table to dry for the specified time mentioned on the sealant’s instructions. Proper drying ensures that the sealant forms a protective barrier against the elements.

Sealing Your Table

Sealing your picnic table is an essential step in maintaining its appearance and durability. Sealing helps to protect the material from moisture, stains, and wear. Here are the steps to seal your picnic table:

  • Sanding: Before asking how to seal a picnic table, ensure the surface is smooth by sanding any rough spots. Use sandpaper with a medium to fine grit to smooth out any imperfections in the wood or metal. Sand in the direction of the grain for wood tables;
  • Choose a Sealant: Look for sealants specifically designed for the material of your table (e.g., wood, metal). For wood tables, you can choose between clear sealers that preserve the natural look or colored sealers that enhance or change the wood’s color. For metal tables, opt for a sealant that provides corrosion resistance;
  • Apply: Apply a thin, even coat of the selected sealant to the entire surface of the picnic table. Use a brush or a roller for an even application. Ensure that the sealant penetrates the surface to create a protective layer;
  • Additional Coats: Depending on the manufacturer’s recommendation, you might need to apply multiple coats. Follow the drying time between coats as specified on the product label. Multiple coats provide enhanced protection and longevity.


A picnic table is much more than just a place to eat and socialize in the great outdoors. Knowing the standard dimensions of picnic tables can help you pick the most appropriate one for your setting. Sealing and protecting your table from the elements will make sure it is still a part of your celebrations for years to come.


How big is a standard picnic table?

A standard adult picnic table typically ranges from 6 to 8 feet in length, 28 to 34 inches in width, and 28 to 30 inches in height.

What material lasts the longest for picnic tables?

While wood, particularly cedar and redwood, is a popular choice, tables made from treated metal or synthetic materials like polyethylene can last longer with minimal maintenance.

How wide is a picnic table bench?

The width of a standard picnic table bench is usually between 9 to 11 inches.

How often should I seal my picnic table?

To maintain the table’s integrity, consider sealing it once a year, especially if it’s frequently exposed to harsh weather.

How can I ensure my wooden picnic table doesn’t rot?

Alongside sealing, ensure the table isn’t constantly standing in water, and clean it regularly to prevent organic matter from decaying on its surface.