The Cost of a Cremation and the Benefits to Consider

The cost of dying has been rising since 2004 and looks set to continue for years to come. For many, turning to a cremation is favoured way of keeping costs to a minimum. In the UK, depending on the type of service you choose, cremation is the cheapest funeral service to choose.

With three out of four people now preferring to be cremated, as part of many families looking for cheaper funeral options this may be the best route for you to take.

The Cost of Cremations

Many people are drawn to cremations simply as they’re cheaper than standard burials. They can cost as little as a third the price of a burial – a crematorium can charge between £500 and £900. These fees can be lowered further if less popular times of day are chosen.

This is compared to the cost of a burial, with costs varying between £870 and £7,200 without including key costs from most funerals. Even the most basic burial can cost over £8,000 as locations in popular demand cause prices to continue to rise. In addition, there are costs for:

  • Professional service costs
  • Coffin or casket prices
  • Chapel of Rest costs etc.
  • A hearse for the service
  • Funeral staff such as coffin bearers
  • Additional administration fees

In comparison, the cost of a plastic urn for a cremation comes at a low cost. Caskets can also be purchased if a family wishes to bury the ashes.

Whilst funeral director charges tend to be the same, the cost for a gravesite can vary between £100 and £1,700. This means the average cost of a cremation through a funeral service will be £3,300, which is compared to £4,100 for a burial.

There are also other options to choose from when looking for a more cost-effective and environmentally friendly funeral service.

Direct cremations

Some companies offer a direct cremation. This is where the deceased is taken from a mortuary and cremated at the most convenient time. There is no formal funeral procession or service or any events involved, which avoids many of the costs of more traditional funerals.

With a direct cremation, the deceased is cremated straight after death and ashes can be stored in a simple container (as opposed to expensive coffins or a casket). There is no wake, which removes the need to embalm the body. Memorial services are typically held at a later date.

It’s a modest funeral procession which has become increasingly popular, with the likes of international stars such as David Bowie preferring the method over more lavish ceremonies.

The benefits

With all of the above established, what are the key benefits to bear in mind when choosing a funeral plan?

  • A cheaper funeral service
  • Low cost complements by flexible options
  • Environmentally friendly
  • Option to keep the cremated remains or have them buried
  • Chance to scatter ashes
  • Scatter at sea services available