Deciding what we want to happen when we die can be a very difficult subject to think about but you can’t deny the necessity of it. After all, we’re all going to shuffle off this mortal coil at some point in the future – and it would be nice to think that those left behind don’t have to worry about sorting out funeral arrangements and making difficult decisions at what will already be an incredibly emotional and stressful time.
But again, it can be hard to decide just what you want to happen so it’s worth doing some research into your options well ahead of time if you can, so you know proceedings will go exactly as you want them to.
New research from Over50choices has revealed that one in five people in the UK will choose direct cremation over a more traditional funeral in the next five years, with the number of those going down this route set to double, according to the later life planning firm.
Managing director of the company Ashley Shepherd explained that it’s not hard to see why this kind of service is growing in popularity, given that the average funeral cost in the UK has now reached £4,078. He further suggested that high-profile celebrity deaths and cremations could also be behind this surge in popularity for cremations, such as rock star David Bowie and writer Anita Brookner.
“Families are turning to direct cremation for a number of reasons, embracing the idea of separating the cremation process from the ceremony, leaving them free to say goodbye in a way that suits them, be it a drink down the local pub or a perhaps a family gathering when scattering the ashes,” Mr Shepherd was quoted by the Funeral Service Times as saying.
He went on to note: “Figures showed that in 2017, ten per cent of cremation funerals held did not include a ceremony or service. We expect that by 2023, 20 per cent of all cremations will be direct cremations.”
What is direct cremation?
This is an option where the body is cremated in the days straight after death without a funeral service beforehand. It’s the most economic option available for disposition because it doesn’t include any pre-funeral events or a formal funeral, so many of the costs are avoided as a result.
Because the body is cremated so soon after death, you can enlist the services of a crematory instead of a funeral home, which can save you a surprisingly significant amount of money. The body is typically cremated in a simple container, instead of an expensive coffin or casket and there’s no wake, visitation or viewing before the cremation.
But that doesn’t mean you can’t have a memorial service later down the line, which again removes the need for an expensive casket or any funeral arrangements.