When considering the cost of cremation, it is important to understand that cremation is simply an alternative method of preparing human remains for final disposition, as opposed to full-body burial in a cemetery. It is also important to know that cremation is not necessarily a substitution for a funeral. When choosing cremation as your means of final disposition, there are still several funeral and memorial service options available to you, which will determine what your individual wishes will cost.
Cremation is typically a less expensive option than a traditional full-body burial. This is especially true if an individual chooses to have a “direct” cremation with no other services, preparations or funeral home assistance in which case the cost can be as low as $1,500.00. “Direct” cremation means that the deceased will be cremated and the remains returned to the family without any embalming, cosmetics, funeral or memorial services provided by the funeral home.
Many people still want and need a public visitation and funeral or memorial service in order to provide closure and to properly honor their loved ones and allow family and friends to pay their respects. This can be accommodated either with the body present for a viewing prior to cremation, or without the body and instead having an urn containing the cremated remains or photos of the deceased at the services. Costs for these types of services can range anywhere from approximately $5,000.00 to $12,000.00 or more depending on the unique services and merchandise options that are selected, such as a rental casket, urns other items like flowers, obituary, lunch and cemetery arrangements.
The options are many but it is important to understand that choosing to be cremated does not in any way mean you must give up your wishes for a meaningful funeral or memorial service, or even a viewing. Consider the fact that what you decide is of importance not only to you, but to your loved ones as well. A thoughtfully planned funeral or memorial service can be a great tribute to the deceased and can also significantly impact the ease with which those left behind move through their grieving process, even if cremation is chosen for final disposition of the body.