The cost of funerals has been increasing much faster than general inflation for at least a decade. Many people are stunned by how much they have to pay when a loved one dies; and some people get into debt and real financial hardship as a result of having to arrange a funeral.
Although people naturally want to give their loved ones a good send-off and might feel it is disrespectful to cut back on funeral costs, it is possible to have a dignified funeral without spending a huge amount of money.
There are several ways to keep the cost of a funeral under control. Most funeral directors now offer ’simple funerals’, with a basic coffin and hearse to the local crematorium. Even cheaper are direct cremations, which do not involve any service or mourners at the cremation..
Alternatively, some people choose to keep the cost of a funeral down by choosing a cheaper coffin, not embalming the body or not using a hearse. Or by spending less on flowers, holding wakes at home and doing their own catering.
However, the best way to save money is probably to shop around for a funeral director. Different directors are likely to quote a wide range of prices for essentially the same service.
You can read our report on the cost of funerals here.