According to DFS Memorials, 70% of all cremations in the US are performed as non-traditional direct cremations.
This means, for one reason or another, lots of people are opting for a simple cremation send-off instead of a traditional cremation funeral with all the bells and whistles.
For those that don’t know, direct cremations is when a cremation takes place without a funeral service or ceremony beforehand.
The person who’s passed is taken directly to the crematorium to be cremated, without any family members present.
A memorial or celebration of life can be planned at a later date when the ashes have been returned and there’s a convenient time for everyone to get-together.
As you can imagine, direct cremations have become more popular in recent times due to the coronavirus pandemic.
With quarantine restrictions and social distancing rules in place, elements of traditional cremations haven’t been able to go ahead as normal, and direct cremation has been the practical alternative.
Despite the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, why are people now choosing direct cremation over traditional cremation in the US?
Here are 4 key reasons from our friends at the award-winning funeral plan broker; Reassured:
1) It’s low cost
Funeral directors won’t want you to know this, but direct cremation is the cheapest way to be laid to rest.
According to the National Funeral Directors Affiliation (NFDA), a traditional cremation in the US costs on average $6,645, whereas a direct cremation costs on average just $2,195.
This low-cost alternative is too tempting for many families who simply cannot afford all the frills of a traditional funeral, which tend to include limousines, flowers and a hearse.
Not to mention the expense of a wooden coffin, which are usually more luxurious for a traditional funeral.
With direct cremation, a simple coffin is all that’s needed and an appropriate vehicle can be used to transport the deceased to the crematorium.
2) It’s flexible
A direct cremation is flexible for family and friends as they don’t need to arrange a memorial service within a specific time frame.
They have the flexibility to choose when, where and how the memorial service should take place.
This also makes it easier for family and friends who live in other parts of the country, or parts of the world, who’d like to pay their respects and would otherwise find it difficult getting to the funeral on time.
3) It’s personal
Some people feel that the formality and structure of a traditional funeral ceremony is too impersonal. Traditional or religious elements may not hold much meaning for them, or their family.
In this case, a direct cremation is ideal, as the memorial service doesn’t have to follow any particular structure or have a religious theme at all.
Instead, family and friends can hold the memorial themselves and use this time to focus on the life and personality of the person who’s passed, making it truly personal and unique to them.
4) It’s fuss-free
A direct cremation removes a lot of the fuss and extravagance that a traditional cremation usually entails.
With less fuss comes less stress for family to arrange and pay for the perfect send-off in a short time period.
They also don’t need to spend thousands on funeral director services or on additional extras, such as the order service and flowers.
Also, some people don’t like the idea of people gathering to mourn at their funeral. They’d prefer that their close family and friends can arrange a private, fuss-free ceremony away from a funeral setting.
Found a reason to pre-plan your own direct cremation (or traditional cremation)?
It’s possible to pre-plan and pre-pay your own cremation ahead of time, to ensure that your loved ones are protected from this obligation.
With a pre-paid funeral plan you have control over the cost of your cremation services, as you can specify the services that you want included.
This is especially important if you have specific wishes and want peace of mind that these will be fulfilled when the time comes.
Some of the best pre-paid funeral plans freeze today’s cremation prices. This means that the amount you pay for the plan today would remain fixed, with no more for your family to pay when the time comes, even if prices have risen.
Whilst there are some cons to pre-paid funeral plans, for example they can’t be exchanged for cash, it’s still reassuring to have some form of financial protection in place for your family when the worst happens, and you can’t be there to support them.
A pre-paid funeral plan is a practical solution to putting money aside for your cremation and stays behind as part of your legacy.