The pros and cons of a direct cremation or burial

Direct cremations and burials have increased in popularity in recent years due to their affordability and simple approach. As the cost of funerals continues to rise year-on-year, it’s no wonder many families are seeking a more affordable option for their loved one’s funeral. Here we discuss some of the main pros and cons of a direct funeral to help you decide whether it may be right for you….

What is a direct funeral?

A direct funeral, also referred to as a direct cremation or direct burial, is a very simple funeral without a service. Instead, the deceased is taken straight from the funeral home to be cremated or buried. This makes direct funerals the most affordable type of funeral, and is suited to those who want to keep costs down or want a simple, low-fuss funeral.

Direct burials are always unattended, but at a direct cremation there is the option to have an ‘attended’ or ‘unattended’ funeral. At an ‘attended’ direct cremation, a small number of mourners can visit their loved one in the crematorium chapel to say a brief goodbye. Many families who arrange a direct funeral go on to organise their own memorial or ‘celebration of life’ ceremony at a later date.

What happens at a direct funeral?

The process of arranging a direct burial or cremation is very similar to the many other types of funeral. The main difference is the lack of a funeral service. This makes them much simpler to arrange and eases some of the organisational burden placed on the family.

For anyone arranging a funeral with Dillamore, the first step is to bring the deceased into our care. We’ll then look after them on our premises until the day of the funeral, along with managing all the arrangements and working with the crematorium/cemetery to find a suitable day and time for the funeral.

Unlike many funeral directors, families choosing a direct funeral at Dillamore can visit their loved one in our Chapel of Rest (for a small additional fee). This ensures families can spend time with their loved one and allows them to say a proper goodbye prior to the funeral.

On the day of the funeral, our team will take the deceased from our premises to their final location at the crematorium or burial ground, providing them with the utmost care and respect throughout. Families choosing an ‘attended’ direct cremation will meet their loved one in the crematorium chapel for a final goodbye.

Once the funeral has taken place, we will continue supporting families for as long as they need us, collecting ashes, organising headstones or urns, and providing advice and support.

What are the benefits of direct funerals?

They are more affordable – direct funerals are the most affordable type of funeral. Everything is streamlined to keep the costs down, and because there is no service you’ll avoid the additional costs of flowers, cars, venue fees and officiants. This can make a big difference for many families.

They are simpler – direct funerals are the simplest type of funeral you can arrange. They are perfect for someone who didn’t want any fuss or who doesn’t have many family and friends to attend a service.

There is less stress and burden – because there is less admin involved in arranging a direct funeral, it can ease the emotional strain a family experiences. This can provide families with the time and space they need to grieve.

You can create your own memorial – having a simple funeral allows you to create a more memorable ‘celebration of life’ service further down the line. Instead of being bound by the rituals of a traditional funeral, families can arrange something more memorable and unique.

What are the downsides of direct funerals?

There is no formal goodbye – because there is no service included, some families experience a lack of closure and feel like they haven’t had an opportunity to say goodbye. That is why we offer Chapel of Rest visits to every family choosing a direct funeral with us.

They lack personalisation – the simple format of a direct funeral means there is no possibility of personalising the funeral in any way. For families who want to celebrate the life of a person, direct funerals can lack emotion and significance.

They are non-religious – direct cremations and burials are secular in nature and don’t allow for any religious or cultural beliefs to be upheld. This can make them unsuitable for anyone with religious beliefs or where families want to include specific cultural funeral practices or rituals.

If you would like to find out more, our friendly team are here to help. You can call us on 01525 372210 or email us using our contact form. Alternatively you can book an appointment with us using our online appointment booking tool.

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