How much does a funeral cost? The average funeral cost in the UK depends on several factors like where you live in the UK, whether you choose cremation or burial, and all the other things that you want to include, and a host of other considerations.
Generally, the average price of a funeral in the UK is about £4,417. And in this article, we’ll help you understand how this cost is calculated and services that are typically included in most funeral packages.
Understanding Funeral Services
A funeral service is a way of honouring the lives of people who passed away. Funerals bring peace and comfort to people who are mourning and allow them to share the sorrow of their loss and the joy of knowing the deceased. Typically, people use funeral homes to arrange a funeral service.
Although the funeral director serves as the leading service provider, other businesses are also included. People also need services of headstone providers and cemeteries. Generally, the funeral director coordinates with these providers to organise the required products and services. However, families have the option to buy the services of a funeral home, cemetery, and headstone separately.
There are different types of funerals, and each can be customised to suit your needs and budget:
Things that are included in the Average Funeral Cost
Funeral services can include different things that will suit your taste and budget. When asking the cost of a funeral, it is essential to understand the costs that make up the funeral expenses payment.
1.) Funeral Homes
In the time of grief, it is not easy for anybody to manage and organise a funeral. This is why people choose funeral homes. They provide dedicated funeral services. It is important to note that these services come at a cost and vary based on numerous aspects.
Outlined below are the average funeral costs in the UK that would be charged by a funeral company:
- Average Casket Cost
Depending on your choice, the casket can be one of the most expensive parts of a funeral. The average cost could range from £700 to over £7,000 for copper, bronze, or mahogany coffins.
- Average Funeral Staff Service Fee
Funeral homes typically charge a fee for the assistance their personnel provide in arranging the funeral. The average funeral staff service fee is £500.
- Average Embalming Cost
If you are having an open coffin funeral or having the body transferred interstate, then you will have to pay for the embalming cost. Embalming is the process of temporarily preserving and disinfecting the body of a deceased person. It sets the deceased person’s features to make them more visually appealing for the funeral services. The average embalming service cost could range from £136 – £165.
- Average Cosmetic and other preparation
The funeral company can also provide cosmetic, dressing, and other preparations like getting the deceased all dressed up and applying makeup on the deceased for the funeral service. The average cost of these services is around £250.
- Average Cremation Fee
Cremation may serve as a funeral or post-funeral rite where the final disposition of the body is done through burning. It is an alternative to burial. The average cost for cremation is around £3,986, which includes the funeral director’s fee, the celebrant’s fee, and other costs associated with the paperwork.
- Average Cremation Urn Cost
Cremation urns are used to hold the ashes following a cremation and are available in a variety of designs and materials. From silver to ceramic, brass, fibreglass, crystal, marble, wood, and resin among others, there are different varieties of urns available and their price will depend on the material you choose. With that said, these containers can be pricey; on average, a quality urn may cost around £200.
- Average Flower Cost
While visitors often send flowers, the deceased’s family will usually purchase a wreath or coffin spray. The cost of these arrangements depends on the type of flowers used, Lilies, roses, and orchids can be quite expensive. The average wreath fee could range from £40-£100 or more. It will depend on the season of the flowers and their availability as well. On average, it will cost you around £140 for funeral flower services.
- Average Ceremony Cost
Ceremony costs include performing the funeral and related rites. This would cost an average of £4,417.
- Average Funeral Car Cost
Traditional and Cadillac style hearses cost around £300. Some funeral directors will also provide novelty cars, as well as traditional vehicles. So, the average cost of a funeral car can range from £150 to £200. Typically, a limo is used to transport family and friends from the funeral home to the cemetery. Should you opt for the limousine, the average cost for that is £100.
- Average Legal Paper Costs
You need to get some paperwork to arrange a funeral. A Death Certificate costs around £11 in England and Wales, £15 in Northern Ireland, and £10 in Scotland. Arranging for funeral notice would cost you an average of £70.
2.) Average Cemetery Cost
There are over 2400 cemeteries and over 300 crematoriums across the United Kingdom. Burial is generally more expensive than cremation. When determining the average cemetery cost, there are two factors to consider:
- Average Plot Cost
Based on the location and size of the plot, the cost can vary between £1000 and £2000. If you choose a private cemetery, then the average price would likely be higher. The average cost of a cemetery burial plot in the United Kingdom is between £750 and £950; while the average cost of an ash plot is around £450. The price can significantly vary based on the cemetery. For example, if the burial site is in a specific area of land, like next to a tree or among the shrubbery, additional costs will be charged.
- Average Grave Preparation Cost
The average cost for preparing a grave would cost you around £500. However, it will vary enormously up and down the country. A new grave may cost just over £500 in Belfast, to over £4000 in the Brighton and London areas.
- Average Grave Markers and Headstones
While plain grave markers can cost you as little as £400, statues or monuments can cost you around £10,000. You should expect to spend between £400 to £5000. Custom services will be charged at a higher rate. For instance, most headstone suppliers in the UK have a standard flat rate that includes a specific number of letters or images. Anything additional will cost you more.
Cremation Vs. Burial – Which is Your Best Option?
Cremation and burial are two different ways of conducting a funeral, and their costs differ. The choice between burial and cremation is personal. And your choice can be influenced by the price of the service and effect on the environment.
Average Burial Cost:
With a burial, the deceased’s body remains intact, and the body may be entombed in a mausoleum or interred in the ground. Burial is more expensive in comparison to cremation, and the average cost for burial is £2,400.
- Burial with a Traditional Service
The majority of the funeral services in the United Kingdom are traditional, faith-based services. It is led by a religious official and held in a place of worship, at the graveside, or funeral home.
Traditional services offer a lot of reassurance and comfort at a difficult time for the grieving family. It has 2-3 days viewing period where the loved ones of the deceased can pay them a visit at the funeral home. There is also a reception held after the funeral. With that said, the average cost of a traditional burial in the UK is around £4000.
- Burial with a Memorial Service
Memorial service, unlike a traditional service, is a ceremony for the mourners to honour the departed. It is done after the funeral and there are no rules that one need to follow when planning a memorial service. It can be held in a churchyard or cemetery, at a crematorium, or any other private venue. If you are opting for a memorial service after the burial, you may have to pay an additional £900- £1000 for the memorial service.
Average Cremation Cost in the UK
Cremation is a final disposition process of a deceased body where it is incinerated so that all that remains are ashes. The average cremation cost in the UK is £820. Similar to burial, the average price differs in different regions of the UK.
- Cremation with a Traditional Service:
Certain religious groups in the United Kingdom encourage traditional cremation. Traditional cremation is arranged in a way that is witnessed by loved ones.
Some crematoriums in the UK allow families to view the cremation process through a glass screen. A religious official leads it and all types of rituals based on the deceased’s religion are carried out. Since the deceased is always cremated in their casket or coffin, the body is not visible. If you opt for a traditional cremation, it may cost you £850.
- Cremation with a Basic Memorial Service:
If you want to organise a memorial service after the cremation, as said earlier, it may cost you an £900- £1000. But a basic memorial service can be easily catered under £500. So, based on the type of cremation service you are having, you can add this amount to the bill. On average, cremation with a basic memorial service may cost you around £1500.
- Direct Cremation:
Direct cremation provides a simple alternative to traditional cremation. It takes place without any mourners in attendance. A direct cremation is ideal for those who do not want to have a ceremony or a service before the cremation.
A direct cremation is more cost-effective as compared to traditional cremation and a memorial service. A direct cremation service may cost you around £800, in which a provision for a basic coffin is also included.
So, Which is your Best Option?
Considering all the aspects, it is totally up to you which one you choose. As said earlier, burial is more expensive than cremation. The overall average cost of a funeral with burial will cost you around £4000-£5000. This includes everything from digging the grave to paperwork, funeral home services, memorial, etc.
On the other hand, the overall average cost of a funeral with cremation will cost you around £3000-£4000, which includes all the services and ceremonies, and the fees of the crematorium and funeral staff.
Tips on How to Save Money in Preparing Funeral
Planning a funeral can be expensive. However, you can arrange a meaningful funeral for your loved one while staying within your budget. Below are some practical ways to save money while planning a funeral:
Tip #1: Immediate Burial or Direct Cremation
Burials and cremations can cost a significant amount of money, which can be challenging for families who are looking for affordable funeral services. In light of the rising cost of funeral prices, immediate burial or direct cremation are two alternatives that can be considered.
Immediate burial is the simplest form of burial where the body is buried after death without any formal services. Similarly, direct cremation is an option in which the deceased’s body is cremated immediately following the death, without any funeral services.
Tip #2: The Wake
If you wish to hold a memorial service or wake following the funeral, there are many ways you can keep costs in check. Instead of renting a venue, you can hold the wake at the home of the deceased or a family member. The cost of the refreshments can also be shared amongst the family.
Tip #3: Transport
Traditionally, hearses and limousines are hired to transport the deceased’s body and family members to the funeral home or cemetery. Practically speaking, rather than hiring vehicles for this purpose, family members can use their own vehicles.
Tip #4: Compare your Options Well
When looking for a funeral service provider, be sure to do your research and compare at least a few of the available options. Most areas are likely to have several service providers, with different price packages. Do your research and evaluate your options before making the final decision. Comparing available services and prices will help you cut down on funeral costs.
Tip #5: Choosing the Right Funeral Service
The death of a loved one is never easy, and the challenge of arranging a funeral can seem daunting, especially in the face of rising funeral prices. But with a little research and planning, you can have a meaningful service for your loved one while managing your budget.
A funeral is an honourable way to say goodbye to your loved one. With tons of things to take care of, arranging a funeral can be quite overwhelming. But, with a little research on your part and association with the right funeral
service home, you can host a memorable funeral for your loved one. Planning a funeral does not have to be stressful and time-consuming.
My Estate Planning is a reliable partner that can help you plan your loved one’s funeral service. The company understands the difficulties you are going through and can guide you through the necessary planning steps.
Our team gives you the freedom to choose and even create a customised package for you. All you have to do is to select your plan, and the company will take care of the rest. You will not have to deal with vendors or make any arrangements on your own.
My Estate Planning also offers the ability to pre-plan a funeral, which is an ideal option for individuals who wish to protect their loved ones from the rising costs of funeral services. The company also offers flexible payment options.
You can get in touch with My Estate Planning and request more information on their affordable funeral plans. We will guide you with the best plans so that everything can be managed within your budget.
Allow our experts to assist you in planning a memorable funeral. Call My Estate Planning today and get the best funeral services!