Cremation is quickly becoming a very commonplace alternative to traditional burial for many reasons. Some choose it because it’s less expensive than a traditional burial; others choose it because it’s a greener alternative to burial. Whatever the reason people choose, cremation is no longer a taboo topic and procedure it once was. So what should you know about cremation and the process to before you start shopping around?
Cremation isn’t as cheap as you think. A lot of people choose cremation because they believe it will be cheaper than burial. While there are ways to cut costs significantly, that doesn’t mean there won’t be a hefty bill, probably around $1,000 at the least (though these prices vary by state), at the end even if you forego a service or any other funerary options.
Yes, you need a “casket.” No, it doesn’t need to be one from the funeral home. Some funeral homes will try and sell you a casket for the viewing and the cremation. In fact, you do not have to buy a casket for cremation, but the body does need to be enclosed in a sturdy cardboard or plywood container during the process. Some funeral homes offer the ability to rent a casket for the memorial service or wake if you choose to go that route.
You may not be cremated with someone else. As morbidly romantic as the idea of a couple being cremated together sounds, it’s against all regulations around the country. It can only be one body at a time. Besides, most kilns aren’t designed to hold more than one body. If you really want to reunite loved ones after death, consider purchasing a companion urn.
Most cremation regulations are not federally regulated. Surprisingly, very little of the cremation industry is regulated on a national level. So, while there might be state regulations, there’s nothing controlling the price or emission levels of cremation throughout the country. Make sure you’re familiar with your state and local cremation laws before you start looking at crematories.