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How to Save Money on Funerals and Burials

Death is an inevitable part of life and grieving the loss of a loved one can be an intensely personal experience. People cope with grief in different ways, and funerals serve as a way to pay respect and celebrate someone’s memory and cherish their life.

Over time, various cultures have adopted their own distinctive forms of burial. Many were initiated out of a desire to inter the deceased in natural and sacred locations that honored their individual spiritual beliefs.


As the twentieth century progressed, cremation became more commonplace in North America and Europe. This choice was partly because it allowed deceased individuals to be buried near or even on the same ground as their family and friends, thus maintaining familial ties.

This was a more economical alternative to buring the body in a cemetery. Unfortunately, finding an appropriate place to inter a deceased family member required special preparation and considerable effort on behalf of those bereaved.

Funeral and burial packages can be pricey, especially in this economy. But there are ways to save money by doing some research and asking the provider for pricing information before making a final decision.

A General Price List (GPL) will offer itemized prices for all goods and services offered by a provider. It also allows you to compare prices across providers so that you can pick the best deal that meets your needs and budget.

When a funeral provider offers you a funeral package, it must provide you with a copy of the GPL so you can easily determine how much each item in it will cost. Doing this helps determine which items are most important to you and which ones are not.

Religion dictates where burials and other rituals may take place, either at a church or graveyard. Although these ceremonies differ by country and culture, they usually begin with viewing of the body prior to conducting either a funeral service and interment or cremation.

In some cultures, funeral attendees typically approach the casket and drop handfuls of soil onto it as a symbol of their return to earth. Additionally, certain clothing is worn that represents mourning during this period.


The burial process varies by region, but generally speaking the body is placed in a coffin or vault and taken to a site of special significance to the person who has passed away. At that location, an honorific religious ceremony is held as a tribute to the departed.

Wakes and Viewings

In the Caribbean, wakes and viewings are typically held in homes, funeral homes or churches. Adults usually wear black while children or younger adults dress in lighter colours. After the mass or funeral service is conducted at the church, there will be a procession to the burial site.

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