Although cremation dates back thousands of years ago, it has only become a common choice among Americans recently. A report by the National Funeral Directors Association estimates that in 2021, 57.5% of end-of-life celebrations were cremations. Only 36.6% of the celebrations were burials.
If you’re considering cremation as an option for yourself or a loved one, you may be wondering, “How much does cremation cost?” One of the benefits of cremation is that it’ll be cheaper than a traditional burial.
But the prices can vary depending on a variety of factors. This guide will give you an idea of what to expect regarding cremation prices.
The Average Cost of Cremation
On average, cremation services will cost $1,100 for direct cremation and $6,720 for cremation with a funeral service. This price range will depend on your location.
Cremation costs in rural areas will be cheaper than cremation services in big cities. For example, in New York, you’ll pay up to $10,200 to cremate your loved one. The cost in Washington, DC, ranges between $700 and $7,600.
The type of cremation service you choose will also play a role in the overall cost. Direct cremation is the most affordable cremation option.
Bear in mind that there are no regulations for cremation costs. You should do your research to choose a cremation service provider with the fairest prices.
The Average Cost of Different Types of Cremation
If your loved one is getting cremated, you’ll have to choose the best option from the four available alternatives. The cost of each cremation type differs as follows:
Direct cremation is the simplest cremation option. The cremation process happens without any funeral or memorial service. It’s the best option if you’re working with a small budget.
You’ll take the body directly to the crematorium after death. Once the cremation is complete, the cremation company will return the ashes to your family or scatter them according to your wishes. On average, direct cremation services will cost $1,100.
Cremation With a Memorial Service
This option means you’ll hold a service at a funeral home, but the remains of your deceased loved one don’t have to be present. It’s less expensive than a traditional funeral. You won’t need to embalm the body or prepare it for viewing.
The average cost of cremation with a memorial is $1,200. This cost includes the cremation fee, the cost of using the facility, and a basic printed memorial package.
Cremation With a Traditional Funeral Service
A traditional funeral with cremation is similar to a regular funeral. The main difference is that cremation takes place after the funeral service. The body of your deceased loved one will be present at the funeral in an open casket for viewing or a closed casket.
The cremation service provider will return the ashes to you in an urn or your container of choice. The average cost of this cremation option is $5,000. The cremation prices are a bit higher because you’ll have to pay for things like embalming and grooming.
No-Cost Cremation/Donation to Science
In some cases, it’s possible to get cremated for free. This is usually only an option if you’re willing to donate your body to science.
You can contact local universities or cremation societies to ask about this possibility. It’s essential to make arrangements in advance because most organizations have a limited number of spots available.
Cremation Services That Can Add to the Cost
Some cremation add-ons will increase the overall cost of cremating your deceased loved one. These include:
Even when you opt for direct cremation, you’ll need a simple casket where the body will rest during cremation. The casket will be made of cardboard or wood. Its average price will range between $120 for a simple cardboard casket and $500 for a wooden one.
If you opt for a traditional funeral, you’ll need a better casket. You can rent a coffin during the funeral if you can’t afford one.
Cremation jewelry has a small compartment where you can place a portion of the cremains. This jewelry will help you keep your deceased loved one close to you at all times.
It’s a beautiful and unique way to memorialize your loved one. The average price of cremation jewelry will range from $10 to $200. You can check out Memorials.com for some of the most unique and affordable cremation jewelry.
Cremation Plot or Niche in a Columbarium
If you want to bury the cremains, you’ll need to buy a cremation plot or a niche in a columbarium. The cremation plot price can range from $500 to over $5,000. The final cost will depend on the cemetery’s location and other factors.
A cremation niche is a small space where you can place the cremains in an urn. The cremation niche price will usually start at around $500 and can go up to over $3,000.
If you don’t want to keep the cremains at home or bury them, you can opt for ash scattering. The cremation company will scatter the ashes in a meaningful place for you.
The average cost of ash scattering will range from $50 to over $500. The final price will depend on the location and your other requirements.
How to Save Money on Cremation Services
Cremation is already one of the most affordable funeral options. But there are still ways to save money on cremation services without compromising quality.
Here are some cremation cost-saving tips:
- Choose direct cremation
- Scatter the ashes yourself
- Have a cremation memorial service instead of a traditional funeral
- Choose an inexpensive cremation casket or container
- Purchase your cremation urn
While these may sound like simple practices, they’ll help you save money in the long run. For example, purchasing your urn will help you avoid the markup that cremation service providers typically charge for the same.
How Much Does Cremation Cost? Find Out and Start Planning
If cremation piques your interest, you might be searching for answers to “how much is cremation” or “how much does cremation cost.”
Our article shows that it’s an affordable and practical way to say goodbye to your loved one. We hope you now have the confidence to make the cremation arrangements for your deceased loved one.
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