Direct cremation is an increasingly popular funeral option, with demand more than quadrupling in the last four years. The number of burials has remained consistent throughout this period. However cremations, traditionally the most popular funeral choice, has become split between traditional and direct cremation options.
A direct cremation is the simplest option available: one without any service or ceremony with no congregation and a very simple coffin. Demand has increased from just 2% in 2018 to 18% in 2022. (Sunlife Cost of Dying Report 2023)
Why do people choose direct cremation?
Despite the obvious cost saving, only 5% of people seek the cheapest option for their loved one’s cremation. The Big Future of Funerals Survey 2022 showed that direct cremation is popular due to:
- 54% – Less stress for the family and friends they’ll leave behind
- 15% – A simple and straightforward option
- 14% – Emphasis on their life, not their death
- 12% – Everyone can go straight to the wake
- 5% – The cheapest option
As well as being simpler and quicker, direct cremations emphasise celebrating the deceased person’s life rather than a traditional funeral service. 52% of people want to express their life through their ashes’ final resting place via more informal and celebratory events.
Trends for the future
The survey results show that a good send-off still matters, but how this looks and where it happens are already changing thanks to two key developments:
- A well-established trend towards celebrating the life that has been lived rather than mourning the death.
- A new opportunity to ‘uncouple’ the cremation from the ceremonial elements.
It remains important to acknowledge someone’s death. This is becoming increasingly personalised and experience based. Some people would rather avoid the stress of the funeral service, whereas others find this an important comfort and opportunity to mark the start of a new chapter in life. Above all, it’s important to remember that regardless of the type of funeral, it’s important to reflect the wishes of the deceased person and their loved ones. The team at Austin’s Family Funeral Directors can guide you through the choices available with compassion and expert knowledge. We’re here to help.