Before we discuss funeral alternatives for a traditional service, it is worth noting that many Americans are still opting to have a traditional funeral for their loved ones – one that consists of a viewing (visitation or wake), funeral, and graveside service. If this is your preference, talk with your local funeral home and create an end-of-life plan.

However, those in the funeral industry understand that not everyone wants to have a traditional or typical end-of-life event. Some may seek an alternative to reduce funeral costs, while other families may choose a funeral alternative because they want a less formal event.

Alternative Funeral Services

Here are a few alternatives to a traditional burial. We will advise you on how to save money as well as ideas for celebrating your loved one’s life that you may have never considered.

Direct Cremation

One of the lowest cost options available is direct cremation. Families who choose direct cremation may say goodbye to their loved ones at the place of death. Then, the body is transported to the cremation facility. Because the body is cremated, funeral planning doesn’t need to be done immediately (if at all).

The benefit of simple cremation is that the family does not have to pay for additional transportation or storage costs, embalming, and the costs associated with preparing the remains for viewing.

Direct Burial and Natural Burial

Another cheaper alternative to traditional funerals is direct or immediate burial. This type of service costs more than directly cremating the body, as you are required to purchase a vault, metal casket (or one made from another material), a burial plot, and a headstone. However, because there is no open-casket visitation, the family saves on embalming and service costs.

Green burials (sometimes referred to as “natural burials”) are available in some areas. Talk with a local funeral home employee to learn about green burial (natural burial) alternatives.

Celebration of Life Memorial Service

In some cases, the family chooses to say goodbye to a loved one by having a celebration of life to honor the deceased. You are only limited by your creativity when laying your loved one to rest.

For example, you can gather friends and family to scatter the ashes around a newly planted tree. You may consider a home funeral or sea burial.

Some gather friends to share food, drinks, and memories. Others go out in nature to say goodbye.

Talk With Your Funeral Director for Alternatives to a Traditional Funeral

Whether you are looking for a creative location to scatter your loved one’s cremated remains or are searching for an alternative to high-cost services, talk with the compassionate staff at Alabama Funeral Homes & Cremation Centers. We will not only help you with the preferred method of disposition, but we will also help you choose a funeral service that would be perfect for your loved one.

Contact us any time – day or night– to discuss funeral alternatives in our area. Whether your loved one preferred to be buried or cremated, we will help you find the perfect way to say goodbye to your beloved family member.