Burial Versus Cremation – What to Consider When Deciding Between Both?

Thursday, 21 January 2021

The choice between burial and cremation is an important and often an emotional issue; it is helpful if each person makes this decision and tells family members before they pass away so their wishes can be followed.

This difficult decision will come down to what’s right for you and your family, and this can be based on your personal beliefs, religion, budget, and other factors.

The main factors to be analysed when making the decision can fit into these categories:

  1. Practical Arguments
  2. Cost
  3. Environmental

Let’s walk through each of these points to help you make the best decision.

  1. Practical Arguments

There are some practical arguments to be made for both burial and cremation that you should consider when making your decision.

 

Cremation

In recent years, we have seen cremation become a more popular option for Australians over traditional burials.

Cremated Ashes can be placed into a lovely Niche or Garden area at your chosen cemetery or Crematorium, complete with plaque to mark their place of rest.

However, keep in mind that it is also an option to bury ashes in a cemetery, which offers cremation the same benefits of a permanent resting place.

Ashes can also be placed into beautiful Urns, Keepsake urns, or Jewellery items. We have a gorgeous range of urns for you to choose from if this is your preference. See our range of urns on our website.

Cremation allows the Cremated Remains to be scattered at a place of significance following a loved one’s wishes.

Assuming the cremated remains aren’t interred in a cemetery, they can be taken by the family should they ever wish to relocate or send them overseas.

For families who live long distances apart or in different countries, cremation offers a more straightforward way to return the body home, rather than a full and expensive repatriation process.

Without a permanent resting place, cremated remains can easily be lost, broken, or stolen so some form of permanent memorial is the choice of many families.

Burial

A grave in a cemetery is a permanent place that can be visited honouring and remembering your loved one for generations to come and is a permanent resting place. Many people take great comfort in visiting the cemetery and leaving flowers or special keepsakes especially at birthdays, anniversaries, and Christmas.

Most graves cater for 2 or even 3 burials with family members being interred in the same grave or separate graves can be selected.

 

  1. Cost

Frequently, people choose a cremation because they perceive it to be cheaper than burial.

While this is mostly true, extra options can frequently increase the total cost of cremation to as much and sometimes more than a basic burial.

The cost of burials, includes the plot, interment fees for each person buried and the plaque but remember it also includes the professional maintenance of the cemetery grounds for many generations to come.

Funeral costs include:

  • Transfer of loved one
  • Preparation for funeral
  • Funeral service
  • Funeral director fees
  • Viewing prior to service
  • Celebrant or clergy
  • Legal documents, including the death certificate and medical certificate
  • Coffin or casket
  • Flowers
  • Burial or Cremation costs
  • Order of service Leaflets
  • Photo Tributes
  • Catering costs

 

  1. Environmental

There have been numerous studies on whether burial or cremation is better for the environment. Most studies show that cremation is somewhat more sustainable and eco-friendlier, but not always by as much as you might think.

While many kgs of carbon dioxide are created by cremation, when you factor in that graves in cemeteries need to be maintained, watered and fertilised in perpetuity, and they often have a larger carbon footprint. Studies estimate cremations to be anywhere between 10-50% better for the environment.

If you are environmentally conscious, by far the best option for the environment is a green funeral, where bodies are interred without embalming in a 100% natural and biodegradable coffin.

 

Consider planning your funeral ahead

 

Whether Cremation or Burial is going to be your choice, the best advice is planning your funeral ahead. That way your family will know your preference and understand your choices and directions.

 

Find out more about Burial and Cremation options in our website.

https://ahfunerals.com.au/arrange-a-funeral/burial-and-cremation-options/