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Direct Cremation Guide

What is a direct cremation, and how much does it cost? What is the difference between cremation and direct cremation? Learn more about this type of cremation, what it involves and why people choose them. 


What is a direct cremation?

Direct cremation, also referred to as a cremation without ceremony or an unattended funeral, is ideal for those who do not want a service or ceremony prior to the cremation.

As a non-traditional funeral, there is no procession, so no requirement for costly extras such as a hearse or limousines, and no funeral service or ceremony at the crematorium. This means that direct cremation costs are usually lower than traditional funeral services, saving you a significant amount of money. This type of cremation usually takes place without the attendance of any mourners.

The direct nature of this service means that there is no embalming and no opportunity to view the deceased. 

Following a Simplicity direct cremation, the ashes will be scattered in our gardens of remembrance or can be returned to the family upon request, at an additional cost. If you are planning a memorial with the ashes present, please allow up to 6 weeks for the return of ashes.


How much does a direct cremation cost?

In the UK, this type of non-traditional funeral is one of the most affordable funeral options. As one of the most popular alternatives, a direct cremation costs considerably less than the average traditional funeral you’d arrange with the assistance of a Funeral Director. Read how much does a direct cremation cost for more information about pricing.


How to choose a quality direct cremation provider

It’s important to do your research before choosing a funeral service provider. We’d recommend selecting a reputable company with the relevant knowledge, experience and facilities to carry out a respectful funeral for your loved one.

A low cost funeral should not mean substandard care. As part of the UK’s largest funeral group, we’re the only nationwide direct cremation service provider that has its own staff, vehicles, mortuaries and crematoriums. Our network of facilities ensures a consistently high quality of care, teamed with decades of experience in conducting funerals.

When someone close to you dies, it can be an extremely stressful and emotional time. At Simplicity, we are dedicated to supporting people through what can be a difficult time. From the moment we collect your loved one to the moment the ashes are scattered in our gardens of remembrance or returned to you, every stage of the process is carried out with the utmost care. Our grief and loss support service is available 24 hours a day should you need it - something not all providers will offer.

As recognition to our high quality services, we were awarded Best Direct Cremation Provider in the 2018 Good Funeral Awards.


Can you attend a direct cremation?

An unattended funeral does not usually offer any kind of funeral service or the presence of a minister or officiant, and usually takes place without the presence of any mourners.

If you’d prefer a funeral with the option to attend, you may find our intimate funeral (up to 12 people) or attended funeral (full capacity at the crematorium) will suit your needs better.


Why do people choose direct cremation?

A direct cremation suits those people that for whatever reason, do not want a funeral service at their own or their loved one’s funeral. There are several reasons why an increasing number of people are choosing this type of cremation, which may include:

Direct cremation costs are significantly lower than a traditional funeral
There are an increasing number of people looking for more affordable funeral options, although this is not always the driving factor for those that choose direct cremation. When cost is the reason, it's often because the deceased wished for the money that would have been spent on a traditional funeral to be spent in a more meaningful way by their family.

Your loved one expressed their wishes for a low key funeral
Some people really do not want a fuss when they are gone. Many people do not see the value in some of the ceremonial aspects of a traditional funeral such as a hearse, limousines or floral tributes and would prefer a simpler affair.

Your loved one did not wish for a funeral with a religious ceremony
We provide the cremation without any religious features. Should your loved one have wanted a religious service, you may wish to organise a memorial at a later date.

Family or friends of the deceased live far away
Distance can often make it hard for the family to travel to a funeral, particularly if they live abroad. It is easier to transport ashes abroad than to repatriate a loved one that has passed away. Some people also choose this kind of cremation because as the next of kin, the responsibility to arrange the funeral has fallen to them, but they were not particularly close to the deceased.

You want to hold a celebration at a different time and place away from the crematorium
Many people opt for this kind of funeral in favour of holding a memorial or celebration of life in honour of their loved one at a later date.

Whatever your reason for choosing direct cremation, we will guide you through the entire process.


How to arrange a direct cremation with Simplicity

Arranging a direct cremation is a simple, straightforward process. Unlike a traditional funeral, you will not have to spend hours face to face with a Funeral Director.

Most of the arrangements can be made over the telephone by our expert team.  We will take care of the process, keeping you informed every step of the way.

The funeral will take place at one of our preferred crematoria, at a time and place of our choice. We’ll let you know when the cremation has taken place. This may take a few weeks due to the capacity at the crematoria.

Our phone lines are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, so we’ll be ready to help you understand how to arrange a cremation and the process that follows. We're here when you need us most. 

Would you like to have more involvement in the process? Or the chance to attend the service? Our intimate and attended funeral services may be more suited to you. 


Prepaid Direct Cremation Funeral Plans

If you like the sound of a direct cremation for yourself, you may be interested in a prepaid funeral plan.

Not only will a prepaid direct cremation allow you to freeze the cost of your funeral at today’s price, it will also alleviate your family from the stressful task of making your funeral arrangements when the time comes. They will simply need to call us and we will set the funeral plan into motion.

If you do not feel ready to purchase a  prepaid direct cremation plan, you may wish to share your wishes with a member of your family. This will let them know what you’d like when the time comes but doesn’t require any payment or arrangements. 


We hope that we've answered your questions such as 'what is a direct cremation' and 'what is the difference between cremation and direct cremation'. If you've any further questions, take a look at our frequently asked questions. Alternatively, contact us to talk to one of our friendly professionals.


Download our Guide to Direct Cremation here.

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