If we were to be completely honest, no one really wants to have to think about planning their own funeral. Unfortunately, circumstances sometimes mean that we are faced with the thought of our own death, and planning a funeral can help to ensure that your final wishes are met.
Also, who says that planning a funeral has to be a sad thing? Anyone can plan their funeral at any time, you don’t have to be facing death to make sure your wishes are met! You can make notes for your loved ones and write them in a will. Or even make a night of it with your friends, chatting and sharing how you want to be celebrated or remembered.
At Bequest, we believe that planning your own funeral can also bring comfort to those who experience the loss of a loved one and we’ve prepared a checklist and included lots of guidance on preparing for death that you may want to consider. From looking into how much a funeral costs, to different kinds of funeral ceremonies, and even some more eco-friendly types of funerals. There is plenty to think about when it comes to planning a funeral.
What type of funeral would you prefer? 🤔
Should it be a celebration of your life, or something simple, modest or respectful? Thinking about this will allow you to then consider some of the finer details once you decide on the general theme of the occasion.
Do you want to be buried or cremated? ⚰️
You probably already have an idea of what your preference is, but there are a few options that are a bit outside-the-box that are available for you to choose nowadays. Green burials are designed to leave no mark on the land by using biodegradable coffins made of natural materials and leaving just a small biodegradable memorial, or even none at all. Eco-friendly funerals can also work out cheaper than more traditional services due to the simplicity of them. Something worth thinking about.
Where would you like your funeral to take place? 🌳
Choosing a venue for the ceremony and deciding on a location for the wake or memorial service is an important part of your funeral plan. Churches or crematoriums are probably the most common choices, but you could also select a funeral home or parish hall. Perhaps there is a special place full of memories that would be a good choice for you. Maybe you want to be buried in a woodland and have a tree planted in memorial. There are many options, it’s just a case of looking at them all and deciding what’s right for you and your loved ones.
Would you prefer a religious funeral ceremony? 🙏
If not, you may want to think about who you would like to conduct your ceremony. You could choose a non-religious celebrant or even a friend or family member.
What personal touches would you like? 🎵
Selecting a range of personally meaningful hymns or music to be played during the ceremony can help to bring a real sense of poignancy during the occasion. Similarly, you may wish to select a reading or poem for a loved one to read at the ceremony or memorial service. Perhaps you would like everyone to wear your favourite colour instead of the traditional black? The possibilities are really endless, it’s just a case of deciding what’s most important to you.
Do you want flowers or charitable donations? 💐
Traditional funeral flowers are a common way for mourners to pay tribute to the deceased, they are a visual expression of grief. Some may choose to contribute to a charity or organisation that holds great personal meaning instead.
How is the funeral going to be paid for? 💷
You may want to take out a funeral plan to pay for your funeral in full before you die. You could also leave money in your estate from life insurance, so that when the time comes your executor will have the funds made available to pay the funeral costs. You can find advice for those wanting some help to pay for a funeral and more information about what sort of help is available from the government with claiming funeral benefits.
Making a plan now can be a fun activity, or it could be the last act of kindness you do for your loved ones, and it will be appreciated more than ever for taking some of the pressure off during a time of grief and distress. At Bequest, we’re here to help you prepare for death in whatever way you feel is appropriate for you. You may want to read our article for more advice on preparing for death. You could also ensure that you have a life insurance policy and a will in place so that if the worst were to happen, your loved ones’ interests and your own wishes are taken care of. 💛