Both The Cremation Association of North America and the National Funeral Directors Association (NFDA) have reported that the number of Americans who are selecting cremation as a funeral option of choice is on the rise.
Over the last fifteen years, the rate of funerals that have opted for cremation for the disposition of the body, has nearly doubled. About 24.8% of funerals were cremations in 1999, but by 2014, this percentage had increased to over 46%. This trend is expected to contine and it is clear that cremation is becoming the most popular choice for most Americans.
Why Americans Choose Cremation
Among the reasons to choose cremation compared to a traditional burial include:
As reported by Fox Business News, the average cost of a traditional burial in the USA is roughly $6,600 when using a simple metal casket. Add to that the cost of the burial plot and a cement grave liner, typically $3,000 or more, and the cost increases. Consider that a top-of-the line metal casket can run up to $10,000 or more, and that's not it: annual maintenance fees for burial plots must be maintaind for a long time.
Compare this to the average cost for a cremation, which is around $3,200. For those who are cost conscious, or lack the financial resources for a burial, a basic cremation, without a professional memorial service, costs around $600. The U.S. Federal Trade Commission has a checklist of funeral items that helps calculate the total costs.
It comes as no surprise that consumers are now increasingly using online resources, such as Simple Cremation USA to find cremation solutions that are more cost effective while highly appropriate and available for budgets of any range. And costs alone are not the only attractive feature for cremation services, as even wealthy individuals such as David Bowie have opted for cremation as their preferred method of having their remains disposed post mortem.
Freedom and Flexibility for the Memorial Ceremony
Another key benefit for cremation, is that is allows the friends and family of a deceased person to celebration the life of the departed with a high degree of flexibility: opening up options to hold memorial events in nearly any location, with only a very few restrictions.
Based on the wishes of the person that passed or the desires of those remaining, some part, or all of the cremains (ashes):
- can be kept in a special place,
- maybe displayed at home in the presence of loved ones,
- are spread (scattered) in a natural setting or at sea,
- or placed in a location that has a special significance to the person and their life.
The remains, also known as "Cremains", can be placed in an urn just like a casket or stored in a crypt. Compared to burial of a casket, a cremation offers flexibility and more freedom in the scheduling and location of a memorial ceremony, since the event does not have to happen right away, and the cremains are not as difficult to move as when dealing with the full body of a deceased person.
The NFDA offers a detailed discussion of cremation options.
Cremation isaccepted by many religions, and in some cases is the only acceptable method for disposing of a person's body after death.
Hindus must be cremated, and for Buddhists, cremation is the most common method.
In Christian faiths, cremation is an acceptable practice for Baptists, Episcopalians, Catholics, Lutherans, Methodists, Mormons (while burial preferred, cremation is permitted), Presbyterians (permitted but burial preferred), and Quakers.
There are also religious followings that do not accept Cremation: specifically Muslims, Orthodox Jews (cremation is allowed for Reform Jews), and Eastern Orthodox Christians.
Following the rise of environmental awareness, a recently trend is the concept of a “green funeral” has emerged. A 'green funeral' avoids using materials that do not biodegrade as well as any products that are toxic for the environment, such as formaldehyde used for embalming fluid. Cremains do not spread disease, are non-toxic, and environmentally friendly.
Cremation in America is on the rise, and recent data shows that many are discovering that cremation is both acceptable, affordable, and convenient. To explore the various options, visit Simple Cremation USA for more information.
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