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Archives: Consumers

Don’t Get Buried in Debt

BENEFITS OF MEMBERSHIP IN A FUNERAL CONSUMERS ALLIANCE Funerals in the United States are more elabo-rate and costly than funerals in most other countries. Competition in the usual sense is largely absent in the U.S. funeral business. Yet, paradoxically, there are too many mor-tuaries and half of them receive only one or two cases a week. Read more

Death Away from Home


• Local burial
This is often the least expensive option; however, a few countries do not allow the burial of foreigners. The Consular Officer will be able to tell you. • Cremation
Available in most countries, it may be prohibited or limited in predominantly Catholic or Muslim countries. Read more

Dead Bodies and Disease: The “Danger” That Doesn’t Exist

Funeral industry members frequently claim that dead bodies are a source of contagion to the public, and that embalming is necessary to prevent the spread of disease. Some will also claim that unembalmed dead bodies must be buried in a casket and a vault to prevent “contamination” of groundwater. Read more

Cremation Explained, Answers to Frequently Asked Questions

Cremation is the process of reducing the body to ashes and bone fragments through the use of intense heat. The process usually takes from two to four hours. The cremated remains are then pulverized to break up larger bone fragments to a granular texture. Read more

Guide to Cemetery Purchases

Many people ask us about funeral costs, but often they forget about cemetery expenses, which can be substantial. Buying burial rights at a cemetery can be a complicated and costly process, and cemeteries aren’t sufficiently regulated in most states. Read more

Common Funeral Myths

You must hire a funeral home for every death.
It is perfectly legal in most states to care for the body privately, as a family, without hiring a funeral home. Families can choose to do some or all of the process. A family may want to wash and dress the body and keep it at home for several days as part of a private vigil, only calling the funeral home or crematory when they are ready to let the body go. Read more

Caskets—how to save on them

Note—Retail casket stores come and go so frequently we’re no longer listing them individually as the information is often out of date quickly. If you’re looking for a retail casket business, a local artisan who makes caskets, or a specialty type of casket not available from your funeral home, your best bet is to do a Google search for terms such as your state/region, caskets, retail, casket stores, etc.  Read more