What is Direct Cremation?
Update: Solace is now Tulip Cremation, the nation’s largest online direct cremation services provider, delivering world-class and compassionate care 24/7.
Direct cremation is a form of what’s called “immediate disposition” where the body is cremated in the days immediately following the death, without a funeral service or viewing beforehand. Families who are looking for a more affordable cost of cremation often choose direct cremation.
Solace Cremation offers one price for direct cremation services including transportation, cremation, all necessary filings and the return of remains in a Solace temporary urn in-person or by USPS. Solace Cremation offers direct cremation services in several states.
Cremation is more affordable and popular than burial
Cremation’s popularity is now at its highest historic rate in the United States. Cremation rates have surpassed burial rates every year since 2015, reaching 56 percent in 2020. The National Funeral Directors Association (NFDA) expects an 87 percent rate by 2040. Now, there are more than 2,100 crematories in the United States. We’re facing a cremation revolution.
Many are drawn to cremation because it is more affordable than burial. After embalming and purchasing caskets and gravesites, the median price of burial is now $9,500. After the Great Recession in 2008, there was a jump in the cremation rate because people wanted a lower-cost alternative. The trend continued with the pandemic.
Is direct cremation right for my family?
There are many questions to consider when deciding if direct cremation is right for you or a family member. For many, the cost, convenience and simplicity make it a good option.
What happens before direct cremation?
First, paperwork. Before cremation can take place, a cremation authorization form must be completed and signed by the next of kin or your loved one’s legal representative. This document gives a cremation provider permission to proceed. We’ve worked hard at Solace to make our process as efficient and easy on families as possible.
Next, transportation. If you choose Solace Cremation, we will arrange a time with you to arrive to respectfully and compassionately retrieve your loved one, taking them in our care and to our facility.
Medical implants and pacemakers are removed before cremation can begin. While many cremation service providers charge extra for this, Solace Cremation will never include a charge for removal in the cost of cremation.
What happens during direct cremation?
After the transport of the loved one, the body will be kept in secure, cold storage until paperwork and scheduling are complete.
Once ready, operators follow strict protocols to ensure identities are tracked throughout the process.
The cremation equipment heats the body to between 1,400 and 1,600 degrees Fahrenheit. The process takes up to two hours as the body is reduced to bone fragments.
You can learn more about the cremation process from CANA, the Cremation Association of North America.
What happens after direct cremation?
After the cremation process is complete, the remains are processed into smaller, uniform sizes and a magnet is used to gather any pieces of metal not removed before cremation. Then, the remains are transferred to a container, often a thick plastic bag with an ID tag and/or placed into a temporary urn.
Though we often call remains “ashes,” they are bone fragments ground into the consistency of ashes. The color of the remains varies for every person. The average amount of cremated remains looks like a 5 lb. bag of flour.
Solace Cremation will arrange either in-person or USPS mail delivery of the remains at no additional cost depending on where you live and your preference. We suggest having support at this time as it can be emotional for some people.
Does direct cremation mean I can’t have a service for my loved one?
While there is not a funeral, viewing or visitation before direct cremation, you can still celebrate and remember your loved one in many different, impactful ways. Many choose to hold a Celebration of Life or scatter their loved ones’ ashes around their loved one’s favorite places. See our blog for more creative ideas.
For a growing number of people, the cost, ease and flexibility of a direct cremation makes it a great choice. Whatever you choose, we hope you find a fit that works for your budget and your beliefs.