Planning one’s own funeral might seem an unusual thing to do, but many people find peace of mind in having plans in place so that everyone knows their wishes well in advance. Doing so removes the need for their nearest and dearest to make decisions at a difficult and emotional time when it can be hard to think clearly.

Family and friends will be comforted to know that they are giving you the funeral you wanted. Planning can also help to make the expense of a funeral easier to manage.

Making sure your wishes are respected

Start by writing down some thoughts about what you want – you can use online funeral planning guides to help with this.


  • Where your funeral should take place
  • Any preference regarding burial or cremation (and what should happen with your ashes)
  • Which type of service you’d like, religious or not
  • Whether or not you wish loved ones to view your body
  • Your preferred music or readings
  • How you wish to be dressed
  • How you wish guests to be dressed (for example, these days, many people ask guests not to wear ‘funereal’ black)
  • Type of reception or wake and where this should be held
  • Which funeral director should organise your funeral
  • Who you would like to invite, and who should speak, if anyone

You may also find it helpful to discuss your thoughts with family and friends. That may not be easy, but it will be worth it because you can be confident that they understand your wishes. Certainly, you will want to let them know that you have made a plan. Then put your notes somewhere that is easy to find – preferably with your will.

Pre-paid funeral plans

The average cost of a basic burial in 2023 was approaching £5,100 while a basic cremation will set you back by over £3,800 (source: SunLife). Your family and friends may struggle to cover all the costs if you do not leave money in your will to pay for your funeral. One way to protect them is to take out a pre-paid funeral plan which lets you pay in advance and effectively fixes the costs at current prices. Plans can vary hugely in terms of cost and the cover they offer.

To find out more click here.