Burial or Cremation: What should you choose when planning a funeral?

Planning a funeral can be overwhelming, especially when dealing with the grief of losing a loved one. Living Hope Funerals understand how hard this can be. That’s why we provide sensitive and helpful service so you can make informed decisions with our support and without the pressure. The main thing to decide is whether to have a burial or cremation. In this article will consider the functions of each.


Burials have long been a way of honouring and remembering our loved ones across many cultures. The body is laid to rest in the earth or sometimes in a vault or mausoleum. This symbolises a return to nature and is a resting place on earth. 

During the burial service friends and family gather at the graveside to pay their respects and say farewell. Flowers or soil may be placed on the coffin in the grave as a symbolic way of saying goodbye. Choosing a burial plot is important for the family because the location is then somewhere the family can go to remember their loved one in the future.

Types of Burial Plots

There are three types of burial plots; single, double or family. Single plots are a dedicated resting place for one person. Double plots are designed to accommodate a couple, either side by side or stacked. Family plots provide the comfort of knowing multiple family members are laid to rest together.

When you buy a burial plot, you have the right to use that space for a certain length of time. In Australian cemeteries you may have the option to purchase a plot for 25, 50 or 99 years. Some cemeteries offer the perpetual right of interment, meaning your family can use the plot for generations to come. Check with your chosen cemetery to see what they offer.


Today, cremation is a very common choice, partly because it is a less expensive option but also because it allows the family to choose what to do with the ashes. You may wish to purchase a decorative urn to keep the ashes in, or to scatter them in sacred places or somewhere that holds great meaning for the family. Some people have some of the ashes made into jewellery, in order to keep their loved ones close.

It is also possible to inter ashes in a grave. There may already be a grave plot, usually for a double burial, in which two sets of ashes can also be interred as well as the coffins. The memorial park staff will be able to advise you on these issues, or you can ask Living Hope Funerals, and we will enquire on your behalf.

Burial or cremation?

This is a very personal decision and depends upon your beliefs, values and cultural practices. There are some key things to consider in making this choice:

  • Burials are more expensive than cremations. This is because it involves purchasing a gravesite, the cost of interment and fees for the opening and closing of the grave. The cost is determined by the cemetery. 
  • Burials can hold great traditional, cultural and religious importance for many people. They provide a way for families to honour traditions, rituals and practices of their culture and beliefs.

Contact Living Hope Funerals and we will help guide you through these decisions and give you more details so you can make an informed choice.

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