How to Manage Funeral Plan Comparison When There is so Much Choice

The benefits of funeral plans are manifold, and offer a simple and convenient way to get all the arrangements in place for when the time comes.

However, with so many different providers in the market, it can sometimes be difficult to know who to pick.

But if you know what features to look out for, you will be able to easily wade your way through the mountain of providers to find the one that offers what you want at the best price.

Here are a few suggestions about how to carry out an effective comparison.

Compare like with like

Cost is inevitably a factor when you are choosing a funeral plan provider but the cheapest quote doesn’t necessarily tell the whole story.

Funeral costs look like they are inevitably going to rise.
Funeral costs look like they are inevitably going to rise.

If you are trying to pick the most economical option, simply looking at the price tag could be misleading.

Funeral plans are a great way to reduce the costs for your family; by freezing the prices at today’s value, it leaves more money to protect your loved ones.

However, not all plans include every element

When you’re comparing quotes for funeral plans it’s essential to understand what you are getting for your money. A quote which looks far cheaper than the others may not include all of the same components. The only way to check if you are getting the best value is comparing like with like.

A trusted company

Handing over money to a funeral plan provider isn’t something you should take lightly; it’s vital to know that you can trust them with your hard-earned cash.

It’s an extremely good idea to make sure that the funeral plan provider you are interested in is a fit and proper organisation and offers what it says. The best way to do this is to check to see if they’re a member of the Funeral Planning Authority.

A self-regulating body, the FPA is independent and provides protection for consumers by monitoring their activity and providing a code of conduct by which they must abide. Before granting membership they carry out an assessment to see if they are a legitimate and stable company, and they also have strict criteria for the ring-fencing of customers’ money.

Although membership of the FPA is not compulsory, it’s recommended to use a company which belongs to the body as it provides reassurance over quality.

Use a specialist comparison site

Because funeral plans are rapidly becoming so popular, it’s now possible to get a comparison of providers on mainstream finance sites but there’s a risk that you might not get all the information you need.

There are a number of big players in the industry, but they don’t necessarily always offer the best value, or the best package. Smaller or more specialist providers may not appear in generic comparison sites so it’s better to use a specific funeral plan provider comparison portal.

Whatever type of funeral you want needs financing, using a comparison site is a sensible idea.
Whatever type of funeral you want needs financing, using a comparison site is a sensible idea.

A comparison site can take all of the hard work out of comparing the different plans, allowing you to see the features and the prices with just a glance. By selecting those you are interested in you can carry out a more detailed comparison side by side, saving you hours trawling the internet looking at individual sites.

Be clear about what you want

There are many funeral plan providers out there offering great deals but having a clear idea about what you want in advance can help you find what’s right for you.

It’s very easy to get side-tracked by competitive offers but if it’s not what you’re looking for, you could end up with a plan that’s good value but doesn’t represent the funeral you really wanted.

Take some time to think about some of the fundamental details in advance; if you know whether you want a cremation or a burial, and whether you prefer a budget or deluxe coffin, it will make it far easier to narrow down your selection.


Having so many funeral plan providers in the market can only be a good thing as it means the consumer ends up with not just greater choice, but also more competition on price. However, it can be easy to get lost in the swathe of offers, bargains and deals available.

By using the above top tips you should find it much easier to select the funeral plan that best suits your needs.

The Important Role of Candles in a Funeral Service

Relaxing, tranquil and beautiful, candles are used in a variety of settings, but most frequently to denote peace, harmony and respect.

It’s therefore little surprise that candles play an important role in funeral services, regardless of faith or religion.

A sign of great love and harmony, candles have been used in memorials for many thousands of years, and despite all the modern technology that’s now available, still play an integral part in the funerals of today.

Here’s a closer look at candles and the vital role they play in funeral services.



Candles have been used at funerals and memorials since ancient times, rooted in both religious and non-religious practices.

Candles are so strongly symbolic that they have been used by almost every faith, religion, race and culture in their memorial or funeral services, used to represent a link between this life and the next.

As well as during the memorial, candles were used during the burials too. Evidence revealed that in ancient Greece candles were often buried with the deceased in order to provide them with a light to guide them through the darkness.

But candles weren’t always lit out of respect during funerals, sometimes they were also used in a more fearful way.

The Romans kept a candlelit vigil around a body to ward off evil spirits that may seek to enter and falsely bring the individual back to “life”. In other cultures, the candle was lit during the service to prove to the deceased that they were well respected and honoured. This was believed to be important to stop the ghost of the recently-departed from coming back to haunt anyone.

Religions and faith


Candles have played an extremely prominent role in various faiths throughout the ages, but despite their different beliefs, a love of candles and what they represent are fairly constant throughout.

Many religions believe that the candle represents the human soul and the eternal nature of life itself. However some faiths have a far more religious explanation about the use of candles in funerals. Here are just a few different faiths and their rationale.



In the Jewish faith, the funeral service itself is only a small part of the official mourning process. In accordance with Jewish rules, the funeral should take place quickly, ideally within 24 hours, and it is on return to the house of mourning that the official candle is lit.

Candles are regularly seen on important occasions in Judaism, and in death it’s no different. A memorial candle remains lit in the house of mourning for seven days and nights, never being extinguished during this time. It is strongly preferable to use a real candle rather than an electric simulation because of the symbolic representation each part of the candle holds.

The flame is said to represent the soul, a light that was brought into the mortal world during birth. And the constant upward flickering of this flame is symbolic of the striving of the soul to achieve good things, in the same way the candle’s light reaches towards the heavens.



There is no tradition which involves the use of candles during a Muslim funeral but by the same token, candles are not expressly banned either. For this reason, it’s a common site for a Muslim funeral to involve a soothing bath of candlelight for no other reason that the pure beauty and silent respect a candle implies.

Catholicism and Anglican


A Catholic funeral is one which is deeply symbolic with a number of rituals which must be observed and followed.

The Paschal Candle is a holy item and one which is extremely important to the church. Renewed every Easter, it is only lit on important occasions, one of those being a funeral.

The Paschal Candle is lit ceremoniously at the beginning of the service and placed close to the casket. Other candles may also be lit and placed nearby without restriction.

The Catholic Church stipulates that beeswax candles should ideally be used for funeral services (and at other times in the church) although it is possible to use a candle which has other waxes mixed in too.

The Anglican funeral service is almost identical to the Catholic service, with the Paschal Candle placed at the head of the casket. It may however be lit, together with the altar candles, prior to the arrival of the mourners.

Other religions

There are a huge number of other religions and faiths, far too many to list here, many of which either use candles as a formal part of their death celebrations because it’s prescribed in the traditions, or simply because candle represent pure and natural beauty.