The most common types of funeral services
Traditional full service burial
A traditional funeral service includes a viewing or visitation, a funeral ceremony, and burial at the gravesite. Also known as "full service" funeral, traditional funerals tend to be the main package offered by most funeral funeral homes. It starts off with a viewing/visitation, where attendees can view the body and pay their respects to the family. Embalming is usually recommended for viewings although the casket can remains closed per the family's wishes.
A funeral service follows the viewing/visitation and is held at a funeral home, church, or other event space. Traditional funerals usually include elements such as prayers, eulogies, readings, and music.
Afterwards, the body is transported by procession to cemetery/burial location and interred in the grave. There may also be a funeral reception or repast for family and friends of the deceased to come together after the burial.
A direct burial, sometimes called an affordable burial or immediate burial, happens when the deceased is buried shortly after death without any funeral service or other formal ceremony. The funeral home obtains the death certificate and required permits, prepares the body, and arranges transportation to the cemetery for burial.
Direct burial tends to be an affordable funeral option as embalming of the body is not necessary and a simple box can be used for burial instead of an expensive casket. The lack of ceremonial services also cuts down on overall funeral costs, but the cost of the cemetery plot should be taken into account when figuring total expenses. Cemetery grave plots can pricey depending on the location.
Full service cremation
A full service cremation includes a viewing or visitation, a funeral service and basic cremation service. Because there is a viewing, typically the body will be embalmed. The cremated ashes are placed in an urn which can be buried below or above ground, scattered, or kept by the family..
A direct cremation happens when the deceased is cremated shortly after death without any funeral service or formal ceremony. Embalming is unnecessary as there is no viewing/visitation, and a cardboard container can be used for the cremation process. Direct cremation is an inexpensive funeral option and is rapidly growing in popularity with price-conscious consumers
A graveside service can be held for individuals that are either buried or cremated and occurs when the funeral service takes place at cemetery or burial site. Funeral attendees gather at the gravesite for ceremony led by a cosen officiant and s with traditional funeral services, there may be buried, scattered, or placed in a columbarium niche.
After the service the body is lowered into the grave or placed in a mausoleum or crypt. If the deceased was cremated, the urn holding the ashes can either be buried, scattered, or placed in a columbarium niche.
A memorial service differs from a funeral service in that the body is not present. A memorial service is usually held after the deceased is buried and there is no viewing or visitation. However if cremation was the method of disposition, the urn containing the cremated ashes can be present during the memorial service.
Some families hold memorial services as a way to memorialize their loved ones, while others view memorial services as celebration of life events where family and friends of the deceased can gather in remembrance, share memories, and support each other in grief.