Dying is an expensive business

Elvis may have been the King of Rock N Roll, but his funeral cost – a mere £18,434 – was more pauper style compared to the big spenders in history. Michael Jackson, never one to be overshadowed, racked up £758k in funeral costs, thanks to the gold casket he took his last dance in. Ten years in the planning saw Churchill’s state funeral spiral to £3.2m. But if you really want to go out in style, look no further than Alexander the Great. When he popped off in 323 BC, the Macedonians were treated to £464m worth of funeral expenses, complete with a solid gold carriage pulled by 60 horses. Truly great.

The cost of dying

For some of us, a modest casket and a drink down the local with a sausage roll buffet should suffice. In fact, we’ve even managed to write another blog post about, you guessed it, the humble sausage roll… But even the most basic cremation will set you back around £1.7k. Add in a funeral director and you can double that. If, once you’ve departed you fancied going in the ground, you’re soon in the region of £4.3k funeral costs.


So funerals are big businesses. Once you’ve done the legal stuff – someone to certify you’re properly dead, and someone authorised to dispose of the body (your mate Jeff with the white van probably isn’t the one you’re looking for) you’re into vanity land. The guilt of sending a loved one off on the cheap can soon see funeral costs rocket. You might want to steer clear of a £100 cardboard coffin, unless they’ve specifically requested the eco-conscious casket, but we doubt the £22.8k “Solaris” is necessary to avoid ridicule. You’ll need a hearse, but The Rolls-Royce Phantom Hearse B12 is more of a house. But even a nice display of lilies may set you back a few hundred quid; you’ll need a tad more if their dying wish was to be carried through a rainforest scene.

Party like there’s no tomorrow

And then there’s the party. It’s not compulsory. If the dead person was a particularly unlikeable type, or crowds just aren’t your thing right now, screw it. Go home and stick a weepy movie on. But if a Michael Jackson style funeral is what your dearly departed wanted, then you’ll need a venue, caterers, a bar tab, fireworks, a Billy Joel tribute band, and a life size diamond encrusted statue of them.


It’s best not to leave these things to chance. People in mourning can do crazy shit. Instead why not plan and pay for your funeral yourself? Some folk don’t like to ponder their own mortality. But until cryogenic freezing pulls its finger out, or you reckon God has singled you out for resurrection, then you only get one shot at this death thing. Make it count.


Life insurance can, and usually does cover your funeral expenses. But you’re going to have to calculate how much cash you’ll need when you take out the policy, which could be 25, 50 or even 75 years before the big day. Inflation aside, who knows what sort of money you’ll need for the send off you’ll fancy by then.


Here’s another way: Deathwishes. Put some of your life insurance payout towards the funeral you want. Your loved ones won’t lump the cost and nor will they have to plan it. So if you’ve always fancied a 50 strong Welsh male voice choir man belting out your favourite hymns, having your ashes whooshed into low orbit, or paying for everyone’s taxis home, best plan and pay for it yourself. So you know it’ll get done. What’s the saying, if you want something doing right?

A free funeral with DeadHappy?

Now, here’s the even better thing. At DeadHappy, we won’t just cover your payout for a very reasonable sum each month, we’ll add an additional 5k payout for you, absolutely free if you take out a life insurance plan with us. All we ask, is that you make sure your nearest and dearest are aware of your wishes by sharing them on your favourite social media channel. That’s right. A FREE FIVE THOUSAND POUND Deathwish. On us. Perfect for paying for your funeral, or perhaps a massive party for all your mates. Your body, your choice after all.