It is never an easy task to shop for an urn for a loved one, and it’s certainly not something that anyone becomes adjusted to. But in life, death and loss are all but a guarantee, and sometimes we find ourselves in the position of holding the responsibility for carefully selecting an urn for someone we have lost.
1. Don't be afraid to reach out to the provider to ask questions - This experience is about you and your needs. It’s not a bother to ask about the material or check on the size or seek simple reassurance that your purchase is a good one. The customer service is there to provide you with whatever guidance and help you might need in what is already a difficult time. You’ll often find they’re compassionate and understanding, helping guide you through an assortment of cremation urns until you find the one that is right for you and your family.
2. Keep the decision down to one or just a few people - If you aren’t shopping for the urn alone, and decide to include a few other family members in the process, keep it to just that. There is an incredible assortment of urns available, and the more people you bring into the process, the more challenging and divisive the selection process might become. Some family members might want a butterfly urn, while others want a heart-shaped urn, or there may be disagreement on the best color choice, or what engraving to have put on…
It’s not something you need to engage in right now. A few close family members means it will be easy for you to come to an agreement on the perfect cremation urn, but without opening the conversation to too many opinions. A few heads together can be great in providing reassurances that the one selected is the best choice; it eases the burden of feeling inadequate or guilty over the decision.
3. Go in open-minded to what’s out there, but have a shortlist of needs/wants - There’s a fine line to balance between having no idea of what you want or need, and having a list that is way too specific. Shopping for a cremation urn online without any idea of what you want can make the process feel overwhelming before you have even begun. It makes it difficult with where you want to start, since you have so many choices.
On the other hand, starting with a specific list of color, size, shape, style, etc, might leave you unsatisfied with the choices since you started with something so specific in mind.
An easy way to help approach it, is to think of what requirements have to be met regardless. It might be size, it might be an engraving option, it might be matching keepsake cremation urns. Select one or two traits that you have in mind, that are needs. This will help you start somewhere, and use it to filter out some of the choices available.
4. Consider your purpose and placement - What is your plan for the cremation urn that you are purchasing? Do you want to have it sit on a mantle in your home? Do you want to bury it in the backyard in a biodegradable urn? Do you have a large family, who wants to split the urn up amongst themselves, each keeping some ashes in smaller keepsake cremation urns? With so many options, it can be overwhelming if you don’t have some idea going in of what you would like to do with the urn once you’ve selected it. Where you want to place it permanently might also affect the material of the urn you select, since some urns might do better in different environments.
5. Have a budget range in mind - Your love for someone is not measured by how much you’re willing to spend on their urn. It bears no indication whatsoever. If you have a budget that you need to stick to, then provide yourself with a range for your ideal amount of money to be spending. Provide yourself some flexibility, in case you find a piece outside of your budget that you absolutely love. Funeral arrangements, legal considerations, time, effort- it can be costly and overwhelming to manage a passing. If finances are a bit tight, there is nothing wrong with setting yourself a spending range goal to help guide you to which cremation urns to look at.
There’s no one-process that fits all, and everyone's experience is unique to them, but with some of the tips and suggestions, we hope to help make the process a bit more manageable and easier for you and your loved ones.
Check out our Getting Started page for more helpful information.
Overcome grief during the holidays by communicating your emotions to your family and friends and by beginning new traditions of remembrance.