How to arrange a low-cost direct cremation in Honolulu, HI

If you need to arrange a simple and affordable cremation service in Honolulu, this guide can help you understand what cremation options you have, what cremation costs to expect and how to save money by arranging a direct cremation.

We have outlined below some more information about funeral and cremation costs.

How much can I expect to pay for a funeral service in Honolulu?

The cost of a funeral can vary quite significantly.  This will depend upon the type of funeral service you opt for and the funeral service provider you select.  If you do any research with local funeral homes you will discover that the price for a funeral package will vary from different providers, even for the exact same services!  Whilst the NFDA (2019) can quote the average cost of a funeral at around $9,000, it is possible to arrange a funeral for considerably less than this.

The average cost of a traditional funeral in Honolulu is $8,378* with the lowest price coming in at $5,365.

How much does a cremation cost in Honolulu?

Cremation service prices in Honolulu range from $1,045 to over $5,000*, again depending on the type of cremation service chosen.  A full-service cremation costs more than a simple direct cremation.

We have included in a direct cremation cost comparison below to give you an idea of comparable costs from several cremation service providers in Honolulu.

How do I select a funeral services provider?

If you have no prior experience with a funeral services provider this can seem an overwhelming task. Consult with friends and associates and seek recommendations.  If you are using the Internet to research funeral services and prices in Honolulu, be sure to check the ownership of who you are dealing with.  Some funeral companies have set up online budget cremation businesses, and some corporate groups also trade as low-cost cremation companies.  If you are in doubt, ask if they are independently-owned.

average cremation cost honolulu hawaiiHow can I save money when arranging a funeral or cremation in Honolulu?

These days many of us are concerned about having the necessary funds to conduct funeral services for a loved one if no provision was made.  Let’s face it…not many folks can just produce thousands of dollars at the drop of a hat!  There are ways that you can ensure you keep your funeral expenses to a minimum.

Generally a cremation will work out less expensive than a burial, namely as no immediate cemetery fees are required for a cremation.  However, a dignified burial can be achieved at a very affordable cost.

Opting for cremation means that there is no need for a casket, burial vault or cemetery plot.  And eliminating these costs alone can save you several thousand dollars.

What is ‘direct cremation’?

A direct cremation is where the deceased is cremated but no services or ceremony is held.  Minimal services are offered by the funeral director to collect the deceased, prepare the body for cremation, and process all the required paperwork.  The deceased is cremated in a simple cremation container and the remains are made available for the family to collect or have delivered to them.  No funeral home visit is required for a direct cremation service.  In many cases the funeral director will visit you at home to sign the paperwork and consult with you about arrangements.

Direct cremation is becoming very popular as a way in which the funeral home can assist in the immediate disposition of the deceased for an affordable fee, but leaves the family with the opportunity to conduct their own memorial ceremony once they have the cremated remains back.

direct cremation Honolulu HIHow do I know I am getting the remains of my loved one back?

This is one question that a lot of families ask.  There are strict laws governing how human cremation is conducted.  Operatives are trained in the processes and only one body can be cremated in a retort at any one time.  The retort chamber is then fully cleared before another cremation proceeds.  A body is tagged the minute it is logged into the funeral home or crematory and ID checks are done at each step of the process.

What can I do with the cremated remains?

You can inter cremated remains into a grave plot or niche at a cemetery, keep a cremation urn at home, or scatter the remains in a place of your choosing.  Today there are many options for how we can memorialize a lost loved one and there are now a range of cremation artifacts that can be created to help us immortalize the memory of a loved one, from bird baths made with concrete infused with cremation ashes to memorial diamonds!  Other folks are choosing to scatter ashes in a memorable place for a loved one’s last resting place.  Read this section on Ash Scattering for more ideas.

Can I arrange a cremation in Honolulu and then have the cremated remains transported back to the Continental United States?

If a loved one passed in Hawaii and you wish to arrange a simple low-cost cremation in Honolulu and then ship the cremated remains directly back to your home state, this can be arranged easily by shipping via USPS.  Everything can be arranged remotely by email and fax and a small fee is charged to ship the remains.

What if the deceased is at the Medical Examiners?

If the deceased is at the Medical Examiner’s office, you need to appoint a funeral director to arrange the release of the body into their care.  Only a licensed funeral director can collect a body from the county morgue.

Honolulu Medical Examiner Department

835 Iwilei Road, Honolulu, HI 96817    Phone: (808) 768-3090

What if the deceased had no life insurance?

More often these days family members are passing and we find out that they had no life insurance or funeral plan.  This can mean surviving family are burdened with a funeral bill that they cannot afford to pay.  There is very little financial support to assist families in this situation, and it varies significantly by state and county.  We would suggest you contact Hawaii Department of Human Services at:

1390 Miller Street, Room 209, Honolulu, HI 96813     Phone: (855) 643-1643

There is also a $255 lump-sum social security death benefit payment for those that qualify.  Your funeral director will assist you in claiming this.

We hope this short guide has answered some of your questions about how to save on funeral costs and will help you arrange a simple cremation at an affordable price.

*Prices obtained from Funeralocity (2021)