A study of 1,000 adults who have organised a funeral found 70 per cent were ‘surprised and dismayed’ at the cost.
Nearly four in 10 (39 per cent) had to dip into their savings to pay for it while 22 per cent covered expenses using a credit card.
A further 17 per cent borrowed money from others, 16 per cent worked extra hours and 10 per cent even took on a second job.
Others resorted to taking a payment holiday on their mortgage or missing payments on other bills to meet the cost.
As a result of the financial difficulties, a quarter felt they let their loved one down because they were unable to afford the send-off they felt they deserved.
Anthony Young, CEO of Tyde (https://tyde.co/), the UK’s first online funeral booking service, which commissioned the research, said: “The death of a loved one is upsetting enough, and arranging a funeral is hard.
“When you pile on money worries, the experience becomes even more difficult.
“Everyone wants to give their loved one the funeral they would have liked – and that they deserve – but sometimes the cost makes this impossible and you have to scale back.
“We never know what is around the corner, but when the time comes, planning a funeral should be a kinder and easier process, with no hidden or inflated costs.
“During this vulnerable time, you should be able to pay for what you want with no hidden fees and no high-pressure sales talk.
“With Tyde, for the first time, you can plan all this in the comfort of your own home when it is most convenient and comfortable for you”.
The study also found 37 per cent felt they had to compromise on some elements of the funeral due to the cost, with transport (49 per cent), the wake (46 per cent) and the coffin (41 per cent) among the most common sacrifices.
More than a quarter also said the cost of planning a funeral led to disagreements with other family members.
The choice of songs (13 per cent), where to hold the wake (13 per cent) and service (12 per cent) and even the flowers have all caused rows among bereaved relatives.
It also emerged nearly three in 10 think they had to pay over the odds for a coffin or casket, while 26 per cent think they splashed out too much on family transport.
But as a result of having to fork out for a funeral, more than half have now started to put aside funds for their own send off to save their loved ones going through the same.
This comes after 29 per cent of those polled via OnePoll found the experience of planning a funeral daunting while 28 per cent felt overwhelmed.
Having to break the news to people was found to be the greatest challenge when it comes to planning a funeral, followed by the paperwork and hidden costs.
Anthony Young added: “It’s no surprise to see that so many people find the experience of planning a funeral daunting, which is why we want to make coping with the death of a loved one that bit easier and give a little peace of mind during a really tough time.
“It should be a kinder, easier, more efficient process, which is why Tyde has brought funeral planning online”.
TOP 20 PROBLEMS WHEN PLANNING A FUNERAL:
1. Having to break the news to people who might not know
2. The paperwork
3. The lack of transparency around costs / hidden costs
4. Getting the date we wanted
5. Deciding what type of ceremony/service to have
6. The time spent planning for it
7. Having to have a face-to-face meeting with a funeral director
8. Lack of information
9. Getting family members to agree on how the funeral should run
10. Following COVID guidelines
11. Having to plan an unexpected event around your day-to-day life (i.e work and family commitments)
12. Deciding on the flowers
13. Asking for time off work
14. Deciding on whether there should be charity donations
15. Working out how to get invitations to everyone that might want to come to the funeral
16. Having to make frequent visits to funeral parlours
17. Predatory sales tactics from funeral directors
18. Deciding between a burial or cremation
19. Conflict of interest
20. Lack of out-of-hours support e.g. from funeral directors