Planning your own funeral checklist: make sure you get what you want

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Planning your own funeral: make sure you get what you really want
Make a list, then make it official

One of the advantages of planning your own funeral is that you can make sure you get what you want, our checklist will help you out.

Having a pre-paid funeral plan with Golden Leaves means you are able to arrange your funeral how you would like it to be held and by planning your own funeral, not only will you get the send-off you want, you will relieve your family of the burden, both financially and with regards to making decisions.

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Planning the details of your own funeral will give you more time to think about what you would like, so if you’d rather have some good classic rock played at your funeral than hymns, or you have something in particular that you’d really like people to remember you by at your funeral or memorial service, this is your opportunity to make sure that it happens.

There is no ideal time to plan your own funeral, but doing so in advance will give your family one less thing to have to worry about when the time comes.

We have made this list to help you to pinpoint all the things that you may want to plan in advance:


Where would you like it to be held? What is your ideal venue? Do you want it in your home?

Do you want it to be religious or not?

Who do you want to lead the service?


Who else would you like to speak?

What readings, poems or music would you like?

Do you want a memorial video?

Do you want a theme?

What would you like to be wearing?

Do you have any special wishes for how your body should be prepared?

What would you like family and friends to wear?

Do you want to be buried with your jewellery?

Do you want an open or closed casket?

Do you want any special flowers and/or donations?

What floral decorations do you prefer? Do you want a personalised flower arrangement?

Do you prefer burial or cremation? Do you want your body donated to science?

Are you concerned with environmental matters? Do you want a green or natural burial?

What type of coffin, headstone or urn do you prefer?

Are there specific people you would like to carry your coffin?

What sort of transport would you like for your coffin?

What sort of graveside or crematorium service do you want, if any?

Where do you want to be buried or want your ashes to go?

Where would you like your wake to be held and how?

Do you want memorial favours to be handed out?

What type of food should be served?

What would you want to see in your obituary or death notice and where do you want it placed?

Do you want your death announced on Facebook?

Would you like cremation jewellery made with your ashes?

Do you want the mourning customs of your religion to be observed?

With many of these decisions, in particular the venue, you should also include an alternative preference, just in case your first choice is not available or can’t be used due to issues such as the weather.

If there are other details that you would like to arrange for your funeral, include them in your funeral plan.

Most importantly, let your family know you have a funeral plan and give them a list of contacts you want to be informed of your death and invited to your funeral or memorial service.

They may not always want to talk about it, but inform them of what you would like, even if it’s in writing in your funeral plan.

It will also help for you to keep all important documents where they can be easily located by your relatives.

If you put together important information which you would like to be included in your obituary when planning your own funeral, that is also helpful.

Remember that if you want a pre-paid funeral plan in Spain, Golden Leaves International are the people to speak to. You can arrange your funeral in advance, pay for it at today’s prices no matter when it takes place and also relieve your family of having to deal with all the procedures following your death in a different country and a foreign language.

www.goldenleavesinternational.com[email protected]
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Jennifer Leighfield, born in Salisbury, UK; resident in Malaga, Spain since 1989. Degree in Translation and Interpreting in Spanish, French and English from Malaga University (2005), specialising in Crime, Forensic Medicine and Genetics. Published translations include three books by Richard Handscombe. Worked with Euro Weekly News since November 2006. Well-travelled throughout Spain and the rest of the world, fan of Harry Potter and most things ‘geek’.

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