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15 weird and wonderful funeral requests

When it comes to attending a funeral we usually know what to expect, or at least we thought we did. But our latest cost of dying research has uncovered some of the weird and wonderful funeral requests made by those who don’t want a traditional gloomy affair.

The brighter, the better

One of the most common requests from people who talk about their funeral plans is ‘no black’. While some will just ask for people to wear their favourite colour or their favourite sports team’s kit, many have more ‘out there’ requests, such as Hawaiian shirts or even cowboys and Indians dress code. While one Glastonbury fan requested everyone who attended their funeral wore wellies commemorating their love of the festival. Probably not a bad idea considering the British weather.

people carrying a coffin with colourful wellies on

Arrive in style and go off with a bang

Unconventional transport is also a popular request. Why have a hearse when you can arrive in an American rig lorry or an old-fashioned milk float?

Another growing trend is to do something ‘different’ with the person’s ashes. Often people’s ashes are made into jewellery, or sometimes they’re put into a firework to ‘go off with a bang!’ Either way, they’ll be remembered.

Whether the request is warm-hearted, wonderful, wacky or just downright weird, personalisation is a great way to turn a funeral into a celebration of life.

Here’s our top 15 out of the ordinary funeral requests

You may even feel inspired.

  1. Arrive in an American rig lorry
  2. Have ashes in a firework (to go off with a bang)
  3. Star Wars theme with a Darth Vader funeral director
  4. Lead the congregation with the conga
  5. Attendees to wear wellies
  6. Be buried at home
  7. Pets at the funeral
  8. Being buried with a whistle (in case of waking up)
  9. Milk float as transport
  10. Plants and vegetables instead of flowers
  11. Cowboys and Indians dress code
  12. Motorbike procession
  13. Be buried with letters from the family
  14. Beach wear attire
  15. Have ashes made into jewellery

Make it personal

Most of us don’t like talking about death, and it is a conversation we’ll put off, often until it’s too late. But, if you want a funeral personal to you, make your wishes known with our My Perfect Send-Off planner or use our funeral planning guide to help you start thinking about your funeral arrangements.

Find out more about the SunLife Guaranteed Funeral Plan

You can get a quote or give us a call on 0800 904 7649 to talk about your plan today. You can also request a call back.

Here's the information that you need to know about who we are and the other companies that we work with in order to provide our products and services.

Who are SunLife?

Phoenix Life Limited trades as SunLife and is the provider of the Guaranteed Over 50 Plan, SunLife Insurance and the life insurance policy payment option for Funeral Plans. Phoenix Life Limited’s registered office is at 1 Wythall Green Way, Wythall, Birmingham, B47 6WG (registered in England, no. 1016269). 

SunLife Limited distributes financial products and services and is a company limited by shares, registered office: 1 Wythall Green Way, Wythall, Birmingham, B47 6WG (registered in England, no. 05460862). SunLife Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and is entered on the Financial Services Register (registration no. 769427).

You can contact us by post at SunLife, PO Box 1395, Peterborough, PE2 2TR or by phone on 0800 008 6060.

If you choose to add Funeral Benefit Option to your Guaranteed Over 50 Plan, Dignity Funerals Ltd arranges and provides the funeral services, registered office: 4 King Edwards Court, Sutton Coldfield, West Midlands, B73 6AP (registered in England and Wales, No. 00041598). Dignity Funerals Ltd is a member of the National Association of Funeral Directors.

Who provides the Funeral Plans?

Dignity Funerals Ltd arranges and provides the funeral services, registered office: 4 King Edwards Court, Sutton Coldfield, West Midlands, B73 6AP (registered in England and Wales, No. 00041598). Dignity Funerals Ltd is a member of the National Association of Funeral Directors.

The life insurance policy that pays for your funeral will be provided by Phoenix Life Limited, trading as SunLife.

Who provides My Smarter (ISA)?

My Smarter (ISA) is provided by Scottish Friendly Asset Managers Limited. Authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Details can be found on the Financial Services register, registration No. 188832. Member of The Investment Association. Registered Office: Scottish Friendly House, 16 Blythswood Square, Glasgow G2 4HJ.

Who provides the Will writing services?

Hugh James is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA Number:303202).

The information contained on this website is based on Hugh James' understanding of the law of intestacy in England and Wales only as at April 2014. The law in Scotland and Northern Ireland is significantly different. This is for information purposes and is not intended to be legal advice.

Who provides Family Life Insurance?

SunLife Family Life Insurance is provided by Scottish Friendly Assurance Society Limited which is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority. Details can be found on the Financial Services register (registration number 110002). Registered Office: Scottish Friendly House, 16 Blythswood Square, Glasgow G2 4HJ. 

Who provides SunLife Pet Insurance

SunLife Pet Insurance is arranged and administered by BDML Connect Limited. BDML Connect Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (No. 309140). Registered in England and Wales Number 02785540. Registered Office: 45 Westerham Road, Bessels Green, Sevenoaks, Kent, TN13 2QB.

Who provides SunLife Home Insurance

SunLife Home Insurance is arranged and administered by BISL Limited and underwritten by a panel of insurers. BISL Limited are an intermediary authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Registered in England no. 03231094. Registered office Pegasus House, Bakewell Road, Orton Southgate, Peterborough PE2 6YS.

Who provides SunLife Car Insurance

SunLife Car Insurance is arranged and administered by BISL Limited and underwritten by a panel of insurers. BISL Limited are an intermediary authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Registered in England no. 03231094. Registered office Pegasus House, Bakewell Road, Orton Southgate, Peterborough PE2 6YS.