Ontario Cremation Costs & Life Insurance

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Article Contents
Picture of By <span>Matthew Roberts</span>
By Matthew Roberts

Updated on May 29, 2024

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Picture of By <span>Matthew Roberts</span>
By Matthew Roberts

Updated May 29, 2024

Visit author page

4 minute read

Article Contents

Ontario cremation costs can range between $1,000 and $10,000, depending on the services you need. Fortunately, life insurance can cover cremation costs with some considerations.

Ontario Cremation Costs and Life Insurance at a Glance

  • Term life insurance, whole life insurance, and guaranteed issue insurance can help cover end-of-life expenses, including cremation.
  • Cremation costs in Ontario range from $1,000 to $10,000 depending on the services required and the type of urn, among other things.
  • Researching and comparing costs from various crematoriums can help you find the best and most cost-effective option for your loved one.

While saying goodbye to a loved one can be a devastating and costly experience, it’s possible to honour their memory while being practical about your budget. Understanding cremation costs in Ontario and how your life insurance policy can help make you feel more informed and prepared.

Does Life Insurance Cover Cremation Costs in Canada?

Yes, life insurance can cover cremation costs in Canada. When a policyholder dies, the company pays the death benefit as a lump sum to the named beneficiaries. Different life insurance policies offer different cremation benefits. Here’s a closer look.

Term Life Insurance Benefits for Cremation

Term life insurance typically offers a more affordable way to cover cremation costs through a tailored coverage period (usually 10, 20, or 30 years). These terms are flexible and guarantee a payout within the term.

Whole Life Insurance Benefits for Cremation

Cash value is the primary difference between term life and whole life insurance cremation benefits. Whole life insurance offers a cash value component, allowing policyholders to withdraw cash from their policy anytime. They can set these funds aside to cover future cremation costs on top of the guaranteed payout.

Guaranteed Issue

Guaranteed issue insurance, or final expense insurance, is designed to cover end-of-life expenses like cremation. It typically pays between $5,000 and $25,000, distributed to beneficiaries as a lump sum. While premiums are higher than term life insurance, guaranteed issue is a no-medical insurance policy with a fast and easy application process. 

Choosing term vs. whole life insurance to cover final costs will ultimately depend on your needs and financial limitations.

How Much is Cremation in Ontario?

Cremation services in Ontario cost between $1,000 and $10,000, with direct cremation being the cheapest option. Direct cremation covers collection and cremation and costs typically between $1,400 and $2,100.

Traditional cremation funerals cost between $7,500 and $10,000, as they often include embalming, viewing, and a ceremony before cremation. Here is what a typical cremation service in Ontario might cost.

Documenting a death for cremation in Ontario is an expense not many people are aware of or consider. Documentation fees range between $100 and $300. 

Registering a death and receiving a death certificate in Ontario costs $15, with expedited services costing $45 or more. Requesting a certified copy of death registration costs $22 for regular services and $52 for expedited services.

Most crematoriums in Ontario charge $100 for body transportation, covering private transportation and gas costs. However, some funeral homes include these expenses in set package deals.

Body storage or sheltering costs between $35 and $100 per day and will vary depending on how long the family intends to store the body. The type of refrigeration used may also influence this number. In Ontario, embalming services cost between $200 and $1,000.

Flame cremation is a traditional and more cost-effective process in the $1,000 to $4,000 price range. Aquamation, a newer and more environmentally friendly process, may have higher costs in some parts of Ontario. Prices range between $2,000 and $5,000.

Cremation Expenses vs. Traditional Burial Expenses

Compared to cremations, the cost of a funeral in Ontario is much higher – roughly in the $7,500 to $15,000 range (on average). Considerations affecting traditional burial costs might include the following:

  • Cemetery plot: $2,000 to $10,000, depending on location and cemetery size
  • Casket: $2,000 to $20,000, depending on the material and design
  • Burial vault (optional): $1,000 to $3,000 to protect the casket underground

Cremation: Provincial Differences

Cremation itself has similar costs across Canadian provinces due to comparable operational expenses. However, urban areas, such as Ontario’s larger cities, may charge more due to higher overheads for funeral homes. 

FeatureBritish ColumbiaOntarioAlbertaQuebecManitoba
Permit RequirementRequired for
Required for
Required for
The act applies
to various funeral
operations, including
cremation services
Licence required
for operating a
for Permit
Original death or
stillbirth documents
should be sent to a
hospital administrator
Similar to BC.Original Medical
Certificate of Death
and the Registration
of Death form
Specific documents
are not detailed
but involve various
funeral operations
Approval of plans
by an engineer
and the minister;
licence issued by
the Public Utilities
Who Can Arrange
Legal for family/friends
to arrange
Similar to BCLegal for family/friends
to arrange
Specifics not
detailed; various
operations regulated
under the Funeral
Operations Act
Crematorium operators
must be licensed.
burials, cremation
Similar to BCSimilar to BCEmbalming, viewing
services, cremation
Cremation, with
specific regulations
for the operation
of crematoriums
Hospital administrator
issues permit
Similar process
as BC
Similar process
as BC
A funeral services
business license
and an embalmer’s
license are required
for offering funeral
and embalming
Crematory construction
and operation require
certification and
licensing and must
be operated by

Factors Affecting Cremation Costs

Cremation costs in Ontario may vary depending on several factors. Here’s a breakdown of each factor.


Funeral homes in larger cities often have higher overhead costs, which also increases the cost of cremation. However, Ontario cremation costs fall within the national average.

Funeral Home Services

Different funeral homes have different pricing structures and services. Factors like embalming, viewing of the deceased, a formal ceremony, and urn rental can increase these prices.

Cremation Container and Urn

In Ontario, cremation containers and urns cost an average of $50 to $200. However, luxury urns made from stone (like marble or granite) can cost upwards of $1,000. 

The most cost-effective urn materials are ceramic, plastic, and wood, which cost between $50 and $400. Mid-range options include brass, bronze, and decorative wood, which cost between $400 and $800.

Interment, or placing the loved one’s remains in a grave, may also increase costs. Ontario cemeteries often charge about $400 for the purchasing of interment rights, with a single niche costing $700 to $2,500.

Choosing a Cremation Home in Ontario

Ontario has many cremation providers, so choosing one can be tricky. Here are a few tips for finding the right provider to memorialize your loved one in a meaningful yet cost-effective way.

Do Research on Funeral Homes Online

The Bereavement Authority of Ontario (BAO) provides a public register of all the crematoriums and funeral establishments in Ontario. Here, you can find cremation services by location or business name. 

Most funeral home websites publish their services and pricing. Thoroughly review inclusions and package options, and remember to read customer reviews.

Contact and Compare

Don’t just focus on price – contact multiple funeral establishments and compare different cremation packages to find one that suits your needs. Inquire about satisfaction and price match guarantees. 

Some cremation providers offer flexible payment programs or allow applicants to pre-pay for services. 

Key Advice from MyChoice

As cremation is becoming an increasingly popular choice for many, knowing your options can save your loved ones time and money, allowing them to grieve peacefully. If you’re set on cremation, study these few key takeaways and tips from My Choice:

  • Life insurance can provide financial assistance for cremations, as beneficiaries can use the death benefit for final expenses. Term life insurance offers cheaper and more flexible options, but whole life insurance may provide a bigger payout. You can also apply for a final expense policy.
  • On average, cremation costs in Ontario range between $1,000 and $10,000. Factors like funeral establishment packages, urn type, documentation, and location may influence these costs.
  • Choose the right crematorium by doing ample research online, reading customer reviews, and getting referrals from others.

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