Golden Charter Direct Cremation Review
- Nationwide company working with over 3,000 independent funeral directors
- Funeral planning experts with over 25 years experience
- Registered and regulated by the Funeral Planning Authority
- One of the more expensive plans at either £1,950 or £2,300
- Additional costs may be incurred
You may wish to compare Golden Charter with other providers of direct cremation funerals clicking the "Compare Plans" button.
Who is Golden Charter?
Owned by independent funeral directors, Golden Charter is one of the largest funeral plan providers in the UK. Founded in 1989, the company has more than 25 years experience and offer a range of funeral and life planning services such as Wills and probate services.
What direct cremation plans do they offer?
In addition to the simple direct funeral option, Golden Charter offer 4 other plans that include a more traditional funeral service. For the purpose of this direct cremation review, we will be focusing on the two simple direct cremation plans:
The Basic Direct Cremation Plan – Designed for people who want a cremation without a funeral service, the Golden Charter Basic Plan includes collection within a 15 mile radius during working hours, a £500 allowance towards third party costs such as cremation fees, a coffin suitable for cremation chosen by the funeral director and ashes available for collection.
The Basic Plus Direct Cremation – This direct funeral plan includes all the services in the Basic Plan with the addition of family viewing in the chapel of rest at a time specified by the funeral director and transportation in a hearse.
You can find out more about direct cremation and how it works on our main direct cremation page.
Will there be more for my family to pay when the time comes?
The Golden Charter direct funeral plan come with a guarantee that ensures your family will have nothing more to pay for the professional fees; however additional costs may be incurred elsewhere.
For example the mileage radius for collection is only 15 miles. Therefore if you die outside this area the funeral director would probably charge you a price per mile over the allowance.
Also it states that collection is only within working hours so again, this means the funeral director does have the right to charge if required outside of their core hours.
As far as third party costs are concerned, there is an allowance of £500. Therefore if the cremation fees and doctor’s fees if still applicable are greater than this amount, the family would need to pay the balance.
Finally ashes have to be collected at the crematorium if required rather than delivered and it does state in the small print that there could be additional costs for this at the time of need.
How can I be sure my money is safe?
The money you pay for your Golden Charter direct funeral plan is placed in the Golden Charter Trust fund. The trust fund is a totally separate entity to Golden Charter, so if anything were to happen to them, the fund would remain intact ready to pay for your direct cremation funeral.
Also as mentioned Golden Charter is registered with the Funeral Planning Authority so you know they have had to abide by their strict rules and code of conduct as to how the money is kept.
(Please note - if you choose the fixed monthly payment option your money is held in a life insurance policy).
With a Single Payment
You can choose to pay in one go or spread your payments over 12 months without incurring any additional fees. This is the cheapest way to buy a Golden Charter direct cremation plan.
If you prefer to spread your costs you can either pay by low cost monthly instalments or a fixed monthly payment plan.
The low cost monthly instalment option depends on the number of years you choose to pay your instalments for, with payments needing to be complete by the time you are 80 years of age. For example, a 75 year old can choose instalment options between 2 and 5 years. You are covered for the direct funeral services once you have completed the payment; if you die before the payments are complete, the family would just need to pay the balance for the outstanding instalments.
The fixed monthly payment plan is based on your age. You pay a fixed amount either for life or until you are 90 and you are covered for your direct funeral services after the first two years. With this type of payment plan there is a chance you could pay more in premiums than the actual cost of the direct funeral service – it all depends on how long you live. (This payment option is not available to anyone under the age of 50).
Can I cancel my plan?
If you cancel the plan after this period you will receive all your money back minus the administration fee of £249.
(No money is refunded if you pay by the fixed monthly payment plan).
What happens if I move address?
If you move then Golden Charter would move the plan to another independent funeral director close to your new address. Whether there is a charge for this would depend on how much the individual funeral director charges.