How a Funeral Director Can Ease the Stress of Funeral Planning

Sponsored By: McAlister-Smith Funeral & Cremation


Sponsored By: McAlister-Smith Funeral & Cremation

Weddings, birthdays, anniversaries – these are all special occasions worth planning for. Funerals are a special occasion too. While the emotions are vastly different, they require no less attention than our happiest times.

If you have ever planned an event, you know that even the smallest ones require attention to detail. When organizing the funeral event, your funeral home staff can serve as your event planning team – saving you time, money and stress.

With their expertise and professional contacts, funeral home staff can make it easy for you by coordinating all necessary specifics. Your funeral team can do much more than order flowers and put out a guest book. Have you ever considered asking them to book hotel rooms, cater the reception or reserve a restaurant for gathering?

Here are 4 ways to begin helping you understand how involved your funeral team can be in planning the event.

1. Coordinating the many details.

Events are filled with logistics from seating to food to music. At such an unexpected time in life, it can be difficult to manage all of the details needed to create a memorable event.

While large events are planned over a period of months, funeral events are generally planned over a period of a few days. Your funeral home team consistently plans events in this way and are accustomed to working on a short timeline. They will know which detail needs to be arranged first and which can be changed at the last minute. Not having to be involved in this level of detail will allow you the opportunity to appreciate the event.

2. Customizing a unique event.

A great way to honor a late loved one is by creating a memorable service as unique as they were.

So if the person always enjoyed the outdoors, for example, why not book a pavilion at the park and have a BBQ? Or maybe they loved going to the movies. Why not rent a big screen TV and watch one of their favorite films with everyone? If you can dream it, you should try to do it.

Your funeral team can customize any type of event you are planning. They can recommend a company, schedule the event and ensure all details are taken care of. All you would need to do is arrive.

3. Providing relief from the stress of planning the event.

Planning an event requires many details, from the location and décor to food and staffing. This can lead to multiple phone calls, price negotiations and time spent organizing details. Working with several vendors can be burdensome for a family who has experienced a loss.

That’s where a funeral director comes in. “It’s like saying, ‘I’ll do my job and you do yours,’” says Dana Madanski, Director of Marketing with McAlister-Smith. “This is a joint effort. The funeral director won’t be able to find that special picture or memento, but they can locate a chaplain and reserve a room. While you work on the personal details of the event, your funeral care team can work on the practical details. With all parties involved, more emphasis can be placed on the details that matter most-those that are truly unique to the family being served.”

4. Minimize costs and help save you money.

If planning an event on your own, you may work with several vendors, each incurring a separate cost for the use of their services. At McAlister-Smith, the services provided to you by the staff are already included in the one-time service charge. That service charge covers every phone call, appointment and detail arranged, whether it’s two or 12 vendors.

We may not plan to set aside money for a funeral, and the cost may be different than what we anticipate. Having your funeral director handle the details of the event will save money and time. You will know exactly who you are working with and what the charge is up front, there will be no hidden service fees.

Ask your funeral care team if they partner with businesses willing to offer products and services at a lower cost. At McAlister-Smith, the team has partnered with Charleston area hotels that offer special rates for out-of-town family members and guests. The hotels are conveniently located to our chapels and know our staff. The funeral director can reserve the room or share the contact with the family.

When a loss occurs, the to-do list can seem overwhelming. When planning your event, have your funeral care team, like the team at McAlister-Smith, remove this stressful burden, giving you time to spend with loved ones and focus on healing.

Since 1886, McAlister-Smith Funeral & Cremation has been providing personal and caring services, placing a particular emphasis on the importance of family. McAlister-Smith has four convenient locations to serve families throughout the Lowcountry, including West Ashley, Mount Pleasant, Goose Creek and James Island.

For more information about services, visit or call (843) 722-8371.

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