We often get questions about the Neptune Society so here is what we’ve learned about them.
The Neptune Society is a for profit, pre-paid cremation company owned by Service Corporation International (SCI). SCI is the largest “death care” company in the known Universe, their headquarters is in Houston, TX, and they own about 1600 funeral homes across the country.
In southern Arizona, they own South Lawn, East Lawn and Desert Rose-Heather. In the Phoenix area they own at least 10 funeral homes including Green Acres Mortuary, Chapel of the Chimes, Lakeshore and Greenwood. In northern Arizona, SCI owns Dimond & Sons Silver Bell Chapel in Bullhead City among others.
Neptune Society is involved only in cremations and they are not inexpensive. According to their most recent General Price List, their price for a direct cremation (meaning without a service at the funeral home, but with everything else needed) is $2119. The also offer a cremation package with a travel insurance component. This means that if you are 100 miles or more from home they will pay for a cremation and return the cremated remains to a designated person.
This travel “protection” adds another $499 to the cost for a total of $2618.
These prices are “locked in” meaning if prices increase your family will not have to pay any more.
Sounds like a good deal, right?
Not so fast!
Our Funeral Consumers Alliance of Arizona member price for a direct cremation is currently less than $600 in southern and central Arizona and about $850 in the Prescott/Sedona/Flagstaff areas. In less populated parts of the state prices range from $800 to $1200. You can “lock in” this price by going to one of our co-operating funeral homes (find the list in our brochures or our website www.FCAAZ.org) and purchasing an insurance policy to get the same benefit that the Neptune Society is charging $2119 for!
Remember, that as a member of the Funeral Consumers Alliance of Arizona (FCA-AZ) you have access to the discounted prices our sister affiliates across the U.S. have negotiated in their area. While not every affiliate has a co-operating funeral home, any of them can tell you the ethical, reasonably priced funeral homes in their area. Within 30 miles of nearly anyplace I know of in the United States you can find a direct cremation for less than $1500 and usually for $1100 or less.
Do you travel much? If the travel component appeals to you because you are a “snowbird” or often travel domestically or internationally more than 100 miles from home, there are travel death policies as low as $325 (for our members) to cover the same travel benefit that with the Neptune Society costs $499. Also, if you purchase travel coverage from the folks we work with and die more than 100 miles from home, the pre-need insurance you purchased from the funeral home will be paid back to the named beneficiary or to your estate. This is not true of the Neptune Society.
You can do your own due diligence, and we highly recommend that you do so. Just search online for Neptune Society Reviews or complaints to see how others who have used the Neptune Society view their experiences.
So what do we think of the Neptune Society? Our experience tells us that they charge a great deal more than you need to pay. Most folks I know personally had a satisfactory experience. Cremations happened at the price they had already paid, but it’s pricey.
I think that there are less expensive ways to accomplish the same thing without the higher prices, the ongoing phone calls and high pressure sales that folks report with the Neptune Society.
As always, it’s your choice. Never be pressured in buying something, especially for thousands of dollars that may not meet your needs or budget.
Funeral Consumers Alliance of Arizona
P.O. Box 12661
Tucson, AZ 85732-2661
The Funeral Consumers Alliance of Arizona – Your source for objective help and information. Funerals can be Dignified, Meaningful and Affordable.