Neptune Society Review: The Best Cremation Company To Choose?
Article HighlightsAbout the Company Neptune Locations What Does the Neptune Society Provide? Prepaid Plans How Much Does Neptune Society Cost? Customer Reviews Neptune Society Lawsuit Other National Cremation Providers
If you’ve done any research about cremation providers, you most likely have come across Neptune Society.
Founded in 1973, they’re now the largest cremation provider throughout the US.
But the real question is, are they a good option for you?
In this cremation provider review, we’ll take a look at everything you need to know about Neptune Society.
We’ll look at what services they offer, packages, costs, customer satisfaction, and a lot more.
About the Company
Founded over 40 years ago, the Neptune Cremation Society has been around longer than almost any other company in the industry. In their long history, their team has served multiple generations of families.
Their experience in helping grieving families shows in their solid reputation.
Their mission statement guarantees affordable choices and immediate service available with just one call.
Presently the Neptune Society is a subsidiary of Service Corporation International.
It acquired the Cremation Society of Iowa back in 2000, and was almost purchased by Walt Disney’s great-nephew for $11.5 million in 2003.
The Neptune Cremation Society was founded in and is based out of Plantation, FL. However they have 45 locations nationwide and are still expanding.
Locations include diverse places such as Massachusetts, California, Kansas City, Minnesota and Texas. So no matter where you live, chances are you can find one near you.
It is also known for two famous final resting places: the Neptune Society Columbarium in San Francisco and the Neptune Memorial Reef out in the Florida Keys.
What Does the Neptune Society Provide?
When you’ve lost a loved one, there is a lot to think about and many choices to be made. The Neptune Society provides a nice range of options so you have plenty of flexibility.
Even if you choose cremation, you can still opt for a traditional funeral and/or a viewing. Or you can keep it as simple as possible with a direct cremation.
Your choice depends on many factors, including cost and your loved one’s final wishes.
Here are some of the services provided by Neptune Society.
In most cases, Neptune Society will complete the cremation process in about 5-7 days. This time could be longer depending on weekends and holidays, and any holdups at the Coroner’s office.
Additional services such as transportation, refrigeration and a basic container can be purchased separately.
The overall cost of cremation is significantly less than the costs associated with a burial.
This is the least expensive and simplest cremation option.
It involves no funeral, viewings, embalming or casket, saving significantly on end-of-life costs.
Your loved one’s ashes will simply be returned to you after cremation.
You may choose to purchase a nice urn for them, or to honor them with a simple memorial service. However, this is completely up to you.
You may choose to have a memorial service for your loved one either before cremation or after.
Even if your loved one’s remains are not there, it can still be a very meaningful service.
Friends and family members can remember your loved ones with songs, stories, scripture/poetry readings and photographs.
It can be a very healing and special time where you share comforting memories of your loved one.
For an hourly fee, you can use a chapel provided by the Neptune Society. It seats up to 60 people.
It is available during regular business hours, as well as on the weekends for a slightly higher charge.
This may be a good option if you don’t have access to a traditional place of worship for your memorial service.
The Neptune Cremation Society provides the services of a minister at a cost of $175 to $300.
He or she will lead your loved one’s memorial service and provide spiritual counsel to the bereaved.
If you opt for a memorial service before cremation, you can choose to have a traditional service which includes a viewing.
If you decide to go this route, you will need to budget some extra for the cost of buying or renting a casket and embalming.
You can save some money by using the cremation container for the viewing instead of paying for a casket.
The process of embalming can make your loved one look more natural and life-like during the viewing.
Neptune Cremation Society provides this service at a cost of $275.
Neptune Cremation Society provides transportation for your loved one’s remains. The price of this service varies based on distance, but usually costs about $495.
A non-declinable flat fee of $895 covers several essential services. These include the response to the initial request for service and conference with family or responsible party.
It also includes the preparation of necessary legal documents, secretarial costs, and equipment expenses.
While this fee must be paid by everyone, additional services are available to you based on your needs, budget and the final wishes of your loved one.
A fee of $494 covers removal of your loved one’s remains from the place of death.
The price may be higher depending on your area. There is also a higher charge on evenings, weekends and holidays.
Scattering of Ashes
Many families now opt to scatter their loved one’s ashes in a special place, such as a garden or on the ocean.
For $245, the Neptune Cremation Society can scatter your loved one’s ashes in their garden in Evergreen, CA.
If you want a personalized memorial at sea, Neptune Society offers several options. A private memorial at sea on a yacht costs $1095. Or you can choose a multi-family memorial for $495.
Of course, you can also choose to have the ashes returned to you and arrange a simple scattering ceremony of your own.
The cost of having your loved one’s cremains returned to you in a simple container is $245.
Although cremation incurs significantly less cost than a traditional burial, it still needs to be factored into your budget so you don’t leave too much of a burden on your loved ones.
Fortunately, there is some flexibility in choosing a payment plan that works with your finances.
Pay for cremation in full
If you can afford to pay the entire cost of cremation up front, this results in bigger savings for you and your family.
Pay for cremation in installments
While this may cost you more in the long run, it offers the advantage of budgeting for cremation over time. This may be your best bet if the up-front cost of cremation is a hardship.
Add travel or relocation plans
This offers protection when you’re travelling or if you or your family move. In these cases, you will be covered for transportation of the remains from the place of death to the cremation facility.
This option can be a huge money-saver if you can afford it as part of your package, especially if you travel a lot or live far away from other family members.
How Much Does Neptune Society Cost?
The overall cost of cremation varies based on many factors, including your geographic area and the services that you choose.
Here is a breakdown of some of the possible costs.
Funeral Director Fees
Funeral homes generally charge a base cost for using their services, which include paperwork and acquiring copies of the death certificate.
This fee can range anywhere from $1500 to $3500. In some cases, it may be as much as $7000.
Sometimes, this fee can include other services such as transportation and the use of facilities.
The basic cremation process generally costs between $250-$400. However, other services may be included in the pricing plan which add to the price.
It’s a good idea to check to see how the services are broken down so you know exactly what you’re paying for.
The Neptune Society charges a total cost of $1950 for cremation. This price includes professional services, transportation, refrigeration and a container.
The average cost of embalming is between $200 and $800. The cost varies depending on the size and condition of the body.
Embalming is not always necessary, especially if you are not planning to have a viewing.
The Neptune Society will embalm and dress your loved one’s body for a fee of $750.
You may opt for a time when family and friends can visit and view your loved one’s remains before cremation.
Neptune Society offers its Viewing Room for this purpose. It can be rented for $525 per hour.
Caskets designed specifically for cremation are much less expensive than traditional caskets used for burial.
Typically you can purchase one for about $500-$600. You can save even more money by renting a casket just for the viewing. This can cost as little as $400.
The Neptune Society charges between $500 and $700 to rent a casket, depending on what kind of casket you choose.
It’s difficult to quote a price for a memorial service because there are so many options.
You can opt for something casual or traditional, simple or formal.
You can conduct the service in a place of worship, or simply gather a few friends in someone’s home. You can have a viewing or simply have your loved one’s remains present in a tasteful cremation urn.
You can even host a scattering of your loved one’s ashes at sea or on a lake. Your choices determine how much or little you end up spending.
The Neptune Society offers a range of services, starting with a memorial at sea for $495, all the way up to renting a chapel with a minister and a viewing.
It just depends on your preference and your loved one’s final wishes.
It’s hard to imagine anything more sacred than cremation and funeral services.
When it comes to mourning a loved one, you want to know for sure that their remains are in capable and professional hands.
That’s why it’s reassuring to read the positive reviews of former customers.
They have been called “true professionals, responsive, efficient and very compassionate.” Others have commented on how simple and efficient the process was.
While there have been a few complaints about the company in the 40+ years they have been in business, most of these complaints have been speedily resolved.
Neptune Society Lawsuit
In May 2016, a lawsuit was filed against the Neptune Society for aggressive telemarketing practices.
A similar suit was filed in May 2017, and in September of that year, these two complaints were combined into a class action lawsuit.
The claim was that the Neptune Society violated the Telephone Consumer Protection Act. This law protects consumers by requiring telemarketers to respect their requests to “opt out.”
Companies are obligated to maintain an internal “do not call” list of those who have opted out. The TCPA also prohibits the use of automated dialing with pre-recorded messages.
In response to this lawsuit, the Neptune Society set up a $15 million dollar fund to pay settlements.
Other National Cremation Providers
Although Neptune Society is among the biggest names in the industry, there are other options.
This company has been around for over a decade and receives rave reviews for prompt and compassionate service.
They are located primarily in the western U.S., with locations in many major cities including Las Vegas, Phoenix and Sacramento (to name a few).
Founded in 1970, National Cremation has served about 160,000 families and developed a solid reputation. Many are repeat customers, who speak highly of the ease and simplicity of the process.
There are locations all over the U.S., including California, Florida, Colorado and Connecticut.
Simple Cremation Online
This company offers the huge perk of allowing you to plan a cremation from the comfort of your home.
It connects you with a variety of service providers so you can choose the best one for your needs.
And it provides a wide range of options in terms of cost. There is live support available to guide you as you navigate these decisions.
Simple Cremation Online has locations throughout the U.S. These locations include Arkansas, Florida, Massachusetts, Texas and many others.
I have a complaint about your sales person in Rockford IL. She would not tell me what the “Basic” package was or what it included. By the end of the conversation and me questioning why she started out at close to $3,000.00 and went down from there to $2,400 but still would not tell me what it included. I didn’t even tell her what I would need other than cremation. Then she raised her voice to me and I hung up. Really not happy. Looking for an alternative.
Sounds like this particular Neptune Society staff member might need to seek employment in a different sort of job. Maybe by now she has? 🙁
That is not the experience we have it is a totally great provider as neptune society family gives you options and clear pricing according to your specific needs. It’s better to talk to a representative and have a specific plan put into place than to have your family members bear the financial burden of higher out of pocket costs …. plus the fact that your prices are locked in when you become a member.
I received a survey for my area from Neptune Society. Because I had always wanted to do pre-arrangement planning for cremation, I completed the survey and eventually received a call from a Neptune agent. Its plan for me was exactly what I wanted. I explained that I had a funeral policy that could be transferred to Neptune. I just learned that Neptune will not accept my policy. The agent only said that they can’t accept my policy. Could you explain why you think Neptune would not accept my policy?
I got a call that they didn’t have my mother’s body, that someone else had picked her up from the hospital, and even gave me a name, and told me that I would have to find her body, myself. Yeah. They suggested that I call the hospital to try to track her down. I replied that I had notified them, and only them. I highly doubted that some random person just came along and took her with them. After laughing at them, telling them that she was prepaid in full, and it was a ‘you problem’, they worked harder to find her body, miles and a ferry ride away. At least, Mom got a good ride. DON’T USE THESE PEOPLE!
I dealt w/ a local funeral home for inlaws. Urns were reasonable also, funeral home is adjacent to a cemetery where they RIP. Columbariums are being built and an option. Funeral homes here are cheaper than having to travel to a cremation facility. Best to check prices in areas nearby first and then decide if travelling out of area is worth the expense and hassle..
I have several complaints about your Neptune in Austin, Texas. The saleswomen wanted a quick close. The contract costs are hidden. They insist on you contracting for an expensive urn. I do not recommend Neptune.
Really not happy. Looking for a more ethical service alternative.
My question isn’t Neptune specific…but generally….what happens if you’ve prepaid and the company goes out of business? I don’t know how often that happens but what if? Are you out of luck? I mean I supposed you would need to validate them periodically but what if you or family hasn’t?