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Frequently Asked Questions on Irish Urns

How much is shipping?

Free to USA, Ireland, and UK – OTHER LOCATIONS are calculated at checkout.

Where do you ship?

We ship worldwide.

How long does shipping take?

Your order will be shipped within 1-2 working days on receipt of payment unless otherwise agreed*.

Our delivery times per zone are as follows:

Shipping to USA and Rest of World: allow 5-7 days from dispatch (Express available on request).

Shipping to the United Kingdom and Mainland Europe: allow 2-4 days from dispatch.

Shipping within Ireland: allow 1-2 days from dispatch.

Once your order has been dispatched, you will be sent an order tracking email and this will allow you to go to the carrier website to track your order.

What is your returns policy?

Irish Urns are always grateful when one of our Urns for ashes has been purchased, as it is such an important decision.

This means that we are disappointed if you don’t like what you have received.

If you would like to discuss any Cremation Urn ahead of your order, please give us a call.

Irish Urns are happy to help get things right and will accept returns. We will either replace or refund the item, you can decide (minus our shipping cost).

Please send us an email at Contact@irishurns.ie within 14 days of receipt of the item, if you are not happy with the Cremation Urn. Postal cost and insurance for returning the Ashes Urn is the customer’s responsibility.

We can only accept returns on Cremation items that have been unused and are still in their original packaging, in order to allow us to restock and resell the item. Returned items must be received within 28 days of delivery.

If an item has been received and is damaged before it was delivered to you, please advise us by email at Contact@irishurns.ie immediately or within 48 hours of receipt and attach a photograph of the items and the packaging, as we will need this to claim from our shippers.

We will do all we can to ensure you are happy and will contact you once we receive your email to walk you through your options.

What is the cremation process?

Cremation is a process of transforming the body into bone fragments using heat.

Any metal objects included with the body are removed and the remaining pieces are ground into an ash.

Many people are choosing cremation as a more environmentally-friendly, economical and convenient option to a traditional burial (55% in US and 75% in UK).

If you would like to understand the process more, this video link to YouTube may be useful.

What do I need to consider when choosing what to do with my loved one’s ashes?

There are many things you can do with their ashes – and your choices generally fall within 3 categories:

Keep them at home and find a suitable Urn for human ashes that reflects your love for them.

Take them home and scatter the ashes in a place that would be appreciated by your loved one (land or sea).

Take them home, choose a suitable Cremation Urn and bury the Cremation Urn in a fitting place, perhaps in the grave plot of other family members.

There is a mix of other alternatives. For example, you may want to keep the remains in an Ashes Urn until the time is right for you to decide if scattering or burial is more appropriate.

You can also consider sharing the ashes. For example, siblings each taking a keepsake (Small Urn or Jewelry) and the main Cremation Urn being buried or the remainder of ashes scattered, or indeed a spouse/partner may want to keep the ashes in an art piece Urn for ashes.

Why are more and more families choosing cremation?

Cremation has become increasingly popular due to environmental concerns, the dignity, and simplicity of cremation, and the flexibility it affords in the planning and disposition of the body.

What happens to the ashes after the cremation process?

The cremated remains will be passed to the family either directly or via your funeral director and generally, they are in a sealed plastic bag within a temporary box or Tube.

Your crematorium will advise how long after the cremation, but normally between 3-10 days.

The choice is then what feels right to you. Find the right cremation Urn and take your time to decide whether it should be kept at home, buried in the ground, interned in a columbarium, shared in keepsakes or scattered (Scattering is final – so be sure!).

How do I choose the right Cremation Urn?

There are thousands of Cremation Urn designs and, like most things, you will probably know it when you see it.

The choice is so vast you could spend days browsing the internet, so we suggest you set out some criteria before you start.

Wood, metal, ceramic? Handcrafted or mass-produced? Generic or unique?

An art piece or a utility piece?

Try and fit in some of your loved one’s values or heritage or background into the Urn for Ashes. As mentioned already, you will know the right cremation urn when you see it.

What size Cremation Urn do I need?

Cremation Urns can generally take between 130 and 200 cubic inches of ashes, although some are larger. For example, companion Urns for Ashes which are designed with two people in mind.

It is suggested that the bodyweight on death is less significant as the cremains are mostly bone ash.

Is the final Urn for Ashes required at the cremation?

You are not required to supply an urn for ashes for the cremation ceremony – families are encouraged to take their time to find the right Cremation Urn and a temporary Urn or appropriate container is always offered by the crematorium.

Once the right Cremation Urn is found, the family may choose to bury the remains, place the urn for ashes in a columbarium, store the remains at home and/or share some remains in keepsake jewelry or keepsake Urns.

What are the Guidelines for the Scattering of Ashes?

Many people ask that their ashes be scattered and often define the location or favorite time of year.

We suggest that you also consider the legalities, and seek permission from the landowner.

In the case of national parks, you should contact their offices and seek prior and ideally written approval.

There is a certain attraction to scattering ashes on the sea but the elements often hamper your ceremony, so ideally use a scatter tube so that you can control the speed and direction of the remains.

Once you have permission, just use common sense and have consideration for others. For example, if in a place of natural beauty, walk off the beaten path a little and then spread the ashes finely.

Many people use their mobile phone Geolocation tag to record the exact spot, should you ever wish to revisit it or share the location with family or friends. The best advice is to plan wisely so you can enjoy the ceremony.

Are Ashes safe to store in a home?

As cremation rises in popularity, people sometimes ask if the ashes are safe to keep in their homes. They are. Once the body is cremated, all the remains are safe and do not pose a health risk to you or your family.

After the cremation process, what remains is mostly tri-calcium phosphate, the primary component of bone. There are trace amounts of other minerals like sodium and potassium, which are naturally found in our environment.

Can I fly with cremated remains and what is likely to happen?

Generally, you are allowed to take ashes on a plane. However, you must consider airline regulations, transport security policies and local laws before you plan to fly.

So we suggest that you make a direct call to the airline and ask about their policy, as some may only allow the cremation urn to be transported in a checked bag with luggage.

Others operate the opposite and ask that you carry the Urn for ashes on the plane (in a bag). It is important that you secure the lid of the urn carefully.

In your departure airport, approach airport security people and inform one of the teams that you have a container of cremated remains (before you step through the scanner.)

They will then ensure you and your precious cargo are treated with respect and empathy, however, we would suggest that you allow extra time as the Ashes Urn will need to be scanned and x-rayed. I understand that the security teams do not open Cremation Urns as a mark of respect.

Can I take a filled Cremation Urn to a different country?

Some people ask that their remains are put with other family in their ancestral land or ask that their ashes be scattered in a particular location, which means you must bring the ashes urn on a plane.

Airport staff see this regularly and are generally very supportive.

We would also suggest that, to be sure, you should contact the destination countries embassy to understand their rules.

If shipping the remains, postal services will generally insist on proper packaging and that the cremation urn itself is extremely well-sealed. They may also request that the urn for ashes is placed inside a plastic sealed bag, or inside a box and that box should be then placed in a padded box and the contents declared when shipping.

Are there different laws for different countries?

Just to be certain, we suggest you should contact the embassy in the country of destination. For example, Germany do not allow importing or exporting on individuals’ ashes.

A small number of countries do not permit remains to be brought in. Others have rules about who can send the remains, as well as who can receive them.

If I am cremated, can I be buried with my spouse or partner’s remains?

Yes — depending upon the cemetery’s policy, you may have your remains and Cremation Urn buried on top or beside the casketed remains of your spouse.

Many cemeteries allow for multiple cremated remains to be interred in a single grave space. Cemeteries ask that they are notified ahead of the placing or scattering of ashes. There is likely to be a registration cost and a cost for opening a part of the grave to take the Urn for Ashes.

How much can I expect to pay for a Cremation Urn?

The majority of Urns for human ashes available in Funeral Homes and online are often mass-produced, mainly in China or India, and are mostly fit for purpose. You might expect to pay between $200 – $400 dollars for these.

It all depends on your budget and loved one’s preference.

For more individual pieces that are handcrafted by named artisans, many create to order and, as such, these are normally more valuable. Therefore, prices range from $350 – $2,000 as these cremation urns are generally unique and handcrafted.

There are other higher-end options that are significant art pieces and are bought to display the remains either in a home or in a garden.

Should I buy a Cremation Urn if I plan to scatter the ashes at some stage in the future?

It is totally your decision and many people buy the right Cremation Urn now, keep the ashes at home and then use the urn to scatter the ashes when it feels right.

Most people then keep the cremation urn to hold memories of the person’s life (photos, jewelry, a lock of hair, a note) or continue to keep a small quantity of ashes in a smaller Keepsake urn for ashes.

Is it okay not to buy an Urn for Ashes from our local Funeral Director?

Absolutely – Generally most Funeral Directors have a range of Urns for human ashes, but choices can be quite limited, purely functional and often sourced from a Chinese or Indian manufacturer.

Your Funeral Director will happily accept a Cremation Urn of your choosing whether bought elsewhere or online. Many Funeral Directors will also be happy to transfer the ashes from the crematorium container into your chosen Cremation Urn. Funeral Directors store Ashes until collected by the family.

What criteria did you use to assemble such great Artisans?

In a word – provenance. My guide to authenticity and quality.
Each artisan must be highly regarded by their peers with Irish National award-winning recognition.
To have created commissioned works for our Heads of State, Presidents and our Government.
Honed and toned skills gained through years of practice, trial, error and success.
Artists first, committed to design, original thinkers with the skills to create from their own imagination.
A depth of integrity, a deep appreciation that each unique Cremation Urn must give comfort to families in appearance and design inspiration.

I will let you decide if I have delivered on that criteria.

Do you have any practical tips on scattering ashes?

Scattering the ashes of a loved one is a very personal, emotional, and private event. It can help to understand the rules and regulations around doing this in both private and public spaces.

Human ashes don’t provide a health hazard to the living or to the environment. The remains are essentially powdered fragments of the deceased person’s bones. All metal and other elements are removed before being given to the family.

It’s good to note that many mountaineering societies request that human ash isn’t scattered on high hills and mountainsides as the remains have been shown to have a negative impact on alpine plants. The ash covers delicate foliage and can sometimes destroy the plant.

It quickly becomes apparent that there are contradictions and differences between countries and societies when it comes to scattering the ashes of a deceased loved one.

Here are some common rules that countries like Ireland, the UK, Canada, Australia, and the USA all share:

You can scatter ashes on property that you own without any permission.

If space is privately owned, you’ll need to get permission from the owner.

In the UK, local authority-owned space can require permission. Many decide to go ahead and scatter or bury ashes without permission. Be aware that this can create issues with some vigilant park wardens. It could potentially ruin a sacred moment if someone in a high-vis vest picks a fight with you about the ‘rules’.

Some Botanic Gardens (such as Kew Gardens in London) allow ash scattering once you seek permission.

Scattering ashes on a waterway is permissible unless it is an owned stream, river or lake where you should ask the owner for permission.

If the ceremony takes place from a pier, you are requested to ask permission from the Harbourmaster.

Scattering ashes at sea doesn’t require permission. However, an exception is California in the US which specifically prefers if the ashes are scattered at least 500 yards off the coast.

If you’d like to scatter ashes on a family grave you should know that some cemeteries don’t allow this. Some cemeteries also charge fees for interment (or burial) of urns containing ashes into a grave.

If you want to transport ashes to another worldwide location:

Most airlines and shipping companies require ashes to be contained in non-metallic containers.

You’ll also need a statement from the crematorium identifying that these are the remains of your deceased loved one.

There are exceptions to the above. For example, Qantas doesn’t require any specific containers or certificates for ashes flown out of Australia.

Be aware that remains will be screened through security just as any other object going on a plane.

If you would like to transport ashes into other countries, it is best to contact the relevant consulate authorities.

Scattering ashes in US National Parks is allowed but it needs to take place away from other people and 90 meters away from water.

Amusement parks like Disney World prohibit ash scattering of any kind.

Ash scattering is facilitated by many ferry and cruise companies like P&O and Carnival Cruises. They frequently assist families with memorials and can facilitate services. Each company has different ways of approaching this but can usually provide the family with a private space on board to conduct a ceremony. Materials dispersed from the ship must all be biodegradable.

Be aware of prevailing wind when scattering or casting out the ashes. Make sure that you know the direction of travel for the ashes is the one that you want.

This segment is compliments of the wonderful website called https://aftering.com

Whats kind of a memorial service can a family have?

A Memorial Service

This is an event to remember the deceased loved one, where family and friends come along to celebrate their life but with no actual body present.

Some people find the presence of the body upsetting, or find that they want to remember the person as they had been when they were alive rather than in a ‘box’.

A Funeral Service

The body of the loved one is actually present and the coffin or casket may be open or closed. A service takes place in the presence of the body.

This is a very traditional way to send off a loved one. Funerals are frequently religious in context. More and more people are opting for a combination of religious and secular. It is a very personal choice. Many at the end of their lives find that they do not have any religious beliefs and prefer their families to provide for a civil funeral when they have died.

A Committal Service

This kind of event usually happens at the graveside before the body of the loved one is buried or when their ashes are being buried or scattered.

Many times this service is only for close family and friends who travel to the graveside or location where the ashes will be scattered. It is seen as a very final goodbye and it can be a highly emotional and intense moment.

A Tribute

Sometimes tributes can take place long after the person has died. It is an event to focus on the life of the deceased loved one and what feelings and memories people would like to share about that life.

Tributes are opportunities for large groups of people to join together when the immediate rawness of death is over. It is a great chance to reflect on all of the happy experiences spent with the person who is now gone.

For more information please look up this kind author’s website, https://www.aftering.com

Where can I find Funeral Poems?

A great website for general funeral and grief information, as well as a range of the most popular Poems, Quotes and Music, is a website called Aftering.com.

An example by Mary Frye :-

Do not stand at my grave and weep. I am not there. I do not sleep. I am a thousand winds that blow. I am the diamond glints on snow. I am the sunlight on ripened grain. I am the gentle autumn rain. When you awaken in the morning’s hush I am the swift uplifting rush of quiet birds in circled flight. I am the soft stars that shine at night. Do not stand at my grave and cry; I am not there. I did not die

What is a Funeral Celebrant?

A funeral celebrant is a professionally trained person who conducts funeral and memorial ceremonies outside of the church setting. A funeral celebrant works closely with the bereaved family to create a unique ceremony that truly reflects the essence of the person who has died. This ceremony can take place in the family home, the funeral home, crematorium, place burial or another venue if desired.

If you wish to learn more about about funeral celebrancy, please click here.

How are trees planted and can we visit?

All of our trees are planted on 10 acres of lakeside land located in North County Dublin, nearby the small village of Naul.

They are a range of mixed native Irish Trees planted randomly so species are mixed to create a more natural eco system and habitat for nature. Click to see more on our INSTAGRAM page.

3 bulbs are planted for every tree. The woodland boundary has been seeded with millions of native Irish Wildflowers.

Every tree planted is a contribution to the woodland and to the environment.

When viewed from above, the woodland is made up of giant leaf plots and Giant Butterfly plots. Our Bee colony love all the native plants and trees and the butterflies love our Buddleia bushes that make up the body of the huge butterflies.

People can visit the woodland by private appointment – contact bob@irishurns.ie or bob@irishtrees.ie to agree a good date for your visit.

We are also partnered with Ireland’s National Hospice – The Irish Hospice Foundation. Féileacáin ( Baby loss support Charity) and Laura Lynn. €40 from the sale of each of these related trees goes to the nominated charity.

Irish Urns and Memorial Trees is partially funded by the European Development Fund and our Local Enterprise Office.

More information can be found on Irishtrees.ie, Irishurns.com, our official Etsy store.