Articles > Selecting a venue for a funeral: what to consider

Selecting a venue for a funeral: what to consider

The YourLoss team is dedicated to sourcing and providing Australians with free and easy access to relevant and helping information and resources to assist them in all areas of death and bereavement.

Arranging a funeral can be a daunting experience, and it’s not something we tend to do on a regular basis. One of the key decisions to make is where the farewell should be held. From beaches to places of worship, selecting a venue can sometimes be tricky.

According to world-renowned grief expert Alan Wolfet:

People who take the time and make the effort to create meaningful funeral arrangements when someone loved dies often end up making new arrangements in their own lives. They remember and reconnect with what is most meaningful to them in life…strengthen bonds with family members and friends. They emerge changed, more authentic and purposeful. The best funerals remind us how we should live.

He is encouraging us to treat each farewell with care and consideration of both those who have died, and those who are still with us. When selecting a venue, it’s therefore important to remember what kind of person your loved one was, as sometimes the venue you choose can reflect the sense of the person, their personality, and the life they lived.

Types of venues

If your loved one was traditional or spiritual, you may wish to have the funeral at a church or temple.

Religious venue

Sanctuary Of A Small Church With Pews And Pulpit

If they didn’t have any religious beliefs, the chapel or gathering space of a funeral home may be a more appropriate option. With that said, religious services are still welcome and regularly conducted in these premises.

Funeral home

If they had a particular hobby like swimming or gardening, a location overlooking the water or a garden might be a possibility. Other contemporary options include social clubs, function centres, and town halls.

Contemporary setting


Some families wish to have the funeral service at their own home, which can be a wonderful option as it brings a stronger sense of personality and family life to the event.

Personal home

Beautiful Design And Detail On New Home

Important considerations

When discussing options with your funeral director, they will ask you several questions to try to determine which venue may be the most appropriate. This often includes how many people you envision attending, whether you would like a location with religious significance, or what kind of aesthetic you are after.

There are other elements of the service that may impact the venue selection, such as whether there is audio visual equipment in place for a slideshow or streaming of the service, permission to have an open coffin or viewing, or whether there are any special circumstances to consider like accessibility.

The Covid-19 pandemic has also had an impact on which venues may or may not be appropriate, with social distancing and other government regulations being factored into the equation.

Logistics will also need to be considered if the funeral service is spread over two locations, such as a final graveside committal or wake. In this case you may wish to consider hire cars for transportation between locations so that you don’t have to drive yourself.

Pre-planned and prepaid funerals

If you and your loved one are considering pre-planning or pre-paying a funeral, selecting the venue can be one of the main points to consider. It’s crucial that you advise your nearest and dearest that you have put these plans in place and to advise them which funeral home to call when the time comes.

Even if you haven’t pre-arranged your wishes, having a conversation about what you’d like to have happen with your friends and family can help steer them in the right direction when you die. You may also wish to consider expressing your wishes in a will and appointing an executor, who should be made aware of what you’d like for your farewell.


In the end there are no right or wrongs, and venues do not have to be incredibly fancy, decorated, or grandiose. It’s more a case of finding a nice balance between somewhere that feels personal and meaningful to you and your loved one, and reflecting the life that they lived. Remember, your funeral director will be able to help you through every step of the way and will be familiar with most venue choices in the surrounding area.

The information on this website is for general information only and are not (and nor are they intended to be) a substitute for professional medical or mental health advice, nor is it used for diagnosis and treatment. You, or anyone you are concerned about, are encouraged to seek professional medical or mental health advice and treatment from suitably qualified medical and clinical practitioners and providers. 

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Funerals & Farewells Personalising Pre-Planning Resources

The YourLoss team is dedicated to sourcing and providing Australians with free and easy access to relevant and helping information and resources to assist them in all areas of death and bereavement.

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