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How do you choose the best funeral cover in South Africa?

Some of the best funeral cover options in South Africa are:

  • Assupol funeral cover
  • Avbob funeral cover
  • Capitec funeral cover
  • Clientele funeral cover
  • FNB funeral cover
  • Hollard funeral cover
  • Meerkat funeral cover
  • Metropolitam funeral cover
  • Old Mutual funeral cover
  • Outsurance funeral cover

An introduction to funeral cover in South Africa

When you love someone; one of the most important things for you is making sure that they have peace of mind, and are well taken care of, even when you are no longer present.

In more ways than often said, purchasing a funeral or life cover is an expression of love; a way to show your loved ones just how important they are to you even beyond the grave.

Death is inevitable, and a very normal part of life. No matter how much we may avoid speaking or even thinking about it, it is still a fate we all ought to face one day.

It is for this reason that you should consider getting a good funeral cover; to ensure that your loved ones are not overburdened by your passing. A final message to say “I love you”; “I care”.

How does one even begin to choose a funeral policy that is perfectly suited for your needs, your budget, and your aspirations? What makes a good funeral cover?

Below are some of the criteria for choosing a suitable funeral cover.

How to choose the best funeral cover:

Choosing the right funeral cover is one of the most important decisions you will make. Below are ten important things you need to consider when choosing the best funeral cover for you and your loved ones.

What are the needs of your family, both now and in the future?

How many people would you have to cater for at the funeral? Would your family need legal assistance at the event of your passing? Would your family need funeral assistance services in the event of your passing? What is the waiting period for the payout?

Any answer to the above questions would widely determine the type of funeral cover you would need to take - comprehensive funeral cover, burial cover, extended family cover, standard cover, etc.

How many people can you cover with one funeral policy?

Not all families are equal; and oftentimes, the people we consider family aren’t necessarily the ones within our immediate family. Over and above our spouses or children; grandparents, cousins, uncles, and other relatives can also be highly treasured members of the family we would like to cover in our policy.

It is important that you consider this when you begin to choose your funeral cover.

How old are the family members you’d like to cover?

Some funeral policies limit the members it can cover according to age. For someone who is intending to cover elderly members of their family, this could be a big inconvenience.

You might want to enquire about the age limitations of the funeral policy you intend to take before you purchase a funeral cover.

How much will you need to pay for the funeral cover?

After everything has been said and done, what matters most is the bottom line and whether it makes financial sense to you or not.  

You need to ask yourself how much the individual members included in the policy will be covered for, and how much it will cost you on a monthly basis.

Make sure you answer financially related questions as honestly as possible before choosing a funeral cover or you’ll risk potentially paying more than you are prepared for.

Commission and Costs

If you purchased your funeral product from a salesperson, they are probably being paid commission.  Ask them how much they will be paid, and whether you can negotiate that amount lower.  Older funeral products often need paper application forms.  These companies have to cover the costs of all the paper.  In both these examples, the newer policies that are administered on the internet can be much cheaper.

Education Benefits

For parents with school-age children, education is one of the most meaningful legacies they can leave behind. Some comprehensive funeral covers offer educational benefits to assist with the cost of education for the policy holder's children in the event of the policy holder's death.

Ask your funeral cover provider about education benefits if this matters more to you.

Does the policy increase with accidental death?

Nobody plans the date of their death, but accidental deaths leave families more devastated and even less prepared for the sudden eventualities brought about by the sudden death of a loved one.

An accidental cover can provide your family with the financial means to arrange your funeral and even continue their life without incurring large amounts of debt in the event of accidental death.

Does the funeral cover offer burial repatriation?

We live in a more and more globalised world, and we travel more than any other time in history. Find out whether your funeral cover offers transportation arrangements for you or your loved one’s repatriation in the case of death happening away from home.

From what countries or provinces do they repatriate a body from? Do they make arrangements for a family member to accompany the mortal remains of a policy member covered by the policy?

Voluntary Policy Pause

In the case of you losing a job, being retrenched, illness, or any other case where you are left unable to pay your premium, would you be able to pause your policy for a set period without losing your cover?

What are the funeral cover inflation rates?

 Will the premium amount increase overtime? How often? At what percentage rate? Once you have got an idea on how this will be; you can then decide if you’d still be able to afford it should your income not increase as well.

Pro's and Con's

What are the Pros & Cons of a Funeral Cover?

Advantages Of Funeral Cover

  • Peace of mind that you or loved one are not overburdened in the event of death.
  • You can get covered immediately and select beneficiaries who will receive the pay-out.
  • Your beneficiaries can use the lump sum to pay for a wide range of immediate expenses.
  • Reduced financial pressure in the event of death when taking out your funeral insurance policy, you can indicate who you would like to include in the policy.
  • Some funeral cover services can double the payment in the case of accidental death.
  • The opportunity to plan your funeral in advance.

Disadvantages of Funeral Cover

  • The maximum amount which you are covered for can be limiting, depending on the funeral expenses.
  • Most funeral insurance companies do not pay out if the policy holder’s death is due to suicide.
  • You could pay more over time than the actual cost of a funeral, especially if you are obliged to pay for your cover even after retirement.
  • Insurance benefits may be subject to approval.

The best funeral cover options in South Africa

Assupol funeral cover

Established in 1913 and registered as a long-term insurer under the Long-term Insurance Act in 1960; Assupol is one of the biggest funeral insurance companies in South Africa.

One of their funeral policy selling points is guaranteed insurance for you and your family, without paying any premiums for up to 6 months if you get retrenched from your job.

Avbob funeral cover

Founded in 1921 in Bloemfontein; AVBOB is, today, Africa’s Largest Mutual Assurance Society.

Avbob prides itself for offering some of the lowest-priced funeral covers in the country. One of their policy promises is a cash-back of the premiums received in the fifth year, after every consecutive five years that you do not claim against your policy.

Capitec funeral cover

One of the fastest-growing banks in the world, and now also the second biggest retail bank in South Africa; Capitec now also offers funeral cover.

Capitec offers personalised funeral cover according to your needs. They let you decide how much cover you need and then calculate your premiums; or alternatively, you choose the premium within your budget and they calculate the cover.

Clientele funeral cover

Founded in 2007, Clientele quickly grew to become one of the most recognisable funeral policy companies in South Africa.
Clientèle gives customers the option to receive 50% off their premiums back in cash at the age of 65.

FNB funeral cover

FNB is the oldest bank in South Africa, dating as far back as 1838. FNB funeral cover selling point is a claims process that is quick and simple, with valid claims paid out within 24 hours and 1 in 5 claims paid out in 30 minutes.

Hollard funeral cover

Founded in 1980  by Robert Enthoven and his son Patrick Enthoven. Hollard is now South Africa's largest privately-owned insurance group. Their funeral cover promises to give you 20% cashback after every five years of paying all your insurance policy premiums claim-free!

Meerkat funeral cover

Founded in 2016, Meerkat is already a worthy competitor in the market due to its innovative nature. Underwritten by Old-Mutual Alternative Risk Transfer Limited; Meerkat is all about building with you, offering solutions that are simple, cost-effective and tailor-made.  

Meerkat funeral cover offers one affordable contract to replace multiple policies; remains in place on retirement*, and their cover also remains in place if you miss a premium if you have also chosen their savings plan.

Whether it’s  funeral cover, debt management, savings, or credit life insurance you seek; Meerkat walks the journey to financial freedom with you, looking out for you every step of the way; helping you find the most suitable solutions based on your immediate and future needs.

* cover will remain in place once premiums are received. Meerkat offers a savings product which can be used to fund premiums in the future, subject to you having sufficient funds.

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Metropolitan funeral cover

With a legacy of over 120 years, Metropolitan has been serving and empowering South African communities with accessible financial solutions through the best and challenging times. As one of the largest financial services companies in South Africa, their legacy is centred on providing client centric solutions.

You can customise your plan to suit your needs. You have the flexibility to change your cover as and when your life changes.

Old Mutual funeral cover

Old Mutual was established in Cape Town in 1845 as South Africa's first mutual life assurance society. Their purpose is to help their customers thrive by enabling them to achieve their lifetime financial goals, while investing their funds in ways that will create a positive future for them, their families, their communities and broader society.

Old Mutual’s Burial Society Support Plan is designed for collectives such as churches, stokvels, NGOs and clubs.

Outsurance funeral cover

Founded in 1998, OUTsurance was built on the idea that you should always get something out, turning INsurance into OUTsurance.  OUTsurance offers customisable options to suit varied customer needs such as pause and play your plan.

What you need to know about funeral cover

Getting  suitable funeral cover can be a daunting task when you don’t know what you’re looking for, but no matter who you are getting your cover from, there are certain things you need to know:

  • Just because a company offering the funeral cover is a big brand does not necessarily mean they will offer you the best cover.
  • Funeral cover premiums can rise very quickly, make sure you are  aware of these potential changes and hikes from the start of your premium.
  • Make sure your funeral insurance policy covers all of your needs. i.e paying for groceries and expenses for a fixed period, bereavement counselling, emergency medical support, education benefit, memorial benefit, etc.
  • Know and understand some of the things that can cause the failure of payout when claiming - incorrect information, suicide, death in an incident of crime, war, etc.
  • Find out whether there is a way to review and get the premium reduced annually.

Give yourself and your family peace of mind.  Meerkat has affordable, trusted funeral cover in South Africa.

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