October 16, 2004

Funeral Price Search Engine

kakaku_funeral.png imageDead? No? That’s too bad — we’ve got a hot deal for you. The hot Death market has lead Japanese mega-price search site kakaku.com to open a new section they’re simply calling “Sougi,” meaning “funeral.” Though the funeral price-search engine currently covers only the greater Tokyo and Kanagawa areas, the company is planning on expanding it to other regions of the country.

Users choose their preferred funeral from “cremation,” “family and friends funeral,” “general funeral,” (of which there are two variations), “company funeral,” and finally “production funeral.” The respective estimated attendees are at 10, 30, 40, 100 (the second variation of general), and 500 people for each particular type. The next step is to select your region, and you will then be presented with a price list of “funeral providers” in that area offering the type of funeral you have selected. You can even access data such as “which religions are supported” (Buddhist, Shinto, Christian, None), whether or not the funeral provider accepts requests online, and year of establishment.

In the interest of internet journalism, we went ahead and died, and selected “company funeral.” The lowest price we were presented with for this funeral type was 4,300,000 yen - about $39,000 USD.