Attending a funeral or memorial service is an emotionally charged experience for everyone involved, regardless of your relationship with the deceased. Whether you are a close family member of the deceased, a friend, or just a neighbor, you are very likely to be affected and in an emotional state.

It can be difficult to determine what would be appropriate to express your sympathy and condolences to the grieving family at this emotionally challenging time. Ultimately, the most important thing is to be there for the grieving family through your presence and the support you can offer at a funeral or memorial service. However, as part of a thoughtful gesture, you may consider bringing small gifts like flowers, a sympathy card, a donation, photos, or other items to express your feelings during this somber occasion.

We have created the following guide to facilitate this process and to offer ideas for different ways you can show your sympathy and compassion to grieving loved ones.

Should I bring a gift or money to a funeral service?

There are a variety of factors that affect what would be appropriate for you to What to bring to a funeral service, such as your relationship with the deceased. If you are immediate family, you will most likely be responsible for keeping the guest book, bringing videos or photos of the deceased, or perhaps arranging canapes for the guests. If your relationship with the deceased was that of a friend or acquaintance, you may consider taking a small gift to express your condolences.

Unless you are closely related to the grieving family, you should avoid bringing money or a financial donation. However, you may consider money in the form of donations or financial assistance if the grieving family needs to cover funeral expenses or if they have been asked to provide this assistance in lieu of flowers.

Also, if the bereaved family belongs to a particular religion or culture, the traditions or customs they follow in accordance with the religion may affect what is appropriate to bring to the memorial service or funeral service. For example, for a memorial service being celebrated by a Jewish family, it is appropriate to bring food baskets or food trays. In the Jewish religion, a grieving Shiva family sits in honor of the deceased and will refrain from cooking and preparing their own meals during this time, so gifts of food baskets or food trays are particularly appreciated.

Funeral Flowers

Flowers are still one of the most popular gifts for this occasion. As long as you attract flowers in a more subtle and simple way, they are a good choice because they affect people’s emotions with their timeless beauty. You need to be polite, not disturb the other audience on your arrival or divert attention from the grieving family.

Flowers serve as a meaningful symbol of tranquility and compassion, chosen by them as a thought to express their love and sympathy for the bereaved family. Depending on the type of flower you can bring to the funeral service, consider more muted or pastel-colored flowers. With their serene beauty, lilies are a popular choice for this type of occasion.

It is usually preferred to send flowers before the reception begins or before the guests arrive. You can also choose to send flowers to the bereaved family instead of the funeral home. Always check with the funeral home and read family guidelines or recommendations on the funeral home website to avoid being inappropriate or arbitrary and make sure you are following the funeral home rules.


It depends on the family. In some cases, families record the receipt of their gifts. In this case, it is better to respect their wishes and comply with their demands. If you still think you might want to bring a gift to the funeral service, choose a small gesture they can take home later.

If you are planning What to bring to a funeral service, we have listed several things that are appropriate to consider in most cases. However, every funeral service is different, including traditions and religious rites. So be careful and try to consider the feelings of others. It’s also important to note that it’s often more appropriate to give a gift about a week after the funeral.



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