GENERAL QUESTIONS ABOUT SCATTERING

Burial at Sea

What questions should I ask a burial at sea company?

-Is the boat selected for your group Coast Guard certified to safely carry the number of people in your Party?
-Does the company carry insurance?
-Will the burial be performed within 30 days?
-Are those involved in burial at sea licensed U.S. Coast Guard Masters?
-Are all your questions answered to your satisfaction?
Pacific Coast Ashes at Sea has met these requirements for over 20 years. In these times when personal service is often difficult to find, we trust you will find our service to your satisfaction.

Why do people scatter ashes at sea?

The reasons vary from person to person and family to family. Generally, people select scattering of ashes at sea because they want to return to nature what nature created.

What kind of official documents do you need to scatter ashes?

For unattended scattering, we need a burial permit from the County Vital Statistics Office at the place of disposition. We need our Authorization for Scattering form for attended and unattended scatterings. The Authorization for Scattering form can be downloaded from the Authorization Form link.

Do you scatter pet remains?

Yes, usually when we are scattering other cremains. Pet scattering is $100.

What is the aerial scattering procedure?

After we receive the urn containing the cremains, we schedule the dispersal flight as soon as possible. Usually, the next day, weather permitting. We fly to the approved dispersal location, complete the dispersal, record the coordinates, and return.

How common is aerial scattering?

Because of the high costs associated with conventional funerals and cemetery burial, cremated remains scattering has grown dramatically over the last few years. Aerial scattering is another affordable option available for final disposition.

Where can I get information on cremation?

Your best source is your local funeral director. They have all the information you need to make an appropriate decision about cremation and scattering of ashes. Their experience can guide you throughout the entire process.

Do I have to make a reservation or appointment?

Yes. We are available on the weekdays to set up the time and date for the sea scattering. Once we have a firm booking, we will provide you and your guests with directions, parking availability, etc.

Are services available on the weekends?

Yes, services are available daily. Weekends are the most convenient time for most people to gather together for the burial at sea ceremony.

Would our family and guests be the only ones on the boat at the time of scattering?

The boat is exclusively yours for the cruise and memorial service. Family and friends may conduct whatever type of memorial service they wish, and the Captain will perform the scattering ceremony.

I've had the cremated remains for some time. What can I do now?

Many people choose to keep the cremated remains of a loved one at home for a while (maybe even years) before feeling the need to make a decision about their ultimate placement. This is very common. Call us for assistance.

Is sending the cremains by US Postal Service a proven and reliable method?

Yes, it's been proven to be the best, fastest, and most reliable method. Some other delivery providers will not accept cremains due to liability restrictions.
[ click here for mailing instructions ]

Why do you use a post office for the shipping destination of cremated remains?

Most cremated remains are shipped to us via registered mail. The use of United States Postal Service's registered mail is by far the most secure form of transportation. The shipment is protected by the United States Government. It is only proper that every precaution is taken to protect this transportation of human remains. The transportation of them at a guarded government facility assures they are safe, and protected.

What if I want to talk to you personally?

Call us toll-free at (562) 437-5046. We'll be glad to talk to you.

Can you accommodate special requests for scattering?

Yes, we will attempt to satisfy any special requests provided they are not in violation of governing state or federal statutes.

How long is the cruise and how far do you go offshore?

Approximately 1 to 1.5 hours, depending on the "service to be conducted" arrangements made prior to departure.

Is the cruise safe for children?

Yes, high railings around the boat, and non-skid decks help keep children safe.

What about providing flowers?

Family and friends customarily bring “cut flowers” for tossing into the ocean immediately after the cremains are lowered. Wreaths are also sometimes used, but the wreath must be completely biodegradable. Styrofoam wreaths are not approved for placing in the ocean.

What type of clothing/shoes/hat/glasses should we wear?

Wear warm clothes, preferably wind-proof, non-skid shoes, a head cover and sunglasses.

Will I get sea sick?

If you are concerned about becoming sea sick, we recommend considering taking a dose of anti-motion sickness medication as the waves do cause a little bit of rocking.

Can I visit the scattering site later?

Yes, knowing the exact coordinates of the scattering site, we can take you to that spot for any memorial you have in mind.

How will I know when and where the unattended scattering took place?

It is our policy to scatter remains as soon as possible after receipt, usually within the week. You will receive a Memorial Letter indicating the date and location of scattering.

For families on a tight budget, what do you offer and are there any hidden charges associated with burial at sea?

We offer "unattended scattering" service. We receive the cremains by mail from you along with a disposition permit from the Los Angeles County health department, promptly conduct the dispersal off the coast of Los Angeles County and send you a Letter of Scattering with the date and location of the scattering. The cost is $195. Disposition permits when not obtainable in person can be arranged through a Los Angeles county funeral home.

How and when is payment made?

Payment can be made by personal check, money order, cashier's check, or credit card and is due when the reservation is made. 

Make check payable to our mother company, Harbor Breeze Cruises, and mail to: 

Pacific Coast Ashes at Sea
620 W. 16th Street, Suite C
Long Beach, CA 90813


We provide our services to the following Cities and Towns in: »
  • Alaska
  • Homer
  • Ketchikan
  • Kodiak
  • Sitka
  • Oregon
  • Depoe Bay
  • Newport
  • Texas
  • Galveston Bay
  • Washington
  • Edmonds
  • Olympia
  • Westport
  • Hawaii
  • Honolulu