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Avalon Funeral Plan Coup

Avalon celebrates exceptional feedback after being named ‘Best Funeral Plan Provider’ at this year’s Personal Finance Awards.

Stephen Pett of the Prepaid Funeral Review said “I was pleased to receive Avalons Press Release (below) which clearly shows they are one of the most improving providers in the crowded prepaid funeral plan market. As one gets better, all the rest have to try harder to get an edge – which makes our Independent Advice even more important.”

Avalon Funeral Plans is celebrating a coveted award win after being named ‘Best Funeral Plan Provider’ at the 2019 Personal Finance Awards.

Now in its 22nd year, the Personal Finance Awards has long been recognised as a benchmark for excellence in the UK’s consumer finance market, providing a reflection of the consumer’s choice of top financial providers over the last two decades.

Nominations for the awards are sent in directly by the consumer, based on their experience of outstanding products or customer service in the industry. This year, the awards received just over 20,000 votes.

With over 25 years’ experience providing funeral plans to more than 70,000 customers across the UK and Europe, Avalon was recognised for its dedication to its customers, as well as the high standard of its service.

These qualities are continuously reflected in the company’s industry-leading customer feedback, with over 2,000 reviews and a rating of ‘excellent’ on Trustpilot, as well as a five-star rating on Defaqto, lending justification to the company’s esteemed award win. So trusted is the brand that someone chooses an Avalon funeral plan every 10 minutes*.

Avalon’s prepaid funeral plans are designed to give customers peace of mind, working with a network of 1,800 local, independent funeral directors across the UK to ensure that families always have support close to home.

Avalon’s commitment to putting the customer at its heart is also reflected in the unique features offered in their plans when compared to other funeral plan providers. The Avalon Promise, launched earlier this year, reassures customers that if they pass away before their plan is fully paid, Avalon can cover the cost of the services included in their funeral plan.

The Promise offers increased peace of mind for Avalon’s customers, and the company is the only plan provider that works with local, independent funeral directors to offer this.

The award win follows a successful period of growth for the business under a new senior management team led by CEO, Susan Stevenson.

Speaking about the award win, Avalon’s CEO, Susan Stevenson, said: “There are few other industries in which taking care of the customer, their journey and their family is quite so important.

“We like to think we’re different to other funeral plan providers in that we go the extra mile in helping customers and their loved ones when they perhaps need it most.

“It’s our promise to always put our customers at the centre of what we do, and the fact that we’ve been recognised for our efforts – particularly by such a widely renowned awarding body as the Personal Finance Awards – really means the world to us.”

Regulated in the UK by the Funeral Planning Authority (FPA), Avalon employs more than 200 people at its offices in Cheshire and across Spain, The Canaries, Portugal and Cyprus.

The company is flexible in offering customers three different ways to discuss their requirements and their range of funeral plans.  They can speak to a specialist advisor in the comfort of their own home, or over the phone, or 24/7 online.

For more information, and to find out if Avalon plans would be right for you, contact Steve at the Prepaid Funeral Review on 0800 0588 240.

*Based on sales of funeral plans over the period January – December 2018, by home appointment or over the phone, during standard trading hours.

Avalon celebrates exceptional feedback

 after being named ‘Best Funeral Plan Provider’ at this year’s Personal Finance Awards,  Avalon Funeral Plans PR Company is celebrating Avalons coveted award win after being named ‘Best Funeral Plan Provider’ at the 2019 Personal Finance Awards.

Now in its 22nd year, the Personal Finance Awards has long been recognised as a benchmark for excellence in the UK’s consumer finance market, providing a reflection of the consumer’s choice of top financial providers over the last two decades.

Nominations for the awards are sent in directly by the consumer, based on their experience of outstanding products or customer service in the industry. This year, the awards received just over 20,000 votes.

With over 25 years’ experience providing funeral plans to more than 70,000 customers across the UK and Europe, Avalon was recognised for its dedication to its customers, as well as the high standard of its service.

These qualities are continuously reflected in the company’s industry-leading customer feedback, with over 2,000 reviews and a rating of ‘excellent’ on Trustpilot, as well as a five-star rating on Defaqto, lending justification to the company’s esteemed award win. So trusted is the brand that someone chooses an Avalon funeral plan every 10 minutes*.

Avalon’s prepaid funeral plans are designed to give customers peace of mind, working with a network of 1,800 local, independent funeral directors across the UK to ensure that families always have support close to home.

Avalon’s commitment to putting the customer at its heart is also reflected in the unique features offered in their plans when compared to other funeral plan providers. The Avalon Promise, launched earlier this year, reassures customers that if they pass away before their plan is fully paid, Avalon can cover the cost of the services included in their funeral plan.

The Promise offers increased peace of mind for Avalon’s customers, and the company is the only plan provider that works with local, independent funeral directors to offer this.

The award win follows a successful period of growth for the business under a new senior management team led by CEO, Susan Stevenson.

Speaking about the award win, Avalon’s CEO, Susan Stevenson, said: “There are few other industries in which taking care of the customer, their journey and their family is quite so important.

“We like to think we’re different to other funeral plan providers in that we go the extra mile in helping customers and their loved ones when they perhaps need it most.

“It’s our promise to always put our customers at the centre of what we do, and the fact that we’ve been recognised for our efforts – particularly by such a widely renowned awarding body as the Personal Finance Awards – really means the world to us.”

Regulated in the UK by the Funeral Planning Authority (FPA), Avalon employs more than 200 people at its offices in Cheshire and across Spain, The Canaries, Portugal and Cyprus.

The company is flexible in offering customers three different ways to discuss their requirements and their range of funeral plans.  They can speak to a specialist advisor in the comfort of their own home, or over the phone, or 24/7 online.

For more information, visit avalon funeral plans.

*Based on sales of funeral plans over the period January – December 2018, by home appointment or over the phone, during standard trading hours.

The Quality of Death: UK Leads the Way

Quality of Death Survey 2015.

Quality of Death Report 2015

Quality of Death Report 2015

Being world beating in The Quality of Death stakes is a bit of an odd thing for the UK to be a world leader in. But it is comforting, especially with all the fuss about the NHS. Death happens to all normal folk, but planning for it is often non-existent. No up to date Will, no Powers of Attorney (so the family stay in charge right up to the end). And no prepaid funeral plan, so the family get stuck with stumping up several thousand pounds at a weeks notice or no funeral and extra costs.

Yes, it is distressing to talk about and in many cultures is taboo. we are fortunate in the UK to have a great NHS (not perfect, just great) and lots and lots of hospices to help people – and their families – towards the end. (If you are a hospice, contact us about our fund raising service.) Too often such care is simply not available. According to the Worldwide Palliative Care Alliance, while more than 100,000,000 people annually would benefit from hospice and palliative care (but less than 8% of those in need access it).

Funeral Plan Quotes

Funeral Plan Quotes

Few nations, including rich ones with cutting-edge healthcare systems, incorporate palliative care strategies into their overall healthcare policy.  This despite the fact that in many of these countries, increasing longevity and ageing populations mean demand for end-of-life care is likely to rise sharply. Globally, training for palliative care is rarely included in healthcare education curricula. Institutions that specialise in giving palliative and end-of-life care are often not part of national healthcare systems.   Many rely on volunteer or charitable status. Added to this, the availability of painkilling drugs—the most basic issue in the minimisation of suffering—is woefully inadequate across much of the world.  This is often due to concerns about illicit use and trafficking. The result of this state of affairs is an incalculable surfeit of suffering, not just for those about to die, but also for their loved ones. A deeper embedding of palliative care into broader health policy, and the improvement of standards of end-of-life care will raise the “quality of death.”  And will also yield significant gains for humanity’s quality of life.

With this in mind, the Economist Intellience Unit was commissioned by the Lien Foundation, a Singaporean philanthropic organisation, to devise a ”Quality of Death” Index.  This ranks countries according to their provision of end-of-life care. To go with the Index, the Economist Intelligence Unit interviewed experts around the world.  It also reviewed existing research on the topic of end-of-life care for the white paper.  It addresses issues on the Quality of Death as quantified by the Index rankings. Not all the complex cultural, ethical and sociological issues connected to dying could be included in the Index.   The White Paper also puts the Index findings into context and attempts to define the issues that must be considered when policymakers seek to improve the quality of death faced in their countries by those with incurable illness. Their conclusion:

The UK leads the world in quality of death.  Many developed nations must work to catch up. The UK has led the way in terms of its hospice care network and statutory involvement in end-of-life care, and ranks top of 40 countries measured in the Index. This is despite having a far-from-perfect healthcare system (indeed, it ranks 27th on the Basic End-of Life Healthcare Environment sub-category, which accounts for 20% of the overall score). But the UK is top in the Quality of End-of-Life Care sub-category, which includes indicators such as public awareness, training availability, access to pain killers and doctor- patient transparency (and accounts for 40% of the overall score). However, in the overall score, many rich nations lag a long way behind: these include Denmark (22nd), Italy (24th), Finland (28th) and South Korea (32nd). In these cases the quality and availability of care is often poor and policy co-ordination lacking.

Combating perceptions of death, and cultural taboos, is crucial to improving palliative care. Death and dying are stigmatised in some cultures to the point where they are taboo—as in Chinese culture. In Western societies death has become medicalised and curative procedures are often prioritised ahead of palliative care. In the US, discussion of end-of-life care often inflames religious sentiment that holds the sanctity of life paramount The issue is complicated by the perception that “hospice care” is often associated with “giving up”.

Public debates about euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide may raise awareness, but relate to only a small minority of deaths. While debates about these issues gain the most media attention, they affect only a tiny proportion of the terminally ill. (Consequently, policies on these issues are not included in the Index, although the legal status of “do not resuscitate” orders is included.) Nonetheless, pressure brought on policymakers over these issues can be a catalyst for the improvement of palliative care services—as in Australia, where the federal overturning of a Northern Territory euthanasia law in 1996 led to increased national funding for end-of-life care.

Drug availability is the most important practical issue. Pain control is the point from which all palliative care stems, and the availability of opioids (morphine and its equivalents) is fundamental to quality of end-of-life care. But across the world an estimated 5bn people lack access to opioids, principally due to concerns about illicit drug use and trafficking. A lack of training is also a problem, with many doctors and nurses ignorant of how to administer them.

State funding of end-of-life care is limited and often prioritises conventional treatment. In many countries—even where palliative care treatment is available through national healthcare systems or insurance—end-of-life care bodies rely on charitable donations and philanthropic activity to support them. In the US, while palliative care is available through public medical insurance, patients must relinquish curative treatments to be eligible for reimbursements/ Unlike in the UK, for example, where both courses of treatment may be pursued.

More palliative care may mean less health spending. By increasing the proportion of community and homecare, palliative care can reduce costs associated with hospital stays and emergency admissions. In the US in particular, with the recent passing of a major healthcare reform bill, this is likely to become a focus of debate. In Spain, one study found that in 2006 a shift away from the use of conventional hospital treatment towards palliative care, an increase in homecare and lower use of emergency rooms, generated savings of 61% compared with expenditure recorded in a 1992 study. However, the costs associated with non-cancer palliative care are higher than for cancer-related care. And as the population ages, more end-of- life care will be needed overall.

High-level policy recognition and support is crucial. Pioneering areas in developing countries—such as Uganda, and the state of Kerala in India—show the importance of receiving high-level backing for palliative care strategies. Yet only seven countries in the Index have a national policy in place (another four are developing them). In other countries, awareness at a national level has not led to coherent national policies: high-level statements of support for a general position (such as that articulated by the Council of Europe) aren’t enough. End-of-life care must “get into the bloodstream of policy”, in the words of one interviewee. Deeper integration of palliative care into national healthcare systems is also vital.

Palliative care need not mean institutional care, but more training is needed. Much palliative care can be—and is—given at home; indeed more than 75% of those receiving such care in the US die at home. This is often representative of the patient’s wishes, which may be ignored in conventional curative medicine. However, capacity building, particularly training of caregivers, is necessary to enable homecare with suitably high standards. Technology will be of increasing importance in the provision of end-of-life care at home, whether to put those in developing countries in touch with doctors via mobile phones, or to enable remote monitoring of medical devices through advanced systems.

You can download the Quality of Death Report here – it is free.

Avalon announces alliance with pro golf coach Neil Evans

Avalon, one of Europe’s leading providers of pre-paid funeral plans, has announced a sponsorship alliance with the top European golf coach, Neil Evans.

Under the agreement, Avalon’s branding will appear on clothes worn by Neil at golf tournaments and on the BMW car he uses at PGA (Professional Golfers’ Association) tournament processions. Winners of competitions involving Neil will receive golf related prizes from Avalon. Neil will promote Avalon’s services through his website.

As a PGA Professional, Neil has worked at prestigious resorts such as Pinhieros Altos in Portugal, the Mizuno Training Academy in Germany and The Warwickshire in the UK. With over 20 years’ experience in the sport, Neil has coached at The Open Championship seven times.

Speaking about the alliance, Jason Gardner, head of Europe at Avalon, said: “Neil Evans is one of the most respected golfing professionals in Europe, so it’s fantastic to be working with him. He has a big presence at PGA tournaments and he’s very supportive of our services. This alliance is a great fit for both parties.”

Neil, who also runs his own golf school, commented: “It’s important to be aligned with companies like Avalon. The service it provides to its customers is second-to-none. The company is one of the most respected funeral plan providers in Europe.”

Avalon recently opened a new Spanish office in Turre, Almeria, to meet growing demand for its plans across the region. In the last six months, the company has seen a 500 per cent increase in enquiries in Almeria. The new office will enable residents to visit Avalon in person to discuss their funeral plans.

The Turre office, which is equidistant from Avalon’s offices in Costa del Sol and Algorfa, enables customers in the area to enjoy a personal, localised service.

Avalon protects customers from rising funeral costs and the worry of arranging a funeral when the time comes, which can be complex outside the UK. Avalon’s three comprehensive packages, Balmoral, Windsor Way and Britannia, are available in Spain, Portugal and Tenerife. Alternative plans are available for customers residing in Cyprus, Malta and Turkey.

Avalon Spain Spanish Funeral Plans

Avalon Spain expands with new office in Turre, Almeria.

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Avalon, one of Europe’s leading providers of prepaid funeral plans, has opened their third Spanish office. Located in Turre, Almeria, the new office will meet growing demand for funeral plans across the region, says the Avalon Press Office.

In the last six months, Avalon has seen a 500 per cent increase in enquiries in Almeria. The new office will enable residents to visit Avalon in person to discuss their funeral plans.

Funeral Plan Quotes

Funeral Plan Quotes

The Turre office, which is equidistant from Avalon’s offices in Costa del Sol and Algorfa, increases the company’s reach in Spain while enabling it to give a localised service to consumers.

Jason Gardner, head of Europe at Avalon, said: “Avalon is constantly evolving and expanding. So it was an obvious decision to develop our presence in Almeria. Given the considerable increase in enquiries and a high British expatriate population in the area, our new office will help more people access our funeral plans.”

Avalon Spain Spanish Funeral Plans.

Turre is one of five towns in Almeria where over 50 per cent of the registered population is British. With excellent road links in the area, Avalon Spain’s new office is easily accessible from Mojacar, Albox, Olula del Rio and the city of Almeria.

Between July 2013 and July 2014, Avalon won its first customers in Portugal, Malta and the Spanish regions of Seville, Jaen and Cordoba. In December 2014, its overall sales were 76 per cent up year on year.

Avalon Funeral Plans offer great employment opportunities to UK expatriates. Staff numbers in Europe, at 58, now match those in the UK.

Funeral Plan provider Avalon protects customers from rising funeral costs and the worry of arranging a funeral when the time comes.  This can be complex outside the UK. Avalon’s three comprehensive packages, Balmoral, Windsor Way and Britannia, are available in Spain, Portugal and Tenerife. Alternative plans are available for customers residing in Cyprus, Malta and Turkey.

Avalon Spain Spanish Funeral Plans.