Understanding the Hindu funeral dress code

When you attend a Hindu funeral, you should know what to wear. Make sure to wear white, casual clothing that is in no way flashy or showy. You want to dress down when you attend a Hindu funeral, not fancy.

The significance of colour

Wearing white to mourn a Hindu is not without reason or significance. Just as wearing black is the norm in some cultures because it is a symbol of loss, white is a vital colour to the Hindu culture. White symbolizes purity and is used to show respect. The departed are buried in certain colours as well. White is most common, but young women that are unmarried will often be dressed in red.


It is not common, but some practising Hindus do not follow such burial customs. It is very important to follow the lead of each individual family and particularly so if they choose a traditional Hindu burial. The vast majority will want you to wear white so you likely will be safe to do so regardless. White is a safe and respectful colour at pretty much any Hindu funeral as a mourner.

Other differences to expect

There are some other things about Hindu funerals that will be different from what you are probably used to. For example, the body will often be covered in flowers and is almost always in an open casket before burial or cremation. Family members may be the presiding official at the service but a priest may also be present. After the service, a cleansing will take place. When this is over, friends and family often gather to celebrate the deceased person’s life.

Hindu funeral etiquette and dress code is based around the same principles you may be used to; They want to respect the dead and celebrate all the things that made them special in their life. So knowing what to wear to a Hindu funeral will ensure that you are dressed appropriately to be respectful.

Understanding the Hindu funeral dress code
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