The word ‘traditional’ is by definition, an evolving word because what is true for one generation is not necessarily true for the next.
However, to all intents and purposes, most would agree that ‘traditional’ refers to something akin to what would have happened in the Victoria era – everyone in black, you can still have a horse drawn hearse (cars are now more normal!), a church service and a traditionally shaped coffin as opposed to a ‘whacky’ alternative, now in wide use.
Many families opt for the traditional route because they see it as a dignified way to say goodbye to a loved one. Equally it might be more suited to a person who was more religious or, perhaps, even a little more conservative in life, in the same way that the modern range of ‘whacky’ coffins tend to be favoured by families of a more extrovert disposition.
Neither are wrong, they are simply different, and a ‘traditional’ funeral can still incorporate all the joy of something that is a little more upbeat, whilst maintaining a calm dignity.