What is Cryonics?
Cryopreservation is the process of freezing a person's body in the hopes of reviving them in the future. The science behind cryopreservation is still developing, but the basic idea is that by freezing the body, the cells and tissues will be preserved and can be revived in the future. Careful cooling of the body is essential to the process, and it must be done quickly to prevent cell damage. Once the body is frozen, it can be stored indefinitely. This process is also known as cryonics.
How Costly is Cryonics?
Due to the sophistication of the process, cryopreservation is an expensive undertaking. Specifically, the cost can range from $200,000 to $400,000, depending on the provider.
There are a few different providers of cryopreservation services, but the two most well-known are ALCOR and TomorrowBio. These two providers tend to be the most expensive, but they are also the most reputable.
ALCOR was founded in 1972 and is based in Arizona. They have cryopreserved over 200 people. They offer two types of membership: whole body and neuro. Whole body membership costs $200,000 and neuro membership costs $80,000.
TomorrowBio is a recent startup based in Europe. They haven't cryopreserved anyone yet, but will be starting soon. Currently they're raising funds and looking for people who are interested in helping.
The Cryonics Institute is a less well-known provider, but they are significantly cheaper than the other two and costs only around $80,000 all-in. However, there is some concern that the lower cost may mean lower quality. The Cryonics Institute has been around since 1976 and is based in Michigan. They have cryopreserved over 150 people. Their whole body membership costs $28,000.It is important
to note that there is no way to avoid paying the full cost of cryopreservation. The only way to lower the cost is to choose a less reputable provider. However, this is not recommended as it could jeopardize your chances of being revived in the future.
Covering your cost
If you know your provider and you are sure you will be using their services, there is no way to avoid paying the full cost. However, there are different ways of financing it.
Whole life insurance is a way of financing over your lifetime. You pay a little each month, but you are still paying the full expected value over your life. This makes sense as the insurance companies need to at least make a profit on their services. Whole life insurance is the most recommended method if you know you are getting cryopreservation for sure.
Term life insurance may seem really cheap if you're young and healthy, but it's not sustainable up to old age. It's a way to get cryopreservation if you are young and healthy and die accidentally. However, if you maintain term life insurance up to old age, when you likely actually will die, the prices shoot up really fast. In your final years, term life insurance could cost as much as 6-digits a year and become completely unaffordable. You may end up paying summed over your life way above the original $400K cost if you live long.
Parts of Cryopreservation Costs
The cost of cryopreservation is usually broken down into three components: the membership fee, the standby fee, and the actual preservation procedure fee. The membership fee is a one-time fee that covers the cost of enrolling in the program. It may just be just a few dollars (typically tens) per month. It funds the organization's operating expenses and allows them to keep the program running.
The standby fee is an annual fee that covers the cost of the organization having a team on watch in case a member dies. The standby fee is typically a few hundred dollars per year.
The actual preservation procedure fee is the largest component, and it covers the cost of the procedure itself.
How to fund Cryopreservation
There are three main ways to fund cryopreservation.
Method 1: If you're really rich, you can just prepay the cost or set aside a part of your estate to pay the cost. This method requires the least amount of planning, but it also requires a large amount of money upfront.
Method 2: If you know you want cryopreservation for sure, and you can afford whole life insurance, get that. This method is recommended for people who are confident in their decision to be cryopreserved and have the financial means to do so.
Method 3: If you want cryopreservation, and you're poor but healthy and young, you can use term life insurance for a few years while you build up wealth, and then move to whole life insurance.
This method is for people who want to be cryopreserved but can't afford it right away. It requires more planning than the other methods, but it is a way to save up for cryopreservation over time. Eventually you will need to switch to a universal or whole life insurance policy.
Cryopreservation is a complicated and expensive process, but it is possible to finance it in a few different ways. If you are sure you want to be cryopreserved, the best way to finance it is through whole life insurance. If you are poor but healthy and young, you can use term life insurance for a few years while you build up wealth, and then move to whole life insurance. Ultimately, the decision of how to finance cryopreservation is a personal one, and you should choose the method that best suits your needs.
Appeal for Help: If you want to help cryopreservation research and increase access to cryonics, you should consider the Cryonauts project funding TomorrowBio.