There are many ways to make a long distance birthday special. From a surprise visit to a homemade gift, the important thing is to demonstrate love and care for the individual. Depending on your relationship with the birthday boy or girl, rather than buying a gift such as perfume, think about how you can show them that they are missed and in your thoughts by doing something personal for them.
A homemade DVD with a personal message from you is meaningful and does not have to cost much. Jot down some thoughts you would like to say on a piece of paper and read them before you start recording. Set up a video camera or have a friend help you record you message. If you will be sending your DVD to a partner, then just include yourself in the DVD. If the gift is for parents or children that have moved away, then involve the entire family. If you do not have time to put the footage on a DVD, then upload it to your computer and send it as an email attachment, which they can view immediately.
One of the most special gestures you can do for a long-distance birthday is plan a surprise visit. Figure out if your loved one will work on his birthday, or try to arrange the day off for him. Surprise him by knocking on his door at home or meeting him after work. Though it may be tempting to give the secret away by letting him know you are on your way to visit, surprises are even more exciting. Bring along a little birthday gift, such as flowers or a plant.
Fill a homemade gift box with special mementos that remind her of you, or with items they like. If the gift is for a family member, gather family photographs and chocolates for the box. Personalize it further: if she is a foodie, pop a homemade herb olive oil in, or if she is a big kid at heart, buy a few retro toys. For a girlfriend or wife, add a teddy bear scented with your aftershave or perfume, along with photos, wine and candles. Wrap the box in tissue paper and ribbons, and include a handwritten gift tag with a heart-felt message.