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16 Fun Long Distance Birthday Ideas to Make Anyone Smile

16 Long Distance Birthday Ideas_Brownie Cake with candles

We live in a world where many of our friends and family live far away, but we still really want to celebrate their big milestones with them. I have compiled a list of totally unique and really fun long distance birthday ideas to put a smile on anyone's face.  

Everyone wishes “happy birthday” on Facebook walls or takes it a step further with a text message.  While sweet gestures, these can be so impersonal.   

Here at The Confetti Post, we really love snail mail. It just feels so personal in this digital age. Therefore, many of these long distance birthday ideas are gifts you send in the mail. Birthday surprises in the mail are the best, aren't they?

Read our list of highly personal and fun long distance birthday gifts to send in the mail. We share simple to elaborate, with DIY ideas and companies that do the work for you.

Long Distance Birthday Ideas To Make Them Smile 

1. Send a birthday party in a box

16 Long Distance Birthday Ideas To Make Anyone Smile | Send a Birthday Party in a Box |  Teeny Birthday in a Box Gift Package by The Confetti Post

Looking for an easy way to say “happy birthday, long distance friend”? Piece together a "party in a box" yourself or let a mail-order company like us at The Confetti Post do it for you. Helping you celebrate others is our specialty.  

Our Teeny Happiest Birthday package is a super fun surprise, complete with card, balloon, confetti, sweet treat, and a personal note from you!  Best of all, most of the work is done for you.  

We have lots of other options for long distance birthday gifts and any occasion at all if you really want to spoil the party person.

2.  Schedule a movie night

While you can't be together in person, you can watch together online via this super fun app, Kast.  The app lets people share online experiences.

Be sure to have popcorn on hand. And cake. I mean, you are celebrating a birthday after all.  

3. Send cake in a jar

Long Distance Relationship Birthday Ideas To Make Anyone Smile | Send Cake in a Jar | Jars by Dani Funfetti Cake in a Jar

Speaking of cake, everyone deserves cake on their birthday!  

Do it yourself or have Jars by Dani do it for you.  They have so many yummy flavors of cakes in a jar.  

That Strawberry Shortcake one is totally calling my name!


Ad showing a photo of a colorful birthday gift box and linking to shop


4. Make a video

Record yourself singing happy birthday. Send it privately, or make a public declaration of those long distance birthday wishes on Facebook or YouTube.

Better yet, we are totally obsessed with this new website Memento. In just a few clicks, it allows you to easily create a video montage from friends and family located all over the world to make that far-away friend's day extra special.

(I'm not crying. You're crying.) 

Or keep it simple and send this super cute video.  

5.  Throw a virtual birthday surprise party

16 Long Distance Birthday Ideas To Make Anyone Smile | Throw a Virtual Surprise Party |  Virtual Birthday Party Mail Invitations Filled with party supplies

Use Skype or Facetime to connect friends from different locations to host a virtual party. 

Make it even more fun by sending balloons, a party horn, and a treat to all those included in on the birthday surprise.  

Maybe something like these party invites on Oh Happy Day.  Don’t forget the birthday person. Put a note on theirs saying not to open until you give permission.

6.  Make a phone call

Not a text or email or Facebook message. 

A real, old school phone call means a lot.  

This may not be the most creative of long distance birthday ideas, but it will probably surprise your loved one!

I bet that number is tucked away somewhere in your cell.

7.  Send photos

Old school custom photo viewer | long distance relationship birthday ideas

Obviously you can go the old school route and stick some fun memories in an envelope. It’s a tried-and-true choice for sending birthday gifts by mail. 

Or you can kick it up a notch with this nostalgic photo viewer reel. You get to insert your own photos on the reel! I can think of no cuter way to cherish photo memories.

So. Much. Fun.

8.  Treat them to lunch

Send a gift card.  

Use Yelp to search for a fun new local spot wherever the birthday person is located.  Most restaurants allow you to easily buy a gift card online, and send straight to the recipient's email.

One of the easiest long distance birthday ideas, but still personal and thoughtful.

9.  Send coordinating snail mail

16 Long Distance Birthday Ideas To Make Anyone Smile | Send Coordinating Snail Mail | Birthday Post Card Puzzle

Coordinate with other friends and family to send some classic snail mail.

I love this idea from Oh Happy Day where everyone sent a piece of a puzzle to the birthday person.  They each wrote a special note on a postcard, and the picture sides fit together like a puzzle.  

The sweetest of long distance birthday gifts ever!


Ad showing open birthday gift box with features listed like free shipping and adorable


10.  Take them on a virtual shopping spree

Have you heard of the site Samesurf?  You can use it to surf the web with someone anywhere else in the world. Surf some fun shops together.  

Let them pick a fun gift, your treat!  

Might I suggest starting at Uncommon Goods?  Even if you don't purchase anything there, you will find lots of fun items to chat about.  

11.  Keep it classy with a birthday card

16 Long Distance Birthday Ideas To Make Anyone Smile | Keep It Classy |  Send a classic greeting card

Keep it simple and classy by sending a good old fashioned birthday card in the mail.  

Only Grandmas seem to send those anymore, am I right?

They feel so much more special than a Facebook post.  

Sommer Letter Co. is one of my favorite card companies with their beautiful watercolor designs. Also big fan of Emily McDowell Studio for keeping sentiments real.

12.  Make a birthday donation

Celebrate their birthday by giving for someone else's special day.  

At The Confetti Post, we partner with The Confetti Foundation and Box of Balloons to spread birthday cheer.  

They are the perfect places to start.  

The Confetti Foundation gives parties in a box to children celebrating their birthdays while in the hospital. Box of Balloons gathers complete party kits for low income children, and give them to the child's parents so they can throw a themed party for their child.  

One of the most thoughtful long distance birthday ideas I can think of.

So much love.

13. Send ice cream

16 Long Distance Birthday Ideas To Make Anyone Smile | Send Ice Cream | Ice Cream Sundae in a Box, ice cream lover gift idea

Shipping ice cream can get complicated so I recommend making a “sundae kit” in a box.

Also, you can order gourmet ice cream online straight to their doorstep. Shipping is obviously super expensive, but I know Jeni's and Salt & Straw are worth it!

Sweet treats showing up at the door are a foodie’s favorite long distance birthday gift! 

14. Long distance book club

Reread one of your favorite books.  

Mark it up with post it notes all the way through with the birthday person in mind.  

Send it to them in the mail of course!

15. Send balloons

16 Long Distance Birthday Ideas To Make Anyone Smile | Send Balloons | Surprise Balloons in a box

Do it yourself as seen here on Studio DIY.  

Get balloons filled with helium, and put them in a large box. Send via overnight mail so they are still inflated when the birthday person opens the box. Latex balloons stay afloat for a very short time with helium, so perhaps try Mylar balloons if you are sending in the mail.  

Sound like too much work?  Have them delivered for you.

16.  Send a birthday countdown

16 Long Distance Birthday Ideas To Make Anyone Smile | DIY Birthday Countdown Gift for when you celebrate a birthday far away

Send a whole week of envelopes or small boxes prior to the big day.  

Label each envelope/box with which day to open each one. Stick a fun note, memory, photo, or treat in each one all the way up to their birthday.  

My two favorite birthday countdown ideas: this box version on Simple As That and this envelope version on Who Arted?

Whatever you choose to do, we know sending long distance birthday gifts to your loved ones will most definitely make them smile. From classic birthday gift ideas to birthday surprises, our list has a bit of everything!

Do you have a favorite one of these long distance birthday ideas? 

What other ways do you celebrate with long distance birthday gifts?

Share with us in the comments below!

Much love and happy party vibes,

Leitia, Founder of The Confetti Post

 P.S. While you are here, be sure to click that "Pin It" button so you come back for these birthday ideas next time you need them!

P.S.S. Check out this other post for more ways to make someone's birthday special long distance or nearby!

Image showing yellow exterior gift boxes with rainbow of gift items inside with text "shop party themed gift boxes


Image Credits: 1-The Confetti Post//3-Jars by Dani//5-Oh Happy Day//7-Uncommon Goods//9-Oh Happy Day//11-Sommer Letter Co./13-The Confetti Post//15-Studio DIY//16-Simple As That


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  • Wow wow wow I’m so amazed with ur perfect ideas…. Thank you

  • I used the cake in a jar idea. FABULOUS! I sent my Airman enough for 12 of his buddies to enjoy!

    Betsy Dalziel
  • Wow wow wow wow wow wow wow am really amazed by visiting your website such a perfect ideas and it motivated me a lot at just few minutes ago was wonderful specially those which were designed uniquely
    I loved them
    Thank you a million


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