If I know someone is going to be away from their community for business over the holiday of Purim, is it appropriate to send the Purim gifts of food by mail?


There is a discussion among authorities on Jewish law whether one can fulfill the obligation of sending food gifts, mishloach manot, by mail, since they should really be sent and received on the day of Purim itself. Some of the rabbis conclude that it is permitted, and some say that it is not.

However, if one makes a condition that the food received should be eaten only on Purim itself, then it is considered as if the gift was given on that day, and one would fulfill the requirement to send food gifts. This could be done by writing this on a paper placed inside the package.1

In your case, I would definitely suggest sending a Purim gift to your friend, as this will certainly add to his or her Purim joy.

However, it is best not to rely on the fulfillment of your requirement to send mishloach manot this way; so be sure to also send a gift to someone local on the day of Purim itself.

See Why Do We Give Food Packages on Purim? from our selection on mishloach manot.