"EVERYONE loves a parcel," announces the publicity material for Scent Direct, and it's hard to disagree with this sentiment. Pretty much everyone, male and female alike, loves to receive perfume too, so the English company has sensibly come up with a means of combining the two. Scent Direct operates a gift delivery service which will post a favourite fragrance to the recipient of your choice, attractively wrapped and tied with ribbon and accompanied by a message card. With Valentine's Day coming up next month, this could be the ideal solution to the dilemma of what to send to your beloved.

Almost every perfume currently on the market can be ordered by credit card from Scent Direct which charges the usual retail price for the bottle, plus an additional £4.50 sterling for postage and packing. The business already has a large number of Irish clients who can testify to its efficacy, thanks to a speedy delivery service and telephone and fax lines operating from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. seven days a week. Corporate accounts and a diary monitor (so that perfume will always be sent to the same person on important dates) are available.

In addition, Scent Direct offers a free search service for perfumes which seem to be hard to find. If the fragrance has been discontinued and is no longer available anywhere in the world, then the company will recommend whatever is most similar. Whatever your eventual choice of gift, with this company the scent - and the sentiment - is certain to last longer than a bouquet of flowers.