It's easy to spot the most frequent of frequent flyers, even without glancing at the colour of their airline loyalty card.
Their travel patterns are etched with the deeply-worn lines of habit. Those practices, honed by hundreds of business trips, ensure they arrive early at the airport to minimise the chance of delay and, for some, maximise lounge time.
There's early selection of the best seat, and online check-in if they're off on a quick hand-luggage-only trip to the likes of Auckland, Singapore or Hong Kong.
There's a departure card completed in advance, and a spare express lane slip 'just in case', to speed their path through check-in.
Once aboard, there's the routine of when to work, eat, relax and – most importantly – sleep.
Falling asleep on the job
This last part is where many infrequent flyers fall down, especially on flights from Australia to the US and Europe.
Spend too many hours awake – be it ploughing through work, or binge-viewing a box set of your favourite TV show – and you'll pay for it at the end of your trip.
Instead of being rested and ready for the day ahead (which is enough of a challenge when you land in Los Angeles or London around 6am) you'll struggle to make it through the day.
And with your sleep patterns totally out of whack, there's an even greater chance you'll wake up in the wee hours of the following morning and face a second day in bleary-eyed, headache-racked zombie mode, which in turn will crimp your work dinners and drinks.
That's exactly what happened to me when business travel became a regular part of my life, with overseas trips every month or two.
Plan to sleep, sleep your plan
Yet it's all so easily avoided. With a little planning and a dose of discipline you can make the most of your chance to sleep above the clouds and hit the ground running... or at least walking at a leisurely pace without bumping into things.
First up, do the maths on your flight.
Let's take the popular outbound flight to Los Angeles on Qantas as an example, flown out of either Sydney or Melbourne. Leaving around noon for a 6.30am touchdown at LAX, that translates to 13-14 hours' flying time.
A little more than half that flight takes place during what would be snoozing hours if you were already Stateside. That's your first clue to getting in sync with the US timezone.
Only the heaviest sleepers will doze through the last two hours of the flight, when the cabin lights come up and breakfast is served.
So your designated 'sleeping time' needs to start as little as five hours into your flight, just to get a necessary six hours under your belt.
Too much beats too little
If you can, aim to head to sleep as early as possible. It's better that you shoot for as much as nine hours and fall a bit short – in which case, you can spend the last few hours of the flight working, reading or watching a movie – than leaving it too late and ending up groggy after just four hours counting sheep.
And as you're guaranteed to have a less restful sleep on the plane than you would at home, you might want to allow for a little more snooze time, as well as more time to actually nod off in the first place.
This is where it's worth experimenting with some sleep-friendly tablets.
I'm a fan of melatonin – readily available in the US at drugstores such as Walgreens and in New York, Duane Reade – and natural sleep tabs containing valerian.
Some colleagues find that codeine-based painkillers such as Nurofen Plus or Panadeine Extra can work well, but it's worth consulting a physician to make sure you're compatible with any such medication.
Soft foam or silicon earplugs can also help by suppressing cabin noise, while an eye mask – lightly spritzed with a sleep spray such as This Works or Bach's Rescue Remedy Sleep – is a great addition to your carry-on amenity kit.
What are your top tips for sleeping on planes?
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