Short trip MEL-LAX-MEL - sleep suggestions

Discussion in 'Open Discussion' started by rpmsol, Sep 24, 2006.

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  1. rpmsol

    rpmsol Intern

    Jun 11, 2006
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    I'm about to do my first short (3 day) trip to US, and am looking for some tips from those who have done it many times before.
    I'm on QF93 out (dep 10:25 / arr 07:30) and QF 94 back (dep 23:40 / arr 07:55).

    Key requirement: Be productive in Melbourne immediately before flight and immediately after return, and fit in three full days (14 hour work days) in US.

    e.g. outbound - I'm thinking that I will work really long on day before flight, so that I'm quite tired, and push myself to work another 5 - 7 hours at beginning of flight and then sleep 7 hours, so I can get in sync with LAX local time. Does anybody think this can work? Any other ideas?

    Ideas and experience welcome for return flight also.

    Note, I'm QF platinum and quite likely to get J upgrade on points (neat front of queue at the moment) - but will cancel upgrade if I can't make really good use of it.

    Thanks very much,
    Paul.
     

  2. NM

    NM
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    Aug 27, 2004
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    In my opinion, the only way to be productive the day of arrival at either end of the trip is if travelling in J or F. If in Y, then forget being productive for a few days.
     
  3. alect

    alect Member

    Jun 20, 2006
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    MEL
    Your theory is spot on - I usually get up really early on the day for QF94 and spend the first few hours reading, working, eating, and then sleep for the remainder of the flight. Then you get into LAX and can work most of the day (not sure about 14 hrs) - though you usually start tiring at around 3 or 4 pm - but nothing that caffeine can't help.

    On the QF93 it's much easier as it is a late night flight - spend less time at the beginning stuffing around and thus get more sleep and arrive into MEL refreshed. Though again usually get tired by 3 or 4 pm but nothing caffeine can't fix.

    All of the above is predicated as NM says, on being in at least J - otherwise forget about it!!
     
  4. Skyring

    Skyring Established Member

    Oct 18, 2005
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    Concur. This is the longest continuous flight that Qantas does and it's a killer. Even with the best seat in Y you are unlikely to get much quality sleep.

    Upgrade or fit in a rest day after each flight.

    Try to find ways to minimise stress and tension. Apart from the comfy seats at the sharp end of the plane, the higher level of service and the reduced possibility of hassles from other passengers - crying babies and so on - will help you relax.

    The more organisation you can do ahead of time, the better. Leaving things to the last moment, or worse, leaving them undone and fretting about them on the plane, is no good at all. If you are comfortable and in control, you should be able to work productively.

    Of course, all the normal advice about jet lag applies. Lots of fluids, no alcohol, minimise caffeine etc.

    And report back here afterwards. You may be eligible for some sort of Hero Traveller award.
     
  5. simongr

    simongr Enthusiast

    Jul 10, 2006
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    Interesting option - I might try that some time ;)

    I have only done the SYD-LAX trip twice - once in Economy and once in J on Qantas. If you can somehow upgrade I would say do it. It was one of the most relaxing and enjoyable flights I have ever been on. 13 hours of sitting watching TV having beer/wine brought to me - I got to LAX very relaxed - but ready for bed. I didnt have any major jet lag and the next morning (after LAX we went to DFW and then PIT - arriving 10:30PM) we kicked off two weeks of 14 hour days without any major impacts from the flights. The arrival home though was a different story...
     
  6. GDSman

    GDSman Member

    Oct 18, 2004
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    I travel to LAX and DFW for 3-4 day trips a few times a year. Normally find the adrenalin and general busy-ness keeps me going but tend to sleep the whoe flight back. Never done it in Y and wouldn't want to try. As for Skyring's no alcohol suggestion - I wouldn't want to try that either....
     
  7. Shano

    Shano Established Member

    Aug 17, 2006
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    I agree with the general consensus that the flight over and first few days working are generally tolerable (even in Y). I have done QF93 to LAX a couple of times where I have then had to hire a car and drive the ~ 3 hours down to Temecula (on the I-15 towards San Diego). Driving in LA certainly keeps the adrenaline flowing to help stay awake after the flight.

    I also tend to sleep better flying back to MEL, perhaps because of the hours spent sitting in the lounge at LAX for the late night flight and the self service bar.....
     
  8. Flying Fox

    Flying Fox Established Member

    Jul 13, 2006
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    Yep, I would have to agree with everyone here.

    If you are in J Class then you can be productive. In Y Class you have to book some recovery time.

    Personally I have found coming home much easier but the QF Skybed are a total winner. I can generally get 8 hrs sleep. I have found a small port before bed also assists me - but thats the only alcohol that I allow myself.

    Good luck & enjoy your trip.
     
  9. Rae

    Rae Member

    Sep 30, 2006
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    I do this trip 3-6 times a year in both classes and often short trips to LA. I've found that you really need to try get J MEL/LAX but LAX/MEL in Y is fine due to the night flight.
     
  10. rpmsol

    rpmsol Intern

    Jun 11, 2006
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    A big thanks to all who posted suggestions. I'm sure the advice will add to the value and efficiency of my trip.

    I now understand the importance of a J class seat MEL-LAX, and when altering the return date for my flights, enquired on the status of J and F on my outbound flight, and both classes were fully booked! My upgrade hopes just took a nosedive.

    I wonder how often such flights are full in business and first.

    Thanks again,
    Paul.
     
  11. NM

    NM
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    Aug 27, 2004
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    I am the other way. I need the J seat for the night flight and could cope with Y seat for a day flight so long as I had the chance for sleep soon after arrival.
     
  12. rpmsol

    rpmsol Intern

    Jun 11, 2006
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    Thanks to all who offered advice.

    My experience was as follows:

    Changed ‘Y’ class out & back to exit row. (Got 58C both ways)

    Changed exit row seats to 72A when I looked on SeatGuru and saw that that seat can be interrupted by galley activity, and that 72A has a window and a little extra space on the side.

    Didn’t get outbound upgrade (full business and first)

    Didn’t sleep much on QF93, despite best attempts, but got solid 3 hours just before breakfast – so quite thankful.

    Squeezed in 4 x 14 to 15 hour days (7 - 8 hours at conference, followed by 6 – 7 hours back in my room).

    Used Skype for affordable voice comms and family video calls home.

    Got points upgrade to ‘J’ for return trip.

    Used First Lounge in Terminal 4 (before heading over to TBIT) – great lounge!

    Informed by SMS that QF94 delayed, so stayed at lounge till they called me, before heading over to TBIT. (Flight from NewYork delayed – containing many PAX with flights back to AUS, Flight possibly delayed due to light aircraft crash into building in NY.) Exited Terminal 4 and had to wait 60 minutes to get passed security in TBIT.

    Great seats and food in ‘J’. Got more than 6 hours sleep in one ‘nap’. Enjoyed midnight snack of drinks and nice chocolate minibar during return flight.

    Arrived back in Aus with minimal jet lag and ready to get back into things.

    Would have been great to go over in ‘J’ – what a difference ‘J’ makes!

    Thanks again for all your help and suggestions.

    Kind regards,
    Paul.
     
  13. alect

    alect Member

    Jun 20, 2006
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    Wow - you're a better man than I am!
     
  14. Skyring

    Skyring Established Member

    Oct 18, 2005
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    Thanks for the trip report! For Y, I don't mind those seats at the back of the bus. Nice to have a bit of extra room by the window and there's only one person between you and the dunny. Mind you, you are pretty well the last off, so there are a few hundred folk ahead of you in immigration. Not my preference if the transfer is tight.

    Skype is great for calling back home, a great product! If the person on the other end also has Skype, the call is essentially free and you can tell if they are online before calling.
     
  15. maninblack

    maninblack Established Member

    Aug 14, 2006
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    Business class makes a huge difference. A few years ago we did a family trip to Europe. My sister-in-law and her family had arrived two days before us having flown economy and were all still wrecked. Apart from a short nap at the hotel, we spent tho whole first day out with them touring and then another short nap and out for dinner at a relatives house. I slept well that night and out we went again the next morning...they were still a little jetlagged on day 3 ;)

    Before flying home my sister in law quoted Scarlett O'Hara: "As God is my witness, as God is my witness, the seats, the lack of oxygen and the inedible food aren't going to lick me. I'm going to live through this, and when it's over, I'm never going to fly Y again. No, nor any of my folks. If I have to steal or kill - as God is my witness, I'm never going to be flying in Y again."
     
  16. simongr

    simongr Enthusiast

    Jul 10, 2006
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    Its interesting - I havent flown often/regular in J but when I flew to the US (SYD-LAX-DFW-PIT) I woke up next morning and worked a 14 hour day and did so for the next two weeks (weekends included), I then flew to UK for two weeks and was tired for a while - but not laged. I then flew LHR-SIn spent a say in SIN working and then flew home - all J. That weekend I was exhausted - not sure if it was the work of too many overnight sleeps on planes...
     
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