5. Figure out where home is
This sounds incredibly basic, but figuring out if a person is coming or going lets you know if the romantic angle makes any sense at all. I told a pretty Ghanaian woman on a flight from Miami that she's "Ghana" enjoy New York and we ended up trading phone numbers.
6. If traveling to a business-y thing, discuss your business and your schedule
If you're going to a con or a fest or a show of some kind, mention a few things that you're interested in seeing/doing/dressing-up-as. It's likely your seatmate will be tickled by a similar feather. If you're, say, a panelist at SXSW, casually mention it and catch a drink with her after she sees you "mobbed" during the Q&A.
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7. Know what you want
If it's strange tail in a strange town, concentrate on making something happen immediately (the mile high club is a touch gauche for a pre-first date, that's for bored couples). If you want something more traditional, I recommend going for barbeque with a nice 27-year-old nurse as soon as you're both back in the Big Apple (or wherever you lay your head).
8. Help her with her luggage
Helping someone hoist their bag into the overhead bin is the modern equivalent of draping your cape over a puddle.
As with nautical or land-based courtship, confidence, humor, tremendous good-looks and a genuine interest in what the other person has to say goes a long way. And get that phone number.
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Have you ever picked up your airplane seatmate? Tell us about it in the comments below.