I have traveled abroad often with my daughters and have learned a few tricks on what has helped us kick our Jetlag in a day! We recently just came back from a trip to London and Ireland and we flipped our Jetlag in a day! While all kids are different and their temperament, personality and mood can differ, here are a few tips that worked for us!
1. Don't focus on their sleep or nap on the day you're traveling.
There are so many elements out of your control. Depending on the age of your baby, they could be extremely stimulated that they have trouble falling asleep. The meal service on the plane could be too noisy for them. All these things are out of your control, so the best you can do is just try to offer the ability to fall asleep, and if they don't, let it go. Entertain them in ways that you know how - airplane cups, drawing on paper, a short video on the flight - just about anything to get you by.
2. Be sure their ears are not hurting from the take off and landing.
The last thing you want is a screaming baby, if you can help it. Most babies scream and cry when their ears are not popping at take off or landing (descending). I always bring pouches, water and snacks and offer it to them during these times if they're not sleeping. It helps with swallowing, which often helps with the ears popping!
3. Live life as the people of your destination.
Once you arrive, it's very likely everyone is tired and ready for bed. If you arrive at your destination and it's morning, I urge you to help your baby take a quick cat nap but get them up to live the day. Go about their schedule the exact same way you would at home. They may go a little delirious, but it's worth the struggle to maximize your days abroad.
4. Offer meals and snacks through the day.
Traveling is tiring. Jetlag is hard. Part of that can be the lack of appetite and the change in time that causes the lack of appetite. I find that if you can get your baby to snack through the day, it gives them energy to deal with the jetlag better.
5. Be sure to entertain and play with your baby.
A key part of flipping the Jetlag is getting them extremely tired in the hours they're awake. For example, my youngest is 14 months old. She naps 1-3p normally once a day. From 7am-1p I am tirelessly entertaining her to make sure she'll go down at 1p without trouble. And when she's up at 3pm, I am focused on taking her to playgrounds and making sure she's getting tired for her 6:30p sleep time.