Spain, on the other hand, fresh from its first fall in visitor numbers in eight years, will not likely be found in the bargain bin, as it targets a more discerning target.
Keep an eye out for American bargains, though, as some states might look to bolster its tourism credentials as the country suffers from a “Trump slump”. The US last year saw a 3.8 per cent fall in arrivals.
Russia, on the other hand, had a broadly successful summer hosting a trouble-free World Cup. Hundreds of thousands of viewers had their eyes opened to the appeals of our eastern adversaries, which may well prompt operators to offer cut-price travel deals for trips next year.
Ryanair has, once again, not had the easiest year. Last year, in the wake of its cancellation fiasco, it attempted to use a low fares sale to keep its customers happy, and we might yet see the same this November, given the summer of strikes the low-cost airline has endured. It already had a £7.99 flash sale earlier this week.
British Airways, too, has some reputational damage to limit after it was the victim of a data hack. It promoted heavily its September sale, but there might be more in the tank for Black Friday.
As the battle between low-cost, long-haul air travel hots up, the likes of WOWair, recently taken over by Icelandair, and Norwegian could pull out all the stops this autumn to grow its customer base.
And cruise deals, too?
Cruise operators could continue their drive to attract a younger audience or they could look to capitalise on the growing popularity of river cruises.
Figures released at the beginning of September showed that more Britons than ever had taken to the continent’s waterways, with the Rhine and Danube fuelling growth. The Douro in Portugal and Russia’s rivers were also growing in popularity.
How do I spot the best deals?
No one is better at working up excitement over deals and discounts than the travel industry, and over the next few weeks, we will be assailed by the most intensive barrage of offers and booking incentives of the year. It begins with the Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales, and in January by the traditional promotion of next summer’s holidays.
Many may indeed offer excellent value. After all, the great thing about travel from the consumer’s point of view is that it is date-stamped: you can’t sell yesterday’s empty airline seat or hotel room, so the closer you get to a departure date, the more power the buyer usually has.
Now is a good time to book last-minute holidays. Low demand means that until mid-December you will rarely find a cheaper time for a city break or some winter sun. A fabulous start to the ski season – as there was last season – could mean that, if you can get away before Christmas, you can take advantage of the cheapest and quietest weeks of the year.
More probably, though, you are looking to next summer, and for this the industry has another agenda. It is not selling distressed stock, it wants as many bookings as it can get well in advance so it has money in the bank and can plan for the future.
Hence the incentives on offer every January. If you want to travel during the school holidays these deals can be worth snapping up since the earliest bookers get first pickings, which can make a big difference to a holiday, with flights or ferries that depart at civilised times, and the best located villas or hotels.
So, if you are booking last minute or planning ahead, how do you judge what constitutes a real deal? Here are a few suggestions:
Five tips for searching for Black Friday discounts
Don’t be distracted by the number in front of the percentage sign: it’s the number behind the pound sign that counts.
Be wary. You are probably overpaying for one element and subsidising another. This is often the case with so-called “free” child places, where the adults have to pay an extra supplement because the children are not being charged. Some extras may well be worth having – upgrades on a flight or room type, for example.
Value versus price
They may not be directly related. It might be of particular value to you, for example, to know you have secured the holiday you want and don’t have to worry any more.
They sound reassuring, but are rarely invoked, and are often so hedged with caveats as to be pretty pointless.
If cash is short after Christmas, these offers may help but should not be seen as something you can cancel later without taking too much of a loss. The small print nearly always requires you to pay the full deposit a few weeks later and this is payable even if you cancel