Updated October 2023Black Friday and Cyber Monday are no longer just for retailers; they’re also prime opportunities for tour operators to boost sales and attract new customers. In an era where much of our lives have moved online, from meetings to shopping, it’s no surprise that people are increasingly booking their tourism experiences through digital channels. As a tour business, you can’t afford to miss out on the Black Friday and Cyber Monday craze. These days, more customers are opting to gift experiences rather than physical items, making it the perfect time to promote your tours and activities.

What is Black Friday?

Black Friday refers to the day after Thanksgiving and is symbolically seen as the start of the critical holiday shopping season. This iconic holiday is often perceived as the day that consumers disregard their usual shopping etiquette, pushing and shoving their way through crowds to score unbeatable deals on electronics and other items. However, in recent times, the focus has shifted to online shopping, where people can find incredible Black Friday travel deals and offers from the comfort of their homes.

For tour operators, Black Friday represents a golden opportunity to tap into the holiday shopping frenzy and attract travelers seeking exceptional deals on memorable experiences. Unlike traditional retailers, tour operators can leverage digital channels to offer enticing promotions and reach a broader audience without the constraints of physical locations.

Why Black Friday matters for tour operators

As a tour operator, participating in Black Friday promotions can be highly lucrative. People believe they’re getting the best deals on this day, and it’s an ideal opportunity to attract new customers and boost sales, especially since many now prefer to gift experiences. Moreover, if your tour business operates primarily online, you won’t have to worry about managing crowds or in-person transactions.

Black friday travel deals

With online bookings representing 66% of travel and tourism reservations, Black Friday provides the perfect moment to capitalize on this shift. With the right strategies and online marketing efforts, you can make this special day a significant revenue generator for your tour business.

Strategies for maximizing Black Friday sales

To make the most of the shopping frenzy, you need a compelling Black Friday campaign. Shoppers expect something special, so consider these strategies:

Offer a deal every hour

While discounts are a tried-and-true method, they may impact your profit margins. Consider innovative approaches, such as featuring hourly unique deals to maintain customer engagement. This tactic encourages visitors to return to your website throughout the day, preventing deep margin cuts while allowing customers to explore your full range of tours and activities.

Free upgrades

marketing in tourism industry

Distinguish yourself from the competition by providing free service enhancements or upgrades. Unlike discounts, the value of an upgrade can be harder to assess, making it an attractive proposition for customers. For instance, if you operate a river cruise tour business in Europe, offer a “Black Friday River Cruise Upgrade” that includes complimentary cabin upgrades or exclusive onboard dining experiences, which will add exceptional value to your packages.

Extend the sale

Don’t limit your Black Friday offers. Consider extending them through the weekend to capture customers who may have missed out on Friday sales. Your discounts don’t have to match those of your competitors; consistency and availability matter.

Example: If you specialize in organizing small group tours to national parks in the United States, promote a “Black Weekend Adventure Sale” that runs from Black Friday through Sunday. Highlight the fact that your tours provide an opportunity to explore the beauty of America’s national parks at a fraction of the regular price during this limited-time offer.

Leverage the hype of Cyber Monday

While Black Friday steals the spotlight, don’t forget about its digital counterpart, Cyber Monday. This online shopping extravaganza, which falls on the Monday following Black Friday, presents another fantastic opportunity for tour operators to continue their sales momentum.

Incorporating Cyber Monday into your holiday marketing strategy allows you to prolong the festive sales period and capture the attention of consumers looking for last-minute deals. By offering enticing promotions, spreading the word through various marketing channels, and maintaining a well-functioning website, you can make the most of both Black Friday and Cyber Monday to boost your tour business’s success during this holiday season.

How to effectively promote your Black Friday marketing strategies

Once you’ve decided on your promotions, you’ll need to spread the word. Here are some recommended strategies:

Email marketing campaigns

If you have a mailing list, utilize it for Black Friday promotions. According to a survey by Adobe, email is the preferred means of communication from brands. Create engaging email campaigns with attractive Black Friday travel deals and promo codes.

Email marketing for black friday

Example: Suppose you operate a tour company specializing in cultural experiences in Italy. Create a series of captivating emails leading up to Black Friday, teasing your exclusive offers and highlighting the charm of Italian cities like Rome and Venice. Encourage subscribers to book their dream Italian getaway with enticing subject lines like “Unlock Italy: Exclusive Black Friday Deals Inside!”

Leverage social media

Leverage your social media channels to reach your target audience. Post engaging content, share exclusive deals, and utilize paid advertising to reach a wider audience. Consider creating a countdown to build excitement.

Example: If you organize guided tours through historic sites in Spain, use your social media platforms to showcase stunning visuals of Spain’s rich cultural heritage and create buzz around your upcoming Black Friday promotions. Run a “Seven Days of Spain” countdown series, featuring different Spanish cities and attractions each day, leading up to the grand Black Friday reveal.

Leverage online travel agents

Partner with online travel agents such as GetYourGuide and Booking.com to expose your business to a global audience. Although commissions may cut into your margins, this also provides an opportunity to add customers to your mailing lists for future marketing efforts.

Example: If your tour business focuses on adventure tours in Asia, collaborate with prominent online travel agents specializing in Asian destinations. These partnerships can significantly enhance your reach, as travelers often turn to trusted platforms like GetYourGuide to explore and book experiences in their chosen destinations.

Optimize your website

As the holiday season approaches, preparing your website to handle the anticipated surge in traffic is essential. Slow-loading pages and technical glitches can deter potential customers, potentially impacting your sales during Black Friday and Cyber Monday. To avoid these pitfalls, perform thorough testing and optimizations well in advance.

Black friday website tips

Streamlining your website’s performance and bookings during peak periods can be made easier with the help of an online booking system like Rezdy. This powerful solution not only ensures your website remains responsive and reliable but also enhances the overall user experience.

Rezdy’s online booking system ensures that once your customers make the decision to purchase your products and services, they’re able to do so in a timely and efficient manner. Advanced features such as real-time availability viewer, automated guest communication, and the ability to accept secure online bookings will provide your customers with a streamlined booking process and a positive customer experience.


In today’s dynamic travel industry, tour operators must stay adaptable and in tune with evolving consumer preferences. Black Friday and Cyber Monday, traditionally retail-focused, now offer tour operators a unique chance to shine in the digital sphere. It presents tour operators with a prime opportunity to captivate travelers by offering exclusive promotions and leveraging digital marketing strategies. From enticing discounts to email campaigns and social media special deals, these strategies provide a roadmap for success.

By embracing these shopping holidays and implementing effective strategies, tour operators can not only boost sales but also create enduring connections with travelers seeking memorable experiences.

Ready to leverage the Black Friday frenzy with Rezdy? Start your FREE 21-day trial or book a demo today to see how Rezdy can fit within your business.

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