Holiday sun
Thousands of people are set to book their holidays to escape the winter bluesIstock

Thousands of people will book their holidays on the weekend of 9-10 January in what has been dubbed by the travel industry as 'Sunshine Saturday'. Brits will scour the web for the best deals and bargains to book their summer getaways and escape the cold weather as the post-festive season winter blues sets in.

Thomson and First Choice estimate that Saturday (9 January) will be the busiest day of the year for holiday bookings, with over one million people visiting their websites or stores. Last year, Sunshine Saturday saw bookings on mobile and tablet hitting an all-time high.

Andrew Flintham, commercial director for Thomson and First Choice, said: "Many people like to book their holidays early to give them something to look forward to in the year ahead. January is one of the best times to book as there are some fantastic deals available, from thousands of free child places to a broad range of hotels and destinations."

Abta's 2016 Travel Trends report found that "tried and trusted destinations" such as Spain, Portugal and Italy will be popular.

Abta chief executive Mark Tanzer said: "Early bookers are able to take advantage of a range of benefits and discounts, so we hope that customers will make the most of these. Benefits are even more pronounced for families, where availability of child places for the summer months can fill up quickly."

What new destinations are being launched for 2016?

As well as European city breaks, holidaygoers have an even wider option of far-flung destinations to choose from this year. British Airways will launch 13 new services, including to the Peruvian capital of Lima and to San Jose in Costa Rica from Gatwick, from 27 April.

Cancun
Holidaymakers can fly direct to Cancun more frequentlyGetty

Thomson Airways have announced their new destinations for the summer, which include Boeing 787 Dreamliner flights from London Stansted to Cancun, Mexico, and Sanford airport, Orlando, from May 2016.

From Gatwick, travellers will be able to fly direct to Costa Rica and Cuba. From Birmingham, sunseekers can fly direct to Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic, as well as Agadir in Morocco and Izmir, Turkey. There will also be additional Dreamliner flights to Cancun from Newcastle and Glasgow.

EasyJet will increase services from regional airports, with new routes from Bristol to Venice, Copenhagen, Dubrovnik and Nantes from March. There will be additional routes from Manchester to Sardinia, Gibraltar and Montenegro.