It's hard to believe that Black Friday 2018 is only six months away already. Here, we bring you everything you need to know about the world's biggest shopping event, including top tips for getting the best Black Friday deals on Apple products this year.

When is Black Friday this year?

Black Friday always falls on the day after Thanksgiving, which means that this year's Black Friday is 23 November. It's followed by a weekend of deals and then Cyber Monday on 26 November. Here's everything you need to know about Cyber Monday 2018.

However, many retailers kick off their Black Friday sales event before the day itself. Last year Amazon began its sales a week early, and others had weekend sales events throughout November. Many even continue their deals into December.

Will Apple join in with Black Friday 2018?

Apple has been known to join in with the Black Friday fun, but in recent years it has chosen to offer gift cards instead of discounts.

In 2017, Apple's one-day event gave customers a free gift card worth up to £120/US$150 with certain purchases, so we expect something similar to take place this year.

Apple's one-day-only bundle deal offered free gift card when you buy a Mac, iPad, iPhone or Apple Watch. The amount on the gift card depended on the product you purchased (a pricey Mac resulted in a more valuable gift card, for example), and the gift card can be spent on products from the Apple Store.

The biggest gift cards were £120/US$150 for purchases of a MacBook or iMac, right down to £20/$25 back for buying an Apple Watch Series 1 or iPhone SE. It's worth noting though that the deal didn't apply to the company's most recent products, like the iPhone 8 and X, Apple Watch 3, or Apple TV 4K.

You'll be pleased to hear that you'll often find Apple products available with big discounts from third-party retailers in the UK and US on Black Friday.

Best Apple deals right now

Our team of Apple experts is always scouring the web for the top deals, offers and discounts on Apple products, even outside of Black Friday and Cyber Monday. We use our knowledge of Apple, its products and the retailers who sell them to pick out only the best money-off offers.

On Black Friday, retailers offer huge discounts to shoppers ahead of the holiday season. It all began in the US, falling on the day after Thanksgiving, but over the past three or four years it has really taken off around the world, including here in the UK.

It follows Black Friday, so called because it’s the day when stores traditionally go from the red (debit) to the black (credit).

A more recent trend is Cyber Monday. It came about because it tended to be the busiest day of the year for online shopping. It always falls on the Monday after Black Friday.

Here is where we bring you the very best deals on gifts and gadgets from across the web to make sure you don’t miss out on Black Friday bargains. Many of the deals offered will run for a limited time or offer limited stock, so you’ll want to keep on top of things in order to get everything you want.

We’d strongly recommend making a list of what you’re looking for in the sales. Try not to buy things on a whim because they sound like a good deal, because you could soon find you have lots of things you didn’t need and have actually spent far more money than you would have otherwise (we discovered this the hard way).

If you're looking for deals on more than just Apple products, you can check out our sister title Tech Advisor's complete guide to Black Friday deals.

Where to find Black Friday Apple deals

Third-party reseller KRCS are likely to have some great deals on Macs and other Apple products. Discounted Macs include built-to-order configurations, too.

Amazon, Currys, Argos, John Lewis and other retailers will offer Apple discounts too.

If you’ve found that you’re missing out on Amazon’s Lightning deals, which run for just a few hours and offer limited stock, we’d recommend signing up for Amazon’s 30 day free trial of Prime, which will get you access to deals 30 minutes before everyone else. Plus, you’ll get free next-day delivery with the Prime trial, as well as access to Prime Instant Video and more.

Sign up for Prime now.

We also expect to see Apple deals from the following retailers:

If you're looking for a particular Apple product, visit our individual articles:

We've also got the best deals for designers and artists here.

Best Apple deals

1. Apple Refurbished Mac Store

From: Apple

Now: Up to £380 off

Get a Mac from Apple at much lower prices in the Refurbished Store. Find out more about Refurbished Macs here.

2. MacBook Sale

From: Very

Now: up to £200 off

Tonnes of savings available right now on the MacBook Air, MacBook Pro (including Retina display and Touch Bar models)!

3. Apple Refurbished iPad Store

From: Apple

Now: Up to £170 off

Refurbished iPads at hugely discounted prices. Wondering whether refurbished iPads are worth buying? See our complete guide

4. Amazon MacBook Sale

From: Amazon

Now: Up to £400 off

5. AVG Secure VPN 1-year subscription for Mac

From: AVG

Was: £49.99

Now: £39.99  (20% off)

It's also available for PC.

6. Apple iPhone SE 32GB

From: Very

Was: £379

Now: £279  (£100 off)

A brilliant price on Apple's iPhone SE, Apple's most recent phone with a 4in display.

7. Apple iPhone 7 32GB with 30GB data

From: EE

Now: £0 up front, £33 per month

8. Apple iPhone X 64GB or 256GB - Upgrade every 12 or 24 months

From: Sky

Now: From £0 upfront, £42 per month

You can now get the iPhone X for £0 upfront and £42 per month when you opt for 500MB of data. This deal lets you choose to have your phone automatically upgraded every 12 or 24 months. There are higher data options available depending on your budget.