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11 Best Cruise Stocks To Buy Now

In this article, we discuss 11 best cruise stocks to buy now. If you want to skip our discussion on the cruise industry, head over to 5 Best Cruise Stocks To Buy Now

2024 is poised to be exceptional for cruise vacations, with unprecedented booking volumes across different income levels, surpassing pre-COVID-19 levels. Cruise operators and travel agents report heightened interest due to the relative affordability of cruises compared to land-based alternatives. Despite cancellations in other travel sectors, cruise bookings for 2024 are anticipated to break records. With occupancy levels steadily approaching pre-pandemic levels, cruise operators are contemplating adjustments in pricing strategies to capitalize on the skyrocketing demand. However, this heightened interest in cruise vacations comes against the backdrop of cancellations and postponements of travel plans to other regions, particularly the Middle East. The Cruise Lines International Association predicts 35.7 million passengers in 2024, a 6% increase from 2019. 

However, the industry faces a challenge in meeting the demand. Carnival CEO Josh Weinstein highlighted concerns about potential inventory shortages despite a 5% increase in capacity compared to 2023. Smaller operators, such as Oslo-based luxury cruise line SeaDream Yacht Club, report overwhelming demand for bookings in 2024 and beyond, with reservations already open for autumn 2026. Similarly, travel agencies like Marvelous Mouse Travels and InteleTravel have experienced a significant uptick in demand, surpassing pre-pandemic booking levels by considerable margins. Cruise operator Royal Caribbean observed a surge in first-time cruisers. To benefit from this opportunity, online travel companies, including Booking.com, are capitalizing on this trend, launching cruise verticals to cater to the growing demand.

The latest trends in the cruise industry, as highlighted by CLIA, indicate a strong focus on younger generations, with 88% of millennials and 86% of Gen-X travelers who have previously cruised expressing plans to cruise again. Additionally, there is growing interest among millennials and Gen-Xers who have never cruised, with 73% considering a cruise vacation. Similarly, solo cruise travel is on the rise, prompting cruise lines to enhance offerings for solo travelers by increasing single-cabin availability. Moreover, the commitment to environmental considerations is rising among current and potential cruise travelers, with 50% expressing increased dedication to making travel decisions based on environmental impacts. Additionally, expedition cruises are experiencing a surge in popularity, driven by the desire for immersive, responsible, and bucket-list travel experiences. This trend is evident across all age groups, with the number of passengers on expedition cruises more than doubling from 2016 to 2022.

On January 10, 2024, Chicago Tribune quoted Michelle Fee, the CEO and founder of Cruise Planners, an organization with over 2,500 travel agency franchises:

“It’s not pent-up demand anymore. It’s just pure demand. Cruising is back with a vengeance.”

Against this growing market opportunity, some of the best cruise stocks to buy include The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS), Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. (NYSE:RCL), and Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc. (NYSE:HLT). 

Our Methodology 

For this article, we scanned Insider Monkey’s fourth quarter database of 933 hedge funds and picked 11 companies operating in the cruise industry. These are the best cruise stocks to buy according to hedge funds. Hedge funds’ top 10 consensus stock picks outperformed the S&P 500 Index by more than 140 percentage points over the last 10 years (see the details here).

 Best Cruise Stocks To Buy Now
Best Cruise Stocks To Buy Now

Best Cruise Stocks To Buy Now

11. Lindblad Expeditions Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ:LIND)

Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 14

Lindblad Expeditions Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ:LIND) provides marine expedition adventures and travel experiences. The company operates through two segments – Lindblad, which offers ship-based expeditions to remote and culturally significant locations like Antarctica, the Arctic, Galápagos Islands, and Alaska; and Land Experiences, which provides over 100 expedition itineraries in 45 countries, focusing on eco-conscious and nature-focused small-group tours, including cycling adventures with local guides. Lindblad Expeditions Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ:LIND) also specializes in luxury adventure cruises. 

In November 2023, Lindblad Expeditions Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ:LIND) announced that it extended its 20-year strategic relationship with National Geographic for an additional 17 years, until 2040. The agreement includes global rights to the National Geographic brand for expedition cruises, allowing Lindblad to expand its fleet and enter new market segments. 

According to Insider Monkey’s fourth quarter database, 14 hedge funds were bullish on Lindblad Expeditions Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ:LIND), compared to 12 funds in the earlier quarter. 

Like The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS), Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. (NYSE:RCL), and Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc. (NYSE:HLT), Lindblad Expeditions Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ:LIND) is one of the best cruise stocks to watch. 

Ariel Small Cap Value Strategy made the following comment about Lindblad Expeditions Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ:LIND) in its Q3 2023 investor letter:

“Alternatively, shares of luxury adventure travel services company, Lindblad Expeditions Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ:LIND), weighed on results in the period. We believe this recent price action runs counter to the company’s solid business fundamentals. LIND reported revenue and EBITDA ahead of Wall Street expectations. Future travel reservations continue to be strong with both booking trends and pricing for 2023 ahead of pre-pandemic levels. Although more expensive fuel prices and an uptick in discounting from certain competitors may present short-term headwinds, cancelation rates are slowly improving and should result in higher cruise occupancy. Longer-term, we expect LIND’s fundamentals will pave the way for multiple expansion as the company extends its market share in the expedition tourism niche. At today’s valuation, we believe LIND’s risk/reward is skewed sharply to the upside.”

10. World Kinect Corporation (NYSE:WKC)

Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 17

World Kinect Corporation (NYSE:WKC) is an energy management company operating through three segments – Aviation, supplying fuel and services to different aviation entities; Land, offering fuel, lubricants, heating oil, and sustainability solutions to diverse customers; and Marine, providing fuel, lubricants, and services to marine fleets, cruise lines, governments, and other fuel suppliers. World Kinect Corporation (NYSE:WKC) is one of the best cruise stocks to invest in. World Kinect Corporation (NYSE:WKC) paid a $0.14 per share quarterly dividend to shareholders on January 16. The company's revenue for the fourth quarter of 2023 came in at $12 billion, in-line with market estimates.

According to Insider Monkey’s fourth quarter database, 17 hedge funds were long World Kinect Corporation (NYSE:WKC), compared to 19 funds in the prior quarter. Ken Griffin’s Citadel Investment Group is the largest stakeholder of the company, with 483,293 shares worth $11 million. 

Bernzott Capital Advisors made the following comment about World Kinect Corporation (NYSE:WKC) in its second quarter 2023 investor letter:

“World Kinect Corporation (NYSE:WKC): The company’s most recent results produced margins below expectations which negatively impacted stock performance during the quarter. Demand remains firm however within their two largest segments of Aviation and Land, as overall travel has rebounded while pricing should take a step up due to contracts repricing higher.”

9. OneSpaWorld Holdings Limited (NASDAQ:OSW)

Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 19

OneSpaWorld Holdings Limited (NASDAQ:OSW) operates health and wellness centers on cruise ships and destination resorts globally. The centers provide a range of services, including traditional body, salon, and skincare, as well as fitness facilities, specialized classes, and personal training. OneSpaWorld Holdings Limited (NASDAQ:OSW) ranks 8th on our list of the best cruise stocks. 

On February 28, OneSpaWorld Holdings Limited (NASDAQ:OSW) reported that its Q4 revenue increased 15.3% year-over-year to $194.8 million. The increase in revenue is attributed to a 9% rise in the average ship count, reaching 184 health and wellness centers onboard ships during the quarter, compared to 169 centers in the fourth quarter of 2022. The company has also introduced a Q1 2024 revenue guidance ranging from $204 million to $209 million, surpassing the consensus estimate of $202.65 million.

According to Insider Monkey’s fourth quarter database, 19 hedge funds were bullish on OneSpaWorld Holdings Limited (NASDAQ:OSW), compared to 16 funds in the last quarter. John W. Rogers’ Ariel Investments is the largest stakeholder of the company, with 13.4 million shares worth $189 million. 

McIntyre Partnership made the following comment about OneSpaWorld Holdings Limited (NASDAQ:OSW) in its Q1 2023 investor letter:

“In the winners column, OneSpaWorld Holdings Limited (NASDAQ:OSW) and STHO contributed 100-500 bps, while SHC and MSGE contributed over 500 bps. In the losers column, no investment lost more than 100 bps. Beyond SHC, the fund also registered gains in two large and long held investments, MSGE and OSW, which rallied 34% and 33%, respectively. MSGE benefited from both strong earnings and anticipation of its value-unlocking spinoff, which I discuss below, while OSW rallied on a faster than anticipated return to profitability and the ongoing recovery in cruise travel. As cruise travel has not yet fully recovered from the pandemic, I believe the sector can improve further as capacity returns, even if overall consumer spending broadly pulls back.”

8. Agilysys, Inc. (NASDAQ:AGYS)

Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 21

Agilysys, Inc. (NASDAQ:AGYS) is a hospitality industry technology developer and marketer, serving North America, Europe, the Asia-Pacific, and India. The company provides hardware and software solutions, including point of sale, property management systems, inventory management, payments, and reservations, aimed at enhancing guest experiences. The company’s solutions cater to multiple sectors, including hotels, resorts, cruise lines, casinos, corporate food service management, restaurants, universities, stadiums, and healthcare applications. Agilysys, Inc. (NASDAQ:AGYS) is one of the best cruise stocks to invest in. 

On January 22, Agilysys, Inc. (NASDAQ:AGYS) reported financial results for its fiscal 2024 third quarter ending December 31, 2023. The company announced a non-GAAP EPS of $0.35 and a revenue of $60.57 million, exceeding Wall Street estimates by $0.09 and $0.5 million, respectively. 

According to Insider Monkey’s fourth quarter database, 21 hedge funds were long Agilysys, Inc. (NASDAQ:AGYS), same as the prior quarter. Michael Kaufman’s MAK Capital One is the biggest stakeholder of the company, with 3.32 million shares worth $282 million. 

Wasatch Micro Cap Growth—U.S. Strategy made the following comment about Agilysys, Inc. (NASDAQ:AGYS) in its Q4 2022 investor letter:

“Agilysys, Inc. (NASDAQ:AGYS) was the top contributor to strategy performance during the fourth quarter. The company develops application software for point-of-sale, property-management, inventory and procurement applications. Agilysys specializes in the hospitality and retail industries world-wide, and its solutions can be implemented on wireless and mobile devices. The company recently modernized its software, which has proved fortuitous as post-pandemic consumer and business travel has accelerated. On December 15, Agilysys announced an agreement to deploy its cloud-based property-management system software across Marriott’s luxury, premium and select service hotels in the United States and Canada. Beyond the incremental earnings and cash flows related to Marriott, the agreement should help Agilysys win new customers on an ongoing basis.”

7. Sabre Corporation (NASDAQ:SABR)

Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 26

Sabre Corporation (NASDAQ:SABR) is a global software and technology company in the travel industry, with operations in the United States, Europe, Asia-Pacific, and internationally. The company’s Travel Solutions segment runs a business-to-business travel marketplace, offering content from travel suppliers such as airlines, hotels, car rentals, rail carriers, cruise lines, and tour operators; and The Hospitality Solutions segment offers software and solutions to hoteliers through software-as-a-service (SaaS) and hosted delivery models. 

On February 15, Sabre Corporation (NASDAQ:SABR) reported a Q4 non-GAAP EPS of -$0.12, beating market consensus by $0.02. Revenue for the quarter increased 8.8% year-over-year to $687 million, but fell short of Wall Street estimates by $4.33 million. In the fourth quarter of 2023, free cash flow amounted to $77 million, marking a significant increase from the $22 million reported in the fourth quarter of 2022.

According to Insider Monkey’s fourth quarter database, 26 hedge funds held stakes in Sabre Corporation (NASDAQ:SABR), compared to 28 funds in the prior quarter. Terry Smith’s Fundsmith LLP is the biggest stakeholder of the company, with 22.26 million shares worth $98 million. 

6. Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. (NYSE:NCLH)

Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 31

Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. (NYSE:NCLH) is a cruise company that operates globally, including in North America, Europe, and the Asia-Pacific. The company manages three brands – Norwegian Cruise Line, Oceania Cruises, and Regent Seven Seas Cruises. It is one of the best cruise stocks to monitor. On February 27, Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. (NYSE:NCLH) reported a revenue of $1.99 billion, up 30.9 % year-over-year and outperforming Wall Street estimates by $30 million. 

According to Insider Monkey’s fourth quarter database, 31 hedge funds were long Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. (NYSE:NCLH), compared to 30 funds in the earlier quarter. John W. Rogers’ Ariel Investments is the biggest stakeholder of the company, with 6.2 million shares worth $125.6 million. 

In addition to The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS), Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. (NYSE:RCL), and Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc. (NYSE:HLT), Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. (NYSE:NCLH) is one of the best cruise stocks to monitor. It ranks 6th on our list. 

Ariel Small Cap Value Strategy made the following comment about Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. (NYSE:NCLH) in its Q3 2023 investor letter:

“Lastly, Cruise ship operator, Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. (NYSE:NCLH) traded lower in the quarter. The stock's strong price appreciation ̶up 34.64% year-to-date ̶ drove profit taking following an underwhelming outlook relative to Royal Caribbean Group’s upward guidance revision. Notably, NCLH continues to deliver record cumulative bookings as well as increased occupancy capacity at higher prices. The company remains focused on right sizing its cost base and improving margins to strengthen its foundation for sustainable and profitable growth. Meanwhile, the company executed on its leadership succession plan, with 15-year veteran Harry J. Sommer’s recent appointment to CEO. With an experienced management team at its helm, a young average fleet and solid liquidity position, we remain enthusiastic about the name.”

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Disclosure: None. 11 Best Cruise Stocks To Buy Now is originally published on Insider Monkey.

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