The 3 Best Airline Stocks to Buy in April 2024


  • Regional and low-cost carriers, not the legacy players, make up the three best airline stocks to buy in April.
  • Alaska Air Group (ALK): If a pending merger gets the regulatory go-ahead, ALK stock could cruise to higher altitudes.
  • SkyWest (SKYW): After a threefold jump over the past twelve months,  SKYW stock is poised to stay a winner among airline stocks.
  • Sun Country Airlines (SNCY): SNCY may be starting to turn a corner, given better-than-feared results, and key strengths cited in a recent analyst upgrade.
Best Airline Stocks to Buy in April - The 3 Best Airline Stocks to Buy in April 2024

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Based on recent headlines talking of figurative and literal turbulence for the air travel space, you are correct to assume the best airline stocks to buy in April are a pretty short list.

Shares in legacy carriers like American Airlines (NASDAQ:AAL) and United Airlines (NASDAQ:UAL) are steer clear situations right now. The same goes for high-profile low-cost carriers like Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV).

These majors (legacy and low-cost) face the prospect of disappointing fiscal results in the quarters ahead. Blame this on both the impact of the Boeing (NYSE:BA) 737 Max safety incidents, as well as factors like slowing travel demand. In the case of United, it’s also contending with flight safety concerns that extend beyond concerns with 737 Max aircraft.

Yet while there are plenty of airline stocks to stay away from right now, a few can be considered the best airline stocks to buy in April. Let’s take a look at each one, and see why their respective tailwinds help to counter industry headwinds.

Alaska Air Group (ALK)

Passengers commercial airplane flying above clouds in sunset light. Concept of fast travel, holidays and business. Airline stocks.
Source: Jag_cz /

With Alaska Air Group (NYSE:ALK) experiencing a high-profile 737 Max flight safety incident this year, at first you may find it odd for me to consider it one of the best airline stocks to buy right now.

Yet while the carrier has announced that the subsequent grounding of the 737 Max will affect growth, ALK stock is actually up from where it was just prior to the incident. Not only that, there is still a major potential catalyst in play that could send shares to high altitudes. I’m talking about Alaska’s pending merger with Hawaiian Holdings (NASDAQ:HA).

There is some uncertainty about the proposed merger, which is currently being scrutinized by the U.S. Department of Justice’s antitrust division. However, Alaska CEO Ben Minicucci is confident that the deal will go through. If completed, the Alaska-Hawaiian merger could result in at least $235 million in annualized cost savings.

Skywest (SKYW)

A close-up shot of a SkyWest (SKYW) plane.
Source: Heather Dunbar /

Skywest (NASDAQ:SKYW) is a regional airline operator. Partnering with major carriers, Skywest provides flights between smaller airlines and the large hubs of the majors. In contrast to the turbulence other airline stocks have encountered, SKYW has performed extremely well.

Over the past twelve months, SKYW stock has increased by more than threefold. As InvestorPlace’s Noah Bolton has pointed out, the reasons for this big run-up are twofold. First, the company has continued to handily beat estimates with its fiscal results. Second, while already the largest regional airline by fleet size, Skywest continues to expand its partnerships with the major airlines.

Unaffected by the 737 Max fiasco, Skywest is poised to continue growing. Sell-side forecasts call for earnings growth in both 2025 and 2026. A winner among airline stocks, and likely to stay that way, consider SKYW one of the best airline stocks to buy in April.

Sun Country Airlines (SNCY)

A Sun Country Airlines plane taking off.
Source: natmac stock /

Sun Country Airlines (NASDAQ:SNCY) operates a low-cost passenger airline, as well as operates a cargo airline. Industry headwinds have affected SNCY’s price performance over the past year, but things may be starting to turn a corner.

For one, back in January, Sun Country reported better-than-feared quarterly results. Although earnings dropped compared to the prior year’s quarter, earnings per share of 12 cents came in far ahead of analyst consensus, which called for earnings of 6 cents per share.

Second, in February, Morgan Stanley’s Ravi Shanker upgraded SNCY stock from the equivalent to “hold” to the equivalent to “buy,” with a price target of $21 per share. In his upgrade, the analyst argued that solid execution and cost control bode well for Sun’s future results. Shanker also noted that downward pressure on the stock due to selling by majority owner Apollo Global Management (NYSE:APO) will soon start to ease.

On the date of publication, Thomas Niel did not hold (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.comPublishing Guidelines.

Thomas Niel, contributor for, has been writing single-stock analysis for web-based publications since 2016.

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