There are a lot of perks being a travel writer. For those wondering, it’s all the travel. Unfortunately, between the ridiculous airport security, plummeting U.S. economy, luggage charges and flight delays there is little to like about air travel anymore. Moreover, as a resident of Los Angeles, all of my international flights are usually, multi-leg long haul flights (unless I am going to Mexico or Canada.) requiring much more patience in the sky. Still, I have gotten use to all the changes in air travel and, sadly, have come to expect little more than getting from point a. to point b.

However, during a year filled with fantastic international destinations, one flight and one airline sticks out as the best I flew during this year and our first recipient of our new ITKT Favorites award, SAS.

In a ten day span on Scandinavian Airlines, I flew from Chicago to Stockholm, Stockholm to Copenhagen, and Copenhagen to Chicago. On each flight, arrivals and departures were all on time, food and drink were complimentary (except alcohol) and delicious with snacks available anytime, attendants were polite and not in a rush, and most importantly I had room in my seat – even in economy. There are also individual entertainment systems for all passengers, offering movies and games.

On my flight home, I flew business class, Copenhagen to Chicago, and the real flight winner of this award. There is little that I can say first hand about the flight as I slept the whole way in my spacious reclined seat/bed, except to take breaks with lots of good, traditional Scandinavian food. I came home jet lag-free.

I can’t begin to describe how valuable my experience was as a long haul traveler. Taking three comfortable flights in a row was a pleasure, and to some degree restored my faith in air travel. I would jump at the chance to fly SAS in the future and officially this is the first ITKT Favorite selection of 2008.

I will have more favorite’s in the coming days as ITKT take time to salute the best in travel all over the world.

For more winners, click here.