Travel Tuesday: Soarigami Review — A Novelty That’s Pretty Genius

Two years ago — in early 2020 — I bought a product I was hoping to get a lot of use of on all of the airplanes I figured I’d be hopping on. At this point, I don’t even really remember how I discovered it, but its inclusion on my list of “5 Interesting Travel Products I’ve Seen Advertised on Instagram” gives me a clue. Anyway, the item in question is the Soarigami armrest extender. Now, after two years of owning the Soarigami myself, my wife and I finally had a chance to try it out! So how did it go? Let’s take a quick look at what the Soarigami is, how it works, and what I thought about it.

What is Soarigami?

The Soarigami is a clever device that’s meant to help two people share an armrest by extending the usable space. Inspired by the design of a paper airplane, the item attaches to most armrests, providing a “wing” for each passenger to use while having a divider in between them. When not in use, the Soarigami folds fairly flat so that it’s easy to store in a carry-on or personal item. On that note, the item measures 11 inches by 6.5 inches, is 0.75 inches thick, and weighs 8 ounces.

How much is it?

While Soarigami is sold out on its own website, you can still find the item on Amazon. There, it sells for $19.99 and is eligible for Prime shipping.

How does it work?

On the bottom of the Soarigami are two rubberized clamps that will go on either side of the armrest. Then, there are two easy-to-adjust screws you can use to tighten the Soarigami’s grip on the armrest as needed. Once installed, passengers on each side of the armrest will have several extra inches of area to, well, rest their arms. After use, the covers on both “wings” can be removed for easier cleaning and then reapplied for your next trip.

The design

Before we get into my thoughts on Soarigami, I do want to give a shoutout to the design. Not only is the product well thought out from a functionality standpoint but is also a lot of fun. The paper airplane idea is brilliant and the stationary-inspired red and blue dash pattern only enhances the overall look. To me, all of these elements really help sell the concept and elevate the item.

My experience with Soarigami

As I mentioned, we had a chance to try our Soarigami, taking it on an Allegiant flight to Las Vegas. For context, Allegiant’s armrests are pretty small and light (with no electronics in them as some airlines have), making them really difficult to share with your fellow passenger. So, we busted out the Soarigami, which also fit nicely into my Away Zip Backpack.

To be honest, we weren’t exactly sure which way to arrange the Soarigami — with the tall part at the front or back — but we elected to just go with the former. As promised, the Soarigami was easy to attach to the armrest thanks to the two screws. Once installed, my wife and I could both fit our full arms onto the Soarigami comfortably. In fact, after we put it on, we decided to leave it for the rest of the flight, with both of us utilizing it for the majority of the time.

Although the Soarigami fit well overall, I did notice that, when one of us lifted our arms, it did dip a bit. However, that is likely due to my poor installation. Either way, it wasn’t really a big deal. The other thing I want to note is that the Soarigami won’t fit onto every armrest you encounter… but that may be moot if your situation is anything like ours. See, we initially planned on trying the Soarigami on our trip to France, but the large armrest between us in Premium Economy meant there was not only no use for the item but also no way to attach it. This is what we in the industry call a “good problem.” Still, for standard armrests on planes, at stadiums, or elsewhere, I think it’d work just fine.

Overall, we both came away from the flight giving the Soarigami a thumbs up. It’s definitely one of those items you don’t realize you need until you have it as once removed from the armrest, I couldn’t even imagine trying to share it between the two of us. On that note, I suspect that I was accidentally hogging the armrest on previous flights, which is why I’m happy to correct my rudeness with this product. Is it a bit silly? Sure. But, for $20, I’d say it’s worth it.


Also published on Medium.

Author

Kyle Burbank

Kyle is a freelance writer and author whose first book, "The E-Ticket Life" is now available on Amazon. In addition to his weekly "Money at 30" column on Dyer News, he is also the editorial director and a writer for the Disney fan site LaughingPlace.com and the founder of Money@30.com.

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