Pandemic Turns a Pilot into a Baker

No flight, no problem. As the aviation industry was among the largest casualties of the coronavirus disease pandemic, earning a living is not as difficult as it used to after a commercial airline pilot and his girlfriend turned one of their plans into motion.

Couple Manuel Andre Prieto and Shayne Therese Daulat had to find an alternative means of living after several countries imposed travel restrictions to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Thankfully, Andre did not lose his job. However, his income was significantly reduced. He shares that he was only able to fly one repatriation flight during the quarantine period when he would usually fly around 70 hours per month.

But instead of complaining and entertaining negative energy, Shayne came up with an idea to sell baked goods to monetize the extra time and for them to become more productive and unlock the skills they have wanted to share.

She said that they plan to have their bakery or café someday and felt that it was the best time to jumpstart that dream when they saw the need arise.

She shared that they were looking for bread and pastries at the start of the pandemic, but every bakeshop was closed. That is when they realized that other people might be looking for bread and pastries, too.

Airbuns 320

During the lockdown, Andrei learned to bake while Shayne honed her baking skills. They established an online bakery which they called ‘Airbuns 320’, a wordplay of the aircraft Andre usually fly.

They sell three types of pastries—soft coffee buns, giant cookies, and its signature twisted cinnamon buns. They were all of Shane’s original recipes, but creating them was their greatest challenge. It took dozens of batches before they finally perfect every bread and cookie recipe.

“It is true that nothing worth having comes easy,” she added.

For now, the couple was more than grateful that their small venture can sustain their daily expenses.

“We thank God for giving us this blessing,” Andre said.