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Tiffani Amo of Heuvelton wants others to follow their travel dreams

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Tiffani F. Amo hasn’t been stateside in a year and a half.

Since the fall of 2011, the 25-year-old Heuvelton native has spent her time visiting Australia, Indonesia and New Zealand, where she currently lives.

“I’ve been here since the beginning of February,” Ms. Amo said of her time in New Zealand. She currently works in a café in Wellington, the nation’s capital.

“I came here because it’s really close to Australia. It’s easy to get a work visa, and I needed the work,” she said.

Ms. Amo isn’t planning on staying in Wellington much longer.

She is already planning on moving north to New Plymouth, New Zealand, where she will stay until she feels like moving on.

“I don’t know what I’m going to do once I get there,” she said, but that’s part of the adventure.

Ms. Amo has been traveling for most of her life.

Her mother, Heidi Broome, lives in St. Petersburg, Fla., while her father, Peter Amo, lives in Heuvelton. She spent a significant amount of time flying up and down the East Coast during her childhood.

In college she studied abroad in Australia, where she caught the travel bug for good.

“Once I came back from there I saw there was so much more I could do. Every little thing was exciting, and when I came home everything was just the way it was when I left,” Ms. Amo said. “Once I came home from [Australia] I realized I just wanted to leave.”

After spending roughly nine months saving money after college, Ms. Amo sold her car, gave everything she couldn’t carry with her to her sister and has been on the move since with no plans of slowing down.

“I promised my family I would come home after two years,” she said, though when she does return in December, she said doesn’t plan on staying put more than a month.

“I want to travel in the States and end up in Alaska,” Ms. Amo said. “I don’t see myself stopping anytime soon.”

For her, traveling is about new experiences.

“You meet so many new people and you’re always doing new things,” Ms. Amo said. “There’s always a stranger waiting to help you out, to become your friend, to keep you company. It’s always fun. You never get bored.”

She hopes to spend time traveling in Southeast Asia and Europe at some point, too, she said, though because she funds her travels working minimum wage jobs, it’s important for her to be able to get work visas.

Ms. Amo said she does her best to stay in touch with friends and family in the United States. Skype, the online communication tool, has been especially helpful in keeping her connected with people back home, though time zones sometimes make communication difficult.

When she gets home from work it’s often too late to talk to anyone at home.

One of her hopes is that friends or family members will join her for short legs of her travels. So far only one of her friends has taken her up on the offer, “but I’m not giving up,” she said.

And Ms. Amo wants other people to be inspired to travel as well.

“It’s really easily if you’re focused and determined to do it,” she said.

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