IELTS SPEAKING PART 1 Public Transportation: Study the sample answers below to the questions about transportation.
Talking about the means of transport – air transport, land transport, and water transport. When you get this topic in your exam, make sure you have enough vocabulary to describe the public transport that you often take.
Learn how the speaker developed his answers to every question about transportation. This topic is not complicated at all as it is a relatable one. Achieve a band 7.0+!
How do you go to work or school?
I’m so lucky that my office is a stone’s throw away (a short distance), so I go to work on foot. I like it because I can exercise every single day and I can save money as I don’t need to spend on public transport.
I have to go to school by bus because it’s the cheapest compared to other modes of transportation. Well, I understand that it takes longer than taking a train but my part-time work is not enough for me to cover all my expenses. So, taking a bus is the best option as I can save than taking the train.
What’s the most popular means of transport in your hometown?
Of course, it’s the train! It’s the most convenient mode of transportation and it’s always on time. But honestly, I don’t like taking the train during rush hour because it’s incredibly crowded. I hate to jam (to gather; to crowd) myself into the crowd as it makes me feel sick.
I believe it’s the train because they’re pretty (very) accessible and convenient. The train stations are really organized and one can go from one place to another without getting lost. But like I said earlier, it’s way more expensive than buses.
How far is your home from your office or school?
It only takes 10 minutes on foot. The location of the company where I’m currently working is perfect for me. As I’m a person who enjoys walking, I love it. I can exercise every day without hitting the gym (going to the gym).
Since I go by bus (travel by bus), it takes me 30 minutes to get to school. However, if I take the train, it only takes 15 minutes approximately. Well, 30 minutes by bus is not really that long, anyway.
Do you think people will drive more in the future?
I believe not because self-driving cars will become more and more popular. Many years later, I think people will simply rely on (depend on) self-driving cars as they’re more reliable compared to human drivers. I understand that people these days are skeptical (having doubts) about those kinds of cars but recently I’ve seen reports that self-driving cars, especially in the US are doing pretty well with very minimal (very few) accidents. Therefore, people in the future will no longer drive.
I don’t think so. I don’t see the future of people giving up on driving cars and simply relying on self-driving cars. I think the feeling of operating a car makes a person happy and for sure it provides him a sense of achievement. But anyway, no one knows the future so I could be wrong.
What kind of public transportation do you usually take?
Well, that depends on the situation. If I’m in a rush (be in a hurry), I usually take a taxi for the obvious reason – it’s faster than any other mode of transport. However, if I’m not in a hurry I normally take a bus since it’s the cheapest and it’s way more accessible.
To be honest with you, I rarely take public transport since I normally drive to work or when I go out with friends. However, if I go on a long trip with family or friends, I take a train or a plane depending on where I’m having my holiday. Well, actually we have advanced modes of public transport in this country so commuters have great options if they decide to take public transportation.
Do most people in your country prefer public transportation?
I’m not sure about this but based on my observation I think the majority of people in our country take public transportation. Honestly, not a lot of people can afford to have their own vehicle since people in our country are not as rich as those people living in developed nations. For that reason alone, I think the general public prefers public transport.
I guess the percentage of people having their own cars is not that high in this country since as I said we have a great public transport system, so I believe a huge number of people prefer public transportation. That’s actually great since we’re not contributing so much to the air pollution problem. But I admit that I’m not one of those people since I drive my car every single day.
When do you usually take public transportation?
I take it every single day because I don’t have a car. As I said, I take a taxi when I’m in a rush to go to work or to attend an appointment, and I take a bus regularly to go to work. Sometimes, it’s really tiring because I have to wait for 30 minutes since buses have a certain schedule that they strictly follow.
As I’ve just mentioned, I take public transport when I have to go on a holiday or to have a long trip. I either take a plane or a train. But you know what, I really love taking a train especially when I go to the countryside since I’ll be able to enjoy the spectacular (beautiful in a dramatic way) and vast (huge) views of the place. So, I actually do it in spring or autumn.
Will there be more people taking public transportation in the future?
I believe so because I think our modes of public transport in this country will surely be improved. I’m confident that our government will make some effort to modernize (update; improve) our public transport system to provide the best service to the general public. For sure when that’s achieved, more and more people will prefer taking public transport and I see it as a great step in protecting the environment very seriously.
Actually, these days a lot of people in this country prefer taking public transport since its system is amazingly advanced. So, I can say that the next generation will also be using any means of public transport as it’s convenient and accessible. I reckon (guess) that in 10 years or 20 years, the general public will rely (depend) more on public transportation.
Do people in your country usually use public transportation?
Definitely! I’m proud to say that our government has made so much effort to provide better public transportation to us. We have a wide choice of transport such as trains, buses, ferries, and rapid transit, among others. And what I like about our transport system is that it’s organized and more importantly the schedules are strictly followed.
Well, this country is still developing, and not a lot of people can afford to own a car so I believe a lot of people are relying on using public transportation – I guess more than half of the population. With that being said, our government is doing its best to improve the condition of public transport in our country, so we won’t question where our taxes go.
Ferry [noun] – a boat or ship
Rapid transit [noun] – a high-speed urban passenger transport like an elevated railway system
Developing country [noun] – poor and seeking to become more advanced socially and economically
i.) Answer 1: The speaker gave a direct positive answer but not in a traditional way of saying yes. Then, he proceeded to talking about his feelings toward the efforts that had been put in by the government in his country to improve the public transportation system. In order for him to extend his answer, he enumerated some examples of public transport in his country that people could use, and that served as his topic vocabulary words. Finally, he ended his answer by expressing his opinion about the transport system in his country.
ii.) Answer 2: The speaker developed his answer by telling the examiner the status of his country first, then gave his assumption as the answer to the question. It’s a creative way to answer that question as he was not just giving a Yes or a No introduction. In that way, he’s able to make use of his language skills better. He also added what effort his government has made to improve the transportation system in his country as a way to extend his answer.
What’s the most popular mode of transportation in your hometown?
My hometown is really remote so it’s expected that we don’t have plenty of choices in terms of public transportation, so basically people in my hometown own vehicles. It’s common in every household to have at least one car and that’s the main means of transportation there.
Remote [adj.] – far off; distant
Plenty [pronoun] – more than enough; many
In terms of [phrase] – with regard to; regarding; concerning
Vehicle [noun] – a thing used to transport goods or people such as cars, trucks, motors, etc.
(every) household [noun] – family
i.) The speaker has a different way of answering the question that instead of giving answers straightly like “train” or “bus”, he makes the examiner visualize what type of life people in their hometown have, and after that, he gives his answer which is ‘car’. That’s a very good way to show the examiner his language skills. A common answer to this question would be: “Bus/Train is the most famous means of transportation in our hometown because…”, that’s a predictable answer. If you can turn a very simple answer into something creative in which you can express your ideas more eloquently then don’t hesitate to do it just like what the speaker did here.
ii.) If you notice the speaker uses the word ‘hometown’ twice, sometimes don’t force yourself to paraphrase words using synonyms, you will sound unnatural when it is forced. Look at the last two words in the last sentence, instead of saying ‘hometown’ for the third time, the speaker simply uses ‘in there’. That’s great!
What’s the difference between planes and trains?
Well, for sure there are so many differences between the two but let me focus on one thing that is the most obvious and that’s the classification of transportation – planes are for air travel and trains are for the land.
Obvious [adj.] – apparent; clear; easily understood
Classification of transportation [noun] – the different types or the category of transport
i.) The speaker answers the question in a simpler and natural way. You don’t need to enumerate many differences since the question is not asking you “What are…”. The speaker simply points out the reasonable difference. Brilliant!
Do people in your country drive to work?
If we talk about the people in cities, they normally use public transportation since the system is incredibly convenient. Our government invested so much in transportation in cities because the business is centered in those places. However, if we talk about the countryside just like where I come from, we definitely drive to work because there’s no other way unless you’re patient enough to spend so much time waiting for the bus.
Incredibly [adv.] – used to introduce a statement that is unbelievable; to a great degree
Invest [verb] – to spend money on something with the expectation of profit
Unless [conjunction] – except if
i.) The speaker answers the question in a more detailed way. Instead of just immediately saying ‘Yes’ or “No’, he categorizes his answers into two: people in the city and people in the countryside. That’s a great answer as we cannot really generalize all people.
ii.) Notice how the sentence construction of the speaker. He uses conditional tense and that is really helpful in making his Grammar mark better.
Which do you prefer: public transportation or private transportation?
To be honest, it’s really hard to choose between two things when you don’t equally experience them. All my life I’ve lived in the countryside and our main mode of transportation is cars, I’ve never had so many chances to take public transport such as trains or buses. So to answer the question, I can say that I prefer the latter.
Mode of transportation [noun] – another way of saying ‘means of transportation’
Public transport [noun] – refers to buses, trains, subways, etc. that charge fares and have fixed routes
(The) latter [adj.] – the second thing mentioned; the second choice mentioned
i.) The speaker starts his answer by giving his reflection. Since in his previous answers, he already mentioned that the only means of transport in his hometown is a car, logically he cannot really compare the two. This shows that the speaker is not just answering the question for the sake of answering but he is also thinking about how to connect his answer to the previous ideas to achieve coherence.
Do you think people will drive more in the future?
I don’t really know, I’m not sure, maybe not! The only thing that I’m certain of is that technology is always evolving. These days we do have self-driving cars, and although they’re not yet available in the market, still I have this feeling that one day people can use them as the main mode of transportation. If that happens, then people will drive less since those cars are computer-generated.
Certain [adj.] – sure; definite
Evolve (-ing) [verb] – progress; develop
Computer-generated [adj.] – designed or produced using a computer program
i.) The speaker is being so honest here since no one really knows or owns the future. Don’t be afraid, to be honest, if you don’t really know the answer as long as you’re able to provide an explanation of why you do not know just like what the speaker did. That’s being natural!
ii.) In the last sentence, he uses the conditional tense. As I have said many times before, using conditional tenses is really good for achieving a better mark in the criterion of Grammar and Accuracy. If you can find a chance to use it in your sentences then do it!
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