IELTS Cue Card Sample 28 - Describe something special you want to buy in the future

IELTS Speaking Part 2: IELTS Cue Card/ Candidate Task Card.

Describe something special you want to buy in the future.

You should say:

  •  What it is
  •  What it is like
  •  When you intend to buy it

 And explain why you want to buy it.

Follow-up Questions:

  • What makes things to be special to you?
  • What makes a brand trustworthy?
  • What are some of the famous costume brands in your country?
  • What electronic devices are more common in your city?

Model Answer 1:
So, I’ve been asked to talk about ‘something special that I’d like to buy in the future’, it’s quite tricky to know how to respond to this topic. Should I pick something that I’d love to buy, but isn’t realistic (like a rainbow); something that I’d love to buy as a gift for someone else (treat my mum to afternoon tea at a posh hotel) or something practical for me (I could really do with a new pair of winter shoes)? In fact, I’m going to go with the first thing that popped into my head when you told me the theme – I’m going to talk about something that I would really really like to buy, but haven’t quite got around to yet.

I’m going to tell you what it is, what is like, when I intend to buy it and why it is I’d like this particular item so much.

The special thing I have in mind is a photo book. You can get them on the internet I think. You select a range of digital photos that are special or meaningful to you and then arrange them electronically with captions and dates and so on. Then there are specialist companies that will put them together in a traditionally bound physical book.

The idea is quite a simple one, but genius. In this age of digital cameras, it’s easy to take lots and lots of photographs, some are good, some are funny, and some are indifferent. Many are bizarre; others are hilarious; and some are just terrible, but all of them are quite literally snapshots of memories. However, because now photographs are everywhere, I think we take them a bit for granted and don’t appreciate them as much as we should. The really great photographs get lost in the multitude of average or terrible ones. There are so many files of photos on my computer, that I can’t even remember what they contain, let alone where the most important ones are stored anymore.  So what I’d love to do, is take the time to pick out a selection that is really important to me, and have them brought together in an album that I can treasure and look back on, and share with others. Honestly, nobody really wants to look at 1000 pictures of your holiday/ family/ pet, but they might like to look at half a dozen of each that had been carefully chosen to tell a particular story, and it’s fun to share such memories.

When do I intend to do this? Well, interestingly, I have a ‘to-do’ list on my desk. One of the items that have been on it for some years is ‘sort through my photos’. I never get around to it. Maybe now I’ve been made to reflect on it, I should prioritise this task. Just because it has never felt urgent (that is, something I need to do immediately) this activity never makes it to the top of my list. However, it is important, I need to make time for it. Maybe next week – I should give myself a deadline!

I hope you can see already why I’d like to buy this so much. But if I need to explain more, it is because I think by making a selection of really important pictures, I can pick out special memories. By putting these together in a physical book I think they will endure longer and be valued more than if they are lost in the millions and millions of images that fill the internet. Even today, I have on my shelves books that are over a hundred years old, they have pages that have slightly yellowed with age, but are perfectly useable and readable. On the other hand, I have a pile of floppy discs, I have no idea what is on them anymore, and I no longer have a computer that I could read them on, effectively, those contents are lost forever. Despite how clever we are in this digital age, I have a suspicion that it is our books that will outlast us all, not pixels in cyberspace!  What do you think?

[ Written by - Lucy Marris: Careers Adviser (UK), TEFL teacher (Vietnam) ]

Possible Answer 2:
I have a personal list (wish list you can say) that has many things that I want to buy in future. One such special thing that I want to buy in near future is a personal car. I mostly use public transportation to move from one place to another and to visit my hometown which is very inconvenient. Owning a car would be a great advantage for me as I would be able to freely move and visit my hometown more frequently.
 
The car I want to buy is the Fusion Hybrid car by Ford. This is a stylish looking car which is also fuel efficient. My preference would be the white colour. I intend to buy it after 2-3 years as it would allow me to save the money and apply for the car loan I need to purchase it.

There are so many advantages of owning a car especially in the city I live in. Maintaining the perfect timing is pretty tough if you travel in a public bus. You would need to wait for the bus, stay in the long queue for a long. And the frequency of the public buses and the number of people do not allow one to maintain the timing one needs to keep. If I own my own car I'd be able to avoid the usual bad traffic and take the alternatives roads. Travelling in a public bus is inconvenient and you do not have any privacy in it. With my own car, I'd be able to go to my hometown and visit my parents more frequently than I do now.

Sample Answer 3:
I know exactly what the special thing is that I want to buy in the future. In fact, I’d like to buy it right now, as soon as I’ve finished talking to you today! I’m going to tell you what it is, what it is like, when I’ll buy it and explain why it is I want to get it so urgently and so much!

The item is a spider catcher.  Have you ever hear of them? They are a bit tricky to describe, but basically, it’s a simple gadget that allows you to pick up a spider without hurting or touching it, so you can release it unharmed elsewhere. There are different designs, but the one I like the look of has a long handle with a trigger mechanism at one end which operates some soft gentle bristles at the other. If you believe the adverts, it works by surrounding the spider with bristles that close around it, forming a harmless trap, which allows you to pickup and release the spider without squashing it. To operate it you simply squeeze the lever to open the bristles, position the open bristles over the spider, then release the lever so they gently close around it. You can then pick up the spider and release it somewhere else – a long way away - by once again squeezing the lever to reopen the trap. Apparently, it doesn’t harm the creature, it also promises ‘no mess, safe and easy to use’.

So that’s what it is called and how it is supposed to work.  I’d like to buy it soon. Why? Because I have a completely irrational fear of spiders!  It is very specific though, I don’t think I have true arachnophobia, I’m fine with even very large spiders if they are outside, but there is a certain form of house spider we have here in the UK which always makes me jump. They are quite large, they can grow to about 12 – 14 centimetres in size, and the males become active in houses around autumn (October time). At this time of year, they leave their webs in search of a female, and will move inside to the drier environment of a house after a summer living outside or in sheds. They prowl about looking for female mates. They move very erratically, and quite high up on their legs, plus they have a tendency to loiter in corners or shoot across the floor, where if the light hits them they cast a ridiculously disproportionate shadow. They can’t hurt you, and they are only looking for love, but my how they frighten me if I just catch sight of one unexpectedly. The reason I want to buy a spider catcher soon, is that I have just this morning seen an ENORMOUS spider prowling about my living room. I really don’t like sharing my flat with him, even though he means me no harm. Once you have seen one spider there will be more, the next few weeks will bring many such monster spiders into my home, and I want to be prepared!

Catching these spiders is hard. One method I use is to put a glass or jug over the spider, and then slide a piece of paper underneath so you can trap the spider and let it go outside. The problem with this method though is that sometimes the spiders are too big to fit under a glass. Also, they move so fast, they can be gone before you get a chance to catch them, and finally, I don’t really like getting so close to them in the attempt to get them! The spider catcher seems like the perfect solution. I wouldn’t want to harm the spider, it isn’t its fault I’m scared, but I’d prefer not to have them running around all over the place either! That’s why I really, really want a spider catcher of my own. It sounds like the perfect solution for fearful me, facing a potential parade of spiders stomping about when I’m all alone watching a horror film on telly at night as autumn draws in!

[ Written by - Lucy Marris: Careers Adviser (UK), TEFL teacher (Vietnam) ]

Tips on answering this cue card question:

This cue card should be an easy one for you to talk about as it gives you several options to pick from. You can pick almost anything you want to buy in the future. Just highlight the facts that you want to buy it because:

It would be very helpful for you...
You had a passion on that and you want to buy it....
It would be very useful for you and for your family...
It would bring you some opportunities...
It is a luxury item that you wanted to own for a long time... etc.

Some of the things you can mention which you want to buy in the future:

1. A cell phone/ mobile phone
2. A Laptop
3. A personal Car
4. A Book by a favourite Author
5. An electronic device like the refrigerator, television, washing machine etc.
6. A house/ apartment/ flat
7. A bicycle
8. A household appliance
9. A musical instrument
10. A sports instruments.
11. A share of a company
12. A machinery device for business use
13. A paint or portrait.
14. A rare antique item etc.

If you can answer this cue card, you should also be able to answer the following cue cards:

1. Describe something you recently bought.
2. Describe something you want to purchase.
3. Talk about a luxury item you want to buy.
4. Talk about a household appliance you want to buy.
5. Describe what you would buy if you have a lot of money.

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