Cue Card Sample

IELTS Cue Card Sample 522 - Describe a method that helps you to save money

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

Describe a method that helps you to save money.

You should say:

  • what it is
  • how long have you been following it
  • whether it is a common method to save money

and explain how effective it is to save money.

[You will have to talk about the topic for one to two minutes. You have one minute to think about what you're going to say. You can make some notes to help you if you wish.]


Model Answer 1:
Saving money is not an easy thing to do, but we all know and understand how important it really is to save up money to live a respectable life, as well as to secure the future of our families and ourselves. Of course, while people have their own ways of saving money, I have my own which I would like to discuss here.

Talking about my method, I try to buy everything, from groceries to flight tickets and from gift-items to vitamin supplements, on discounts as often as possible. Of course, this particular method can be a bit tricky to stick with because it is not always easy to keep track of the original prices of different kinds of products and commodities unless you set some “time” aside from your daily schedule in order the check the prices of different products at different grocery stores and outlets in the town on a regular basis. Besides, in order to become a successful “money saver” by using my method, one also would need to be a bit knowledgeable about different seasons or times when a particular type of “produce”,  especially the vegetables and fruits, is available in abundance and are sold at a lower price. Finally, I also try to keep track of different “special occasions” and “holidays” when the stores usually declare “discounts” on different kinds of products and merchandises so that I can avail such opportunities as much as I can.

I have been following this method for almost a decade in order to save up some money, and I believe that a significant number of people do the same.  

I think that my method is a pretty effective way because it allows me to be flexible in practising a “better” judgment when buying anything. In other words, I don’t allow a certain producer or seller to “exploit” me at will because I happen to favour a certain brand of product over the others. Besides, this particular method allows me to try different kinds of products with different kinds of taste and appeal without spending any extra money.


Sample Answer 2:
Interesting topic indeed and I thank you for the chance to let me talk about a method or way I personally apply to save money. Well, I use a personal accounting application on my mobile phone and enter my earnings and expenditures on a daily basis. This method helps me track down the unnecessary expenses, alert me whenever my expenditure goes beyond a certain limit and eventually help me save money out of my monthly earnings.

I use an "accounting software" on my smartphone for the purpose. It is quite intuitive and easy to use and does not require someone to know the basics of accounting. This is comparatively a small application and does not require a huge resource, unlike many smartphone applications. I have been using this Android mobile application for the last 2 years. I have found it a very handy application that enables me to enter my earnings, expenses, shows various comprehensive reports and possible areas where I can expense less and save money. For instance, at the end of a month, I noticed that I have spent more than 700 dollars on taxi fare and that was quite alarming. I would never have noticed that without this application and from the next month I have devised other plans to reduce my monthly transportation costs.

I am not sure if this application is widely used or not, but using some sort of personal accounting software, mobile applications or using a notebook to tally the earning and expenses is rather a common method. I had my doubt initially whether I would be benefitted from this method. But after a few months, I started realising that it was helping me immensely. As a salaried employee, my earning remains almost the same in each month but the expenses vary to a great extent. Interestingly I knew the mandatory areas or my monthly expenses before I started using this application but after I started using it, my perception of the areas of expenses totally changed. I had no idea there were so many areas of my expenses and the possible ways to save some money weekly by following some simple steps. This application helped me tremendously and I have to thank the developer of this application who made it totally free to download and use.

Adjusting the daily expenses on the application was kind of boring at the beginning, but within a few weeks, I made it a daily habit. Since this method is helping me to save money, I consider it an important task at the end of the day. This application even has reminder options for different events and occasions of my friends and family members. For instance, at the beginning of a month, the application shows me the birthdays or similar events that are going to take place this month. The reminder also shows me the possible amount I can spend on gifts without crossing my monthly budget.  The most amazing feature of this application is its ability to compare products I regularly purchase or intend to purchase and notify me of the best price and special deals. I personally find it very handy as the shopping comparison is done by my application and saves both time and money for me. 


Sample Answer 3:
As an undergrad student, I have no major earnings, rather I take my pocket money from my dad. So, I save money from what I get to fill up my special hobbies or to buy something that I need to. To save money, I note down each of my expenses.

From my early childhood, I have noticed that if the expenses could be tracked down, the level of the cost could be reduced to some extent. There are many ways to control costs and they are useful as well. But saving money from the small amount you get is really difficult. However, this has proved an effective technique for me. Whenever I made any expense, I note that down on a small notebook to track it. In fact, I have a daily budget and to save money I try to figure out the expenses I made on a day. When I look at the list, I get the entire scenario of previous expenses and accordingly plan for expense on that day.

I have been following the method since I was in seventh grade. Dad taught me the way. Actually, he followed the method in his early life. He suggested me noting down all the expenses I made in a day. At the end of the day, I sum up the expense and get a clear account if the expense is more or less than the daily allocated budget. When the expenses are more, I try to spend less on the next day to bring a balance. By the same time, I try to save a portion from the daily allocation. Since I have been following the method for around six years, it proved effective to me. And I am able to save a substantial amount of bucks from my daily fund.

This is a common method though not popular at all. It requires carrying a pencil and a notebook always. Often it is troublesome to write down the expense in a notebook and it is difficult especially when you are in the market and hands are filled with goods. Further, it is quite natural that people may forget about the expenses they made on the day when they are to count all the expenses at night. In fact, it often becomes impossible to take the note instantly in places. If the note is taken later, there are huge chances to forget some of the transactions that you have made. Hence, usually, people do not prefer to write down their expenses and use some alternatives.  

The way appears effective for me. It helps to save my money. When I note the costs and their segments, a clear sense is developed. I can track the costs and control them. As the expense segments are in written format, I get the idea about how much I need to spend on them. So, I make a division of my pocket money and save a portion which remains unused. Before making every single expense, I analyse my financial condition and cut the unnecessary costs. As a result, I can save a smart amount of money per week. This is, in fact, a boring task, I get some special benefits following it. It really helps me break down my expenses and prevents unnecessary costs. Thus I can save money and spend them later for meeting different hobbies and necessities of mine.


More Ideas to talk about this Cue Card/ Candidate Task Card topic:

Topic: Describe a method that helps you to save money.

1. Saving money is one of the obstinate jobs in the world. However, to achieve it, I have opened a bank account. I opened the account around one and a half year ago. This is a common method in my country, Thailand, to open a bank account to save money. After the end of a year, I have found that I have saved a smart amount of money and also needed not to cut any of my budgets. I had to deposit a certain amount at the bank for saving purposes. So, it was effective for me to save money.

2. I have given up watching television to save money. In fact, I use the internet instead of television viewing. I have been following the method for the last six months. This is not a common method in a state like Illinois. When I gave up television, I started saving the subscription bill. So, after six months, I have found that a notable amount of money has been saved. I used the savings to open a scheme with a local bank here. And if I continued watching television, I think I could not have saved the amount.

3. Preparing gifts for an occasion is a great way to save money. In fact, I often need to attend different social events. And I have been following the method for the last two years. It may sound weird to many to prepare gifts at home and deliver those on occasions. It is an effective method as it helps to cut the unnecessary costs. When someone makes a gift at home, the cost is reduced than buying it from a gift shop. All my expenses were half in the past year for the home-made gifts.

4. I prefer to swap books instead of buying them from a library. I love to read books and have a huge collection of different types of books. I have started exchanging books form other people or from the local library to meet my needs. This is not practised widely. In fact, people are not aware of the fact that a new book costs them more than swapping it with others. It is effective for me and saved a notable amount of money in the past two years.

5. Credit cards are traps. They allure people unnecessarily. So, I have given up using the credit card that I had from an international bank operating here in Malaysia from a few months ago. This might not be a conventional method for everyone as they cannot give up the allurement. It helped me greatly to cut my costs into halves. This way I saved a notable portion of my income that I used to pay to the bank to recharge the credit card.

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