Part 1 – Introduction & Interview
Q. Can you tell me your full name, please?
Answer: My full name is Katherina Orynko. This is a pretty common name in Ukraine.
Q. What shall I call you?
Answer: You can call me Katherina as my friends and family call me Katherina as well.
Q. Tell me about the countryside outside your town/city.
Answer: The countryside outside the city where I live is celestial and breathtakingly beautiful. It is so naturally elegant with lavish greeneries, small mountains, cristal clear lakes and vibrant scenic beauties. I had been there several times with my family and I believe it is one of the most beautiful places in the world. Folks from different parts of the world rush in just to enjoy the beauty of this countryside and you can forget the hustle and bustle of the busty city life once you are there.
Q. Would you like to live in the countryside or in a metropolitan city in the future? [Why?]
Answer: I would love to live in the wonderful countryside in the future once I retire from my job and have free time to enjoy the way I want. I need to be in the city to further enhance my career and ensure some amenities that only a large city can offer. However, I will like to live close to Mother Nature, and in the future, I would like to leade a simple life surrounded by beautiful nature and only the countryside can offer me that.
Q. Why do some people move to a city from a rural area? Do you know someone who did so?
Answer: I believe better job facilities are the main reason so many people migrate to city areas each year. Besides, better education, modern facilities, better treatment and entertainment facilities in large cities attract so many people to permanently settle there.
Yes, my uncle, who is seven years senior to my father, moved to a large city to complete his higher studies a long ago, and he has been living there ever since with his family. Besides, my family also moved to the city a few years ago and we have been in a city even though I spent my childhood in a rural area.
Q. Do you enjoy visiting large cities or small villages? [Why?]
Answer: I enjoy visiting small villages most of the time since it refreshes my mind and gives me a chance to stay away from the busy city life for a while. However, that does not mean I never enjoy staying at a large and multi-cultural city where I have so many things to see and do.
Part 2 – Cue Card/ Candidate Task Card
[The topic for your talk will be written on a card which the examiner will hand you. Read it carefully and then make some brief notes.]
Describe something you bought that you were not happy with.
You should say:
- what you bought
- why you were not happy with it
- what you did with it
and explain how you felt about this.
[You will have to talk about the topic for one to two minutes. You have one minute to think about what you are going to say. You can make some notes to help you if you wish.]
I am not exactly a very “wise” shopper, like many others in the “business of shopping”, but I do try to take my time before buying something in order to make sure that I get the best value for my money except, of course, on the occasion when I bought a “toaster” some time ago.
I needed a toaster badly because the one, I had in my kitchen, was getting old and about to stop working soon. So, after searching for some best deals, offered on the toasters, on the internet, I decided to head to a local kitchen appliance store nearby. Anyway, I found exactly what I was looking for, as for as its brand, size and look was concerned. Besides, the toaster was on “discount”, so I just went ahead and bought the toaster.
However, the problem was even though the toaster worked just fine for the first couple of weeks, it started to give me trouble after that. In fact, it was taking a rather long time to “toast” the loaves of bread. Sometimes, the bread slices were not even coming automatically out of the toaster in time. So, I decided to take it back to the store for an exchange, and a refund in case an exchange was not possible, but they said that they couldn’t take it back as it was sold on “discount”.
Needless to say that I was really shocked to learn that there was no refund or exchange policy for products, sold on discount, even though I was pretty sure that I wasn’t told about the policy. In fact, I felt like I was “duped” into buying some product which was way below “the standard quality”. Besides, after that incident, I was left very “wary” about buying anything which was on “discount”, no matter how “flashy” they looked. Finally, I became little mad at myself, not because I spent my hard-earned money on some “below average” product, but because I didn’t verify the information, I obtained, before purchasing it.
Part 3 – Two-way Discussion:
Let’s consider the kinds of products people buy in your country and talk about it…
Q. Are there more goods available in shops now than in the past? Why/Why not?
Answer: Yes, certainly there are a lot more goods available in shops now than in the past because people today want more comforts and luxuries in their lives. Besides, technological development today also has made it easier to produce more and more goods at an affordable cost. Therefore, it is only to be expected that companies around the world would want to take maximum advantages of these two factors, along with some other variables such as cheap labours and availability of raw materials, in order to maximize their sales and profits.
Q. Do people generally prefer to buy products from their own country or from other countries?
Answer: Well, it depends on the quality of products and their prices in most cases. Anyway, where I live, people generally prefer to buy the products, made by their own country, because they are usually more affordable. Of course, at times, people are just forced to buy some products from other countries because making them or manufacturing them in their own countries is not commercially profitable for whatever reasons they may be, or they just don’t have the required expertise and technology to make those products.
Q. What kinds of products are most affected by fashions from other countries?
Answer: In my opinion, dresses and clothes we wear, such as t-shirts, jeans, and regular shirts, footwear we use, and the eyeglasses we put on our eyes are some of the products that are most affected by fashions from other countries. Besides, cosmetics and other beauty products are also some of the products which are most affected by the fashion of other countries.
Q. Will overseas trends and fashions have more or less impact on what people buy in the future?
Answer: We are living in a “globalised world” where we have access to the fashions and trends of pretty much all the countries, courtesy to the internet technologies and satellite TV channels. Therefore, it is fair to assume that overseas trends and fashions will have more impact on what people will buy or use in the future. Besides, international commerce and business, involving exporting and importing of different products among different countries, have also increased in many folds today and will certainly keep increasing in the future, and therefore, what people would buy in the future will certainly be determined to a great extent by international trends and fashions.
Now let’s think about protecting consumers…
Q. What kind of techniques do advertisers use to persuade people to buy more?
Answer: Advertisers all over the world use different kinds of techniques to target different kinds of consumers, such as using images, animations, games, activities, humour, hype, fear, offering discounts and gifts, as well as testimonials and endorsements, so that people are persuaded to buy their products. While using these techniques, the advertisers also make sure that their adverts are posted, published and broadcast on all kinds of electronic and print media in perfect collaboration with each other in order to have the best effects. They also target consumers’ age group, sex, preference and geographical location and produce adverts accordingly to attract more customers.
Q. Who should be responsible for the quality of products: producers, shops or customers?
Answer: Well, in my humble opinion, all these parties should be responsible at some points of the products’ life cycle, from production to consumption or utilization, for the quality of products. But, of course, it all depends on what kind of products we are talking about. If it is food products, then producers should be responsible to ensure the quality when products are being made or manufactured at the plants or factories. Shops should ensure the quality by preserving them in a hygienic condition with perfect temperatures before being sold while customers also ought to keep them in the right condition before eating them. On the other hand, if they are non-food product items, producers should be responsible for their qualities while consumers should make “informed purchase” of those products.
Q. How could governments protect the rights of consumers?
Answer: First, the government can introduce practical and stringent laws in order to protect the rights of consumers. Second, governments would need to enforce the laws very strictly. Finally, they should also work in collaboration with different kinds of electronic and print media in order to raise awareness among the public so that they are able to protect their own rights by taking legal actions against the “perpetrators” and dishonest business people.