CAE Speaking Part 2 Cards – Set #9 (Commuting; Buying things)

CAE Speaking Part 2 sample questions with answers. If you want to print them or save in PDF, click the red icon at the bottom of this page.

Examiner: Here are your pictures, where people are shown commuting. Compare two of the pictures and say why they might have chosen to commute this way and how pleasant might the commute be?

  • Why might they have chosen to commute this way?
  • How pleasant might the commute be?

Candidate A: I’ll be talking about the two pictures at the top. While the man on the bus from the right picture is probably commuting like that out of necessity, the younger person on the mountain bike from the other photo probably does that as a conscious choice. He could be more caring about exercising, or maybe his journeys are shorter, so cycling is a viable option. It should be said however that both ways to commute are fairly sparing on the environment.

I am not entirely sure if the older man is enjoying his time on the bus – he looks rather concerned, although it might be for completely unrelated reasons. As for the cyclists, he is much more likely to find his journeys pleasant – the picture shows us a warm, sunny day, so I’m pretty sure he is enjoyed the ride he has just finished.

Short-turn question: Which picture shows the least stressful way to commute?

Candidate B: The bottom picture is the one that causes the lowest levels of stress. Other than an occasional traffic jam, nothing is likely to upset or disturb you, as you drive to your destination on your own or with company of your choice. You drive at your own pace, listen to the music you are into, you are free to roll down the window to have the stream of air caress your face.


Examiner: Here are the pictures. They show people buying things. Please compare two of the pictures and say why the people have chosen to buy at these places and how often they might be buying these things?

  • Why have the people chosen to buy at these places?
  • How often they might be buying these things?

Candidate B: I’d like to talk about the top pictures. In one of them we can see a place resembling a coffee-shop, and the people there are probably visiting this establishment for their morning cup of americano and a biscuit or something along those lines. Contrastingly, the other picture with a long line of customers in a supermarket probably came there to buy some essentials such as food and other consumer goods.

I’m pretty sure that both pictures show us situations where people frequent the respective places, albeit with different regularity. One might choose to go to the coffee shop several times a day, whereas it would make little sense to drop by the supermarket more often than every other day.

Short-turn question: Which picture shows the people who are likely to shop at the same place again?

Candidate A: It’s the bottom picture, I think. This street fruit vendor seems to know these women so it’s a common courtesy to buy things from people you know, as everybody wins there – the client gets a regular’s discount, while the proprietor has more clientele. So yeah, I believe they are very likely to shop there again.
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