TOEIC lesson 15: Vacation

Directions

In this lesson, your tutor will help you go over a type-3 question from TOEIC speaking test. Read the following question out loud and give your answer in your own words first.

Test Question

Directions: In this part of the test, you will answer three questions. For each question, begin responding immediately. No preparation time is provided. You will have 15 seconds to respond to Question 4 and 5 and 30 seconds to respond to Question 6.

Question 4

Imagine that a French marketing firm is doing research in your country. You have agreed to participate in a telephone interview about vacations.

When was the last time you went on a vacation? Where did you go?

Brainstorm

How did you do? Use the following pointers as a guideline to refine your answer.

  1. How to answer questions that start with “When was the last time…?”
    • Last summer in 2015
    • Last/this spring
    • e.g. I went on vacation this spring.
  2. How to answer questions that start with “Where did you go…?”
    • To a resort in Phuket, Thailand
    • Backpacking in Europe
    • e.g. I went to a resort in Phuket, Thailand for four days.

Directions

Let’s try another one. Read the following question out loud and give your answer in your own words first. You get 15 seconds, starting immediately.

Test Question

Directions: In this part of the test, you will answer three questions. For each question, begin responding immediately. No preparation time is provided. You will have 15 seconds to respond to Question 4 and 5 and 30 seconds to respond to Question 6.

Question 5

What do you usually do during your vacation?

Brainstorm

How did you do? Use the following pointers as a guideline to refine your answer.

  1. How to answer questions that start with “What do you usually do…?”
    • Chill at the beach
    • Go hiking
    • Go shopping
    • e.g. I like to chill at the beach and read as many book as I want.
    • e.g. I like to go hiking and enjoy nature.

Directions

Let’s try another one. Read the following question out loud and give your answer in your own words first. You get 30 seconds, starting immediately.

Test Question

Directions: In this part of the test, you will answer three questions. For each question, begin responding immediately. No preparation time is provided. You will have 15 seconds to respond to Question 4 and 5 and 30 seconds to respond to Question 6.

Question 6

Do you prefer to go on a vacation alone or in a group?

Brainstorm

How did you do? Use the following pointers as a guideline to refine your answer.

  1. How to answer ‘Do you prefer…’ questions?
    • I prefer to travel alone (=on my own) rather than travel with a group of people.
      • Enjoy more freedom
      • I can make my own itinerary
      • Set my own pace
    • I like to travel in a group
      • I enjoy the company of my friends
      • Group activities are more fun

Sample Answer

Reading great sample answers is one way to improve. Go over the sample answer with your tutor. Ask questions if you have any.

Sample Answer

Q4: I went to a beautiful resort in Phuket, Thailand, for 4 days in mid-winter of 2008. It was very exotic, and I really enjoyed the lovely weather and the white sandy beaches. Plus, the resort also provided all of the amenities I needed. More than anything, I loved the private jacuzzi.

Q5: I love outdoor activities so I usually go hiking in the mountains or diving in the ocean. I really like visiting exotic places and exploring hiking trails that I have not been to.

Q6: I prefer to go on vacation alone rather than in a group. First of all, I can make my own itinerary as well as change it spontaneously without asking anyone. Also, I can enjoy more freedom and avoid conflicts. For these reasons, I would rather go on vacation alone.

Further Study

Got more time? Here is a list of common vocab words related to the text you studied today. Go over each one with your tutor.

Additional Expressions

itinerary (n) a planned route or journey
e.g. Our itinerary included stops at several famous cathedrals.
spontaneous (adj) natural and unconstrained; unplanned
e.g. spontaneous laughter
exotic (adj) very different, strange, or unusual
e.g. She’s known for her exotic tastes.
avoid conflict (idiom) keep away from disagreement
e.g. The best way to avoid conflict is to compromise.
chill (v) become more relaxed
e.g. He thinks his parents are way too uptight and says they should just chill.
jacuzzi (n) whirlpool bath
e.g. Im looking forward to soaking in that jacuzzi.
backpacking (n/v) hiking or traveling with a backpack
e.g. We’re planning to go backpacking in a national park this summer.
outdoor activity (n) activities happen outside and not in a building
e.g. If you enjoy outdoor activities, this is the trip for you.
amenities (n) any feature that provides comfort, convenience, or pleasure
e.g. The hotel has other amenities such as a restaurant, swimming pool, and exercise room.
explore (v) travel over or through a place
e.g. I decided to go out and explore the town.
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