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Sample Speaking Test Part 3 – Shopping at markets


Discussion topics:
Shopping at markets


Example questions:

  • Do people in your country enjoy going to open-air markets that sell things like food or clothes or old objects? Which type of market is more popular? Why?
  • Do you think markets are more suitable places for selling certain types of things? Which ones? Why do you think this is?
  • Do you think young people feel the same about shopping at markets as older people? Why is that?


No not, really. I think that’s mainly because of the weather. Living in a cold country we like to do most of our shopping indoors in a supermarket or shopping center normally. There are some specialized markets that exist, but even they’re usually only active during the summer months or they’re housed indoors in a warehouse or other large building during the winter if they’re very popular.

I think nowadays small local markets are disappearing for many different reasons. I can remember my parents selling junk and other household things they didn’t want anymore at a garage sale, but I know people now who do the same thing but on eBay and other internet sites like that. I think internet auction sites are more popular than traditional markets especially for young people.

Yes, markets can be a good option depending on the kind of items you want to sell. I think that if you’re selling food then it’s a good idea to try and sell it at a local market if you can. After all, it’s a little difficult to taste food on an internet auction site, so it’s much easier at a market. A lot has to do with the local culture, I think produce markets are more popular in agricultural areas of the country, but not so common in cities and town nowadays. I suppose another item might be furniture which is handmade or antique, you know, the type made by local crafstmen, that still seems to be popular at some markets.

No, I don’t. Most young people aren’t really interested in going to markets and places like that. Most of my friends buy things on the internet and rarely go shopping like our parents used to. It’s just so much easier, maybe it’s not as interesting as meeting people in a market, but it’s certainly more convenient and it doesn’t depend on the weather, and you can also get a better choice when you look on the internet. I think the future of traditional markets might be somewhat limited to certain items which are very specialized.


Discussion topics:
Shopping in General


Example questions:

  • What do you think are the advantages of buying things from shops rather than markets?
  • How does advertising influence what people choose to buy? Is this true for everyone?
  • Do you think that any recent changes in the way people live have affected general shopping habits? Why is this?


Well, the obvious one is the shop is a permanent location while the market is not. I guess it depends on what you’re buying though, but for example, would you buy domestic appliances from a market? Imagine you had a problem with it and never saw the person who sold it to you again. Shops don’t depend on the weather either, I mean if it was raining I definitely wouldn’t go strolling round a market looking for things to buy. With a shop, that’s not really a problem. I suppose you usually get a better selection of goods in a shop as well, because they can carry more stock.

I think advertising only influences a certain group of people, normally younger people who are easily influenced. Older people don’t seem to find advertising as interesting. They seem to buy things based on their needs rather than some smart and catchy marketing campaign. The big brand names are expert at trying to influence young people with their slick advertisements and publicity and they are always trying to convince us that we need to have the newest and latest of everything, even if the item we have at the moment is perfectly good. But that’s the economy now isn’t it? If we stop consuming, we will have serious economic problems.

Absolutely, this generation and the internet is changing the game totally. Almost half the population in this country have a smartphone or other mobile device now and most of them buy things on the internet. We can already see the decline of business in the high street in many cities.

Lots of small shops have already gone out of business and even some large chain stores that couldn’t compete with online shopping.

It was the same some years ago when we first started to see the development of out-of-town hypermarkets, and now they are beginning to suffer too thanks to the amount of online shopping. Let’s face it, most people are quire lazy. If you give them options they’ll usually choose the one which means not having to leave the house or get in the car and travel – that’s the internet. It’s hard to beat it, and yes, it’s changed shopping habits totally.

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