Transport and travel
Whether you are abroad or traveling domestically, there are multiple transportation options to choose from. Here are a few means of transport and travel available:
- Monorails and tramways
- Light rail
- Subways / The Underground / The Tube (London) / The Metro
- Taxi – tuku – rickshaw – cab – über
- Cable cars
- Rented Bikes
- Ferries, ships, boats
- Planes/ jets/ helicopters
(How did you get there? I was on foot. I walked here.)
- Scooter / moped / motorbike
- Boat (own)
- Rollerblades / skateboard
Now that you identified the different means of transport / travel, notice the grammar and prepositions we can use to talk about different kinds of transport.
- I took / got a boat / bus / ferry / train
- She caught the Subway / Underground/tube / train
When actually boarding a vehicle we can say:
- She got into her car / taxi
- I got on the bus / train / plane
Generally speaking we can use travel by
- She was lucky enough to travel by helicopter
- I like to travel by train, taxi, car, plane….
When a means or transport is leaving we can say:
- The plane took off (and later landed) / departed
- The train / coach left / departed at 6 p.m.
IELTS SPEAKING QUESTIONS ABOUT TRANSPORT
There are many possible questions that could occur in the IELTS speaking test related to the topic of transport. Let’s look at a few of them and I will write some sample answers for you, with highlighted words and phrases. The following three questions are from part one of the speaking test.
Q: How did you get here today?
A: I drove here from my home. It’s actually my parents’ car, but they lent it to me for the day. (to lend) | Bank loan – money borrowed from the bank.
A: I took the train. Then, I walked.
Q: Do you ever use public transportation?
A: Yes, I sometimes take the bus or subway, but it depends where I’m going. I passed my driving test a few years ago so when I can borrow a car, I will drive, but otherwise I rely on public transport. (to borrow)
Q: Is there a lot of traffic congestion in your hometown?
Getting Around Hometown
Here are some nice phrases you can use to answer this question
- I tend to move around by bus, it’s really cheap and convenient.
- I typically walk everywhere. I live in a small city so it’s easy to get around on foot.
- I don’t like driving because there are too many cars.
- It’s congested = too many cars = a lot of traffic jams
- There many cars in the rush hour (= peak time people go to work)
- Cars are bumper to bumper (=close together and so cannot move)
- Infrastructure (n. / uncountable) = roads, buildings, bridges
- It’s a nightmare = a terrible thing
- Pedestrian area (a pedestrian is a person who walks)
- Walking is so easy and a pleasure because we have so many pedestrian areas.
- My father is a backseat driver = someone who doesn’t drive, but tells the drive how to drive!
- At last, I am in the driver’s seat = to be in control
- It’s already 6 o’clock and time we hit the road = to leave / start a journey
I have itchy feet = I love traveling / I want to travel
Delays When Traveling
- I get (on) the train to the suburbs = take / travel by train
- I was held up in traffic and missed the flight
- I missed the plane = I was late and didn’t catch it (missed the train, not lost)
- It was a disaster = a terrible thing
- I got my money back in the end. They re my ticket.
- I arrived in the nick of time.
- We made it to the airport on time by the skin of our teeth = just managed to do it (often meeting a deadline)
- There was a heavy traffic jam
The following both mean arrive well before the necessary time. Learn how to talk about time here.
- Arrive in plenty of time
- Arrive with time to spare