Model answers for Cambridge IELTS Book 17 Task 2 Essays General Test. Learn from my model answers so that you can get the score you need. Written by Mike Wattie, ex-IELTS examiner and author.

Engaging a personalised instructor for exercise instead of participating in organised sport or fitness is becoming increasingly common in various nations. This essay will elaborate on explanations for this phenomenon and why it is considered as being more beneficial.

In some countries, more and more people are hiring a personal fitness trainer, rather than playing sports or doing exercise classes.
What are the reasons for this?
Is this a positive or a negative development?

There are several motives that encourage people to appoint an individual exercise coach. The first is that they are reluctant to join group exercise options. To explain, the younger generation has mostly pursued sedentary hobbies; therefore, they have very limited base fitness and struggle with obesity and lack of coordination which they feel would be exposed in front of their peers. However, a dedicated professional to assist them achieve their initial goals is a less intrusive first step. In addition, successful adults try and emulate their financial accomplishments in all aspects of their life, so do not hesitate to spend elaborately on an expert trainer that allows them to achieve to their specific fitness goals.

Due to the resultant time savings and improved outcomes, increasing reliance on personal trainers is a constructive progression.  In terms of efficiency, contemporary employees work long, unpredictable hours, so finding time to attend organised activities is challenging. Furthermore, the scheduled events tend to be more time consuming, whereas a short but intensive personalised workout at a convenient location could bear improved results. For example, a group fitness class is often an hour long, whereas a targeted training session might be half that length.  In the same vein, paying an experienced professional to guide their workout to ensure goals are achieved while avoiding injury, will add motivation to an individuals’ fitness journey and improve results.

To conclude, the trend of paying for a personal exercise instructor is a result of people’s lack of self-esteem, as well as their ability to afford to focus on their fitness. This is considered a positive tendency overall as it frees up valuable time and results in improved outcomes. (317)

In the future, people may no longer be able to pay for things in shops using cash. All payments may have to be made by card or using phones.
Do you think this will happen one day?
Why do you think some people might not be happy to give up using cash?

A potential future outcome is that consumers may be forced to make in-store purchases solely using electronic options such as bankcards or mobile phone applications, with cash completely eliminated. I believe that this will occur sooner rather than later, and that there will be an element of society who will be disgruntled by this change.

There are several reasons why I consider cash will disappear from day-to-day physical transactions. The main one is that there have already been moves to abolish it for health reasons. In many parts of the world cash transactions were frowned upon during the COVID-19 pandemic, so much so that large corporations such as Starbucks now operate stores where cash is not accepted. Their reasoning is notes and coins are notoriously filthy and can carry diseases which are easily transferred when they are physically passed over. Moreover, cash is not as secure or convenient as electronic options. It is a lot easier for a nefarious individual to steal cash from a busy convenience store, than it is for them to hack into increasingly secure online transactions.

However, some members of the public will not appreciate this change. The elderly often relies on physical currency as it is a comforting option which avoids technology which they find confounding. If they are forced to rely on non-cash options, they will struggle to embrace the alternatives, making them less independent and causing unnecessary stress. In addition, those operating on the fringes of society will also be discontented by cashless transactions. This could include homeless people with no fixed abode to be able to operate bank accounts from, to money launderers who rely on cash transactions to evade detection by the authorities.

In conclusion, I concede that electronic-based transactions will supplant cash in the coming years due to health concerns and improved electronic security. Nevertheless, this tendency will fail to impress groups such as the elderly, indigent and criminals. (319)

It is better to buy just a few expensive clothes, rather than lots of cheaper clothes.
Do you agree or disagree?

A common belief is that it is preferable to purchase a smaller wardrobe of higher-priced apparel, in lieu of owning a large range of less expensive clothing. I strongly agree with this concept as pricey outfits last longer and give a much better first impression.

The major justification for my view that a more streamlined wardrobe of highly-priced items is desirable is they have greater longevity due to the higher quality materials and workmanship used. For people who lack the time or impetus to shop on a regular basis, this allows them to avoid time-consuming trips to retail outlets. Furthermore, as the clothing does not need to be replaced as often, there is far less environmental impact. The apparel industry is a major polluter, with manufacturers using dyes and chemical additives which pollute waterways, not to mention air pollution resulting from transport to market. For example, the vast majority of clothing for the international brand Zara is manufactured Asia, whereas the main customer base is in Europe or the USA.

Further support for my agreement that owning fewer expensive clothes is preferable is that it can lead to better opportunities. If someone wears designer clothing that is suitably tailored for their figure, they will be more likely to create a favourable impression on industry peers and leaders, leading to more potential for collaboration. Additionally, high-quality garments are likely to be far more attractive to potential suitors. This could improve someone’s chances of finding a suitable romantic partner.

In conclusion, I completely agree that a smaller range of expensive garments is preferable to a large wardrobe of lower quality items because they have an extended usable life and improve the wearer’s desirability. Therefore, I recommend people should focus on purchasing high quality clothing which can be used for a variety of occasions. (305)

Some people think that it’s a good idea to socialize with work colleagues during evenings and weekends. Other people think it’s important to keep working life completely separate from social life.
Discuss both these views and give your own opinion.

Opinions vary as to whether spending leisure time with co-workers is desirable, or instead individuals should create a barrier between their professional and personal lives. This essay will elaborate on both sides of this debate before explaining why I agree with the former.

On the one hand, advocates believe relaxing with their associates outside of work is beneficial. Their main justification is that teamwork often relies on mutual trust and understanding, which can be better developed in casual settings. For example, in a fast-paced call-centre environment workers have limited opportunity to get to know their co-workers deeply, but they could achieve this over a meal after work, strengthening their understanding and allowing them to better support each other. Additionally, conflict can be avoided if colleagues are able to let off some steam after work in a more informal setting. Any disagreements that have been brewing during the week could be easily resolved over a meal or beverage.

On the other hand, opponents believe separating one’s business and personal time is more significant. They consider that family relationships are vital, and significant time is already spent focused on their career. To illustrate, accounting for a nominal 40-hour work week plus commuting time results in limited waking hours remaining to devote to loved ones. If some of this precious time is spent socialising with colleagues, family bonds may be weakened. Moreover, many workplaces are strictly hierarchical which could result in discomfort for those in lower positions of authority when faced with inappropriate behaviour, such as drunkenness, in social situations.

In conclusion, although I concede there are merits in both arguments, I tend to support socialising outside of work with colleagues. This is because I believe it will ultimately benefit employees through improved teamwork and reduced conflict, making their workdays more enjoyable. I also recommend that it is important to include families in some of these social activities, achieving family bonding concurrently. (319)

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