If the topic is traveling in part one of your IELTS Speaking test, then your examiner might ask, “Have you done much traveling?”
Let’s look at how to give a great band-seven answer to this question, including 10 good examples (go straight to the answers here).
Answer Using Present Perfect
If the examiner asks you any ‘have you…?’ questions, then they want to know if you can use the present perfect tense (and perhaps also the past tense).
The best way to answer a ‘have you…?” question is to start by saying ‘yes, I have’ or ‘no, I haven’t.’ Then you need to say a sentence or two more.
What You Can Talk About
After saying ‘yes, I have’ or ‘no, I haven’t,’ you could say:
- Where you’ve traveled to before
- When you went there
- What you did there
- Where you’ve been recently
- Why you like traveling (or don’t like it)
- Where you’d like to go in future
- Who you’ve traveled with
- How you like to travel (car, plane, train…)
- What kind of places you like to visit (cities, beaches, mountains…)
- Things you like to do when you travel
- Anything else that comes to mind
Common Mistake: Using Finished Times With Present Perfect
Remember that we can’t use finished times with present perfect. So you can’t say:
‘I’ve been to Germany two times last year.’
‘Last year’ is a finished time. For finished times, you should use past tense. So instead, you could say:
‘I’ve been to Germany. I went there two times last year.’
You can only use unfinished times with present perfect. For example:
‘I’ve been to Germany two times this year.’
‘This year’ is an unfinished time; it’s continuing until now.
Use the Three-Step YES Method
In part one, answer as quickly and fluently as you can, without hesitating.
Practice answering part-one questions quickly, speaking for 10 or 20 seconds, then stopping with confidence.
You can use the three-step YES Method to help with your part-one answers. Just say:
- Your answer (‘yes, I have’ or ‘no, I haven’t)
- Explain your answer, or add a few more details
- Stop talking (stop confidently, and wait for the next question)
Let’s take a look at some good example answers. See if you can borrow a few ideas for your own answer.
‘Yes, I Have’ Answers
1. Yes, I have. I’ve visited most of the big cities and tourist attractions around my country and I’ve been abroad a few times as well.
2. Yes, I have. I’ve always loved traveling because it makes me feel so free and adventurous. I have many good memories from traveling.
3. Yes, I have done a lot of traveling. I often go on trips with my family. Last year we traveled to Egypt to see the Pyramids.
4. Yes, I have traveled quite a lot. I’m a big fan of road trips. I love to get in my car with a couple of friends and drive somewhere we’ve never been before.
5. Yes, I have. I enjoy traveling to countries in South East Asia because the food there is amazing and the people are super friendly.
‘No, I Haven’t’ Answers
6. No, I haven’t. I like traveling, but I’m only a student so I can’t afford to travel much. I’d like to travel a lot more in future.
7. No, I’m afraid I haven’t traveled much. I’m so busy with my job that I don’t have time for trips abroad.
8. No, I haven’t. To be honest, I’m not really interested in traveling. I think it’s too expensive and dangerous. I’d rather stay at home.
9. No, I haven’t. But I plan to travel to America to live and study at university. That’s why I’m doing this IELTS test.
10. No, I haven’t. I don’t need to travel because my city is such an exciting place to live. I have all my friends here and so many things to do. So I don’t need to travel at all.
Your Turn To Try
Now, turn on your voice recorder and ask out loud, “Have you done much traveling?”
Answer as quickly as you can, without hesitation.
When you’ve finished, listen to your answer, then repeat the process. Try to improve a little each time.
This is a wonderful way to prepare for a band-seven score in part one of your IELTS Speaking test.