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Time you were not allowed to use your mobile phone

IELTS Cue Card/ Candidate Task Card 349 with Model Answer:

Describe a time you were not allowed to use your mobile phone.

You should say:
  • when and where it was
  • why you were not allowed to use your phone
  • what you wanted to use your phone for
and explain how you felt about not being able to use your phone.

[You will have to talk about the topic for one to two minutes. You have one minute to think about what you're going to say. You can make some notes to help you if you wish.]


Model Answer 1:
In today’s world, the idea of living without a mobile phone would certainly seem to be an absurd one to most of the people, who are used to rely on these little communication devices on a regular basis. But, today, I would like to talk about a time when I was not allowed to use my mobile phone.

It was about a couple of years ago, when one of my close friends was seriously injured in an accident, and I needed to see him in a hospital. When I heard the news about the accident, I was working in my office. So, it wasn’t really possible for me to know exactly how serious the accident was until and after I had arrived in the hospital. Anyway, when I arrived at the hospital, I found out that the accident was rather serious. In fact, I was told that the doctor was treating my friend in an emergency room. So, I just decided to wait outside of the emergency room with a few other family members of my injured friend, in case if they needed me. My friend had lost a significant amount of blood, and I was also informed that he might have needed some blood later on. Anyway, while waiting for my friend, I almost forgot to inform my family that I would be late to return home as I was visiting my friend at a hospital.  But, when I wanted to call them, I found out that there was no mobile phone network. I was also informed that the hospital authority wanted to stop the use of a mobile phone inside the hospital building in order to reduce unwanted noise.

Anyway, I was a bit disappointed initially after failing to call my family, but later on, I actually became glad of the fact that hospital authority was actually trying to ensure a better treatment environment for all its patients. Besides, I also realized that making a phone call from hospital premises should never be a priority for the visitors if they really wish well for their friends and families.




Sample Answer 2:
Recently, I went to attend a written test for a position in a multinational company. There I was not allowed to use my mobile phone. Though it was not necessary to ban the use of a mobile phone in the exam hall, the authority did not take any risk of breaching the security. The test was held in the regional branch of the company here in Alice Spring in Australia. This is a beautiful candidate task card and I am glad indeed to have this card in my share. I will describe the event below.

Some of the applicants had tried to cheat using mobile phones during the exam. It was a shocking matter for everyone. In fact, cheating in such a level was entirely unexpected from the authority. So, to prevent such situations, the authority disallowed using or carrying phones during the written tests. Consequently, I was unable to use my phone.

I needed to perform some calculations. The math on the question paper was complex and was given to assess candidates’ mathematical ability. And without using a calculator, this was impossible to perform the math. There were some complicated equations that required a calculator. At present, all the mobile phones come with a calculator and the smartphone have some more feature with the calculator. So, I needed to use the phone to have the calculation done automatically.

I was frustrated and irritated. In fact, I was being punished for the crime of some other people. But I had nothing to do. I did the calculation manually and that took much time for me. Luckily, I was able to do complete the calculation and answering the math was a must for each of the applicants. I could have saved my time if I could use my mobile phone.




Idea generation for this Cue Card topic:

"Describe a time you were not allowed to use your mobile phone." 

Here are some other hints for this cue card task that would be helpful for the candidates to answer this question in a different way.

1. While driving my car to my office, I was not allowed to use my mobile phone. In fact, the driving law in my state strictly forbids the driver to refrain from using mobile phones while driving a motor vehicle.

2. My intimate friend's father died suddenly of cardiac arrests and I attended the funeral. A large sign was placed inside the church to switch off the mobile phone during the funeral. So, I had to switch the phone off for the rest of the funeral.

3. I was sent to an important workshop from my office that continued for four hours at a stretch. Using a mobile phone was prohibited there, and thus I was unable to use the phone at the workshop venue.

4. I recently enjoyed a movie with my fiancé at a theatre but I could not use the mobile phone. In fact, the theatre authority wanted to reduce disturbance during the show and asked everyone either to switch off the phone or to use silent mode.

5. I work for a local restaurant as a part-time employee and my employer asked me to switch off my mobile phone at the job.

6. I attended a social welfare meeting organised by our local community and all participants were requested to turn off their mobile phone or at least enable the silent mode.

7. Recently, I went to visit a relative in the hospital and I turned off my cell phone as a large notice forbid anyone to use their mobile phone inside the hospital.

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