Flo-Joe for Cambridge English Exams

Cambridge English: Advanced

Try Flo-Joe's latest CAE Writing task

Writing Task (go to Checklist)

Writing Paper Part 2. Task Type: Letter of Complaint

Read this extract from a letter you have recently sent to a friend:

.... Oh, and by the way, don't go to Barry's Restaurant for your birthday. We went there last night - the service was awful and the food was a disaster! I complained to the head waiter but he asked me to put it in writing ...

Write your letter of complaint to the restaurant manager. (Between 220 - 260 words)

What you need to do to pass
Read our checklist first to understand what the examiner is looking for in a good answer.

Ideas for writing
Ask yourself the following questions to help you get started:

  • What was so disappointing about the service? Make a list of one or two points as in the example below:
    - Waiter spilt soup over my friend's lap
    - We had to leave before 10pm; someone else needed our table
  • What was disastrous about the food?
    - First course (soup) was lukewarm - Three out of six main courses were unavailable
  • What action did you take in the restaurant? (E.g. asked to speak to the manager) What was the outcome?
  • What do you want to achieve by writing your letter? (E.g. a letter of apology? a discount for a future visit?)
  • What tone are you going to adopt? Are you going to use flattery to get the manager's sympathy?
    Your restaurant has an excellent reputation....

Drafting and proofreading your work

You should look at your first draft of the task and decide:

  • Have you answered the question?
  • Is the layout and organisation appropriate?
  • Is the language accurate with a good range of structures?
  • Is the style appropriate and consistent?
  • Will it have a positive effect on the reader?

If the answer is 'no' to any of these questions then you will need to do some more drafting!



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