The high price of low-cost airlines
No plans yet for the weekend? Berlin-Madrid for 19 euros! Low-cost airlines are conquering the European travel market with competitive prices, and the aeroplane is fast becoming an everyday means of transport. But this has dramatic consequences for the environment as no other form of transport has such a damaging ecological effect as the aeroplane.
The recent growth in air travel is above all due to the success of budget airlines. At first sight, they do not seem to have a worse ecological effect than conventional airlines, thanks to near-full capacity usage. The root of the problem lies in the acquisition of a new, wider type of customer through aggressive prices. A two-day shopping trip to London or a relaxing weekend in Majorca would remain a luxury that few could afford without these carriers.
So, for the moment, it is still the traveller’s individual responsibility to resist frequent flying. Those who cannot, or will not, stop flying have the possibility to compensate for the negative effects of travelling by donating money to climate protection projects. It is obvious that such voluntary initiatives will only be supported by a minority of environmentally conscious European citizens and can represent no real or credible alternative to a political solution. The coming months will show if EU states take the Kyoto protocol seriously and put a stop to cheap flights which are so costly to the environment.
1. WRITE A COMPOSITION (120 WORDS). CHOOSE ONE OF THE FOLLOWING OPTIONS. SPECIFY YOUR OPTION.
a) Where, outside Spain, would you like to go to on a short pleasure trip? Give reasons.
b) Attracting more tourists is essential for the Spanish economy. Discuss.
2. ANSWER QUESTIONS 1-2 ACCORDING TO THE INFORMATION GIVEN IN THE TEXT. USE YOUR OWN WORDS. (1 point per answer)
1 According to the writer, why are low-cost airlines so dangerous for the environment?
2 Following the author's opinion stated in the text, can travellers radically solve the environmental problem? Why?
ARE THESE STATEMENTS TRUE OR FALSE? JUSTIFY YOUR ANSWERS WITH THE PRECISE WORDS OR PHRASES FROM THE TEXT.
In one sense, low-cost airlines are more efficient than conventional ones.
Many people can now afford short pleasure trips thanks to low-cost airlines.
It is up to travellers to stop flying so frequently.
Imagine a friend of yours doesn't want to travel by plane because he is afraid to fly. Give him reasons to take a flight to Amsterdam with you.
TURN THE FOLLOWING SENTENCE INTO THE PASSIVE VOICE:
“They never gave me instructions”
REWRITE THE SENTENCE WITHOUT CHANGING ITS MEANING. BEGIN AS INDICATED:
“The ticket was too expensive for him to pay”. | “The ticket was not ...”.
FILL IN THE GAPS WITH A CORRECT FORM OF THE VERB IN BRACKETS:
“If he (BRING) .......... his passport, he would not have had trouble at the airport”.
GIVE A QUESTION FOR THE UNDERLINED WORDS:
“Peter lost his wife’s luggage at the airport two days ago”.