IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|31. Space tourism prospects


Match the halves of the sentences about space tourism

Dennis Anthony Tito (born August 8, 1940) is an American engineer and multimillionaire, most widely known as the first space tourist to fund his own trip into space. In mid-2001, he spent nearly eight days in orbit as a crew member of ISS EP-1, a visiting mission to the International Space Station. Tito was repeatedly criticised by NASA who considered it inappropriate for a tourist to take a ride into space, so it was Russia that granted him his dream.

Complete the strategies with the words from the box


Look at the Writing task. Answer the questions

Write about the following topic.

A new generation of entrepreneurs believe that privately funded space tourism will be the next exciting development in space exploration.

How true do you think this is?

How would space tourism affect space exploration as we know it today?

Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your own knowledge or experience.

1. How many questions do you need to cover in your answer?

2. What does each question require you to do?

3. What main ideas could you include for each question?

Read the essay and underline the key points. Write a brief plan to show the author’s main and supporting points


Answer the questions

1. Where and how does the writer link the first question in the task to the second?

2. How does the author link their main views across paragraphs?

Say which of the conclusions is the best and why


Now match the conclusions with the Teacher’s comments

I think it is very likely that space travel will become a popular activity in the private sector. There are wealthy people in the world who want to go into space, and there is the desire to take them there. All that these people need is the means to take them there.

To a certain extent, that means is already available, and some wealthy business people have already paid millions of dollars to travel into space. If they have done it, others will follow. Human beings have a natural tendency to go beyond their limits; it is this desire to «push the boundaries» that has motivated every explorer in the past.

In the same way, space is definitely where business people in the travel industry are setting their sights. In fact, newspapers say that millionaires like Richard Branson are in the process of doing test flights to the edge of space. So it is only a matter of time before space tourism becomes a reality for the population as a whole.

How that will change space exploration is an interesting question. As businesses will be concentrating on making profits and satisfying a general desire for adventure, it seems unlikely that they will have any influence on the work of space explorers. Essentially, the two activities are quite different, only by doing both would you make any link between them.

Having said that, if space tourism were to become popular, it is quite possible that it would raise extra money that could be channelled back into space exploration in the form of enhanced technology and communications systems. This, in turn, might speed up the process of space exploration.

Match the definitions with the phrases they refer to


Complete the sentences

Read three pairs of sentences and decide whether they are emphatic or neutral



We often place information at or near the beginning of a sentence to emphasise it. To do this, we have to alter the normal word order of the sentence. We can do this by:

🔹placing the complement or direct object of a verb before the subject. Compare these sentences:

We know quite a lot about the Moon and Mars. We have less information about Venus.

We know quite a lot about the Moon and Mars. Venus, we have less information about.

🔹placing the subordinate clause before the main clause. Compare these sentences:

NASA has sent a spacecraft to Mars because they want to find out if there is life there.

Because they want to find out if there is life on Mars, NASA has sent a spacecraft there.

🔹placing preposition and adverb phrases that are not part of another phrase before the subject of the sentence. Compare these sentences:

There is a lot of interest in space exploration despite its cost.

Despite its cost, there is a lot of interest in space exploration.

Cleft sentences

There are some ways of forming cleft sentences:

🔹What + subject + auxiliary verb + «is»/»was» + infinitive with/without «to»:

The Chinese sent a probe to the Moon. → What the Chinese did was to send a probe to the Moon.

People don’t think about the level of planning that is involved. → What people don’t think about is the level of planning that is involved.

🔹What + subject + main verb + «is»/»was» + infinitive with «to»:

Space explorers want to find water on other planets. → What space explorers want is to find water on other planets.

🔹It + «is»/»was» + noun/noun phrase + («that» / «which» (for things) / «who» (for people)):

The astronauts enjoyed the spacewalk most. →

It was the spacewalk that astronauts enjoyed the most.

🔹All («that») + subject + verb + «is»/»was»:

We only require political will to set up a permanent base on the Moon. →

«All (that)» we require to set up a permanent base on the Moon is political will.

Rewrite parts of the sentences so that the underlined words are emphasised

Read the task and write a plan for the essay


Write about the following topic.

Some people argue that space exploration has had more to do with national pride than international effort.

To what extent do you agree with this?

How do you think space exploration will change in the future?

Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your own knowledge or experience.

Exam tips

🔹Read the task attentively and decide which side of the argument you will take if it is stated that you need to do so.

🔹Spend one or two minutes brainstorming some ideas. Don’t forget to brainstorm for both questions.

🔹Incorporate your ideas into the plan in the note form (do not write complete sentences).

Now write a conclusion for the essay you have planned out

Useful vocabulary

  • to establish space programmes
  • the spirit of cooperation
  • to take pride in
  • to enjoy the thrilling sight
  • to get ahead of someone
  • manned spacecraft

Complete the second sentence so that it has a similar meaning to the first one. You’ll need to remember the rules about cleft sentences

Order the sentences to make logically structured paragraphs

Paragraph 1

Paragraph 2


Complete the paragraph with the appropriate sentence (A-D) for each gap


Now write your own essay in the box below

Write about the following topic.

As Earth runs out of natural resources, we have started to look to space for solutions. However, some people argue that this is the wrong thing to do, and instead, we should look for alternative solutions here on Earth.

To what extent do you agree with them?

What alternatives might there be to exploiting space for natural resources?

Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your own knowledge or experience.

Write at least 250 words.


  1. Read the topic and the questions carefully.
  2. Plan what you are going to write about.
  3. Write the essay according to your plan.
  4. Please use 🔗Grammarly to avoid spelling and some grammar mistakes.
  5. Check your writing before sending it for evaluation.

Useful vocabulary

  • to run out of
  • diminishing resources / depleting resources
  • prohibitive costs
  • to bolster economy
  • to exert severe pressure of finite resources
  • to seek replacements
  • to refrain from
  • renewable energy
  • tidal power / wave power
  • hydroelectric power

  • Space facts
  • Knowing the strategies
  • A good plan
  • A successful conclusion
  • Space phrases
  • Emphasising
  • Essay writing
  • Transformations
  • Main part
  • Complete the paragraph
  • Your essay
  • Transformations
  • Main part
  • Complete the paragraph
  • Your essay
  • Emphasising
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  3. 3. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|3. Getting a qualification
  4. 4. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|4. Career plans
  5. 5. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|Revise and Check 1
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  8. 8. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|7. The best colour
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  10. 10. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|Revise and Check 2
  11. 11. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|9. In therapy
  12. 12. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|10. Placebo effect
  13. 13. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|11. Changing life expectancy
  14. 14. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|12. Leading a healthy life
  15. 15. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|Revise and Check 3
  16. 16. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|13. Works of art
  17. 17. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|14. Aboriginal art
  18. 18. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|15. Being good at arts
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  20. 20. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|Revise and Check 4
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  22. 22. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|18. Evolution and survival
  23. 23. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|19. The Earth's interior
  24. 24. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|20. A valuable possession
  25. 25. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|Revise and Check 5
  26. 26. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|21. The role of technology
  27. 27. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|22. Film making and technology
  28. 28. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|23. The impact of IT on society
  29. 29. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|24. Number one website
  30. 30. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|Revise and Check 6
  31. 31. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|25. Environmental issues
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  33. 33. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|27. Endangered species
  34. 34. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|28. A symbol of a nation
  35. 35. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|Revise and Check 7
  36. 36. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|29. Exploring space
  37. 37. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|30. Observing the stars
  38. 38. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|31. Space tourism prospects
  39. 39. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|32. Extraterrestrial phenomena
  40. 40. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|Revise and Check 8
  41. 41. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|Exam Part 1
  42. 42. IELTS|Upper-Intermediate|Exam Part 2