English Reading Exercises for B2 – Globetrotters

1. Complete the email with the correct form of the verbs below.

come      get (x2)      go      pull      set      stop      take

To: frank@email.com

Hi Frank

We went to Petra yesterday. We 1) _________ off from Amman, the capital, very early in the morning. During the coach journey, we 2) _________ up at a small town for a break. We finally arrived at Petra and it was amazing! Andy 3) _________ off to climb the hills to get a better view of the city. I saw quite a few people 4) _________ around on camels, but I didn’t fancy exploring the place in this way! I 5) _________ across some local people selling beautiful handmade souvenirs and bought a few.

Andy wanted to 6) _________ over in a local hotel to 7) _________ in more of the monuments the next day, but I wanted to 8) _________ back to the capital so we could visit that too. There’s so much so see in Jordan! More news tomorrow!

Bye for now!


Show answers

1) set   2) pulled   3) went   4) getting   5) came   6) stop

7) take   8) get

2. Read the texts. Are the sentences true (T) or false (F)?

1) In the past, adventure holidays were something that only the well-off could afford to do.

2) The crocodiles at Crocosaurus swim inside a glass cage that is lowered into the water.

3) The spa in Israel is overcrowded.

4) The visitors lie on their backs on the message table.

5) You have to walk along the ‘Changong Zhando’ in order to get to the top of Mount Haushan.

6) The ‘Changong Zhando’ is through two mountains

Living dangerously!

These days, having adventure holidays is no longer for the privileged few. If you’re looking for new experiences, we’ve got some incredible suggestions for you!

ACrocosaurus Cove, Australia

If you think adventure is synonymous with wild animals, then you should try the Cage of Death at Crocosaurus Cove in Darwin, Australia, where you can swim with crocodiles for fifteen minutes! Visitors climb into a cage made of glass walls that are four centimetres thick and are then lowered into a pool where an enormous ‘croc’ (six metres long and weighing eight hundred kilos) is waiting! It’s an unforgettable experience are you’ll be telling your friends about it for years to come

BTalmei Elazar, Israel

A relaxing massage at a spa is the perfect way to chill out and escape the overcrowded tourist zones. However, this spa in northern Israel employs unusual staff members to give the massages: snakes! The owner, Ada Barack, asks clients to lie on the massage table and then drops six snakes onto their backs! Visitors say they expect the snakes to feel wet, but in fact they are cool, dry and smooth. You may feel a little tense at the beginning, but you’ll be leaving the spa feeling more relaxed than you have in a long time!

CMount Haushan, China

Seeing the sights at the top of Mount Haushan in China is not for people who don’t like heights! After climbing the hundreds of steep steps that are cut into the rock, visitors have to walk along the ‘Changong Zhando’. This is the name given to the terrifying walk along two narrow pieces of wood on the side of the mountain which are only forty centimetres wide. There is just a seven-hundred-year-od chain handrail fixed into the rock to stop you from falling over two thousand metres to your death! You’ll have lost a few kilos through exercise and worry by the time you reach the top!

Show answers

1) T   2) F   3) F   4) F   5) T   6) F

Reading Strategy

When you have to match statements or questions with different texts, you must remember that some of the topic or key words from the task may appear in several of the texts. Study each text carefully to decide which of the statements or questions matches it most closely.

3. Read the Reading Strategy. Match texts A-C wit questions 1-6 below. Each text may be matched with more than one question.

Which text mentions ___

1) a route that visitors have to take?

2) unexpected sensations?

3) the age of the facilities?

4) the chance to reduce stress?

5) protective equipment?

6) losing weight?

Show answers

1) C   2) B   3) C   4) B   5) A / B   6) C

Extra exercises


Remember that the questions in a multiple-choice task always refer to the text. Do not be tempted to choose an answer because it seems right according to your knowledge and experience. There will be specific information in the text that indicates the right answer, even when this contradicts your own idea.

1. Read the text and choose the correct answers (A, B, C, or D).

The rise of Airbnb

In 2007, design graduates, Joe Gebbie and Brian Chesky, were struggling to pay the rent for their San Francisco apartment. When they heard that there was a conference coming to town and there were no hotel rooms available, they came up with the idea of putting their living room floor up for rent. The next day, they created the website airbedandbreakfast.com where they advertised three airbeds in their home at $80 each a night, breakfast included. Only six days later, they had three guests sleeping on their floor. They knew immediately that this was the start of something big.

Being budding entrepreneurs, the pair decided to take their idea further. They enlisted Gebbie’s former flatmate, Nathan Blecharczyk, a computer science graduate, to develop their website. Their idea was to target conferences and festivals across the USA, getting local people to list their rooms and travellers to book them. The new website was completed just in time for the 2008 Democratic National Convention in Denver, at which Barack Obama was due to speak in front of 80,000 people. Within a week, they had 800 listings, an achievement which dealt in part with the shortage of hotel rooms, but did not solve their financial problems, as the site was not making any money.

The team decided that they would have to handle payment for the bookings if they were to make their venture financially viable. They began to charge three per cent to the host and between six and twelve per cent to the traveller, depending on the price of the booking. Meanwhile, investors had started showing interest in the company. By April 2009, Gebbie, Chesky and Blecharcyzk were making enough money to cover their living expenses. When larger investments began to arrive, they moved the company out of their flat into a new state-of-t-art office and hired more staff.

Airbnb hit one million bookings in January 2011, and since then it has gone from strength to strength. It hasn’t been plain sailing, however. When one host complained on her blog later that year that her house had been trashed by an Airbnb renter, the story was reported internationally in the press. The company responded by announcing that in future hosts would be insured and there would be a 24/7 manned helpline to deal with any complaints. A month later, another victim of vandalism was compensated immediately and has gone on to rent out his apartment through the website again. Thanks to quick thinking like this, the company now has over 1.5 million listings in 34,000 cities in 190 countries, and is rumoured to be worth around $20 billion.

1) Gebbie and Chesky decided to rent out floor space because

a they wanted to attract people to a conference in their area.

b they needed money to redecorate the living room.

c there weren’t any hotels near their local conference centre.

d there was a temporary need for accommodation in the city.

2) The new website designed by Nathan Blecharczyk enabled Gebbie and Chesky to

a accommodate most of the guests at a Denver convention.

b make a huge profit as soon as it was launched.

c rent out properties nationally.

d put travellers in touch with hosts abroad.

3) When booking a room with Airbnb,

a it is only the guest who pays.

b both the guest and the host have to pay.

c the guest pays a fixed percentage of the price.

d the guest and the host share the cost equally.

4) Until April 2009, Gebbie and Chesky were running the business from

a a brand new building.

b a friend’s house.

c their own home.

d a flat on Wall Street.

5) In paragraph four, the writer mentions the two acts of vandalism

a to illustrate the speed with which the company reacts to problems.

b to highlight how irresponsible some of the travellers are.

c to emphasise the different treatment that some hosts receive.

d to show how quick the media are to criticise the company.

Show answers

1) D   2) A   3) B   4) C   5) C

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