General Writing Task 1IELTS Writing

General Writing Sample Task 1 #72 – Complaint letter

Last Wednesday you flew from London to Vancouver. When you arrived home, you discovered that you had left your hand luggage on the plane.

Last Wednesday you flew from London to Vancouver. When you arrived home, you discovered that you had left your hand luggage on the plane..

Write a letter to the airline. In your letter, you should explain::

    • where and when you lost your bag
    • what your bag looks like
    • what its contents were

Write at least 150 words.

You do NOT need to write any addresses.


Model answer 1

Dear Sir or Madam,

I would like to report lost property. It seems that I left my hand luggage on one of your flights. Last Wednesday, November 22nd, I flew from London to Vancouver on LB118 and took my hand luggage with me. I put it in the overhead bin. Unfortunately, after the long flight, I must have forgotten it on the plane.

It’s a blue hand luggage on wheels. It has one outside pockets and is locked with a small lock. I had all of my school work and books in it. I also had a new jacket in it. I had just received it as a gift from my grandmother in London.

As you can imagine, these items are very important to me. Please let me know if you have my hand luggage and how I can get it back. Write to me at my return address or email: ana(at)

I’m looking forward to your reply.

Many thanks,

(202 words)


Model Answer 2

Dear Sir or Madam,

I am writing this letter concerning the loss of my handbag on your flight.

Last week my family and I were on a vacation and we were travelling to Vancouver from London airport. Our flight number was LV586 and my seat number was 13B. It was a long haul journey and after my boarding my next flight I realized my hand luggage had been lost. As per the travel guidelines, I had kept my backpack beneath of front seat because the overhead bin had been filled with other passenger belongings.

The luggage is a green, medium-sized Samsonite model and it is a leather bag. Since this holiday was the first time it had been used, it should appear to be in good condition. It has two sections one is for laptop and the second can be used for other personal items.

When I left my bag, it contains not only my clothes but also my work laptop, which is highly essential for me. Can I please request to take this as a priority and assist me.

I look forward to your reply and I would be happy if any swift action has taken.

Yours Sincerely,

Model Answer 3

Dear Sir or Madam,

I am writing this letter to inform you about my hand luggage, that I had left on your plane. I would like your airlines to help in retrieving my lost luggage.

I had taken a flight from London to Vancouver on last Wednesday aboard flight 5EY10. The flight flew from London at 0600 hours and arrived at Vancouver at 1900 hours. During the flight I had kept my bag under the seat and while de-boarding the flight, I collected my luggage from the overhead bins but forgot to collect my bag from under the seat, which I noticed only after I had arrived at my home.

The bag is a regular backpack from American Tourister (Blue Colour). It had a tag with my name and address attached to it, in case someone finds it they can contact me directly using that. And there is a keychain hanging form the side in the form of a shield. The contents include a HP Probook S300 laptop along with it’s charger, a powerbank and a pair of sunglasses.

I would really appreciate if my bag would be found and returned to me. If you need any more information don’t hesitate to contact me using my mail. Expecting to hear a positive reply from you soon.

Yours Faithfully,


Model Answer 4

Dear Sir/Madam,

This letter is in context with the missed bag on your plane A41. I am your long time customer and use your services at least thrice a month for my business travels.

While I was on my arrival flight to Vancouver, I missed my handbag on the plan cupboards of my business compartment A+1, last Wednesday, December 20th. This unforgettable mistake happened as I was extremely exhausted and was in hurry to reach the business meeting on time since the flight was at 5 hours delay already.

My bag is made from LV vegan leather and has a golden bracelet hanging with the letter ‘Q’ on the front zip with a lock on the main compartment. It has dark brown and yellow cross margins on the front and is on wheels.

This bag has all my work essentials and copyright documentation which is crucial information of a big firm with which your airline is partnered with. Any stranger leaking the information might bring both our firms on the highlight.

As you can imagine, these are crucial pieces of information, I would highly appreciate, if you could please reach me if you have my hand luggage, at my return address or email perhaps at [email protected].

Yours sincerely,


Model Answer 5

Dear Sir/Madam,

I am writing this letter to appraise you with a problem which is unavoidable; I am one of the final year students with elite grades throughout all the semesters in your college St. Martin’s in New Zealand. As earlier I had successfully enrolled for a language course and completed it a few weeks ago, now I got to know that course has been abandoned by the committee.

However, I had given up my part-time job for this course as it will help me to fetch a job during placement, as of now authority is not answering properly and lack a piece of conclusive information about the further updates .

I would like you to promulgate guidance for further updates, as there are many students who are in dilemma. We all do not know what to do and how to do further process. I would request you to allow us to receive the degree in this course so we can have proper knowledge of that particular subject.

Hoping for a prompt response in this matter!

Yours faithfully,


Model Answer 5

Dear Sir/Madam,

I am writing this letter to ask you to help me to find my lost hand luggage.

Last Wednesday I flew from London to Vancouver on L118 and my seat was 25A. When I came to the plane I have put my handbag on the shelf above my seats. When the plane took off I have already fallen asleep because was very tired and it was a rather busy day for me. I slept a whole journey and the stewardess woke me up when all passengers already left the plane. I have harried up to leave the plane and totally forgot about my bag.

My bag is a leather black color with two pockets. The bag, besides some usual things which necessary for the business trip, like t-shirts, socks, and other things, contains very important it is a small gift for my wife and son.

I would be very appreciated if you let me know if you have my luggage and how can I able take it back. Please call me on my mobile phone or write an email.

I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Yours faithfully,



General Training Writing Task 1 should be written in the style appropriate to the task: if it is a letter to a friend, it should be written in a friendly, informal style; if it is a letter to a company or institution, it should be written in a formal style.

The following are the basic features of formal style:

  • All verbs forms must be written in full: do not write contractions such as can’t, don’t, etc.
  • Do not use abbreviations such as info for information or ads for advertisements.
  • Avoid using the active voice and the first person singular; in a formal letter you should write: ‘A copy of the receipt will be forwarded to you as soon as possible’ instead of ‘I will send you a copy of the receipt ASAP.’
  • Avoid using informal intensifiers such as really, so, absolutely; use extremely, highly, entirely, fully instead.
  • Avoid using phrasal verbs which tend to be used in informal writing and conversation; for example, use seek a job instead of look for a job; most phrasal verbs are idiomatic in nature, that is, their meaning cannot usually be inferred from their individual parts.
  • Avoid using informal discourse markers and link words such as besides or by the way and use incidentally instead.
  • Do not use set phrases and idioms, for example, ‘I am not going to pay you a penny’ instead of ‘Your fee will not be paid.’
  • Avoid ellipsis (leaving out words), for example, leaving out the subject I in ‘Hope to hear from you soon.’

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