When things are not quite right, or when the quality of something you recently bought isn’t very good, just what do you do? You have to make a complaint, but can you manage to do this? Or can you listen and understand when someone else is complaining?

In this Podcast, you will learn:

(i) How to make a complaint about something you bought

(ii) To explain to another person what is wrong with the article in question


A customer wants to return some shoes she recently bought:


(zài shāng chǎng)

(at the department store)


Nín hǎo! Xū yào bāng máng me?

Hello. Can I help you?


Nín hǎo, sān tiān qián wǒ zài nín zhè er mǎi le shuāng gāo gēn xié, zhǐ chuān le yī cì xié gēn jiù diào le. Wǒ xiǎng tuì huò.

Hello, three days ago I bought a pair of high heels here. I only wore them once, and then the heels fell off. I want to return them.


Òu, wǒ néng xiān kàn yī xià me?

Can I take a look first?


Nín kàn. (dǎ kāi hé zi) zhè xié zhì liàng yě tài chà le.

See (opening the box). The quality of the shoes is so bad.


Nín zhè xié dǐ yǐ jīng bèi mó huài le. Àn guī dìng shì bù néng gěi nín tuì huò de.

The outer sole of your shoes is already worn. According to the rules, I can’t replace them for you.


Nà huàn yī shuāng yě xíng a.

I see. Exchange the shoes for another pair is fine then.


Zhēn bào qiàn, huàn yě bù xíng.

I apologise, I can’t exchange them either.


Nà wǒ zhǐ hǎo zhǎo nǐ mén jīng lǐ le.

Then I have to speak with your manager.

Chinese words and phrases mentioned in this Podcast:

需要帮忙吗:can I help you

三天前:three days ago

高跟鞋:high heels



掉了:fall off

退货:return the goods








磨坏:worn out

被:a preposition in Chinese passive tense

按规定:according to the rules/ regulation

换一双:exchange for another pair

只好:have to


Mandarin Chinese learning resources we recommend:

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Keats Chinese SchoolKeats Chinese School, which was founded in 2004, is one of the top Mandarin Chinese language schools in China, offering both one-on-one immersion Mandarin courses and small group Chinese classes. Located in Kunming, Keats develops personalised exercises and materials for students to meet their learning goals and requirements and can arrange a student visa for its 16 week course.

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Narrated by Song Liu

Our Podcast narrator, is a native Chinese speaker and is originally from Beijing, China and is keen to help you get ahead with learning. She graduated from San Francisco State University with a Master of Arts in Communication Studies. Song also hosted a Mandarin live call-in news and music radio show in the Bay Area.

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