Future tense with will
There are several ways of talking about the future in English. In many situations we use the present tenses: present simple and present continuous. This post looks at how we use the future tense with will.
At the end, for more advanced learners, we also look at future perfect tenses.
Also, practice your listening skills by listening to a music video with lyrics (link below)
WILL + negative
I will not I won’t
You will not you won’t
He/she/it will not he/she/it won’t
They/we will not They/we won’t
We use will to say what we think is going to happen (predictions).
I think France will win the World Cup.
I don’t think Donald Trump will ever be president.
You’re going to New Zealand? I think you’ll love it there, it’s beautiful. (Here ‘going to’ is used for personal arrangements/plans – see article on present tenses for the future )
We also use will when we have just decided to do something.
Have you lost your keys? I’ll help you look.
It’s cold in here, I’ll shut the window.
I think I’ll go for a walk.
I don’t think I’ll go for a walk, it’s raining.
We use will for offers and promises.
I’ll drive you to the station if you like.
We’ll see you tomorrow.
Tom said he’ll take us to the beach on Saturday.
Will + present simple and present continuous for the future
We use will and the present simple and continuous to talk about something in the future at a particular time.
|will (‘ll) be
will not (won’t) be
This time next week we will be in Barbados.
This time tomorrow I’ll be flying over the Atlantic on my way to New York.
I’ll be working from home next week.
I won’t be going to Tom’s party on Saturday. I’m going to York for the weekend.
The future perfect is formed will + has/have + past participle
|Will + have||past participle|
Will not (won’t) have
We use the future perfect to talk about a time in the future when we expect an event/activity to have finished. It is often used with before and by.
I will have seen Star Wars fifteen times after today.
Jane is leaving the company in May. She will have worked here for 17 years.
Future perfect continuous
The Future Perfect Continuous is formed with will + has/have + been + the present participle.
|Will + has/have been||continuous|
|will have been
‘ll have been
will not have been
will not’ve been
won’t have been
The future perfect simple and the future perfect continuous are both used to talk about something in the future that has finished. However, the future perfect continuous puts more emphasis on the duration of the event or activity.
If we wait much longer we will have been waiting nearly an hour and a half for this train.
In July, I will have been working for this company for ten years.
We sometimes use will and ‘if’ + present simple – this is also known as the first conditional (tells of events that probably will happen)
If I don’t go to York, I will go to Tom’s party on Saturday night.
I’ll go for a walk if it stops raining soon.
If we leave now, we will be home before it gets dark.
Important: ‘if’ is not in the same clause as will
Incorrect: If I will leave now
Correct: If I leave now, I will ….
Why not listen to the song ‘Will you?’ by Hazel O’Connor (with lyrics)
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