There are several different ways in English that you can talk about the future.
1. Predictions/statements of fact/decision on the spot/offers and promises
Future Simple (will/won't+infinitive) is used
1) to make predictions or hopes,
2) simple statements of fact about the future,
3) to make spontaneous decisions,
4) to make offers and promises.
Will it snow for Christmas? (prediction)
Flying car will go on sale in 2017, AeroMobil Says. (prediction)
Scientists believe that by 2033 there will be over twenty people living, working and flourishing on Mars.(prediction)
The total solar eclipse will be visible from most locations in the United States and Canada on August 21, 2017. (statement of fact in the future)
We've run out of sugar. Ok. I'll buy it in the evening. (decision on the spot)
Shall I help you to carry your bag? (offer)
OK. I'll visit this exhibition. (promise)
Note: When make an offer, you have to use shall instead of will with I and we.
Shall I pour you some tea?
Shall we go to the mall today?
2. Intentions/obvious predictions
be going to + infinitive is used
1) to talk about intentions and future plans,
2) to make predictions based on what we can see or what we know, especially when there is evidence.
I'm going to visit my grandmother next weekend. (future plans)
The government is going to send more troops to Iraq.(future plans)
My son is going to enter a medical institute when he finishes the school. (intention)
Look there are many dark clouds in the sky. It's going to rain. (prediction with evidence)
The Present Continuous tense is used to talk about arrangements. (An arrangement is a plan for the future that you have already thought about and discussed with someone else.)
I'm seeing the dentist tomorrow at 10 a.m.
Are you doing anything on Sunday evening?
What are we having for dinner tomorrow?
The construction be going to и the Present Continuous are very similar in usage. They can be replaced by each other. But the Present Continuous is used for arrangements, and be going to for intentions.
He's travelling to England next month. - Он едет в Англию в следующем месяце. (Он уже купил билеты и получил визу.)
He's going to travel to England this summer. - Он собирается поехать в Англию этим летом. (Это еще не точно.)
4. Scheduled events
The Present Simple tense is usually used to refer to future events that are scheduled (and outside of our control). Such as timetables, programs of scheduled events, working hours.
The departure from London is at 7.40 a.m., the arrival to Paris is at 11.20 a.m.
The concert begins at 8 p.m.
The shop closes at 7 p.m.
Make the exercises then click the "Check" button to check your answers.
Exercise 1. Fill in the gaps with the correct form of the Future Simple or be going to:
1) I ___________ visit my uncle in Kenya next summer. He invited me to stay at his house.
2) Oh, look we’ve run out of milk. Don’t worry I ___________ it on my way home.
3) Ken is leading in this race. He ___________ win the cup.
4) Don’t worry about your luggage. I ___________ carry it to your room.
5) The world population ___________ have water shortage in the near future.
6) _____ you ___________ visit your relative at the weekend? Yes, I ___________ come to them on a Sunday afternoon.
7) The global economy is suffering dramatically now. In this case we ___________ have a financial crisis pretty soon.
8) Oh, I forgot my purse at home. – Don’t worry, I ___________ pay for your purchase and you’ll give me the money back later.
9) What _____ you ___________ buy in the clothes shop next weekend? – I ___________ buy new jeans.
10) Our financial consultant predicts the US dollar ___________ collapse soon.
Exercise 2. Fill in the gaps with the correct form of the Future Simple or be going to:
1) Rick is very serious today because he ___________ have a talk with the boss.
2) I don’t know where are my glasses. I ___________ ask my wife may be she put them somewhere else.
3) What a nice band! I ___________ buy their album.
4) Mary and I have taken a decision. We ___________ set up our business next autumn.
5) I have an extra ticket to the film you’ve wanted to see. _____ you join me?
Exercise 3. Use the verbs in brackets in the correct future tenses: will+infinitive, be going to, the Present Simple or the Present Continuous: