Will + infinitive – Simple Future in English Grammar

Introduction

The future tense with will, also simple future, is one way of talking about future events in the English language. We can use the simple future with will to express a spontaneous decision, a prediction or a future event that cannot be altered. It is formed with the auxiliary verb will and the infinitive or base form of the main verb.

Learn how to conjugate the future tense with will and when to use it with Lingolia’s online grammar lesson. In the exercises, you can practise the will future tense.

Example

  • Oh, what a mess in here! Come on, I’ll help you sort the files.
  • It’s okay, I’ll do it tomorrow. It’ll rain tomorrow anyway.
  • You won’t finish it in just one day.
  • If I need help, I will tell you.
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Usage

We can use the simple future tense with will to express:

  • a spontaneous decision
    Example:
    Come on, I will help you sort the files.
  • an opinion, hope, uncertainty, or assumption regarding the future
    Example:
    You won’t finish it in just one day.
    It will rain tomorrow anyway.
  • a promise
    Example:
    I will do it tomorrow.
  • the first conditional
    Example:
    If I need help, I will tell you.

Conjugation of English Future Tense with Will

The conjugation of the future simple with will is that same for all forms.We simply follow the rule: will + infinitve. The table below provides an overview of the positive, negative and interrogative conjugation of the English future simple tense.

positivenegativequestion
all forms are the same I will speak I will not speak Will I speak?

Contractions

Contractions are a combination of certain pronouns, verbs and the word not. They are mostly used in spoken and informal written English. The table below provides an overview of contractions in the future tense using the verb will.

long formcontractionexample
will …’ll they’ll
will not …’ll not/… won’t I’ll not/I won’t

Negated Contractions

In written English, we usually use contractions after pronouns, but not after nouns.

Example:
He’ll not finish it in just one day.
(but not: My colleague’ll/Phil’ll not finish it in just one day.)

Negated contractions, which are a combination of an auxiliary verb and not, can always be used.

Example:
He won’t finish it in just one day.
My colleague/Phil won’t finish it in just one day.

Signal Words

Signal words help us to recognise the tense being used in a sentence. Below is a list of signal words for the simple future tense:

  • I think
  • probably
  • perhaps