The future continuous (will be + ‘ing’ form) and the future perfect (will have + past participle) tenses are used to talk about events in the future.

Future continuous

  • Don’t ring at 8 o’clock. I’ll be watching Who Wants to be a Millionaire.
  • This time tomorrow we’ll be sitting on the beach. I can’t wait!

We use the future continuous to talk about something that will be in progress at or around a time in the future.

  • Don’t phone grandma now, she’ll be having dinner.
  • The kids are very quiet. They’ll be doing something wrong, I know it!

These sentences are not about the future but we can use the future continuous to talk about what we assume is happening at the moment.

Future Perfect

  • Do you think you will have finished it by next Thursday?
  • In 5 years time I’ll have finished university and I’ll be able to earn some money at last.

We use the future perfect to say that something will be finished by a particular time in the future.

We often use the future perfect with ‘by’ or ‘in

  • I think astronauts will have landed on Mars by the year 2020.
  • I’ll have finished in an hour and then you can use the computer.

By’ means ‘not later than a particular time’ and ‘in’ means 'within a period of time’. We don’t know exactly when something will finish.

  • I promise I’ll have done all the work by next Saturday.

We don’t know exactly when he will finish the work – maybe Thursday, maybe Friday – but definitely before Saturday. 

Exercise

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Hello Sir,
Can we say: Will you be seeing Lisa tomorrow?
Recall we do not use "see" with continuous tenses.
Would it be better to use simple tense in this case?

Thank you

Hello id347627,

When 'see' is used to describe what we do with our eyes then we generally do not use in in a continuous form. However, here 'see' means something different. It means here 'meet' and so it can be in a continuous form ('Will you be meeting...?').

There are other verbs which function in a similar way. For example, 'have' is not used generally in continuous forms when it refers to possession. However, 'have' can be used with other meanings such as 'take' ('He's having a shower') or drink ('They're having a coffee in the cafe').

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Hi sir
I wonder when we used futue perfect and future continuous we sure 100% that it will happen like I think astronauts will have landed on mars on the year 2020.
Don't phone grandma now she will be having dinner .
The last example do i'm sure that she having dinner so i told him don't phone

Hi Mema abdelhamid,

I wouldn't say it's 100% certain. You can speculate about things that seem unlikely. For example, it's fine to say 

I think astronauts will maybe have landed on Mars by the year 2020.

Future perfect describes an event in the future which will be completed by another time in the future. It does not necessarily imply certainty. Future continuous describes an event which we expect to be in progress at a particular time, but also does not imply certainty. For example:

Don't phone grandma now because there's a chance she will be having dinner.

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Thank alot sir

Hello, Sir could you please tell me what is the deference between
I'll be thinking of you when you go into hospital.
and I'll will think of you when you go into hospital.
and if i say I will be writing for you. that means it happen regularly.
Thank you, Sir

Hello sunrisereham,

A lot of these distinctions depend on the context, so it's hard to differentiate all examples.

I'll be thinking of you when you go into hospital  -  this means the person will do this repeatedly or continuously while the person is in hospital, not just once.

I'll will think of you when you go into hospital  -  this suggests that the person will think about them once, not repeatedly.

I will be writing to you  -  ('to', I think, not 'for') this really depends on the context. It could mean regularly (the most likely option), or it could mean that the action will be in progress at a certain time (less likely, but possible).

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Hello, Sir according to use the future continuous to talk about what we assume is happening at the moment.
Don’t phone grandma now, she’ll be having dinner.
The kids are very quiet. They’ll be doing something wrong, I know it!
what the difference if I say
she is having dinner
they are doing something wrong
And I have read this topic recently:
We use will (or won't) to indicate that we think a present situation is certain
You will know that John and Sheila are engaged. (= you already know)
If I say you know that John and Sheila are engaged is that correct too?
Thank you, Sir

Hello sunrisereham,

When we use 'will be [verb]ing' we are guessing based on what we expect at a given time. When we use 'are [verb]ing' we are sure.

Similarly, in your second example when you use 'will' you are saying 'this is what I expect to be the case', while when you use the present simple you are stating a fact which is certain.

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

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