Future continuous and future perfect

Do you know how to use phrases like I'll be studying or I'll have finished? Test what you know with interactive exercises and read the explanation to help you.

Look at these examples to see how the future continuous and future perfect are used.

In three years' time, I'll be studying medicine.
In five years' time, I'll have finished studying medicine.

Try this exercise to test your grammar.

Grammar test 1

Future continuous and future perfect: Grammar test 1

Read the explanation to learn more.

Grammar explanation

Future continuous

We can use the future continuous (will/won't be + -ing form) to talk about future actions that: 

  • will be in progress at a specific time in the future:

When you come out of school tomorrow, I'll be boarding a plane.
Try to call before 8 o'clock. After that, we'll be watching the match.
You can visit us during the first week of July. I won't be working then.

  • we see as new, different or temporary:

Today we're taking the bus but next week we'll be taking the train.
He'll be staying with his parents for several months while his father is in recovery.
Will you be starting work earlier with your new job?

Future perfect

We use the future perfect simple (will/won't have + past participle) to talk about something that will be completed before a specific time in the future.

The guests are coming at 8 p.m. I'll have finished cooking by then.
On 9 October we'll have been married for 50 years.
Will you have gone to bed when I get back?

We can use phrases like by or by the time (meaning 'at some point before') and in or in a day's time / in two months' time / in five years' time etc. (meaning 'at the end of this period') to give the time period in which the action will be completed.

I won't have written all the reports by next week.
By the time we arrive, the kids will have gone to bed.
I'll have finished in an hour and then we can watch a film.
In three years' time, I'll have graduated from university.

Do this exercise to test your grammar again.

Grammar test 2

Future continuous and future perfect: Grammar test 2

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Average: 2.4 (5 votes)

Submitted by bridge23d on Fri, 07/10/2022 - 06:11

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Hi Sir, could you please help me to clarify the following sentence;
"Let's call Rory. He will have arrived by now." As in this sentence, we are talking about the present situation. Can't we use here, "Let's call Rory. He would have arrived by now."

Hello bridge23d,

In sentences like this we use will have when we consider the action/situation likely or sure, and we use would have when we consider it more unlikely. I think will have is the better choice here as the speaker would not call Rory if the speaker believed he had not arrived yet!

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

I think that either "He must have arrived." or "He might have arrived." are even more approptiate here, given the hint that the speaker might be quite sure about the possibility of Rory answering the call.

Submitted by AboWasel on Tue, 02/08/2022 - 23:55

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Hello team.
Which sentence is correct?
She is working on a new project.
She has been working on a new project.
And please tell me the difference in meaning.

Hi AboWasel,

Both sentences are correct. In sentence 1 (present continuous), the time is now. It means that she's doing it now, at the present moment. In sentence 2 (present perfect continuous), the time is recently. She may or may not be doing it right now (i.e. the work may or may not continue to the present moment - both meanings are possible).

I hope that helps!

Jonathan

The LearnEnglish Team

Thank you
Another question ,please. what is the difference in meaning in these 2 examples?
She was woking here for 3 months.
She had been working here for 3 months.

Hello AboWasel,

The second one refers to another point in time in the past. This point in time in the past was probably explained in the previous sentences, or will become clear in the sentences after this one.

The first one is more general in that it doesn't refer to another period of time; it focuses on that period of three months.

I'd suggest you have a look at our Past continuous and Past perfect pages.

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by Sokhom on Sun, 05/06/2022 - 14:07

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Hello, Sir!
I was wondering what the differences between the sentences:
1. The bridge will be completed by May. (Is it a prediction?)
2. The bridge will be being completed by May. (is it a plan or a prediction? If prediction, is it less certain than simple future?)
3. The bridge will have been completed by May. (A completed action before a particular time in the future)
Best Wishes!

Hello Sokhom,

Sentences 1 and 3 mean the same thing -- that before May arrives, the bridge will be completed -- but 3 emphasises the completion more. Perhaps another person has said it won't be done by May and so the speaker uses the future perfect to insist, for example.

I'm afraid sentence 2 isn't really correct. The verb is formed correctly, but it doesn't make sense to use a continuous form with 'by' in this way.

Hope that helps.

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

You explanation is really a big help for me, Sir.
1. The bridge is being completed by May. (future plan)
2. The bridge will be being completed by May.
I wanted to know if we can use "will be +v-ing" to express future plan.
And I wanted to know if we can use "will be +v-ing to express "prediction".
Best Wishes!