Other ways to express the future Posted by carol on Jun 30, 2020 in English Language, English Vocabulary
Hey there! How are you guys doing this week? It is hard to believe we are already halfway through 2020. But there is still a lot ahead of us and the upcoming weeks will be decisive in many ways, as we witness the unfolding of this year’s defining events, such as a sanitary crisis, racial tensions, political turmoil and economic recession. Sure, times are profoundly uncertain. But we, as humans, cannot help but think about the future and start predicting what life might be like. As you know, in English, the most conventional ways to convey the future tense is by using either will or be going to. There are, of course, other possibilities to indicate that something is going to happen. Whether you are already making plans, daydreaming or would rather simply wait a while to check how the situation plays out wherever you are, today’s post will cover other ways to express the future so you can discuss the months to come. Shall we?
BE ABOUT TO + INFINITIVE
to indicate something will happen in the near future
- The meeting is about to start any minute, hurry up!
- The National Research Center is about to begin its first trials for a vaccine on humans in the coming weeks
- I was about to call you when I got your text, what a coincidence!
BE LIKELY TO + INFINITIVE
to indicate the probability of something happening
- A second wave of contagion is likely to happen if restrictions are lifted too soon
- Scientists are not likely to come up with a vaccine this year
- As part of the risk group, the elderly are more likely to get infected
*note: you can use UNLIKELY when something will probably not happen
BE ON THE BRINK/ VERGE/ POINT OF
to indicate that something will happen very soon
- Spain’s economy is now on the verge of bankruptcy
- Front-line health workers claim that hospitals are on the brink of collapse
- Kate was on the point of moving abroad when the borders closed and she had to postpone
BE BOUND TO + INFINITIVE
to indicate that something will most certainly happen in the future, high possibility
- Reopening schools and economic activities like bars and restaurants is bound to be a slow, gradual process
- Experts claim that the pandemics is bound to impact tourism in the short term
- The number of infected people is bound to increase if restrictions are lifted too early
BE DUE TO + INFINITIVE
to indicate that something is planned, scheduled or expected to happen
- Austria is due to reopen its borders with Germany next week
- The Minister of Health is due to announce his decision at a press conference tomorrow
- Apple’s latest iPhone is due to be launched by the end of the month
BE TO + INFINITIVE
to indicate official instructions and orders
- According to the Prime Minister, the government is to pass new regulations soon
- The board decided that employees are not to leave home office until further notice
- Foreigners are not to enter the country without valid justification
I hope you enjoyed these alternatives to discussing the future in English. And remember, the important thing is to stay calm and remain positive!
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