Today, we are going to explore the usage of present tenses for expressing future. In addition, I am going to introduce some advanced structures which can also be used.
The usage of present tenses is very specific, so let's have a look at it.
Is used to talk about (fixed) events which have been scheduled
Airline schedules, timetables, opening hours, departures / arrivals
The train from Brno arrives at 10:27 a.m.
The bank opens at 9:00.
The meeting is in room 9. It begins at 13:30 p.m.
a future arrangement, a plan that you have decided and organised with another person
I'm meeting George at 2 o'clock tomorrow afternoon.
He's spending Easter with his family.
What are we doing for Christmas? (the person the arrangement is with does not have to be always stated)
* I'm asking for a pay rise tomorrow.
Both be going to and present continuous can be used for intentions. However, present continuous is not usually used for intentions in the distant future.
E.g. I am going to become a CEO one day. I am becoming a CEO one day.
For more advanced students
In addition, there are other expressions which can be used to express future.
Be (just) about to - for the (very) near future
I'm about to leave this company.
Be (just) on the point / verge of - for the (very) near future
I'm just on the point/verge of giving notice.
Be due to - for formal arrangements and scheduled events
The visitors are due to arrive at the plant at 7 o'clock.
Be to do - for obligations or formal announcements
Mary is to prepare the speech and Anthony is to contact the participants about the changes in the schedule.
Commands and instructions
You are to go to the headteacher's office.
The Prime Minister is about to announce an emergency plan on energy.