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Grammar: Be about to, Future Continuous vs. Future Perfect Simple

Welcome to another episode of The Art of Business English. This week is the second part in my 2-part series looking at future tenses and how to use them correctly.

This week we are covering some more advanced uses of the future. Specifically, we will be looking at be about to, Future Continuous and Future Perfect tenses.

Understanding how to use these tenses correctly will make a huge positive impact on how well you can speak English. So, grab a pen and paper and get ready to take some notes.

Watch the episode here

Be about to


Subject +am/is/are about to + verb

I’m about to go to Rome


Subject + am/is/are not about to + verb

I am not about to go to Rome


am/is/are… + subject + verb?

Are you about to go to Rome?

We use be about to, to talk about something likely to happen in the immediate future:

I'm about to go to Rome for a conference. (I will be leaving very soon)

Note: The negative form suggests the speaker has no intention of doing something:

I'm not about to cancel my trip. (= I have no intention of cancelling my trip)

Future Continuous

We use the future continuous for:

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

    They will be taking part in a play next month.
  • Plans and arrangements for the future:

    The technology company will be launching the new product tomorrow.

Some time expressions often with the future continuous are: this time next… and this time tomorrow….

Future Perfect Simple

We use the future perfect simple to talk about:

  • Something that will be finished by or before a specific time of future: John will have finished cooking by now.
  • The length of time that an action will have lasted for at a point of time in the future: I will have had this tablet for a month on Monday and I am still getting used to it.

Some time expressions often with the future perfect simple are: by the end of… and this time tomorrow….

Final thoughts

I hope you found this episode useful, be sure to check out last week’s episode on the present continuous, future simple and be going to if you haven’t already.

Feel free to leave any comments or questions below and we will be more than happy to answer them for you.

I you are looking to improve your English grammar then take a look at my General English courses where we cover this grammar and a whole lot more. Click below for more details.

That is it from me for another episode, until next week, keep learning and take care. 

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Andrew is the CEO and founder of the Art of Business English. Besides teaching and coaching native Spanish speakers in Business English, he is also passionate about mountain biking, sailing and healthy living. When He is not working, Andrew loves to spend time with his family and friends.

Andrew Ambrosius

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