If there aren't any tickets

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mimi2

Senior Member
vietnam vietnamese
Hi,
Which sentence could I use?
1. If there aren’t any tickets left when we reach the front of the queue, we will wait all the time for nothing.
2. If there aren’t any tickets left when we reach the front of the queue, we will be waiting all the time for nothing.
3. If there aren’t any tickets left when we reach the front of the queue, we will have been waiting all the time for nothing.
Thanks a lot.
 
  • mimi2

    Senior Member
    vietnam vietnamese
    Hi, cropje_njr.
    The first two are not correct?
    Could you explain a little about the third?
    Thanks.
     

    cropje_jnr

    Senior Member
    English - Australia
    Sure :).

    we will wait all the time for nothing.
    The future tense makes sense, but means a different thing to what I sense you're trying to express. It means you will wait needlessly if there are no tickets left -- meaning you will only wait once you find out there are no more tickets!

    we will be waiting all the time for nothing.
    The present progressive can also work. It would mean that both the queueing and the discovery that there are no more tickets will take place a while into the future. For instance, you may say this if you are theorising about these events while you are at home, before you have even left for the train station, airport, etc. (or wherever these events occur). Note that even if this were the case, you would most likely still use the third suggestion below.

    we will have been waiting all the time for nothing.
    This is the most correct, tense, in my opinion, because it implies (as I believe you intend to) that you were unaware of the risk of running out of tickets whilst in the queue. However, as I noted above, "we will have waited" would be simpler and more commonly-heard by native speakers.
     

    Dimcl

    Senior Member
    Canadian English
    Hi,
    Which sentence could I use?
    1. If there aren’t any tickets left when we reach the front of the queue, we will wait all the time for nothing.
    2. If there aren’t any tickets left when we reach the front of the queue, we will be waiting all the time for nothing.
    3. If there aren’t any tickets left when we reach the front of the queue, we will have been waiting all the time for nothing.
    Thanks a lot.
    The proper phrase would be:

    "If there aren't any tickets left when we reach the front of the queue, we will have waited all this time for nothing"
     
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