present simple expressing future

Discussion in 'English Only' started by aalla, Feb 13, 2015.

  1. aalla Member

    From a grammar book: Present simple is used to talk about scheduled, timetabled or fixed events. The match starts at 7:30 tomorrow evening. The ferry leaves at noon.

    Would it sound weird if I used future simple in cases like this? The ferry will leave at noon ... does it mean the same or is there a difference? Thanks. :)
  2. Florentia52

    Florentia52 Modwoman in the attic

    English - United States
    Are you talking about the difference between "The ferry will leave at noon" and "The ferry leaves at noon?" If so, they both mean the same thing. We would more commonly use the latter.
  3. aalla Member

    Yes, that's what I meant. I wondered if the "will" doesn't perhpas shift focus on something else a bit. For example, that it makes the future more certain, or more unceirtain, or something of the kind.
  4. se16teddy

    se16teddy Senior Member

    London but from Yorkshire
    English - England
    Each way of expressing the future in English has its own nuances; but different native speakers use them in different ways. This is how I tend to use them.
    The ferry leaves at 7.30 - that's what the timetable says; we have no control over it.
    The ferry is leaving at 7.30 - that is what the timetable says; I assume and have faith that it will happen.
    The ferry will be leaving at 7.30 - it is agreed or timetabled and I predict it will take place (in a world where the future is intrinsically unpredictable).
    As Florentia suggests, the ferry will leave at 7.30 doesn't sound a particularly likely choice. We often use will + be + (verb)-ing when the decision has already been made that the event will take place; we often use will + verb at or around the time we take the decision that the event will take place.
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2015
  5. aalla Member

    I see. It's that I normally use the "ferry will leave" construction on these occasions. So one more thing to be unlearnt. :)

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