Future Simple vs. Future Perfect

There are similarities and differences between future simple and future perfect, which might cause confusion. To learn more, click here!

What is Their Main Difference?

Future simple tense tends to appear when we are talking about decisions that we made, while future perfect tense guesses the time of the completion of events.

Uses and Comparison

1. Making Decisions

When we want to talk about decisions that we make for the future, we use the future simple tense.

I won't help her.

Here, we are talking about a decision in the future.

I won't have helped her.

Here, we are talking about having regrets and not making decisions.

We will visit our parents.

He we are talking about a premade plan.

We will have visited our parents.

Here, we are not talking about a decision.

2. Future Events

Both tenses tend to describe future actions but they express different actions and events.

She will finish the task.

She will have finished the task.

I will call her.

I will have called her.

3. Completion of Actions

We use future perfect tense to talk about forecasts of actions or events. We tend to guess the time of the completion of events and actions.

By next Thursday, I will have finished my homework.

Here, we are talking about the completion of events.

By next Thursday, I will finish my homework.

Here, we are talking about future plans.

I will have graduated by next year.

Here, we are talking about the completion of an event.

I will graduate by next year.

Here, we are talking a certain future action and not the completion of an event.

4. Order of Events

The future perfect tense can be used as a comparative tense. This means that we use this tense to compare events and actions to predict which one will end sooner.

We will have arrived by the time she finishes.

Here we are talking about the order of events.

We will arrive by the time she finishes.

Here we are not talking about order of events but rather naming them.

She will eat by the time he gets home.

Here we are talking about order of events and guessing which will end sooner.

She will have eaten by the time he gets home.

Here, we are naming events.

Structure

Now that we tackled the uses and comparison, we will talk about the structure of the two verb tenses.

1. Future Simple Tense

In order to create this tense, we tend to add 'will' to the subject at the beginning of the sentence, then the base form of the main verb. Have a look:

I will take her home.

We will give you a lift.

2. Future Perfect Tense

The future perfect tense tends to follow a certain pattern:

Subject + will + have + past participle

In this pattern, we have the auxiliary verbs 'will,' or 'have' followed by the past participle of the main verb.

She will have been here by midnight.

I will have met her sooner.

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