Gramática 4:

Hablar del futuro
The two future tenses

The compound future tense is used to express actions in the near future.


The compound future is formed by combining a form of IR in the present tense + a + infinitive.

voy             vamos

vas             vais          +        infinitive

va               van

It translates to “is going to + verb” or “are going to + verb”.

¿Qué van a tocar en el concierto?
What are you going to play at the concert?

Vamos a tocar una pieza de Enrique Granados.
We are going to play a piece by Enrique Granados.

The simple future expresses actions that have not occurred yet. These actions are less likely to occur than those expressed by the compound future.

Attach the following endings to the infinitive verb to form the simple future:

é             emos                                                     bailaré                  bailaremos

ás            éis                                                         bailarás                bailaréis

á              án                                                          bailará                  bailarán


As always there are some exceptions to the rule. Here are the irregular verbs in the simple future tense:

  • Verbs that drop “e” from the infinitive
    Haber (to have) = habr-              Poder(to be able to) = podr-
    Querer (to want) = querr-         Saber (to know) = sabr-

  • Verbs that change “e” or “i” in the infinitive = d
    Poner (to put) = pondr-              Salir (to leave) = saldr-
    Tener (to have) = tendr-            Venir (to come) = vendr-

  • Verbs that drop the “c” and the “e” from the infinitive
    Decir (to say) = dir-                       Hacer (to do/make) = har-


It translates to “will/shall + verb”.

¿Qué harás mañana? Iré al cine.               
What will you do tomorrow? I will go to the movies.

*The future can also be used to express probability or to make conjectures in the present.

Pablo está ausente. ¿Estará enfermo?   Pablo is absent. I wonder if he is sick. He might be sick.

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