Will and Going: what is the difference?

Will and Going: what is the difference?


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What is the difference between will and going to?

To put it simply, we use ‘be going to’ + infinitive verb to evoke an intention to do something when a decision has already been made as we speak.

When the decision is made immediately, we use will. Will is also stronger than going to (will is used to make a promise, for example).

Compare the following examples:

  • I need the car. I’m going to visit Uncle Paul. 
  • She’ll tell you why she did it. 

We also use Be going to to predict something from what we see or know. With Will, the prediction is more abstract:

  • Look at this kid with his skateboard. I’m sure he’s going to fall. 
  • She’s going to have a baby. Her belly is really big. 
  • Be careful! You’re going to drop thos glasses. 
  • It’s going to rain. 

That said, sometimes there is not much difference between will and going to and you can use either one or the other:

  • I think the weather will be nice tomorrow morning. = I think the weather is going to be nice tomorrow morning.

 

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