The Near Future Tense in Spanish ¡Vas a Aprenderlo!
What are you going to do today? What are you going to do this summer/weekend? While you ponder these questions, it becomes clear that our plans and intentions for the future are an important part of daily conversations. The Spanish future tense comes in two forms: simple and “near future.” In this blog post, we are going to explore the near future!
Going to the Future
When you’re talking about the near future, you say you’re going to do something; this is called the futuro próximo, or the futuro idiomático.
In contrast to the futuro simple, the futuro próximo doesn’t involve a lot of new endings and accents. This is convenient and quick to learn because once you get the formula down, you won’t have to memorize any new verb endings!
How to Form the Near Future Tense in Spanish
First, let’s look at an example in English:
I am going to call you later.
Unlike in English, the near future tense in Spanish uses the present simple conjugation of ir (voy) instead of the present continuous (yendo):
Te voy a llamar más tarde.
So, what is the formula?
Present simple conjugation of ir + a + infinitive verb
- Always use the present simple conjugations of the verb ir.
- Always include the word a between ir and the infinitive verb.
- An infinitive verb in Spanish is one that ends in -ar, -er, and -ir.
Refresh the Present
If you already have the present simple conjugations of the verb ir memorized, then this form will be very easy for you! If not, you can use this following chart to refresh your memory:
When Do I Use the Near Future Tense?
Now, you have everything you need to form the futuro próximo. But, when do you use it?
For the immediate future
If you are talking about what you are going to do shortly (ahorita), you need to use the futuro próximo. This could include things that you’re going to do in 5 minutes or 5 days—it all depends on your definition of “soon.” Either way, the futuro próximo is the appropriate tense to use.
Lo voy a hacer ahorita. – I am going to do it right now (soon).
¿Vas a venir con nosotros? – Are you going to come with us?
For making plans
The type of plans that use the near future tense are more tentative that we’re currently making and they’re not exactly set in stone. Maybe you haven’t yet bought your flight to Mexico yet, but you are looking for a cheap one. Maybe your friend hasn’t invited everyone to the party yet, but she marked it down in her calendar.
Vamos a ir de vacaciones a México en diciembre. – We’re going on vacation to Mexico in December.
Ella va a tener una fiesta el sábado. – She’s going to have a party on Saturday.
For setting intentions
Intentions are like New Year’s resolutions—sometimes they happen, sometimes they don’t. And then there are times when they happen, but just not how we expected them to. Whatever the case may be, we need to use the futuro próximo in Spanish to express things that we intend to do.
Lo voy a hacer mañana. – I’m going to do it tomorrow.
Voy a limpiar mi cuarto después. – I’m going to clean my room later.
Future Tense in English and Spanish
Did you notice how in every example, the English and Spanish tenses were equivalent? The “going to” future in English is comparable in structure AND use to the futuro próximo in Spanish. Basically, when you would use the “going to” tense in English, more than likely, you can use the futuro próximo in Spanish.
Future Tense in Spanish Using Near or Simple
The future tenses of near and simple are used similarly when it comes to our intentions. Despite having a slightly different connotation, or feel, to them, they are appropriate and completely acceptable when talking about your intentions. Here are some examples to make your life a bit easier!
Voy a practicar mi español más. – I’m going to practice my Spanish more.
Practicaré mi español más. – I will pracitce my Spanish more.
Vamos a hablar de eso después. – We’re going to talk about that later.
Hablaremos de eso después. – We will talk about that later.
Of course, la práctica hace al maestro (practice makes perfect). To make sure you can use the futuro próximo with ease in your next Spanish conversation, check out our extra practice materials! You can find our video on all the future tenses in Spanish below. It is in Spanish, so it will give you extra practice. We also have a special PDF for you to test what you’ve learned in this blog. Don’t forget to check your answers with the answer key!
Boost Your Fluency Right Now
Even if you have everything memorized, it still may be hard to produce the futuro próximo fluently in conversation. If you would like help from a native Spanish speaker, try a FREE class with us! Our teachers would be more than happy to go over some of these rules or just have a practice conversation with you. Sign up today!