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I was watching Subbed episode of Pokemon and stumbled upon this

There's time to kill. They have missed the boat.The next one leaves in three hours.

Does 'leaves in three hours' mean the boat leaves after three hours or any time within three hours span?

Is it a sophisticated way of saying the former? Besides is it an American way or an English way?

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    leaves in three hours means "leaves after three hours have passed". leaves within three hours means "leaves sometime during the next three hours". Oct 3, 2016 at 17:52

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"Leaves in three hours" means that the next boat won't leave until three full hours have elapsed. The use of 'in' here is somewhat misleading, and I can see why it could be confusing, but it is normal and proper usage when discussing time.

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