Can you assure me that the CD will be in stock in the next month? I'll order from you when (or if) it will be in stock.

Why not "it is in stock" it is a when or if clause expressing future, so present should work better

I was answered last time I asked this question "present continuous for a future intention" I am ordering it when it will be available that this sentence was awkward (perfectly ok):it should be "I'm ordering now for something that will be available" or "I'm going to order when(or if) it is available" but not"I will order it when it will be available"

I've added if with when because they work the same way with future .

My two examples are very similar and in the first example future is possible with when and not in the second, where is the logic!

I am really lost!

  • 2
    Your first example is not correct either. You would say "I'll order it when it is in stock." At the time you are going to place the order, the item's being in stock will be the present, not the future. Jun 23, 2023 at 8:17
  • I think the rule is simply that "when" clauses use the present tense even with a future event. "I will retire when I am old", "I hope to go to the Louvre when I am in Paris", "I always go to the beach when I am on holiday". I guess that's just something you have to learn.
    – Stuart F
    Jun 23, 2023 at 9:32
  • but the first example was an answer given to a similar question, and I was very surprised to get this answer and I did not understand it
    – Yves Lefol
    Jun 23, 2023 at 10:17
  • I think the confusing thing is that English has a weird way of talking about the future, and tenses are badly named. English doesn't really have a future tense per se, we have constructions that we use to talk about the future. And the "present" tense is really more like the "general truth" tense.
    – stangdon
    Jun 23, 2023 at 14:46
  • Which question? If you mean your last question about tenses, two of us told you to say "when it is available". Jun 23, 2023 at 14:56

1 Answer 1


The answer is that your first example is wrong. Use of the future tense in that context is not correct, for the reasons you were given before. If you’ve seen it being used, you saw someone making a mistake.

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