In the my English book,¹ it notes that we do not use “will” for things we have already arranged or decided to do.

But why is that the case? Can anyone explain a little more?


  1. We are going to cinema on Sunday. (Not “we will go”)
  2. I am not working tomorrow. (Not “I will not work”)

¹ Essential Grammar in Use, 3rd Edition.

  • 2
    Could you give an example of a sentence you were trying to use it with? Commented Oct 7, 2014 at 5:16
  • This is simply the rule. To express a future action we use the present continuous, the present simple, "will", "going to"; they are used in different cases, for example "will do that" could be a spontaneous decision, and not a plan, while "going to do that" will be planned. That is what those rules are for, they explain when native speakers would prefer one over the other. So what exactly is your question?
    – fluffy
    Commented Oct 7, 2014 at 10:05
  • If you conceptualize a future event as decided, as a sure thing, then there's no need to use a modal auxiliary for epistemic weakening.
    – user230
    Commented Oct 7, 2014 at 13:53
  • I don’t think this should be closed. It would be good to have someone explain why the other options would carry different meanings. Commented Oct 7, 2014 at 14:50
  • See also What's will? on Language Log.
    – user230
    Commented Oct 7, 2014 at 22:24

1 Answer 1


The reason is the same why we use capitals at the beginning of a sentence: it's English.

Like with any other natural language, its grammar evolved from primitive prehistoric interjections to the modern state. The reason why we say so and not say another way is actually a history and traditions, not any logic :)

Although you actually can hypothesize on the actual reasons. But I guess this kind of question should rather go there:

English Language & Usage

For linguists, etymologists, and serious English language enthusiasts.

// If I got your question right

  • Sorry, you got a wrong question.
    – Carter
    Commented Oct 7, 2014 at 8:25
  • @user1917217 Maybe you want to know if usage of future tenses is correct, and/or what meaning it would have?
    – sshilovsky
    Commented Oct 7, 2014 at 8:34

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