When To Use “Will” And “Going To.”

Will And Going To

A common and confusing concept is learning when to use WILL and GOING TO. Both of them refer to future actions, and there is a difference between the two, but in most cases, they can be used in the same sentence with no changes in the meaning. However, knowing which one you think is best really just depends on what you’re trying to say.

Because there are multiple ways of expressing the same thing or idea in English, you really have to focus on learning how to express something the way you want it to. Like I said before, you can use both WILL and GOING TO in the same sentence with no change in the meaning, but you really have to ask yourself what it is you’re really trying to say. So, you have to pay attention to the different types of situations so you can understand which of these two choices will be the best option.


One important detail about “WILL” is that it is most often used to discuss things or situations that may take a long time to happen. The expression “WILL” is used in the following situations:

  • Dreamsex. Someday I will learn another language.
  • Promisesex. I promise I’ll call you tonight!
  • To express actions that are far into the futureex. I will get married someday. 
  • Requests – ex. Will you buy a hamburger for me? Thank you!
  • To discuss a factex. I’ll graduate from college next year
  • After making a decisionex. Yes! I will marry you!
  • Help/Volunteer – ex. I’ll volunteer at this event tonight!


One important detail about “GOING TO” is that it is most often used to discuss things or situations that might happen soon. The expression “GOING TO” is used in the following situations:

  • Definite plansex. I am going to help you with your English!
  • Immediate actionsex. I’m going to eat lunch with my friend tomorrow (not 3 years from now).
  • Actions that will happen soonex. I’m going to be a doctor someday.
  • Anticipationex. Are you going to download our free Ebook?
  • Predicting a future actionex. The weather is going to be very cold today.

So Break It Down For Me

When you are plans are definite, use GOING TO. When you dream of doing something, use WILL.

When you’re talking about actions that are far into the future (months or maybe years from now), use WILL. When you’re talking about actions that you will do soon (tomorrow or next week), use GOING TO.

When you want to ask/request for something, use WILL). When you’re expecting/anticipating something to happen, use GOING TO.

Finally, when you promise something, use ‘WILL!’

If you found these tips useful, then let others know about it! If you want more tips on learning English, check out our ESL Troubleshooting course! It gives you more focus on the challenging parts of English, and provides you with video lessons, quizzes, and worksheets that will help you improve your knowledge and confidence in the English language!

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