Simple future tense in French (le futur simple)

 

To speak about things that will happen in the future, French people generally use the near future (le futur proche) or simple future tense (le futur simple), depending on how far or close it might occur.

 

Simple future is one of the most common and easiest tenses in French. Today, our focus will be on learning how to form it and in which contexts to use it.

1. When to use simple future tense in French?

 

As its name indicates, le futur simple is very simple to use.

It is used for actions that will happen in the future (dans l'avenir) : for example to make predictions or to speak about future projects.

Example 

  • L'année prochaine, nous irons en Italie. => Next year we will go to Italy.

 

2. How to form the future tense in French?

 

For regular verbs like those ending with ER or  IR,  this is how to conjugate future tense. Take the whole infinitive as the stem and add on the following endings depending on the subject.

  • je => ai

  • Tu => as

  • Il/elle/on  => a

  • Nous => ons

  • Vous => ez

  • Ils/elles => ont.

Example 

  • Je finirai => I will finish

  • Tu finiras => You will finish

  • Il finira => He will finish

  • Nous finirons => We will finish

  • Vous finirez => You will finish

  • Ils /elles finiront. => They will finish

For verbs that end with RE, you should suppress the "e" before adding the future endings.

Example

J’attendrai devant la banque. => I will wait in front of the bank.

French future tense Regular verbs.jpg

3. How to get irregular stems in simple future tense?

 

For irregular verbs, the good news is that you just need to remember the stems to which you add the same endings as previously.

Verbs like partir, dormir,  sortir, which are irregular, have their conjugation in future tense  like the regular IR verbs.

 

Here is a list of some irregular verbs that are commonly used in French with their stems, followed by an example.

  • Être = > SER > Je serai (i will be)

  • Avoir = > AUR > Tu auras (you will have)

  • Faire => FER > Il fera (He will do)

  • Aller => IR > Elle ira (she will go)

  • Devoir > DEVR > Nous devrons (We shall have to)

  • Savoir => SAUR> Vous saurez (You will know)

  • Pouvoir => POURR > Ils pourront (They will be able)

  • Venir => VIENDR> Elles viendront (they will come)

  • Voir = > VERR > Je verrai (I will see)

  • Vouloir => VOUDR > tu voudras (you will want)

  • Falloir => FAUDR > Il faudra (it will be necessary to)

Below is an infographic that you could pin or save for later.

French future tense Irregular verbs.jpg

4. Practice your future tense in French

 

​If you want to test your knowledge and make sure you understand how  the future tense works in French, then here is a practical exercise for you.

Take our test right below. 

You can also practice with this interesting exercise of Lingolia. Happy practicing!

 

Related lessons 

Near future (futur proche)

Conjugating Regular verbs

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