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ESL forum > Ask for help > will vs going to    

will vs going to


will vs going to
Hello fellow teachers,
 I need your help in explaining why the correct answer in the following question is are going to not will:
We are so bored that we ´ve decided we are going to go out. 
                                                                              Thanks a lot 

2 Feb 2016      


 "Will" is used for on-the-spot decisions. For "plans" or "intentions" we use "Going to" and since in the example you have provided it is clearly seen that the decision was not taken at the moment of speaking but before that, you need to use "Going to".


2 Feb 2016     


will+base form: decision made at the time of speaking
be going to: decision made before the time of speaking

2 Feb 2016     

United Kingdom

I never knew that!

2 Feb 2016     


Thanks a lot for your  explicit clarification!

2 Feb 2016     

United States

As a speaker of American English, I tend to use "going to" and "will" interchangeably. From Lynne ´s comment, I guess she does as well.

2 Feb 2016     

United States

I also use going to and will interchangeably in many situations, but there are some times when I feel it is more natural to use one of them and not the other.
For instance, if I hear the phone ring, and I want to offer to answer it, I say "I ´ll get it" to alert the other family members that I volunteer to answer the phone. In this case, I would not say I ´m going to get it because to me that sounds like I am determined to be the one to get the phone. My mind is already made up and they are not needed.
When I plan my day, the night before, I say that tomorrow I will get up at 6 am to go swimming, I will go shopping, I will cook dinner, etc. But If I say I am going to make sure that I don ´t oversleep again, it feels to me like the "going to" expresses more determination than a simple "will" . 

I think I would say, "Its going to rain tomorrow" more often than "It will rain tomorrow".
I don ´t know if others feel like this, too. 

2 Feb 2016     

alien boy

I think it ´s very difficult to determine the difference in written form for many native English speakers, because writing lacks the sound to show emotional intent. I believe that we genereally use them interchangeably. However, in the spoken form the differences occur in how emphatically the words are used. ´Will ´ seems to be more direct, forceful & emphatic than ´going to ´, but ´going to ´ can be very strong when said emphatically, too.


I wiil add more to this, if I get the time! 

2 Feb 2016