Many Ways to Say 'Will' in Korean
In English, will is a modal that indicates future actions. However, it is not the only way to express the future. There is be –ing and be going to as well. Here are sample sentences.
I will meet John tomorrow.
I am meeting John tomorrow.
I am going to meet John tomorrow.
While they all refer to the future, they have differences. We use will when an action is decided at the moment of speaking, while be going to is used when the action has been decided before the moment of speaking. The pattern be –ing is originally present progressive, but when used as future simple, it is more definite than be going to.
Korean future tense can also be expressed in more than one way, but they are not necessarily the counterparts of those in English.
VERB + (으)ㄹ 거야
학교에 갈 거야.
I will go to school. / I am going to school.
비가 올 거야.
It will rain. / It is going to rain.
버스를 탈 거야.
I will take a bus. / I am going to take a bus.
VERB + (으)ㄹ 게(요)
내가 알아서 할게.
I will take care of it.
I will help you.
잘 말해 줄게.
I’ll put it in good words.
This ending is used when making a promise or doing a favour. In English, only will plays this role. The next three ways are kind of different because they are futuristic words which are modified by verb-(으)ㄹ- 계회, 생각, and 예정. We attached the verb 이다 (be) to them.
언제 한국에 갈 계획이야?
When are you going to Korea?
우리는 내년에 결혼할 계획이야.
We are going to get married next year.
난 좀 이따가 피자 먹으러 갈 생각이야.
I am going to eat some pizza later.
이 집을 언제 팔 생각이야?
When are you selling this house?
그 사람을 몇 시에 만날 예정이야?
When are you meeting him?
피곤한다며? 직업을 언제 그만둘 예정이야?
Didn’t you say you were tired? When are quitting your job?