Expressions with be to talk about the future

be + full infinitive

We use be + to + infinitive in formal language for arrangements. This expression is often used by journalists.

We only use be + to + infinitive for events which are under human control.

The prime minister is to open a new factory.
The Queen is to open a new business centre.

be about + to + infinitive

We use be about + to + infinitive to say something will happen very soon. If we want to emphasise negative intentions we use not be about + to + infinitive.

Hurry up! The bus is about to leave!
I've never smoked and I'm not about to start now.

be due + full infinitive

We use be due to + infinitive to talk about scheduled events and to say something is owed or expected very soon, often a certain time.

Ling's train is due to arrive at 9:37.
I'm due to meet her secretary this afternoon.

be + sure / bound + full infinitive

To talk about a future event we are confident will happen.

Peter's sure to be late. He always is.
Don’t lie to her. She’s bound to find out.
It's bound to rain tomorrow. It always does when we have a picnic.

be on the verge of / on the brink of / on the point of

For events that are going to happen very soon. Followed by nouns or gerunds

The volcano was on the verge of erupting.
The minister was on the brink of resigning.
The countries were on the verge of war.
She's on the point of madness.

be + looking to + verb

This expressions means to be planning or expecting to do something

We’re looking to expand the business.
We’re looking to buy a new car early next year.