Question about to use shall in American English

Hi all. I have a Question. Sometimes here I write some Text to improve my English skills and someone give me Feedback or corrections.

Yesterday I wrote: Tomorrow I will flight to Los Angeles.

The Correction was: I shall to flight….

Would American Native Speaker say this or how they would say it?


Correct would be, “Tomorrow I will fly to Los Angeles”. You could say “Tomorrow I shall fly …”. To me “shall” sounds old fashioned and formal. But it wouldn’t be wrong.


Thank you for the explanation

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Actually, usually we would say:

I’m flying to Los Angeles tomorrow.


As a native speaker of English, I agree that “shall” is outdated.

Most native speakers will either say like WillowMeDown wrote: “I’m flying to Los Angeles tomorrow.”

Though I would maybe say: “I’m flying to [LA] tomorrow.”

Contractions and abbreviations for cities help to keep things short, “casual”, and less “old fashion” overall.

P.S. American speaker of English POV.

Note: POV = abbreviation for “point of view”/ short-hand for something coming from a certain “perspective”


I will fly to LA.
I’m flying to LA.
I’m going to fly to LA.
I’m going to LA by plane.

All are correct. As a British English speaker, I have never understood the use of shall. It’s not used in everyday speech here.


Not a native English speaker, but an English teacher. In my experience, “shall” in the sense of “will” is practically never used in American English, and it’s slightly archaic but occasionally still encountered in British English. (Think of Churchill: “We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, … we shall never surrender.”)

An outdated (and even in its time probably inaccurate) grammar “rule” says that the future is expressed with “shall” in the first person, and with “will” in the second and third person - and that be reversing this (e.g. “I will”, or “he shall”), you are adding emphasis and/or intentionality to the meaning. However, this is categorically false today, and probably always was. (Note that even the Churchill quote above disregards this “rule”! According to this rule, to demonstrate determination and intention as he did, he should have said “we will”!)

American English does use “shall” in the phrase “shall we [do XYZ]”? It’s also used very frequently in legal texts, in the sense of “must/must not” (as in the Ten Commandments: “Thou shalt not…”, or as in the 1st Amendment to the US Constitution: “Congress shall make no law…”)


“Shall” is pretty much dead in spoken use.

There are a few remnants were it could be used emphatically. While I can think of a few examples that I could describe, they are extremely nuanced–so much so that most native speakers simply won’t use this form in speaking.

As fabbol indicates, it remains in use in legal texts and contracts and such as project requirements documentation such as the MoSCoW model for describing requirements that are:

Must have
Should have
Could have
Would have

For prioritization’s sake.

We don’t really encounter “shall” outside of those contexts.

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Definitely not used anymore in the sense of “I shall do something” as others have pointed out.

However, I do think there is a more common use of the word, and that is to question whether another person or group wants you to do something.

For example. Shall I wash the car for you? Shall I do the dishes? etc etc.

Effectively you’re asking the other person(s) if they would like you to do something. You’re offering to do something for them.

I use that fairly frequently. It’s quicker than asking “Do you want me to …”

I don’t think this usage is uncommon.


To each their own overall, but I would say, “Should I wash the car?”, or “Want me to wash the car?” / “Do you want me to wash the car”, etc. (over “Shall”).

Generally, the people I interact with daily would find any use of “shall” odd (4 years - ~65 years of age generally). Even in employee-to-customer interactions (on the retail level), it would be a bit out of place.

However, in the case of an employee-to-customer type situation, I might say, “Would you like me to wash your car?” / “May I wash your car?” / Etc. (though I’m getting a bit subjective here with this part).

Maybe I hang out with odd people, but there some specific contexts in which I hear and use “shall.”

You can invite one to do something with you by saying “Shall we?” To which the reply is: “Let’s”

That formulaic question and answer has a slightly ironic or playful tone to me.

The formula is used without specifying the object verb, though there are common object verbs:

“Shall we dance?” “Shall we go?” “Shall we eat?”

Specifying the object verb sounds less playful or ironic to me.

Outside of these sorts of very direct questions I don’t think I hear or use this word in everyday speech.

EDIT: I just saw that @ericb100 made the same observation! So we have two data points on this usage now.


Yes! This statement captures that tone well! I often use this “Shall we?” when I’m directing a playful (with maybe a hint of drama?) tone with an invitation to do something.

“Shall we?”

Subtext: (Brave the annoyances of this situation and continue together?)

“Shall we?”

Subtext: (Stick together and proceed with a daunting task?)

“Shall we?”

Subtext: (Dance and “let loose?”)


Edited Note:

It’s not only the bad stuff, lol.

Overall, I use this rarely and usually when I want to convey a sense of closeness (with someone around my age or a colleague, if the circumstances fit) or with someone. I’m close with (like my mom or best friend). — Again, more subjective territory.


Exactly. As I say “Shall we?” it is as if I’m verbally extended my elbow like the Scarecrow in the Wizard of Oz, inviting the interlocutor to lock arms as we start off.


Also when joking around or using a more formal register.

“I shall have to report you to the police.”
“We shall overcome!”
“What time shall I put you down for, sir?”


Interesting conversation.

Btw, you are often talking about “spoken use” but here it is a “writing” correction for writing use. I was wondering, could it be different for a more sophisticated writing? (just speculating).

However, to be more precise, these were the corrections given within the exact context:

Tomorrow i will be flying to United States at the City of los Angeles.
On Tuesday I will be on a Event there.

Tomorrow I shall be flying to United States, at the City of Los Angeles.
On Tuesday I shall be attending an event there.

I will=I must/I have to etc
I shall=I am going to/I intend to etc.

The choice was probably to keep the same sentence format and verb consistency.

Is there a more technical or formal reason to use “shall be …ing” replacing “will be …ing”?
Or it is not possible to use “will be flying” but it is probably possible to use “shall be flying” ?

Or it is just old fashioned and formal?

I have no idea but I just wanted to give more context.

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Pretty much everything said above applies to the majority of writing. The only time I ever see it is in legal documents including all the “Terms of Service” things we ignore when we log onto a site for the first time. I wrote for 30 years professionally for automotive and motorcycle book and magazine publishers and I doubt I ever used “shall” for any purpose. Not even for warnings about potential injury.


For really formal writing, I think there might be a case for it, but it makes me think of an 18th-century fiction novel or an 18th-century penned letter.

I mean, using “shall” really isn’t wrong.

You could write," Tomorrow, I shall fly to LA", but it just won’t be as common.

I know our conversation got a bit further away from the original sentence, but it might still prove helpful for a bit of context and understanding of the nuance of language across fluent speakers.

“will be” and “shall be” can be used in those contexts—though “at the City of Los Angeles” and “shall be attending” are a bit confusing in wording:

  • Tomorrow I shall be flying to United States, at the City of Los Angeles.: Instead, “Tomorrow, I shall fly to the United States, to the City of Los Angeles.” would make more sense. Though it might be more commonly written as “Tomorrow, I’m flying to the United States. I’m going to the city of Los Angeles.” (As maybe a diary entry or letter to a friend.)
  • On Tuesday I shall be attending an event there.: Instead, “On Tuesday, I will attend an event there.” And maybe more commonly: “On Tuesday, I’ll be attending an event there.” / “On Tuesday, I’m attending an event there.”

Note: Please, take this with a “grain of salt”, as I’m a fluent speaker, not a grammar/language teacher. :sweat_smile:


I really like this.

A rare time I might use “shall” would be in certain social contexts.

I can imagine I went to a social event, such as a party. I can imagine I went with my wife or with a close friend. It’s a situation where perhaps many people are observing me, seeing my facial expressions, yet they can’t hear what I say.

I really want to leave.

I lean over to the person I came with and say as quietly as possible with zero facial tells:

Shall we go?

I’ve hidden my signaling from possible onlookers. But because the use of “shall” is so piqued it catches the clear attention to the person I’ve quietly said it to.

I’d suspect one of the primary uses of “shall” in natural conversation is its rare use like this–where one wants to signal strong preference or intent to an intimate yet avoid any social tells to others of that preference or intent.

Similarly, “shall we dance?” signals possibly both “I really want to dance with you” and “I wouldn’t mind us having an increased intimacy in our relationship.”

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The error in both sentences is that “flight” is a noun, not a verb, so you would have to use a verb for the sentence to be correct (fly or am flying or will fly or even shall fly, though as other people have written, Americans don’t use shall casually much.) but “flight” is a nominalization, thus a noun, thus incorrect in the original sentence.

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In general the modal verbs are something I find really interesting across the Germanic languages as they have all drifted over time, but cognates exist in all the ones I have learned.

Can, will, shall, want, etc.

It really comes down to tense and mood between shall and should.

As others have said, shall is typically archaic in modern American English, but there are really 3 use cases that it does appear:

You shall do this tomorrow.

Simple Future with absolute certainty:
I shall be at the airport at 5 am.

Asking someone to do something with you, or if they would like you to do something*:
Shall we?
Shall I get that for you?*

I would also note that all three of these examples are squarely within the formal register. You would not use them casually unless you were playing with the language you are using.