In general, saying “next Saturday” will almost always indicate the following Saturday, not the one coming up at the end of the current week. However, there are some caveats in this depending on the specific use of certain words around the phrase, “next Saturday.”
Even if you tend to get this wrong, don’t worry – so do most English speakers. In fact, many people have to go around in circles before they figure out someone means the Saturday after the next. When in doubt, always clarify the actual date in conjunction with Saturday and you can avoid miscommunication 95% of the time.
General Usage of “Next Saturday”
While it generally means the following Saturday after the coming one when you say, “next Saturday,” there are some nuances to note. “Next Saturday” can also denote the one coming up depending on other words that appear before or after the phrase. As you can see, the words around “next Saturday” give further specifics and context.
- Next Weekend: We are going to the art museum next Saturday.
- This Weekend: We are going to the art museum this next Saturday.
- Next Weekend: We are going to the art museum the following next Saturday.
- This Weekend: We are going to the art museum next Saturday this coming week.
Nuances of the Current Day
Of course, another nuance is the day in which you’re saying “next Saturday.” If it is Saturday, obviously you mean next weekend when you use, “next Saturday.” This is also true if it’s Friday or Sunday. Monday through Thursday, you may have to clarify what you mean by “next Saturday.”
We’re going to the art museum, not this Saturday, but next Saturday.
Since today is Wednesday, we won’t be able to go to the museum until next week Saturday.
We are going to the art museum the next Saturday after this one coming up.
Yesterday was Monday, so we will be going to the art museum the next Saturday coming this week.
Exceptions When Time is Vague
One last exception in regards to “next Saturday” is if you are speaking of a general time frame without indicating a finite or specific date. Therefore, “next Saturday” in this context could mean any available Saturday in the future or one with an undetermined amount of time.
We can go to the museum the next Saturday I have off from work.
Who knows what the next Saturday will be to go to the art museum.
The next Saturday available to go to the art museum is uncertain.
We go to the art museum the next Saturday comes along when we’re free to go.
In general, “next Saturday” will usually refer to the Saturday after the one coming up in the current week. However, there are some nuances and exceptions to the rule depending on the context and time frame. It isn’t difficult, but you can have a serious exchange of miscommunication if you aren’t careful.