Frequently Asked Questions

Quick Reference

1.    Where is Dining Services located?

A: The Dining Services office is located in Crumley Hall #132, and is open Monday to Friday from 8:00am–5:00pm. Our office number is 940-565-2462.

2.    How do I use my meal plan?

A: Your meal plan is loaded on your student ID card, which will be swiped at the register at any dining hall or food retail location.  If you are paying with Declining Balance or Flex, you must notify the cashier. 

3.    Where can I get an ID card?

A: ID cards are issued by UNT ID Systems in the Eagle Student Services Center (ESSC) #105.

It takes at least 1 hour for new ID information to update across all UNT systems. If you plan to use your new ID immediately after it is issued, please contact us to make sure your meal plan is transferred to your new ID.

4.    How do I buy a meal plan online?

A: Click on the GET A MEAL PLAN NOW! button. Set up an e-dining account with your email and a password, select your desired meal plan, and enter your credit card information. Online purchases take a minimum of 4 hours to process.

5.    How much does one meal cost?

A: The door prices at all the cafeterias for one meal is $7.52, including tax, and they accept cash and debit/credit cards. Meal prices at the food retail locations vary.  

6. Can I take food out of a cafeteria?

A: No. Meals are dine-in only and cannot be carried out. Guests may only take small food items, such as ice cream cones or pieces of fruit.

7. What cafeterias are open on the weekends?

A: Kerr is UNT’s weekend cafeteria. No food retail locations are open on the weekends.

8.    I have a lot of classes at Discovery Park. Will my meal plan work there?

A: Discovery Park does not have a dine-in cafeteria, but they have food retail options that accept Flex dollars and Declining Balance. The main portion of the meal plan will have to be used on the main campus. Students also have the option of purchasing a Discovery Park Meal Plan to better accommodate their schedules.

9.    How many weeks are in a semester?

A: 17 weeks.

Freshman Information

10.    Are freshmen required to have a meal plan?

A: All freshmen living in on-campus housing are required to have a residential dining plan. Freshmen living in Greek housing, an apartment, or who commute are not required to have a meal plan.

11.    What meal plan options are available to freshmen?

A: Resident freshmen must choose one of the 5 or 7 Day meal plans. Off-campus freshmen may also sign up voluntarily for a Residential plan or they may select a plan from the Commuter meal plan options. 

12.    How can resident freshmen choose or change their meal plan?

A: Typically, freshmen select a meal plan when they sign up for housing.

If you need to make changes to your meal plan before the start of the semester, you may do so by sending an email to housinginfo@unt.edu and including your name, ID #, phone number, your current meal plan and what you wish to change to in the email.

If you need to make changes to your meal plan after the first day of move-in, you must come into the Dining Services office (Crumley Hall #132) to fill out a meal plan change form.

Meal plan changes may not be initiated over the phone.

Resident freshmen and students in mandatory Hall's (Crumley, Bruce, West, Champs, Maple, Clark, & Kerr) must finalize any meal plan downgrades before the 2nd Friday after the first day of move-in. Meal plan upgrades may be made at any time.

Upperclassmen/ Commuters Information

13.    Are upperclassmen/commuters required to have a meal plan?

A: Upperclassmen living in the following dorms will be required to have a residential dining plan: Bruce, Clark, Crumley, Kerr, Maple, McConnell, Traditions, Victory, and West.

Upperclassmen living in the following dorms will not be required to have a residential dining plan: College Inn, Honors, Legend, Mozart, or Santa Fe.

Commuters or upperclassmen living in Greek housing or an apartment will not be required to have a residential dining plan.

14.    How can upperclassmen/commuters choose or change their meal plan?

A: Upperclassmen who live in meal-plan-required dorms will automatically have a 5 or 7 Day meal plan added to their Housing bill. Those who live in meal-plan-exempt dorms and who wish to take advantage of the residential dining plan may choose to add their meal plan cost to their housing bill or by visiting the Dining Services office.

Commuters and upperclassmen who wish to purchase a Commuter meal plan must purchase it separately either online or in the Dining Services office. Commuter meal plans must be paid in full at the time of purchase, unless sufficient financial aid is expected. Refer to the Meal Plans section for further details.

You may change, upgrade, downgrade, or cancel your meal plan at any time by coming to the Dining Services office and filling out a meal plan change form.

You may not purchase or change a Commuter or Resident plan over the phone.

15.    What meal plan options are available to upperclassmen/commuters?

A: Commuters and upperclassmen living in meal-plan-exempt dorms, Greek housing, or an apartment may select any meal plan from the Commuter meal plans or the Resident dining plans.

Upperclassmen living in meal-plan-required dorms must have a 5 or 7 Day plan.

Meal Plans

16.    What is the difference between a 5 and 7 Day Residential dining plan?

A: Residential dining plans allow access to our five dining halls and provide unlimited meals for the duration of the meal plan.

5 Day plans are only active Monday-Friday. Students may not choose any alternate 5 days for meal plan coverage.

7 Day plans are active Monday-Sunday.  Remember that the 7 day plan covers the entire week and pays for itself even if you dine on campus one weekend per month. 

17.    What is the difference between a Value and a Basic Residential dining plan?

A: The only difference between a Value and a Basic meal plan is the amount of Flex money awarded to each meal plan.

5 Day Basic = $50 Flex
5 Day Value = $150 Flex
7 Day Basic = $75
7 Day Value = $175

 18What are the Commuter Anytime and the Commuter Weekday?

A: The Commuter Anytime and the Commuter Weekday work the same way as the 5 and 7 Day Residential dining plans: the Commuter Anytime gives you unlimited meals Mon-Sun, while the Commuter Weekday gives you unlimited meals Mon-Fri. However, these Commuter options do not include Flex.

19.    What is the Commuter Any 10?

A: This meal plan gives you 10 meals a week (Sun-Sat) to use at your convenience. However, you only get 10 meals each week; meaning, the meal plan resets back to 10 meals each Sunday and any unused meals from the previous week will not carry over. 

20.   What is the 8’s Enough?

A: This meal plan gives you 8 meals a week (Sun-Sat) to use at your convenience. However, you only get 8 meals each week; meaning, the meal plan resets back to 8 meals each Sunday and any unused meals from the previous week will not carry over.  

21.    What is the 1-A-Day?

A: This meal plan gives you 1 meal per day Mon-Fri. Any unused meal will not carry over to the next day. 

22.    What is the difference between the Commuter 160, 120, and 80?

A: The numbers for each meal plan correspond to the amount of meal swipes you are purchasing. For example, if one has a Commuter 80 one may use 80 visits to cafeterias at one’s convenience.

These meal plans carry over from semester to semester and can be refunded at any time.

23.    What is an Advantage meal plan?

A: Advantage meal plans is similar to the traditional flex.  Students that purchase these plans have a debit allowance that may be used throughout the semester at any retail location during business hours.  One advantage of this option is that with this currency you don’t have to pay the tax of individual purchases.  

A second benefit of this plan, is that each plan has built in bonus dollars:

Advantage 960 = $800 base price (pre-tax) + $160 bonus
Advantage 805 = $700 base price (pre-tax) + $105 bonus
Advantage 660 = $600 base price (pre-tax) + $60 bonus

However, you’ll want to remember that with this plan you have to pay for the food items and cafeteria door prices. And another caveat is that if you do not use up all of your flex dollars at the end of the semester, you will lose them and not be able to get a refund.  

24.    Where can I use my meal plan?

A: Meal plans provide access to the following five cafeterias: Kerr, Maple, Bruce, West, Champs.

Flex dollars and Declining Balance may be used in the cafeterias and/or in any of our food retail locations on campus. For a complete list of locations that accept Flex and Declining Balance, click here.

25.   Can I use my meal plan for a guest?

A: Commuter meal plans may be used to bring in a guest, with the exception of the 1-A-Day since the student only has one meal per day and they may not hand their ID to someone else. Students with 5 or 7 Day plans can use their Flex money to treat a guest, but not the meal plan portion.

Flex & Declining Balance

26.    What is Flex?

A: Flex money is a perk included with the 5 and 7 Day meal plans and works like a gift card. Each time a purchase is made, the cost is subtracted from your Flex account and the new balance will print at the bottom of your receipt.

Flex can be used in any of the cafeterias and food retail locations on campus.

Any unused Flex expires on the last day of finals of each semester and is non-refundable, even if a student cancels their meal plan with Flex dollars remaining.

27.    Am I charged tax when I used my Flex dollars?

A: No, all applicable taxes are charged at the time of the 5 or 7 Day meal plan purchase through Housing or Dining. 

28.    What happens if I run out of Flex?

A: After the initial Flex is depleted, you cannot add more unless you choose to upgrade to a higher meal plan that provides more Flex money.

You may choose to add Declining Balance, which works the same way as Flex with a few key differences: you have to pay tax on your Declining Balance purchases, but the Declining Balance rolls over to the next semester and is refundable. 

29.    What is Declining Balance?

A: A Declining Balance is a fixed amount of money added to a student’s ID card that functions like a debit card—each time you make a purchase, the cost is deducted from the balance on your card. Since Declining Balance is a dollar-for-dollar option, students will pay tax at the register for each of their purchase.

Declining Balance can be purchased on its own by Commuters and upperclassmen living in meal-plan-exempt residence halls, or by students who run out of Flex dollars. Like Flex, the money can be used in any of the dining halls and the food retail locations on campus. However, unlike Flex, Declining Balance does roll over semester to semester and can be refunded at any time. 

30.    How much money can I add to a Declining Balance?

A: Online Declining Balance orders only allow three options: $300, $400, or $500.

Custom amounts ($25 minimum) may be set up in the Dining Services office.

31.  Where can I spend my Flex Dollars or Declining Balance on campus?

Most students use these currencies at the retail locations on campus--the Student Union, Kush Roti, Southern Sunami, and Coffee Shops.  But if you are a Commuter you may choose to spend your Declining Balance at the Cafeterias. To learn more about each venue please look under our locations tab on the top bar.

Buying Meal Plan

32.    How can I pay for a meal plan?

A: Meal plans can be purchased online or in the Dining Services office.

We accept cash, checks, and all major credit cards for office purchases. We can also split a payment between different payments methods as long as the full amount is covered at the time of purchase.

33.    Can I use financial aid to pay for a meal plan?

A: Students can purchase voluntary meal plans (Commuter or Residential meal plans not mandated by Housing) by coming to the Dining Services office and providing documentation of their financial aid awards.

Providing documentation will defer the payment until your financial aid has been disbursed, but financial aid does not automatically cover the meal plan charge. Financial aid will only automatically cover tuition and other university-related fees. A Dining plan is a separate financial obligation and must be paid independently.

If you signed up for a meal plan during a spring semester, you must pay off your meal plan by the 2nd Friday of March. If you signed up for a meal plan during a fall semester, you must pay off your meal plan by the 2nd Friday of October.

Failure to pay for your meal plan by the due date will result in a cancellation of your meal plan and a hold placed on your account until all pending charges have been paid.

34.    What is the installment plan?

A: The installment plan is an option only available for voluntary 5 or 7 Day plans purchased in the Dining Services office. It allows you to split the cost of the meal plan into two payments.

The first payment is $1,000 and is due immediately. The second payment is due on the 2nd Friday of March (for a spring semester purchase) or on the 2nd Friday of October (for a fall semester purchase).

If you do not make your second payment by the due date, your meal plan will be cancelled. 

Nutrition Questions


35.What if my student is on a special diet?

A: In addition to providing nutritional information on our website, all five of our dining halls serve from a diverse catalogue of over 4000 menu items and recipes, covering a wide range of dietary needs. For those with more serious dietary concerns we recommend visiting a dietitian (The UNT Health Center has a dietitian on staff) or specialist for more detailed advice. 

If you know of your condition and want to be cared for, you should begin the process of the Special Diet Meal Plan. First, you must bring a doctor’s note from the UNT Health and Wellness Center.  Second, you must fill out a Meal Plan Conversion Form by the 2nd Friday of the semester.


36. What kind of food is served in the dining halls?

A: Our dining halls serve a wide variety of healthy, locally-sourced, made-from-scratch dishes, and our cafeteria managers work hard to create new and exciting menus each week.  In addition to our three traditional cafeterias, which offer a constantly rotating selection of entrees, sides, salads, and desserts, we also operate two specialty cafeterias: Mean Greens at Maple—our all vegan dining hall, and West at West Hall—our homestyle/creole option. 

37. What if I have a medical condition?

A: Each case will be evaluated independently by our executive committee to determine what options best serve a students particular needs. Read more at our resident policies page under the subheading "Conversion Process".

Mean Greens Dining/Vegan Cuisine 


38. What is Mean Greens at Maple Hall?

A: Mean Greens is the nation's first full-service, all vegan school cafeteria, located right here at UNT behind Maple Hall on Maple Street. 

39. What does being a vegan cafeteria mean, exactly?

A: It means that none of the food served at Mean Greens contains any ingredient that originally came from a sentient animal (meat, fish, eggs, or dairy products).

40. Why vegan?

A: We wanted to step out of the box!  Additionally, more people eat a variety of fruits and veggies than people who solely eat meat.  Serving a completely vegan menu gives students the opportunity to explore new things and stimulate their taste buds!  This also makes UNT unique and more competitive in comparison to other universities around the country.

41. Why do people become vegan?

A: Some like to explore veganism for the ethical, spiritual, health and sustainability reasons. Many students are ethical vegans who feel eating animal products is wrong. Some just see the benefits of eating a healthy high energy plant based diet. Many students believe a vegan diet is better for the earth and is aligned with our sustainability initiatives for a green campus – We Mean Green!

42. But we only have a few true vegans on campus, isn't this a waste of resources for just a few people? 

A: This exciting new option adds variety to our current menu selection. Based on student feedback we believe there are more strict vegans (students who never eat meat) than there are strict meat eaters (students who never eat vegetables), with most students falling somewhere in between. It doesn't have to be an "all or nothing" proposition - there's nothing wrong with being vegan for a meal, a day, a week, a month, a year or a lifetime. Many universities do "Meatless Mondays" but with five dining halls on our campus we have the resources to support the vegan lifestyle every day. 

43. How will vegans get their protein? 

A: There are several sources of protein. It is true that animal meat has more grams of protein per ounce than other foods, but they also contain high levels of saturated fats. Foods like beans, peas, lentils, nuts and seeds are great sources of protein and offer numerous vitamins, minerals and healthy fats. Plus, they have something that animal products don't have… fiber! 

44. Are there other nutritional concerns for vegans?

A: It is important to make sure the body gets plenty of calcium, vitamin d, iron and vitamin b-12 when consuming a vegan diet. Fortified soy milk can take care of several of these concerns as it contains calcium, vitamin D and vitamin B-12. Dark, leafy greens also provide calcium and iron. 

45. I live in Maple and I am not vegan. Where will I eat?

A: Mean Greens at Maple is open to all students, vegan and non-vegan alike! Did you know? 9 out of 10 individuals dining at Mean Greens aren't even vegan!

 

Miscellaneous Questions


46. Where can we eat if there is a University closure due to inclement weather?

A: In case of inclement weather, Kerr and Victory will be open. 

47. What are the hours of retail locations? 

A: Retail hours vary, please click here.

48. How much would it cost to eat at a dining hall without a meal plan?
A: 

  Door price w/o meal plan Door price + tax Price per meal w/ meal plan
Breakfast $6.95 $7.52 Under $5
Lunch $6.95 $7.52 Under $5
Dinner $6.95 $7.52 Under $5


49. Can I take food out of the Cafeteria?

A: No. The cafeterias are designed to be environmentally and economically sustainable. Take-out service increases costs upwards of 30% (and your price) and generates an enormous amount of additional waste on campus.

50. If I withdrawal from school, will I get my money back for my meal plan? 

A: Yes, the unused portion of your meal plan will be reimbursed.