Frequently Asked Questions...
About Dining Services
- What is included in the meal plans?
Beginning students can choose a traditional plan that includes 8-, 13-, or Unlimited meal swipes each week. The meal plans run Monday through Sunday each week of the semester. All meal plans reset Sunday night for the following week and unused meals will be forfeited.
- The Boiler Flex Unlimited 500 Plan affords students the most value, as it has the lowest cost per meal. This plan includes an average of five swipes at On-the-GO! per week and $500 Dining Dollars for the year to spend at the 29 retail dining locations around campus. The Boiler Flex Unlimited Plan 500 provides 16 guest meals per academic year or 8 per semester. Dining Dollars can also be used to bring guests to the dining court. The Boiler Flex Unlimited plans allow students to add additional Dining Dollars at semester break anytime during the semester.
- The Boiler Flex Unlimited 250 Plan includes an average of five swipes at On-the-GO! per week and $250 Dining Dollars for the year to spend at the 29 retail dining locations around campus. The Boiler Flex Unlimited Plan 250 provides 16 guest meals per academic year or 8 per semester. Dining Dollars can also be used to bring guests to the dining court. The Boiler Flex Unlimited plans allow students to add additional Dining Dollars at semester break anytime during the semester.
- The 13-Track Plan includes thirteen meals per week in dining courts or On-the-GO! locations. This plan is ideal for the student who eats twice a day in the dining courts and offers $450 Dining Dollars per year to spend in dining and retail locations across campus.
- The 8-Track Plan includes eight meals per week. per week in the dining courts or On-the-GO! locations. This plan is designed for the student on a budget who chooses not to eat as many meals each week. This plan does not offer any Dining Dollars.
Dining Dollars for all meal plans are distributed by semester, half in the fall and half in the spring. Unused Dining Dollars will carry over from fall to spring semester and will expire when the meal contract ends after finals week in May.
If you are a student living in University Residences, and are college sophomore status or above, you have an additional option available for meal plan selection. You may choose the Boiler Block Plan instead of a 8-, 13-, or Boiler Flex Unlimited Meal Plans.
- The Boiler Block Plan includes 246 per year that can be used for you and/or your guests at any time during the semester. The Block plan also includes also $450 Dining Dollars. The meals and the Dining Dollars are distributed by semester, half in the fall and half in the spring. Unused meals and Dining Dollars will carry over from fall to spring semester and will expire when the meal contract ends.
- The Boiler Gold Plan is an exclusive meal plan option for the residents of Hawkins Hall. This meal plan includes $1500 Dining Dollars per year (no meal swipes) that can be used in dining courts or retail locations across campus.
- Can I change my meal plan?
Sometimes circumstances change, and if you find that the meal plan you selected is not the best option for you, we can usually make accommodations. You can go online any time before the start of the semester and make changes to your meal plan. After the semester begins, you can only move up in meal plans. You may increase the 8-Track or 13-Track meal plans any time during the academic year. If you have a Boiler Block Plan you can only change to a traditional plan at the semester break before the start of second semester.
If you want to increase the number of meal swipes in your current traditional meal plan for the remainder of this semester, please send your meal plan change request to firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you are living in Hawkins or Hilltop where a meal plan is optional, you should be aware that when selecting a meal plan you are contracting for the entire academic year. You are billed by semester, but the meal plan option is for the full year. Note: Students living at Hilltop Apartments or Hawkins Hall who have selected a meal plan are not eligible to change to a room only option during the term of the housing contract.
For the 2015-16 Academic Year, you may reduce the number of meal swipes within meal plans or switch to the Boiler Block Plan by the following deadlines:
- The fall deadline is Thursday, Aug. 18, 2016.
- The spring deadline is Sunday, Jan. 8, 2017.
- If you select an 8-Track meal plan to start the semester and want more meals, you can move up to the 13-Track or one of the Boiler Flex Unlimited plans anytime during the semester. The difference in cost will be billed to your MyPurdue account.
- If you select the 13-Track meal plan to start the semester, you can move up to one of the Boiler Flex Unlimited Plans anytime during the semester. The difference in cost will be billed to your MyPurdue account.
- If you start the semester with Boiler Block Plan, you are not allowed to change plans until semester break.
- If you start the semester with one of the Boiler Flex Unlimited plans, you are not allowed to change plans until semester break.
- If you are changing plans at semester break and moving up or down into a new plan, any unspent Dining Dollars will roll over to the new plan.
The Fine Print
When choosing a meal plan please be aware that you are signing up for the full academic year. You are billed for half of the cost of the plan each semester. You can increase your meal plan at anytime during the semester, but you cannot drop the meal plan while you are living in University Residences. For the 2016-17 Academic Year, residents of Hawkins Hall and Hilltop Apartments are not required to purchase a meal plan. Students assigned to these residences who wish to change to a room-only option must do so prior to the start of the Fall 2016 contract. Current residents of non-apartment halls who transfer to Hilltop Apartments, Purdue Village or Hawkins Hall can select a room-only option when they are initially assigned. Residents of Hawkins Hall or Hilltop Apartments may eat at any residential dining services location by purchasing a meal plan here or by using a BoilerExpress account.
- Do I have to get a meal plan?
Students who choose to live in the undergraduate residence halls are required to purchase a meal plan as part of the housing contract. Students who live in Hilltop Apartments or Hawkins Hall may select a meal plan when they sign their housing contract but are not required to do so. (Note: Students living at Hilltop Apartments or Hawkins Hall who have selected a meal plan are not eligible to change to a room-only option during the term of the housing contract.) Hawkins Hall residents may also purchase a Boiler Gold plan for dining in Purdue Dining & Catering facilities.
- What locations accept a meal plan?
The meal swipes may be used in any of the dining courts or On-the-GO! dining facilities. Dining Dollars offer another level of flexibility to your meal plan. You can purchase extra meals in the dining court or visit any of the 29 retail locations spread across the residential and academic campus. Unused meal swipes will expire each Sunday and the meal plans will reset for the following week. Unspent Dining Dollars roll over from first to second semester, but expire when your meal contract ends.
- Where can I eat?
The meal portion of the board plan can be used in any residential dining courts and according to the posted schedule of service times and days they are serving. Dining Dollars can also be used in all Purdue Dining & Catering residential and retail operations, at the Union Commons in Purdue Memorial Union and campus satellite retail locations.
- I have a special diet. Can you help?
We offer a wide variety of menu items to accommodate most special diet needs. If you suffer from food allergies and would like some help navigating the dining courts please contact email@example.com . Our staff will be glad to meet with you to discuss your situation and provide guidance. If you require a special diet you should contact the Disability Resource Center http://www.purdue.edu/odos/drc/ for help in securing accommodations.
The DRC is located in Young Hall, Room 830. Current office hours are Monday - Friday, 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. Students who wish to make an appointment may do so by calling (765) 494-1247
- Can I purchase meals if I live off campus?
BoilerExpress can be used to purchase meals in the dining courts or retail operations. Students can deposit money into their accounts in convenient amounts and use it to buy meals and snacks when and where their schedules permit. To open an account visit purdue.edu/card
- What forms of payment do the dining courts accept and how much does a meal cost for a guest?
The dining courts accept Dining Dollars, BoilerExpress, cash, Visa, and Mastercard. For meal rates please, please view Guest Meal Prices.
- Are there opportunities for employment?
We are always looking for students who would like to work in a fun, fast paced environment. We offer flexible schedules and convenient locations. As an added bonus, you receive a free meal with each shift you work. You can contact any dining court directly or follow this link to fill out an application online.
About NetNutrition & Sensible Eating
- Where can I find nutritional information about food served at the dining courts?
NetNutrition is your source for nutritional information. By clicking on the link you can select the hall you would like to visit, look at the stations and select items you want to eat. By hovering your mouse over the item a nutrition label will pop up and show you ingredients, calories and portion size. You can look at a specific item or your entire meal. You can also click on the different food allergies and the menus will sort out items containing your food sensitivity. Icons are provided next to the menu items to help alert you to the top eight food allergens.
- How far in advance and how far back can I view nutritional information that is based on items that are being served at the dining courts?
You can view one week’s menus at any time. We have information for specific stations available all the time.
- I am searching for an entree from Heartland Classics. Why can’t I find it?
Not all item data has been verified that it is correct to show on NetNutrition. A team is continuing to work on this data, and it will show under the title of Daily Feature as items and recipes are coded.
- How do I figure how many calories I need?
There are a variety of sites that provide information on caloric intake. ChooseMyPlate.gov is a great place to start your search.
- How can I estimate the measurement of the portions I eat at the dining courts?
- Computer Mouse = ¾ Cup
- Whole Tennis Ball = About ½ Cup
- Golf Ball = ¼ Cup
- Pair of Dice = About 1 Tablespoon
- Cheese Slice = 1 Ounce
- Deck of Cards = 3 oz Portion of Meat
- Postage Stamp = 1 Teaspoon
- How do I identify vegan and vegetarian items within NetNutrition?
Vegan items can be identified if Vegan appears in the name of the item. Vegetarian items will be denoted with an asterisk.
- What are some resources to find information about Vegan and Vegetarian lifestyles?
- Can I look up On-the-Go! items in NetNutrition?
- I am concerned about food safety, what types of precautions can I take?
There are Use by dates on various On-the-GO! items. Potentially hazardous foods should be refrigerated or eaten within 4 hours.
- Where can I find more information on food allergies?
- What kind of oil is used for frying foods?
Trans Fat Free oil is used for frying all products.
- Are the fat calories in fried products accurate?
The data used for fried products does include absorption of fat from frying.
- What is BoilerExpress?
A BoilerExpress debit account provides a way of making cash-free purchases at Purdue Dining & Catering residential dining and retail locations and the Purdue Memorial Union as well as its campus satellite locations. It can also be used in vending machines, copy machines and for doing laundry. BoilerExpress account information is accessed through each student’s University ID card. To open a BoilerExpress account, visit purdue.edu/card There is no minimum balance to maintain, and any balance remaining at the end of the year will roll to the next year as long as you remain a Purdue student.