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Meal Plan Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is open?
    Beginning in August 2021, all dining locations in the USU, as well as Campus Coffee, will be open in accordance with CDC, state, and local health and safety guidelines regarding COVID-19. For information about hours of operation and dining location menus, please visit our Dining Spots Page. For information on Vending Machine locations, visit our Dining Services Page.
  • Can anyone purchase a Declining Balance Dining Card?

    Yes, the Declining Balance Dining Card is available for all students, faculty, and staff. Please visit https://csusm.sodexomyway.com/my-meal-plan to purchase a Declining Balance Dining Card.

  • What are the benefits of a Declining Balance Dining Card?
    • Safer than carrying cash or a Credit Card to make food purchases on Campus
    • Peace of mind knowing the dollars on the card will go to food and beverage on campus
    • On a budget? You pick the amount you would like to load
    • Stay on campus, save time and money
    • The card can be replaced if stolen or lost
  • How do I purchase a Declining Balance Dining Card?

    Students, faculty, and staff can pay for their meals by using their Declining Balance Dining Card at all eateries except for Campus Coffee. All eateries also accept major credit and debit cards.

    You can purchase a Declining Balance Dining Card online by clicking HERE to purchase and add funds to your card. You can choose one of the suggested amounts or pick your own amount to load.

    If you are having issues purchasing a Declining Balance Meal Card, please email Yanai.Yanez@sodexo.com and include your name, your phone number, and when would be a good time for them to contact you.

  • Where do I get my Declining Balance Dining Card?
     

    Starting August 2, you may pick up your card at the Dining Office that is inside the Market at the University Student Union.
    Cards will be available for pickup Monday to Friday, from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

    If you are moving into housing and you purchased a plan online prior to move in, your card will be in your move in welcome packet.

  • Where can I use my Declining Balance Dining Card?

    You may use your Declining Balance Dining Card at:

    • The Market @ USU
    • Crash’s Café
    • Get Fresh
    • Caliente
    • WOW
    • Panda Express
    • Starbucks
  • How do I know which Declining Balance Dining Program is right for me?
    Example $750 Plan $500 Plan $250 Plan Add Dollars as Needed
    I like to eat every meal, every day x x    
    I eat most meals on campus x x    
    I eat late in the day x   x  
    I am a light eater     x  
    I am not on campus for every meal     x x
    I need flexibility with my meal plan x x x x
    I am a commuter, but I still want a meal plan x x x x
    I live in other apartments, but I still want a meal plan x x x x
  • How do I budget my Declining Balance Dining Card?

    For Fall 2021 the average meal on Campus should cost you about 8.50 and a snack is about 4.00.

    If you eat 2 times a day on campus plus a snack you should budget 21.00 a day for food.

    • A 250.00 plan will cover you for about 3 weeks if you eat on campus 9 times a week and have a snack 4 times a week. Your results may vary based on your menu choices.
    • A 500.00 plan will cover you for about 6 weeks if you eat on campus 9 times a week and have a snack 4 times a week. Your results may vary based on your menu choices.
    • A 750.00 plan will cover you for about 2 months if you eat on campus 9 times a week and have a snack 4 times a week. Your results may vary based on your menu choices.
    • If you want to load your card one time for the Semester- we recommend you load 1600.00 and check your balance at the Thanksgiving break. You can always add more Cougar Dollars and they don’t expire.
  • How do I check what my current balance is on my Declining Balance Card?

    There are two ways to check your balance, and both must be done in-store. 

    • You can check your receipt after making a purchase and your current balance will be listed there.
    • You can ask a cashier to check and print out a balance statement using your card.
  • What do I do if I have a special dietary need?

    Please contact our General Manager Yanai Yanez for all your dietary needs, yanai.yanez@sodexo.com

  • Who do I contact for help with my Declining Balance Dining Card, or if I have a question or concern?

    If you are having issues purchasing a Declining Balance Meal Card, please email Yanai.Yanez@sodexo.com and include your name, your phone number, and when would be a good time for them to contact you.

    For other inquiries, please contact:

    CSUSM Dining Services - Janelle Temnick, dining@csusm.edu

  • Do funds on the Declining Balance Dining Card carry over from semester to semester?

    Yes. Any unused funds on the Declining Balance Dining Card will rollover from the Fall to the Spring semester. Any remaining funds on your Declining Balance Dining Card at the close of the Spring semester can be used the following semester.

  • How often can I change my Declining Balance Dining Program?

    Once you purchase a Declining Balance Dining Card you can add funds at any time. For further assistance with changing the value of your plan please contact Yanai Yanez, yanai.yanez@sodexo.com.

  • What do I do if I run out of funds on my Declining Balance Dining Card before the end of the semester?

    You can add funds to your Declining Balance Dining Card in any amount at any time HERE.

  • Is the Declining Balance Dining Program required?

    The Declining Balance Dining Program is not mandatory for resident students but highly suggested.

    Any student may purchase a Declining Balance Dining Card HERE.

    Having a Declining Balance Dining Card is safe, secure and most of all ensures that the money you set aside for food on campus gets used for food on campus.

  • Is the Declining Balance Dining Program refundable?

    Declining Balance Dining Card Refund Policy:

    • 100% refund at any time for the remaining balance on the card. Contact Yanai Yanez, yanai.yanez@sodexo.com, if you need to request a refund.
  • What do I do if my Declining Balance Dining Card is lost or stolen?

    Declining Balance Dining Card are an extremely valuable resource to CSUSM staff and students. If you lose your card, immediately contact the Dining Office during office hours to report it lost (760-750-4764). Or email Yanai Yanez at Yania.Yanez@sodexo.com.

    Please note: if you lose your card and want a replacement, there will be a $5 fee for the first replacement, and then any further replacement cards will be $10.