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The mission of Northwestern Dining is to educate students, engage the community, and enrich the Northwestern experience by offering one of the most unique and pioneering campus meal programs in the nation.

Information, Policies, and Procedures

Policies Concerning the Meal Plan

  • For more information visit the Meal Plan Terms and Conditions page.
  • All University Housing residents must have a meal plan while living on campus.
  • Incoming students (freshmen and transfers) that have electronically signed their University Housing & Food Service Contracts are automatically assigned the Open Access Meal Plan.
  • Returning students living on campus will automatically be assigned the Base 14 meal plan.
  • Meal plans begin at the beginning of each term when the dining halls open.
  • All dining halls feature trayless, buffet-style and all-you-can-eat dining.
  • Students may stay in a dining hall throughout an entire meal period. However, one may not leave and re-enter that or any other dining hall during the same meal period except under the Open Access Meal Plan.
  • A "meal" is designated by each time a student uses his/her Wildcard to enter the dining hall.
  • Cat Cash can be added to any Meal Plan.
  • Cat Cash purchases made by students are tax-exempt. Please tell the cashier that you are a student when making your Cat Cash purchases.
  • Cash and Credit Card purchases are charged taxes for faculty, staff and guests.
  • Students may also purchase items at designated retail locations using Dining Dollars or Cat Cash.
  • There are five meal periods offered in the dining halls:
    • Breakfast and Lunch are offered Monday through Saturday.
    • Dinner is offered everyday.
    • Brunch is offered only on Sunday.
    • Late-Night is offered Monday through Thursday at Foster-Walker, Hinman, and Sargent Halls.

Change Your Meal Plan

Students may only change their meal plans once each quarter. To change a meal plan visit the Meal Plan Change page.                         

When changing a meal plan, please note that there may be changes that occur in the billing of your meal plan when charges are prorated.

Charges are prorated differently for each type of meal plan. For this reason, changing from one type of meal plan to another, despite the same quarterly/yearly price, may result in additional charges.

Meal Plan Rates

*Please note that our website may contain typographical errors or inaccuracies and may not be complete or current. We reserve the right to correct any errors or inaccuracies and to change or update information at any time, without prior notice (including after a meal plan choice has been submitted). Such errors or inaccuracies may relate to description and pricing of meal plans.*

Door Prices - Applicable taxes will be applied when entering a dining hall using Cash or a Credit Card. Students entering a Dining Hall using Cat Cash or Dining Dollars will not be charged taxes.

2017 Summer RatesDoor Price          
Dinner        $12.00

Meal Contracts

Arrangements for meal contracts are made with:
Food Service Office
Evanston Campus
600 Haven, Room J147
Evanston, Illinois 60201
Phone: 847-491-2020

Northwestern University | Dining Services | 2122 Sheridan Road | Room J147 | Evanston, IL 60201 | tel. 847-491-2020 | Contact Us