Student Meal Plans: answering your questions

 

You asked, we answered - see below for commonly asked questions:

  • Are you a first year student living in residence? Yes you do need a Student Meal Plan.
  • Are you an upper year student living in residence? Yes you do need a Student Meal Plan.
  • Do you live off-campus? No you do not need a Student Meal Plan, but you can still buy one if you would like.

Read more about our Student Meal Plans here.

Resident Students: A Student Meal Plan is required

A student meal plan ensures that your dining requirements are covered for the academic year, allowing you to focus on other activities that will help you succeed at UTM.

Non-Resident Students: A Student Meal Plan is not required

You can choose to purchase a student meal plan as a way to budget your food purchases throughout the year.  If you know that you will be spending time on campus outside of just going to classes, then you may want to consider a Student Meal Plan

  • Are you a first year student living in residence? Then no you cannot opt out of a Student Meal Plan.
  • Are you an upper year student living in residence? Then no you cannot opt out of a Student Meal Plan.

Read more about our Student Meal Plans here.

A Student Meal Plan is a Declining Balance, À La Carte style meal plan. This means that you pay for what you want, when you want

Whenever you make a food or beverage purchase, the purchase value comes off of your Student Meal Plan balance (Declining Balance). If you want to purchase an entire breakfast meal, or if you just want a coffee and a muffin in the morning, or even if you don't want to eat anything until late afternoon, then you are free to do so. You can skip breakfast or eat 3 burgers for dinner - your Student Meal Plan does not dictate your eating habits, you do.  This is because you can purchase as much or as little as you want any time during the day (à la carte).

  • We have a meal plan type called a “Declining Balance” meal plan
  • This means that you start with a total amount of money in your account, and as you spend it, it declines from your account
    • It does not matter if you only eat two meals a day, or if you eat five meals a day, because it only removes money from your account when you purchase food
    • You do not lose money for not eating breakfast; you only spend money when you purchase food
  • You can buy food anywhere on campus, and at our off campus partners
  • Student Meal Plans also “include” up to a 13% savings on all “Basic” purchases (save the tax)

Read more about our Student Meal Plan options here.

  • "Basic" dollar purchases allow you a tax savings of up to 13% off of qualifying purchases
  • You can use the online Budget Planner to see how your spending compares in order to adjust your spending. Once you see how you are spending, you may move to a smaller plan (within one month after first-year move-in; see Important Dates and Deadlines for details) or you may add more money to your account as required
  • The funds are deposited directly on your TCard and can be used whenever you need to make a food or beverage purchase, just tap and go!
  • You can use your student meal plan funds at all food service locations on campus, as well as with our off campus partners

  • Each Student Meal Plan includes two accounts: "Basic" funds and "Flex" funds
     
  • The terms “Basic” and “Flex” refer to the account your funds are coming from for the food you are purchasing:
     
    • Basic” funds are the tax-exempt portion of your Student Meal Plan.  Any purchase of a meal on campus (with the exception of meals from the Blind Duck, Chatime, Duck Stop, food trucks, and most vending machines) qualifies as a Basic purchase
       
    • Flex” funds can be used to purchase all items that don't qualify as a Basic-eligible meal
      • You can use your Flex funds for:
        • Snack items
        • Beverages
        • Convenience items
        • Confectionary
        • Grocery items
        • Vending machines with card readers
        • The Blind Duck (in the Student Centre)
        • Chatime (in the Student Centre)
        • The Duck Stop (in the Student Centre)
        • Participating food trucks on campus
        • Our off campus partners
           
  • When you use “Basic” funds, you can SAVE up to 13% on each purchase because they are tax exempt
  • Basic or Flex funds cannot be used to make purchases at the UTM Bookstore

Read more on Student Meal Plan options here.

Basic” funds are the tax-exempt portion of your Student Meal Plan.  Any purchase of a meal on campus (with the exception of meals from the Blind Duck, Chatime, Duck Stop, food trucks, and most vending machines) qualifies as a Basic purchase

For more information on "Basic" vs. "Flex" visit the Understanding Basic vs. Flex webpage. 

Flex” funds can be used to purchase all items that don't qualify as a Basic-eligible meal.

You can use your Flex funds for:

  • Snack items
  • Beverages
  • Convenience items
  • Confectionary
  • Grocery items
  • Vending machines with card readers
  • The Blind Duck (in the Student Centre)
  • Chatime (in the Student Centre)
  • The Duck Stop (in the Student Centre)
  • Participating food trucks on campus

For more information on "Basic" vs. "Flex" visit the Understanding Basic vs. Flex webpage. 

  • Each Student Meal Plan has a different monetary value so that you are able to purchase a plan that reflects how often you will be eating on campus and the size of your appetite
    • As a guide, consider the below:
      • If you will be on campus through the week, and on weekends, you will want a larger plan
      • If you plan to leave campus on the weekends, you will need a smaller plan
      • If you have a large appetite, you will need a larger plan
      • If you have a smaller appetite, you will need a smaller plan

 

Read more on Student Meal Plan options here.

The "Minimum Commitment" is the minimum level of Basic Dollar spending required.

Basic Dollars remaining at the end of the school year over this minimum level of spending are eligible for carryover into the following year.

  • If you choose a plan then change your mind, you can change your plan

Read more about Important Dates and Deadlines here.

As a general guide, consider the below:

  • Will you be staying on campus on the weekends? Do you have a large appetite?
    • Consider the Plus 500 plan
  • Will you be staying on campus on the weekends? Do you have a smaller appetite?
    • Consider the Plus 250 plan
  • Will you be leaving campus on the weekend? Do you have a large appetite?
    • Consider the Full 500 plan
  • Will you be leaving campus on the weekends? Do you have a smaller appetite?
    • Consider the Full 250 plan

Read more on Student Meal Plan options here.

  • YOU SAVE MONEY:
    • You do not pay tax on "Basic" dollar purchases (a savings of up to 13%)
       
  • SPEND MONEY ON FOOD, SMARTER:
    • We provide a Budget Planner so you can understand the rate at which you are spending your money – will you run out of money too soon? Will you have too much money at the end of the year left over?
    • Based on your spending habits you may choose to change your plan, that is easy to do (as long as it is before the deadline)

See how you can change your plan here.

Please also note the Important Dates and Deadlines
 

  • USE YOUR STUDENT MEAL PLAN ON AND OFF CAMPUS
  • ONE CARD FOR CONTACTLESS PURCHASES
    • Don’t worry about carrying multiple cards around campus, your TCard can be used at all foodservice locations
    • Don’t worry about PINs or inserting cards – TCards are enabled with tap technology

Read more on Student Meal Plans here.

*Activate and utilize your Utoronto email account*

Your UTORid is required to activate and access your University of Toronto email account. All university communication will be sent to this email address, so it is essential that you get into the practice of checking it regularly. Your email account will be activated at the same time that you activate your UTORid.

You are responsible for setting up an official university email address and for correspondence sent to you by the University at that account.

Only university-sponsored email addresses (those ending in mail.utoronto.ca, utoronto.ca or toronto.edu) can be updated through ACORN. Please make certain you update your U of T email address as soon as possible and before classes begin.

UTM Student Meal Plans cannot be used at:

  • U of T St. George campus
  • U of T St. George campus affiliated Colleges
  • UTSC 
The Hospitality & Ancillary Services Department at U of T Mississauga is committed to providing products and services that deliver value to the U of T Mississauga Community

Questions? Contact us!

​​mealplan.utm@utoronto.ca
(905) 569-4795
William G. Davis building, Suite 3127

Making experiences, exceptional