A close up of a male student eating lunch with friends at The Mill at Penn State Mont Alto.

Meal Plan Comparison

LionCash+

Recommended option for off-campus students who like to eat on campus and want the ability to use the plan at participating off-campus restaurants.

  • Flexibility to use at any on-campus dining location, as well as many off-campus businesses
  • Discounts at select on- and off-campus locations
  • Convenience of cash-free purchasing with the Penn State id+ Card

Commuter Meal Plan

Recommended option for off-campus students who like to eat on campus, but need to charge the plan to the Bursar account.  Purchase the fall plan before September 30 and the spring plan before February 28.

  • Flexibility to use at any on-campus dining location
  • Discounts at select on-campus dining locations
  • Convenience of cash-free purchasing with the Penn State id+ Card
  • Ability to charge the Bursar account

Campus Meal Plan

Recommended option for off-campus students who eat 14 or more meals each week at the dining commons; required for students living on campus.

  • Flexibility to use at any on-campus dining location
  • Ultimate value at the all-you-care-to-eat dining commons and residential retail locations
  • Convenience of cash-free purchasing with the Penn State id+ Card
  • Ability to charge the Bursar account

Meal Plan Comparison Chart (2017-2018)

Question LionCash+ Commuter Meal Plan Campus Meal Plan**
Is there a base cost? No No Yes
$1,370 per semester
(2017-2018 rate)
Where are the meal plan costs? Based on amount deposited Level 1: $500
Level 2: $1,000
Level 1: $1,985/semester
Level 2: $2,305/semester
Level 3: $2,550/semester
(Amount includes base cost)
What are the spendable dining dollars? 100% of amount deposited Level 1: $500
Level 2: $1,000
Level 1: $615
Level 2: $935
Level 3: $1,180
How many prepared meals will the plan buy in the dining center?

*Approximation is based on the average cost of lunch and dinner.
$500 deposit:
3 meals/week
$1,000 deposit:
6 meals/week*
Level 1: 3 meals/week
Level 2: 6 meals/week*
Level 1: 9 meals/week
Level 2: 13 meals/week
Level 3: 16 meals/week*
Where can the meal plan be used? On-campus dining locations
Off-campus businesses
For full listing, visit:
LionCash+ Merchants
On-campus dining locations On-campus dining locations
Is there a discount on purchases? Yes
    10% discount at the on-campus all-you-care-to-eat dining commons 10% discount on prepared items at on-campus retail dining locations. Discounts at other participating LionCash+ businesses
Yes
    10% discount at the on-campus all-you-care-to-eat dining commons 10% discount on prepared items at on-campus retail dining locations.
Yes
    65% discount at the on-campus all-you-care-to-eat dining commons 65% discount on prepared items at on-campus residential retail dining locations 10% discount on prepared items at on-campus retail dining locations.
Can additional funds be added to the meal plan throughout the semester if needed? Yes No Yes
Do leftover funds carry over? Yes Leftover funds at the end of the fall semester will carry over to the spring; however, leftover funds at the end of the spring semester are forfeited Leftover funds will only carry over at the end of the fall semester if a new meal plan is purchased for the spring semester. Leftover funds at the end of the spring semester are forfeited
Can the meal plan be charged to the Bursar account? No Yes
 
Yes
 
When can the meal plan be purchased? Year Round

For Fall 2017: By September 30, 2017.
For Spring 2018: By February 28, 2018.

One semester prior
Who is eligible to purchase the plan? Any Penn State student*

*Students who are living on-campus must purchase a Campus Meal Plan with the Housing and Food Services contract; however, LionCash+ may be used in conjunction with the Campus Meal Plan for off-campus spending and for on-campus laundry, vending, and copier usage.
Enrolled off-campus students Students who are living on campus with a Housing and Food Services contract, as well as enrolled off-campus students and enrolled students living on-campus who are not required by contract to purchase the Campus Meal Plan
How do I purchase the plan? www.idonline.psu.edu www.eliving.psu.edu www.eliving.psu.edu
Can the meal plan be cancelled or refunded? Yes
(Upon graduation or withdrawal from the University; or at the end of the spring semester)
Only students who officially withdraw from the University Only students who officially withdraw from the University

Comparison table will be updated when rates are approved by the Board of Trustees in spring 2018.