2024-25 Meal Plan Policies


Academic year 2024-25

Meal plan selections may be made on the Housing & Residence Life website through the Housing Application or on Banner Self Service under the Student Account/Student Services tab through the Meal Plan Selection Form.

When selecting a meal plan, remember to:

  1. Carefully read the terms and conditions of the Contract for Meal Plans.
  2. Complete the Meal Plan section of the Housing Application if living on campus or the Meal Plan Selection form if living off campus.
  3. Classification and meal plan eligibility is as defined by the University and Housing and Residence Life.

Contract Terms and Conditions for Meal Plans for Academic Year Fall 2024- Spring 2025

Key concepts and definitions

Meals: Meals allow students entrance into a dining hall when the resident dining locations are open (see below for effective dates and dining hall closures). Meals expire at the end of the semester.

Declining balance: Declining balance funds may be used at any dining location on campus. These funds roll over from semester to semester and expire at the end of the academic year in which it was purchased.

Meal plans: Meal plans are available only to UNC Charlotte students registered for courses in the semester for which the meal plan is purchased. These plans have a predesignated quantity of meals and/or declining balance funds billed to a student’s Student Account.

First day of meal service: The first day of meal service refers to the first day students may use their meal swipes at the resident dining halls.

Sales taxes: North Carolina tax law requires the meal portion of a meal plan to be subject to sales tax; the associated Declining Balance portion of the meal plan is subject to sales tax at the point of sale.

Student meal plans

The University offers a variety of meal plans to meet the diverse dining needs of students.

Daily Plan: The Daily Plan provides students unlimited meals to be used at our resident dining hall locations, five (5) guest swipes to be used at the dining halls at the cardholders’ discretion, and Declining Balance funds to use at any on-campus dining location.

Block Plans: Block plans provide students with a specific quantity of meals to use in our resident dining hall locations that decline upon use and funds in their declining balance to use at any on-campus dining location or off-campus partner.

Declining Balance Plans: Declining Balance Plans refers to a meal plan consisting solely of declining balance funds. Declining Balance plans are used primarily for retail food purchases on campus, although declining balance may also be used to purchase meals at on-campus resident dining halls.

Meal plan eligibility
First-year students living on campus

All first-year students living on campus must purchase the Daily Plan each semester of occupancy, regardless of their housing assignment.

  • Students who enroll with college credit are considered first-year or freshman applicants if they have not taken any college courses since graduating high school, as defined by the Office of Admissions.
  • Summer credits taken between graduating high school and entering into UNC Charlotte do not change this designation.
  • Any student considered a first-year student in the fall will continue with that designation for the academic year.
Upper-class students assigned to “required” housing

All upper-class students (sophomores, juniors, seniors) who are assigned “required meal plan” housing accommodations (those in the towers – Holshouser, Sanford and Scott Halls – and in the suites – Belk, Hawthorn, Holshouser, Hunt, Laurel, Levine, Lynch, Miltimore, Oak, Wallis and Witherspoon Halls) are required each semester to purchase one of the Meal Plans offered to them. These students are able to choose from The Daily Plan or one of the Block Plans.

During the student’s period of occupancy, UNC Charlotte will provide meals according to the plan selected. A student in “required meal plan” housing (as indicated in the previous paragraph) will need to select a Meal Plan during the housing selection process. The student will be charged each semester for a Meal Plan selection. Non-use of a Meal Plan by a student in “required” housing does not nullify the requirement to purchase a plan each semester, nor does it negate the charge for an unused plan. If a plan is not selected or if an incorrect plan is requested, an eligible plan will be assigned.

Upper-class students assigned to “non-required” housing

Upper-class students assigned to “non-required meal plan” housing (those in the apartments in Belk, Elm, Levine, Martin, Miltimore, Pine, Wallis and Witherspoon Halls or Greek Village) may choose from any of the Meal Plans offered. These students may choose The Daily Plan, one of the Block Plans, one of the Declining Balance plans, or may opt out of a Meal Plan purchase.


Commuters, regardless of their class status, may choose from any of the meal plans offered. These students may choose The Daily Plan, one of our Block plans, one of our Declining Balance plans, or may opt-out of a meal plan purchase.

International students

International students should request information regarding their meal plan options through the Office of International Programs before the beginning of the semester. Questions regarding meal plans for these students may also be directed to the Meal Plans & 49er Card Office at 49ercard@charlotte.edu.

Renewal for all plans

Meal plans purchased in the fall semester will automatically be renewed for the spring semester for all students unless changed or canceled by the student. Only students currently enrolled at UNC Charlotte may purchase a meal plan.

Effective dates and dining hall closures

Meal plan purchases are effective on the first meal service date of each semester as posted on the Auxiliary Services website.

Resident dining halls will be closed or have reduced hours during Fall Break, Thanksgiving Break, Winter Break, and Spring Break. Meal plan prices reflect these closures. Declining Balance funds can be used throughout campus at the University dining locations open during these breaks. For up-to-date hours visit, the dine on campus webpage.

Fall Semester
  • Tuesday, Aug. 13, 2024, at noon: Last day for upperclass and commuter students to make changes or cancel their meal plan without incurring a $25 administrative fee
  • Wednesday, Aug. 14, 2024: Meal plans go live
  • Friday, Sept. 6, 2024, at noon: Final deadline to change or cancel a meal plan
Fall Break
  • October 14-15, 2024 (residential dining halls will be open)
Thanksgiving Break
  • Wednesday, Nov. 27 to Saturday, Nov. 30, 2024 (all dining halls closed)
Last day to use a meal plan
  • Thursday, Dec. 12, 2024: Last day to use meals for fall 2024 meal plans
Winter Break
  • Friday, Dec. 13, 2024 through Thursday, Jan. 2, 2024 (all dining halls closed)
Spring Semester
  • Friday, Jan. 3, 2025, at noon: Last day for upperclass and commuter students to make changes or cancel their meal plan without incurring a $25 administrative fee
  • Monday, Jan. 6, 2025: First day of meal service
  • Friday, Jan. 24, 2025, at noon: Last day to make prorated changes to a meal plan
Spring Break
  • Saturday, March 1 through Saturday, March 8, 2025 (all dining halls closed)
Last day to use a meal plan
  • Thursday, May 8, 2025

*Dates are subject to change based on the academic and board calendar

Changes and cancellations

Students may request a change to their Meal Plan through the change period indicated on the Meal Plan Selection website (approximately the third Friday of meal service), unless there is a change to the academic calendar. For the most up-to-date meal plan change information, including dates and deadlines, please visit Auxiliary Services website. The University has the right in its sole discretion to amend Meal Plan options in the event that the schedule for in-person instruction changes due to a Force Majeure.

Student Meal Plan changes or cancellations by students are prorated (as described below) to each semester’s first meal service date and are subject to a $25 Meal Plan Processing Fee, whether the student has used the Meal Plan or not. After the change period, no other Meal Plan changes or cancellations may be made for the current semester. This also applies to students who have moved from required housing to apartments or have moved off campus, unless the student has requested a cancellation due to withdrawal from the University.

All Meal Plan changes or cancellation requests are submitted online, using the Meal Plan Selection Form, accessible under the Student Additional Links section of Student Self-Service in the MyCharlotte Portal. Any questions may be directed to the Meal Plans and ID Office, located in the Student Union, or at 704-687-7337.  

Meal Plan changes and cancellation requests are accepted Mondays beginning at 8:00 AM through Friday at 12:00 noon. All changes and cancellations will be updated each Monday morning for the previous week’s requests. Requests submitted after noon on Friday and through the weekend, will not be processed the upcoming Monday, but instead will be addressed on the following Monday.

If Changing Between The Daily Plan, 160 Block or the 100 Block Plan

The meal portion of the original plan will be refunded in its entirety, and the new meals will be billed accordingly.  The meal usage will transfer to the new plan.  The original Declining Balance portion of these plans will remain with the student.

If Changing from The Daily or a Block Plan to a Declining Balance Plan

A prorated refund of the meal portion of the Meal Plan will be issued.  Proration is determined based on time, if the Daily Plan is the original plan, and based on usage if changing from a block plan.  Declining balance use from the original plan will transfer to the new Declining Balance plan.

If Canceling The Daily Plan, 160 Block or the 100 Block Plan

A prorated refund of the meal portion of the Meal Plan will be issued.  Proration is determined based on time if The Daily Plan is canceled and usage if a block plan is canceled.  The original Declining Balance portion of these plans will remain with the student and cannot be canceled.  

If Changing from a Declining Balance Plan to The Daily or Block Plan

Declining balance use from the original plan will transfer to the new declining balance. If you exceed the allotted amount of declining balance, your new plan will start with a zero balance and you will have a separate charge for the overage. The meals will be assigned in full.

If Canceling a Declining Balance Plan

The remaining balance will be refunded to the student. 


Dining appeals are available for students who have experienced an extenuating circumstance that impacts the need for a Meal Plan. To begin the appeal process, a student must submit a first-level appeal through the Office of Student Assistance and Support Services


Once a request for cancellation due to a withdrawal from the University has been reviewed and validated, the student will be financially responsible for the daily prorated dining charge for their Meal Plan. The Meal Plan charge will be prorated through the week of the last use of the plan or through the effective date of withdrawal from the University, whichever date is later; and a prorated amount will be credited to the student’s account. This cancellation will also incur a $150.00 withdrawal fee, which will be applied to the student’s account. No cancellations or refunds are permitted for students who withdraw within the last four (4) weeks of classes, based on the last date of the semester. If a student is released from their dining contract due to withdrawal from the University but re-enrolls later during the same term, the student will again become financially responsible for the Meal Plan they were contracted for when the student withdrew.

The cancellation terms above do not apply to students who have been granted a withdrawal with extenuating circumstances from the Dean of Students Office and are handled on a case-by-case basis. 

Optional Dining Account

An Optional Dining Account (ODA) may be used to supplement a Meal Plan.  Funds for this account are not billable through Student Accounts, but can be deposited separately through the 49er Card website or the Meal Plans and ID Office (located in Room 127, Popp Martin Student Union) using cash, check or credit/debit card. This account may be used for food purchased in University dining halls, concessions, and convenience store locations. The Optional Dining Account carries over indefinitely as long as the student is enrolled at the University.

Disclosure Terms & Conditions for Optional Dining Account

  1. The Optional Dining Account is a non-required account of pre-deposited funds accessed by the Cardholder for the sole and exclusive use for food purchases in all Dining Services locations and it is placed on the 49er ID Card. This account should not be confused with the 49er Account.
  2. Deposits to Optional Dining Accounts can be made in the Meal Plans and ID Office located in the Popp Martin Student Union.  A minimum deposit of $5.00 (no maximum limit) may be made by cash, check or credit card.
  3. Deposits may also be made at the 49er Card website.
  4. If the Cardholder’s deposit check is returned for non-payment, a $25.00 charge will be assessed on the Cardholder’s account and the account will be automatically suspended. The account will not be reactivated until the NSF check is reconciled and all appropriate bank NSF fees have been reimbursed to the Meal Plans and ID Office.
  5. There is no daily limit on the number of purchases that may be made and debited to the account provided funds are available. The Cardholder understands and agrees the 49er ID Card is not a credit card, nor can it be used to obtain cash or cash advances from the account under any circumstances.
  6. Balances of account may be obtained at any Dining Services point-of-sale location or the 49er Card Online website.
  7. Account Inactivity – Optional Dining Accounts that are inactive for a period of six (6) months will be assessed a $1.00 per month inactivity charge for each inactive month thereafter.