First-Year Student Dining Plans

The first-year dining plans are brand new for 2019-2020 and offer incoming students the flexibility, convenience and value they crave. Students can choose from a wide variety of dining options throughout their day; from grab-and-go to all-you-care-to-eat. Campus Dining features more than 27 dining venues including three markets, three food trucks and over 1,000 menu options. With their dining plan, new Mustangs have the freedom to make their own food choices.


Food plays a huge and very personal role in students’ lives, and each relationship with it is different. Some students can’t seem to consume enough calories, while others are happy to graze and snack their way through the day. For this reason, Campus Dining is offering three brand new dining plans that use a "declining balance system."

First-Year Flex Max

Designed for students who live to eat and eat to live, the First-Year Flex Max plan offers $1,617 a quarter, which translates to $147 a week to spend on food, enough Dining Dollars to keep a student with a large appetite fueled for success.

First-Year Flex Prime

Not everyone needs, or has the time for three squares a day, and for those there is First-Year Flex Prime. Calculated to offer $1,485 a quarter, which translates to $135 a week to spend on food, enough Dining Dollars to keep a student with an average appetite fueled for success.

First-Year Flex Basic

For those who are happy to nosh throughout the day, there is the First-Year Flex Basic plan. The Basic offers $1,386 a quarter, roughly $126 a week, enough Dining Dollars for a student with a light appetite or one who will eat off campus often.

How the plans work

At the beginning of each quarter, a specific amount of Dining Dollars is added to a student's Poly Card (Cal Poly I.D.). The amount is determined by the plan a student chooses. Then a student simply uses his or her Poly Card like a debit card at any Campus Dining venue, dollar-for-dollar. This system gives students the liberty to eat what they want, when they want.

Campus Dining plans are convenient, flexible and easy to use. The only hard part is picking the plan that is right for the student. To make the decision stress free, students are allowed to make a one time switch in dining plans at the end of fall quarter from Nov. 1 through Dec. 6. Their new choice will go into effect the following winter quarter.


Wrapped in each dining plan is a list of factors and costs that go into running a program that supports first-year students and their varied locations, schedules, likes and dislikes, and nutrition requirements. Below is the cost break down of each plan including the Dining Dollars available per quarter.

First-Year Flex MaxFirst-Year Flex PrimeFirst-Year Flex Basic
Plan Cost$5,886$5,490$5,193
Base Expense-$825-$825-$825
Annual Dining Dollars$4,851$4,455$4,158
Quarterly Allotted
Dining Dollars
Maximum Rollover*$300$200$100
*Students who purchase & maintain a plan for 2020-21 will be able to rollover remaining funds per these maximums.

Payment Schedule

Choose to make one annual payment, three quarterly payments or nine monthly payments with the first payment due September 1, 2019 and the last one due May 1, 2020. A $21.00 one-time enrollment fee will be charged for quarterly or payment option. Initial payment deposits will be applied when fall charges are placed.

First-Year Flex MaxFirst-Year Flex PrimeFirst-Year Flex Basic
Total Fall Charges$1,962$1,830$1,731
Installment Due Dates
9/1 amount if $1000 deposit was made$0$0$0
10/1 amount if $1000 deposit was made$308$220$154
Total Winter Charges$1,962$1,830$1,731
Installment Due Dates
Total Spring Charges$1,962$1,830$1,731
Installment Due Dates
Total Academic Year$5,886$5,490$5,193


All freshman living in campus housing are required to have a dining plan for the entire academic year. This gives students the convenience of having meals easily accessible so they can focus on their academics and student life.


Dining Dollars can be used at any Campus Dining venues.


All plans include a base cost. This cost provides up to a 35 percent discount at 805 Kitchen and Vista Grande.


Unused declining balance funds roll over to the next quarter. However, funds remaining at the end of spring quarter are forfeited, unless a plan is purchased and maintained for the 2020-21 academic year.


If a student runs out of Dining Dollars before the quarter is over, they can put funds on a Campus Express account. Please note Campus Express does not include the 35% discount to 805 Kitchen or Vista Grande.


Students with dietary restrictions should review their dining plan food options at to determine if their dietary needs can be met prior to submitting their initial payment registration for the Housing and Dining License.

Additional terms and conditions may be found in the Housing and Dining License Agreement Terms and Conditions 2019-2020