Creating the Extraordinary Student Experience: Office of Student Life

Columbus Campus Dining Plans

Ohio State offers a range of dining plans to meet the needs of students for convenient, nutritious food. 

We look forward to seeing you on campus in the fall!

To help you learn about our plans and make the best decision for your tastes and preferences, we offer this easy-to-use seven step process. All along the way, feel free to contact us with questions at

Please use the drop-down menu to see detailed information on the dining plan options available to you.

Note: The rate you pay is determined through the Ohio State Tuition Guarantee. Use the drop-down menu to choose your cohort.  Non-resident or international students should select the “‘I am either an out-of-state student or a student who started prior to 2020” tab. 

For more information or help determining your cohort, see Ohio Tuition Guarantee Frequently Asked Questions or contact Student Life University Housing at 614-292-8266.

Note that rates for the coming academic year will be determined by The Ohio State University Board of Trustees. Please check back for that information.

Dining Rates for TG21 Cohort

Dining rates are associated with each cohort in the Ohio State Tuition Guarantee. If you are an in-state student eligible for the Tuition Guarantee, dining rates will remain consistent for four years. The cost of each plan will vary depending on your residency and the academic year you enter Ohio State.

The dining rates on this page are for students in the Tuition Guarantee for the 2020-2021 Cohort (TG21).

The room and board rates for autumn semester 2020 have been adjusted based on the revised academic calendar. These rates are valid for autumn semester 2020 only. Check back regularly for information and costs for spring semester 2021 room and board rates.

For more information on the Guarantee, see Ohio State Tuition Guarantee, Frequently Asked Questions page or BuckeyeLink.

The 7-Step Process

1. Rate Information

Please Login to see the rates for your cohort.

2. Review Plan Components

3. Look over the Plans

4. Compare Plans

Unlimited Scarlet 14 Gray 10 Declining Balance Carmen 1 Carmen 2
Weekly Traditional Visit Unlimited 14 10
Traditional Visit Exchange
Dining Dollars $100 $200 $200 $1,255 $291 $569
BuckID Cash Option to add $150 $150 Option to add Option to add Option to add
Available to all Columbus campus students
Second year or higher only

Off-campus residents only

Off-campus residents only
Price per Semester $1,784 $2,207 $1,860 $1,930 $448 $875

7. Pick a Plan

ON CAMPUS RESIDENTS: You will select your plan when you complete your housing contract

OFF CAMPUS RESIDENTS: Follow this link to select your plan. Pick Your Meal Plan Now

Dining rates for each student meeting tuition guarantee eligibility are determined by your cohort under the Ohio State Tuition Guarantee. For more information on Guarantee, and for help determining your cohort, see Ohio Tuition Guarantee Frequently Asked Questions or contact the Student Life University Housing at (614) 292-8266.


Which dining plan should I choose?

You should choose the dining plan that best matches how you prefer to eat. For example, if you like two to three main meals a day with some snacking in between, our unlimited plan offers the best value.

Can I change my mind?

Yes. You can change your plan through the second Friday after classes start each semester. You can also change your plan from semester to semester. You can make changes online or contact Student Life University Housing at 614-292-8266.

What are Dining Dollars?

Dining Dollars are yours to use at any Student Life Dining Services location. They are included in every dining plan to give you additional flexibility to eat what and where you want. You’ll receive a 35% discount for all food purchases at all campus retail locations and a 10% discount at campus C-Stores. Your Dining Dollars roll over every semester as long as you are enrolled.

What is the difference between BuckID Cash and Dining Dollars?

Dining Dollars are just for purchases at any Student Life Dining Services location. BuckID Cash can be used at any of the hundreds of on or off campus merchants that accept BuckID.

Where can I eat using the dining plans?

You can eat almost anywhere. Some of our plans allow for a number of Visits to our Traditions Dining locations, and Dining Dollars are accepted at any of our nearly 30 Student Life Dining Services locations across campus. Two of our plans also have the option to exchange any Visit for an $8 purchase at one of our retail locations or $5 at our C-Stores.

What are “Traditions Dining” locations?

Ohio State has three “Traditions” dining locations, conveniently located on each residential area of campus. Traditions at Kennedy, Traditions at Morrill and Traditions at Scott each offers students an opportunity to enjoy a full range of options. You can visit a Traditions location from early morning through late night.

What is the Visit Exchange?

You can exchange any Visit for an $8 purchase at any of our retail locations or $5 at our C-Stores.

Do Dining Dollars roll over?

Yes. You can keep your Dining Dollars while you are enrolled.

Why do some students pay a different price for the same meal plan?

Under the Ohio State University Tuition Guarantee, the dining plan rates for each student meeting tuition guarantee eligibility for a cohort remain consistent for four years. The cost of each plan will vary depending on the academic year you enter Ohio State.

If I skip a Visit, can I make it up the next week?

Per week visits to our Traditions locations reset each week on Monday at 3 a.m. and do not roll over into the next week. If you know you will not use a Visit, you should plan to redeem it in advance through a Visit Exchange at a retail or C-Store location.

Will I be able to use BuckID Cash at the dining locations on campus?

Yes, our dining plan model was developed to provide maximum flexibility, so BuckID Cash is accepted at all dining locations.

Can I use multiple forms of payment for my meals?

Yes, our dining plans were developed to help students make the most economical choices, so you will be able to use any combination of forms of payment at each transaction.

How do I add money to my Dining Dollars?

You may add Dining Dollars during the semester you have purchased a plan by contacting Student Life University Housing, visiting the Student Life Dining website or through your BuckID account. Dining Dollars can be used at all Student Life Dining location.

What is an administrative fee?

Embedded in each of our plans is an administrative fee that helps cover non-food expenses needed to operate the dining operation including supplies, maintenance, utilities and staffing.

What happens to Visits during breaks?

We will adjust the number of Visits accordingly during weeks in which school breaks occur. We will also add Visits to the week before classes start and at the return from breaks.

What happens if I find a transaction error in my account?

If you find an error on a transaction, contact Student Life Dining Services within three days so we can investigate the issue and make any corrections needed. You can contact us by visiting 450 Lincoln Tower, emailing or calling 614-292-8380. When sending information in writing, please be sure to include the following information:

  • Student’s name and university e-mail address.
  • Description of the transaction in question, and explain as clearly as possible the discrepancy.
  • The dollar amount of the transaction.

What if I have more questions?

Feel free to visit or contact them at 614-292-8380.