You are here: American University Campus Life One Card & Dining Services Meal Plan Information and Facts

What is a Meal Plan?

Most students who live on campus, and many who live off campus, purchase a meal plan (see meal plan rates below). Any actively enrolled student can purchase a meal plan. It has three components — Meal Swipes, Meal Exchanges, and EagleBucks.

  • Meal Swipes

    • Each meal plan has a certain number of swipes. You use a swipe whenever you eat at TDR (the Terrace Dining Room). You can also use a swipe as a meal exchange at other eligible on-campus locations.
    • For example, the 100 Block Meal Plan has 100 swipes; the 175 Block Meal Plan has 175 swipes. All swipes expire at the end of the semester and won’t roll over, so get the right block for you and use them up!
  • Meal Exchanges

    • This is how you use meal swipes outside TDR. On some days, you may want to grab a full meal from other on-campus food locations – such as Wonk Burger, Absurd Bird, Pom and Honey, or other spots.
    • A meal exchange is an entrée, a side, and a drink. For your best value, don’t use a meal exchange if you’re just getting a quick snack (that’s what EagleBucks are for). Each location has a menu that tells you the options to use a full Meal Exchange.
  • EagleBucks

    • If you purchase a meal plan, EagleBucks are part of it. Depending on your plan, you’ll automatically have $100 to $800 EagleBucks.
    • They can be used for snacks, dining (if you’re not using a Meal Exchange), various off campus locations, and many other purposes.
    • Unlike Meal Swipes, unused Eaglebucks roll over into the next semester, for as long as you stay at AU. They can also be reloaded and used without a meal plan.

Key Dining Information

Fall 2022 and Spring 2023 Meal Plan Rates Per Semester
Meal Plan Type Meal Plan Rate Meal Plan Description
All-Access Plan $3,315/semester This plan provides unlimited TDR visits, as well as 5 meal exchanges per week, and $100 Eaglebucks.

175 Block Plan

$2,653/semester This plan provides 175 meals per semester, approximately 10-11 meals per week, plus $400 Eaglebucks.
100 Block Plan $1,726/semester This plan provides 100 meals per semester, approximately 6 meals per week, plus $400 Eaglebucks.
50 Block Plan $755/semester This plan provides 50 meals per semester plus $100 Eaglebucks.
$800 Eaglebucks $800/semester This plan provides 800 Eaglebucks and no meal swipes.

First- and second-year students living in campus housing, except for those in the Frequency, must be on a meal plan.

  • First-year students are required to have at least a 175 Block Meal Plan. (175 meals per semester, around 10 meals per week, plus $400 EagleBucks.)
  • Second-year students must have at least a 100 Block Meal Plan. (100 meals per week, around 6 per week, plus $400 EagleBucks).
  • Sophomores living in the Frequency, which has in-suite kitchens, as well as juniors and seniors living on-campus may choose their preferred meal plan or elect not to have a meal plan.

Minimum Meal Plan Requirements are based on the Housing License Terms and Conditions, as agreed upon by Housing & Residence Life.

Disability-Related Accommodations

Students who have a disability-related dietary need(s), such as a food allergy that substantially limits their dining experience are strongly encouraged to make the university aware of their accommodation needs as early as possible. To request disability-related dining accommodations, please complete the Getting Started with Disability Accommodations request form.

For more information about accommodations, please visit the Academic Support and Access Center (ASAC) website titled "Registering for Accommodations," or contact the ASAC at or calling 202.885.3360.

Religious Considerations

On occasion, students' religious observance necessitates consideration academic, housing, or food-related purposes. If you have a need for such a religious consideration, you may submit a request through Kay Spiritual Life Center.

Economic Considerations

The office of One Card & Dining Services does not make exceptions to the mandatory meal policy based on economic reasons.

Safe, clean dining facilities are an important part of AU's health and safety plan. Among the components:

  • Deep cleaning and strict safety measures are in place for all food service operations. 
  • Physical distancing is in place in both production and service areas following local health department guidelines, CDC recommendations and university requirements.
  • All Dining employees (managers and associates) must attend mandatory training on ServSafe COVID-19.
  • Dining employees must abide by AU's health and safety protocols, which include mandatory vaccine requirements for everyone at AU with a campus presence. 
Where can the Meal Plan be used?
Retail Venue Campus Location Meal Swipe Eligible Meal Exchange Eligible Eaglebucks Eligible
Terrace Dining Room Mary Graydon Center (MGC) X   X
Einstein Bros. Bagel Mary Graydon Center (MGC)- Marketplace   X X
Paper Lantern Mary Graydon Center (MGC)- Marketplace   X X
The District Pickle* (Kosher Deli) Mary Graydon Center (MGC)- Marketplace   X X
True Burger Mary Graydon Center (MGC)- Tavern   X X
Halal Shack & Baba's Pizza Mary Graydon Center (MGC)- Tavern   X X
Subway* Butler Pavilion- The Tunnel   X X
Eagle's Nest C-Store Butler Pavilion- The Tunnel   X X
Starbucks* Butler Pavilion- The Tunnel     X
Campus Coffee & Tea Bender Library- Terrace   X X
Hissho Sushi Kerwin Hall - First Floor   X X
East Campus C-Store East Campus   X X
Spring Valley Cafe* Spring Valley Building- 6th Floor   X X

*Mobile ordering is available at this location. 
**Meal Exchanges allow a student to use one swipe from their meal plan in exchange for a meal from an AU Dining Retail location. A meal exchange consists of an entrée, side and a drink.

Note: EagleBucks can also be used at the student-run coffeehouses, the Bridge and the Davenport Lounge, as well as at many merchants off-campus.