How it Works & FAQ

How it Works

The barcode on the back of your student ID is scanned and identifies your account when you make a purchase.


Meals are included in five of the six meal plans. You can use a Meal for all-you-care-to-eat dining at Fresh Food Co. and The Dish and/or to purchase Combo Meals (predetermined meal items) at various locations. One Meal will be subtracted from your account. You can use up to 4 meals per day using a weekly Meal Plan (exception: Unlimited Plan).  If you have a semester plan, you can use Meals at your discretion.

Dining Dollars

All Plans include Dining Dollars to use in Laker Food Co. restaurants, coffee shops and C-Stores. Purchase beverages, snacks, or meals with Dining Dollars. It's like a debit card; each time a purchase is made, the amount is subtracted from your account. You can add Dining Dollars throughout the semester.

Which Plan to Choose

Visit our Choosing a Plan guide for more detailed Plan breakdowns based on where you live.

Choose Unlimited, 14+, or 7+ 

  • Traditional Style Living Centers* (Copeland, Kistler, Robinson)
  • Suite Style Living Centers* (DeVos, Kirkpatrick, Maple, Oak, Pew, Pickard, Pine, Seidman, Stafford, Swanson)
  • Cluster Style Living Center* (Holton-Hooker)

*Students in these living areas are required to select a Meal Plan and will automatically receive a 14+ plan as part of their Housing contract.

Choose any Plan except Express or Casual+

  • Apartment Style Living Centers** (Frey, Hills, Hoobler, Johnson, Ott, North C, Weed)

**Students in these living areas may choose any plan except the Express or Casual Plan.

Choose any Plan

  • On-Campus Apartments (Calder Art Residence, Grand Valley Apartments, Laker Village, Murray, Niemeyer East & West, Secchia, South C/D/E, VanSteeland, Winter Hall)
  • Off-Campus and Commuter Students

Frequently Asked Questions

Meal Plans activate on Tuesday, August 20, 2024. Classes start on Monday, August 26, 2024.

Yes! You can change your Fall Meal Plan beginning Tuesday, June 11, 2024 through the first week of Fall classes, Friday, August 30, 2024 at 5pm. During the change period, look for the Meal Plan Change Form on our website under Meal Plans. Winter semester Meal Plans can be changed December 2024 through the first Friday of classes in January 2025.

Unused Dining Dollars transfer from Fall to Winter semester. Be sure to use them by the end of Winter semester. Any unused dollars are non-refundable and cannot be transferred to the new academic year.

Casual+ Meals are per semester and will roll to Winter semester. The Unlimited, 14+, 7+, and 5+ plans are per week and do not roll over to the next week.

Check your balance online, or ask any Laker Food Co. cashier. 

3 Ways to add Dining Dollars:

  • Visit
  • Call (616) 331-3016
  • Visit 100 Commons

Accepted payment methods:

  • VISA, Mastercard, Discover
  • Bill your Student Account (online or in person)

Starbucks is the only national brand on campus that accepts gift cards. The best thing for family and friends to do is buy a Laker Food Co. gift card. Students have the freedom to use those gift cards at all Laker Food Co. locations, including national brands. Laker Food Co. gift cards may be purchased online at, via telephone at (616) 331-3016, or in the Laker Food Co. office.

YES, if you live in:

  • Traditional: Copeland, Kistler, Robinson, Holton-Hooker
  • Suite Style: DeVos, Kirkpatrick, Maple, Oak, Pew, Pickard, Pine, Seidman, Stafford, Swanson
  • Apartment Style: Frey, Hills, Hoobler, Johnson, Ott, North C, Weed

NO,  if you live in: 

  • On-Campus Apartment: Calder Art Residence, Grand Valley Apartments, Laker Village, Murray, Niemeyer East & West, Secchia, South C/D/E, VanSteeland, Winter Hall
  • Off-Campus and Commuter Students

Meal plans can be used at any Laker Food Co. locations on the Allendale and Pew campuses.

If you have additional questions, please call (616) 331-3016, or email [email protected].

  1. Visit Student Services to replace your I.D.
  2. Call Laker Food Co. (616) 331-3016 or visit the office at 100 Commons to register your new barcode to your existing meal plan 

Every Saturday night at midnight.

Page last modified May 8, 2024