Dining Dollars

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Dining Dollars are the tax-free 'points' associated with your CUID and are used to purchase food at any of the fourteen campus eateries.

For first year students, they are part of your mandatory meal plan, while upperclassmen can purchase them either separately or through an upperclass meal plan. Upperclassmen, and first years who run out of points, can add more points to their account at any time through SSOL. Dining Dollars do not expire, they roll over to the next semester until graduation.

Dining Services offers discounts to upperclassmen who purchases points and meals in bulk over the summer in advance of the year. A student once calculated that it's possible to buy enough points so that with discount, if you use those points just to eat at John Jay Dining Hall, it would be cheaper than to purchase the equivalent number of meals. And even then you'd have the flexibility of eating elsewhere.

An advantage of using Dining Dollars to make purchases instead of Flex is that there is no tax on your dining dollar purchases.

Dining Dollars roll over year to year and expire upon graduation. Currently, all enrolled students of Columbia University can use it.

How to add Dining Dollars

Columbia students may add money onto their accounts through Columbia Student Services Online (SSOL)

  1. Navigate to Columbia Student Services Online (SSOL).
  2. Log in to SSOL (Student Services OnLine) with your UNI and password.
  3. Scroll down on the screen you are redirected to and click “FlexAccount and Dining Dollars,” located under the heading of “Columbia Card”.
  4. Scroll down on the screen you are redirected to and click "Dining Dollars Deposit Request," located in the "Dining Dollars" section.
  5. Enter in the amount you would like to add and click continue.
  6. The amount you have requested to be deposited will appear on your next Columbia E-Bill.

Alternatively, Columbia students may add money to their Dining Dollars at the Hartley Hospitality Desk in Hartley Hall.

Where to use Dining Dollars

Dining Dollars can be used at the on-campus dining locations, including John Jay Dining Hall, Ferris Booth Commons, and JJ's Place.

First Year Points

First year points were the first-year equivalent of dining dollars until their elimination in Fall 2008.