Campus ID News
Card, mobile credential, payment and security

Northern Illinois discontinues guest passes in dining halls

Andrew Hudson   ||   Sep 21, 2017  ||   

Northern Illinois will discontinue guest passes in its campus dining halls. After offering the service to students for the past three years, the passes were deemed to be both expensive and underutilized.

As reported by the Northern Star, the guest passes were previously issued to students with meal plans, with each student receiving a total of ten passes to use each semester. The number of guest passes was believed to be too great and was not in alignment with industry standards for similar programs.

In addition to cutting costs associated with providing meals to students and others using the passes, students were reporting people gathering in residence halls asking students with guest passes to scan them into the dining halls for a free meal. This situation was reported to have occurred numerous times with some instances seeing non-students asking to be scanned into the dining facilities.

The removal of guest passes isn't expected to have any significant impact on the general student population. According to stats compiled by university dining services, only 18% of students used a guest pass during both semesters last year. Further, less than 20% of students used all 10 guest passes, and a total of 500 students didn’t use any of their allotted guest passes at all.

Underpinning the end of guest passes is a falling number of student meal plans being purchased. In 2014, some 5,000 students purchased a meal plan, but that figure has dropped to roughly 3,500 student meal plans purchased this academic year.

Students are still able to bring guests into dining halls via a new family pass only now a student must fill out a request form 24 hours in advance to receive the pass.

Despite guest passes being discontinued for the 2017-18 academic year, NIU dining services insists that meal plans are reevaluated on a yearly basis. The university will monitor the new dining policies and make further assessments at the end of the academic year.

|| TAGS:
Subscribe to our weekly newsletter


Jan 26, 23 / ,

Baylor adds Starship robot delivery

Baylor University has added robot delivery from Starship Technologies to its dining services offerings with the help of Grubhub. The initiative will see Baylor deploy a fleet of 20 delivery robots on the Waco, TX campus.
Jan 26, 23 /

NACCU Annual Conference registration now open

The National Association of Campus Card Users (NACCU) has opened registration for its Annual Conference. This year’s conference will be held April 16-19 in Austin, Texas and will feature a packed schedule of informative events and sessions with both campus card professionals and corporate vendors.

Grubhub, partner for reusable takeout container initiative

Grubhub has partnered with reusable packaging management platform,, announced to provide an integrated takeout container management service on college campuses. The partnership will bring's ReusePass program to universities across the United States, starting first with Ohio State University and Colorado State University.
CIDN logo reversed
The only publication dedicated to the use of campus cards, mobile credentials, identity and security technology in the education market. CampusIDNews – formerly CR80News – has served more than 6,500 subscribers for more than two decades.

Join us, @NACCUorg, and @TouchNet to explore how campus card programs can successfully navigate the sales and procurement process. Join the webinar on June 6, 2 pm EDT.

Webinar: Learn how the University of Arizona uses campus cards, mobile ordering, kiosks, lockers, and robots to revolutionize campus dining. April 7, 2-2:30 EDT. Register Now at

As supply chain issues in 2021 persist, identity solutions provider @ColorID discusses ways campuses can to overcome potentially troublesome delays until the situation eases.

A dining services push at the @UBuffalo is reinforcing the utility of self-service checkout. @CBORD is improving the food service experience using the GET app, as well as Nextep kiosks and Oracle’s Micros Simphony POS.

Did you miss our recent webinar? No worries - watch it on-demand. Leaders from @NAU and the @UAlberta joined Ryan Audus, Touchnet, and Andrew Hudson, @CR80News, to discuss innovative mobile services and the future of mobile tech in higher ed. Watch now:

Load More...
CampusIDNews is published by AVISIAN Publishing
315 E. Georgia St.
Tallahassee, FL 32301[email protected]
Use our contact form to submit tips, corrections, or questions to our team.
©2023 CampusIDNews. All rights reserved.