Swipe RIGHT on These Meal Swipe Hacks

If you live on campus like I do, you probably decided to opt for a meal plan. Having a meal plan here at Rutgers not only means getting four dining halls to choose from, it also means having the option to use our meal swipes at a variety of different places around all the campuses! Us Scarlet Knights are lucky in that Rutgers has some awesome dining halls with both delicious and healthy options, but sometimes you want to break free of the buffet lines and get something a little different. If you’re new at Rutgers you may not yet know about all the different places you can utilize your meal plan or you just haven’t explored — but that’s okay because this article will give you the inside scoop on where to swipe! Continue reading to not only learn about the different swipe-able places but some extra information that you should know before pulling out your RUConnection card. Keep scrolling to get the most out of your meal plan!

Starbucks Truck

Starbucks Truck

Last school year, the RU Starbucks Truck began accepting meal swipes. There are a few stipulations — you can’t buy multiple drinks with a meal swipe so no swiping for one drink for you and another drink for your meal swipe-less friend BUT you can treat yourself to your favorite drink in the largest size and still have enough leftover to get a snack on the side. The best part is their convenient parking spots on the various campuses — for example parking in front of Nicholas Hall on Cook or their more recent location on College Ave.’s side of George Street between Campbell and Hardenbergh Halls. They open at 10 a.m. and move around campus throughout the week, but for more specifics, definitely check out their Twitter — @RUStarTruck — which they update daily! Specifically, stay updated on when they give out free coffee and tea during finals time!

Harvest Cafe

Harvest Cafe

Located in the IFNH building on Cook Campus right in front of Woodbury Bunting-Cobb Residence Hall, Harvest Cafe is a great place for healthy food-lovers and those with meal swipes to spare. My personal favorite is the Mediterranean grill open at lunchtime where you get to pick alllllllll the veggies with a meat of your choice and spice it up with their array of different spices and seasonings. It tastes better than restaurant food, IMO — especially when you go back and use another meal swipe for a large smoothie of your choice. Eat your delicious meal while staring at the beautiful living plant wall or while observing the grazing horses through the huge windows overlooking the Rutgers Farm. Either way, you’re really getting an awesome, but more importantly, healthy experience when you go to Harvest.

All the Cafes/Woody's

All the Cafes/Woody’s

With a $9 limit (or $7 if it’s breakfast time), you can go to the cafes which are easily accesible in the student centers on Douglass, Cook, and Livingston (The Rock Cafe) in addition to Woody’s on Busch and get cook-to-order grill and deli foods, pre-made meals, and snacks or a drink on the side! The various, delicious options are a refreshing change from the dining hall and are perfect for those who are on-the-go. Cook Cafe is especially convenient for Cook Apartment residents like me passing it on our way to the Biel Road bus stop. My personal fave is the yogurt cups with the granola (if you know what brand that granola is PLEASE let me know).

Themed Nights at Dining Halls

Source: http://food.rutgers.edu/event/king-neptune/

Themed Nights at Dining Halls

Even though this article was supposed to be about swipe-able places other than the dining halls, I thought I should mention the themed nights our dining halls offer throughout the year. These include King Neptune Night, Friendsgiving, Holiday Buffet, and arguably the best one of all: Midknight Breakfast. There’s something about eating breakfast foods in the middle of the night with all your friends during the most stressful time of the year that is unparalleled.

Sbarro

Sbarro

Right past the Dunkin’ Donuts, Sbarro can be found in the middle of the Livingston Student Center, only a short walk across the street for Lynton Tower residents. If pasta takeout night isn’t cutting it for you, you can still get a fast Italian meal for only one meal swipe. With different types of pizza, spaghetti with or without meatballs, baked ziti, and a complementary bread stick, Sbarro is a great place to go when it’s not pasta takeout night. Make sure you take a look at the different, swipeable combos they have posted for an optimal experience!

Knight Wagon

Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Log5w143ElQ

Knight Wagon

You can’t come to Rutgers without at least knowing about the original fat sandwich. If you haven’t yet had the pleasure of tasting one, look no further than the Knight Wagon food truck! Similar to the Starbucks truck, the Knight Wagon moves around campus throughout the week offering fat sandwiches piled on top of delicious “dragon scales” (a.k.a. waffle fries) with a drink on the side, all for just one meal swipe. To stay updated on hours and locations, follow their Twitter — @KNIGHTWAGON. Pro-tip: bring a friend and guest swipe them!

Rutgers Club

Source: http://rutgersclub.rutgers.edu/dt_gallery/the-rutgers-club-renovation/

Rutgers Club

The Rutgers Club, initially located in a historic home at 199 College Ave., has been around for 60 years. It sounds super fancy and it kind of is: as a student, you have to make a reservation and can only attend between certain hours on Monday nights. Is your roommate low on swipes? No problem — you can use a guest swipe! Enjoy a delicious dinner from their pre-fixed menu while you’re seated at a beautifully-set table with your floormates. It also feels like you’re sort of in on a secret since you enjoy your meal above everyone eating in the Livingston Dining Hall.

Henry's Diner

Source: https://www.facebook.com/pg/RUHenrysDiner/posts/

Henry’s Diner

Before I say anything I need to mention that although they take meal swipes, you MUST bring extra money with you when you go to Henry’s Diner on Livingston Campus located right below Livingston Apartments. This is because a tip CANNOT be included in your swipe and this comes as a downside to the super hard-working student servers that work there! Fortunately for the customers, the ability to swipe means a diner experience on your term-bill payment’s dime! If you’re in a rush you’re in luck — they also have take-out!

Kilmer's Market

Source: https://twitter.com/kilmersmarket

Kilmer’s Market

Right next to Henry’s Diner and also under the Livingston Apartments is the closest thing to going to a grocery store except using meal swipes as payment. The only downside to Kilmer’s Market is: there are a few stipulations. Similar to the cafes on campus, you have to purchase a Kilmer’s-made item to add other, non-Kilmer’s things on your bill. It’s a great place to use your meal swipes throughout the year when you need convenience-store items in addition to a cup of fruit or a deli-style sandwich!

Red Pine Pizza

Source: http://studentcenters.rutgers.edu/hours/

Red Pine Pizza

Living in Jameson Hall on Douglass my first and second years, Red Pine Pizza (R.P.P.) was my #1 go-to since it’s right across the street in the Douglass Student Center. Nestled between Dunkin’ Donuts and Douglass Cafe, R.P.P. is a small pizza shop that offers debatably the best deal you can get with a meal swipe at Rutgers: for only two swipes you get an entire large pizza pie, a 2-Liter bottle of soda or iced tea, and not one but two bags of chips of your choice. Although it’s not the Jersey/New York pizza you’re probably used to, it’s still a delicious and great option for a night-in with friends.  

BONUS FREE, NON-SWIPE PLACE: Livingston Tower and Quad 3 Coffee Houses

Source: https://ruoncampus.rutgers.edu/lynton-towers-north/

BONUS FREE, NON-SWIPE PLACE: Livingston Tower and Quad 3 Coffee Houses

If you don’t live in the Lynton (Livingston) Towers or Quad 3, forget about these. But for those who do (and for those who have friends that do), these are great places to study, get some free coffee and snacks, and grant those residents who can use them bragging rights.

Feelin’ a little hungry now? Share this list with your friends to plan your next Rutgers Dining Services-sponsored date! Want to share your favorite swipe-able spot with us? Tell us on social media — @Rutgersreslife on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Carlee S. is a Rutgers University–New Brunswick undergraduate student majoring in communication. She has been a marketing intern in addition to being an Apartment Assistant in the Newell Apartments on Cook Campus with residence life since September. She is a junior and anticipating graduation in May 2020. Her interests include really good coffee and photography – check her out on Instagram @carlee1322

Looking to read more? Check out Underrated Study Spots on College Avenue