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Meal plan costs increase by roughly 3%

Graphic by Trinideé Mercado

Rollins Dining Services announced an increase of approximately 3% on 2023-24 student meal plan prices relative to the 2022-23 academic year. 

In an email sent to the Rollins community, Rollins Dining Services stated, “The reality of global inflation is an unpleasant challenge for every institution, but we have responded by incorporating more flexibility into our plan, allowing participants the choice of including premium services as their budgets allow.”

While meal plans have increased annually for the past 3 years, prior to the 2021-22 academic year the majority of dining plan options had remained stagnant since the 2018-19 academic year. 

Dining plan offerings will also now allow students to opt in or out of purchasing Tarbucs. The Rollins currency which can be used to purchase food at any Rollins owned store or dining facility, as well as select locations within the Winter Park community. 

The increase in dining plan cost is attributed to the rise of economic inflation and the rising costs of food and labor. In 2022 the U.S. Department of Agriculture reported that the Consumer Price Index (CPI), which measures economy-wide inflation, found that the CPI for food increased by 10.1% between January of 2022 and 2023. It is predicted that food costs will increase by an additional 7.9% in 2023.

This meal plan increase comes three months after the announcement of a 3.9% tuition increase equivalent to $1,095 for the 2023-24 academic year. This brings the cost of tuition to $58,300 annually.  This is roughly 32% higher than the national average cost for private higher education institutions according to the U.S. News and World Report.

Meal plan and tuition increases occur on a nearly annual basis at Rollins. Over the past ten years tuition, housing, and dining plan costs for students has increased each year between 1.5% to 3.9%. This year marks the fourth consecutive year of both dining and tuition increases for Rollins students.  

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