All students who live on campus are required to have a meal plan. Each plan differs slightly, but they all come with some combination of meal swipes, Old Golds and food dollars. Meal swipes can be used to “swipe” into the Pit (The Fresh Food Company) and food dollars can be used to buy nearly anything on campus aside other than coffee at Campus Grounds and merchandise at the bookstore. However, what is the elusive and mysterious Old Gold swipe?
When the Pit just isn’t cutting it, an Old Gold is the reliable friend you can fall back on. It’s easily described as a combo meal at many locations across campus including Subway, Chick-fil-A, Einstein Bagels and more. When eating at these places, students are able to use either food dollars, real dollars or an Old Gold meal swipe. You can order anything you want off of these menus and pay for it with food dollars or “real” money, or you can purchase a pre-set combo meal and pay with an Old Gold.
Most restaurants on campus offer Old Gold options, but with a limited number of Old Golds, you need to know where to spend them.
Chick-fil-A: chicken nugget meal, chicken sandwich meal, chicken mini meal
Chick-fil-A is a haven for Old Gold options, a popular choice for students with several great options. With that being said, I really couldn’t narrow it down to just one, so I’ll just give you a rundown of their three Old Golds.
The first, and the best of the three, is the classic chicken nugget meal. This comes with eight-count chicken nuggets, a side of waffle fries and a drink of your choice. The second (although also known as the #1 on the menu) is the chicken sandwich meal. Essentially the same as the nugget meal, just with an original chicken sandwich. Last but not least is the chicken mini meal. This meal is only served at breakfast, so until about 10:45 a.m., so it’s a great way to start your day. It comes with four chicken minis (small chicken nugget sandwiches inside of sweet Hawaiian rolls), a side of hash browns and a drink. With any of these meals, don’t forget to ask for your favorite sauce — it’ll be their pleasure.
Shorty’s: chicken tender meal
If you’ve eaten Chick-fil-A too many times this week, but are still feeling some chicken, Shorty’s in Benson is the way to go. They have a fairly long list of Old Golds, and my favorite Old Gold option at Shorty’s is the chicken tender meal. With this you receive five chicken tenders, a side of fries and a drink of your choice. When you pair a Tapingo order (an on-campus mobile order app) with an Old Gold, it’s the perfect place to grab lunch or a quick to-go dinner.
Subway: Six-inch sub combo
Subway definitely has one of the best Old Gold options on campus. It’s open 24 hours a day, so it’s a great midnight snack, and you can get any sub you can dream up. At most regular Subways, any additional meat will be an extra cost, but not here, as they will lump it all into an Old Gold, so go ahead and get salami and ham. This meal also comes with chips and a drink, so that just makes it even better. If you need more food than just a six-inch sub, you can order a footlong sub, and they will just charge you two Old Golds. Make sure you grab another drink and an extra bag of chips, too.
Starbucks: Tall coffee and pastry
Starbucks selling Old Golds sounds like it’s a great deal, especially if you’re addicted to caffeine like I am. However, it’s only a good deal if you prefer a plain cup of coffee over specialty espresso drinks. A Starbucks Old Gold consists of one tall cup of hot or iced coffee and one pastry of your choice. Of course you can add cream and sugar, but no fancy syrups or flavorings. When you can get a whole meal for the same swipe somewhere else on campus, we recommend against using your Old Golds here and just sticking to food dollars to pay for your caffeine needs.
Moe’s Southwest Grill: Burrito/Bowl
Welcome to Moe’s! The Southwest Grill in the Benson food court has tasty Tex-Mex options. Their best Old Gold option best consists of either a burrito or burrito bowl, and you can add anything you want, even queso. This will also come with a side of chips, a drink and access to the free salsa bar. With something for everyone — including vegan, vegetarian and carnivorous combinations — this is an awesome deal for all dietary needs.