Terrace Views

Swipe, Save, and Dine with the Wisconsin Union

Find the food you want when you want it at a price that fits a budget. That is a tall order that gets a lot shorter when you dine at the Wisconsin Union’s dining options

As a junior here at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, I get it; we all want variety, and our schedules, whether you’re a staff member or student, can be all over the place.

Whether you’re a first-year student in a residence hall with a dining plan or are navigating downtown Madison dining as a student or team member without a dining plan, the Wisconsin Union’s restaurants are the answer to fast dining, made-to-order dining, cost-effective dining, and dining on your schedule. 

I may work here at the Union as a student team member, but I started dining here before then and would choose dining with the Union, because it checks all of the boxes of quality, convenience, deliciousness and variety. I’m sharing my tips for making the most of Wisconsin Union dining. 

Add to Your Wiscard Account Any Time

Have a dining plan? It comes with a set amount of dining dollars that can be used at any Wisconsin Union location. While your plan comes with dining dollars, you can add dollars to your Wiscard account any time. While your meals expire each week, your Wiscard account dollars never expire, and you can take funds out of your Wiscard account at any time at no cost to you. Plus, students, when you use your dining dollars or funds from your Wiscard account, you receive a 10% discount on Union-served food and non-alcoholic beverages. 

No dining plan? You can still add money to your Wiscard account. Students, you’ll get your 10% discount on Union-served food and non-alcoholic beverages even without a dining plan. Again, your dollars never expire, and you can get your money out of the account at any time with no fees. 

I highly recommend loading money onto your Wiscard to visit the plethora of tasty Wisconsin Union dining options. You can upload money at the beginning of the semester or throughout the semester without the concern of your money going to waste.  

If you are looking for an even greater discount, joining the Wisconsin Union team as a non-student or student employee will earn you 30% off of Wisconsin Union food and non-alcoholic drinks. 

Spice Up Your Campus Dining Life 

The variety of food and beverage choices available through the Wisconsin Union are spread across campus making them easily accessible wherever you are! If you find yourself in the southeast section of campus, feel free to stop into the Capital Café in Grainger Hall. I suggest trying a basket of warm mac and cheese bites or a toasted sandwich with a side of house-made soup! 

Take a journey further south on campus, and visit the Union’s Union South! Take a little break, swipe your Wiscard, and refuel with some caffeine from Prairie Fire and a sesame chicken bento bowl from Ginger Root.    

Fun fact: Most of the pastries you find at the Union’s markets and cafes are house-made! Our in-house chefs are amazing and love creating this from-scratch deliciousness.

You can hardly find a corner of campus without a Wisconsin Union dining option! 

Food for Your Dietary Needs

The Wisconsin Union offers inclusive dining options financially as well as for most dietary needs and preferences. The dining locations available offer a whole host of gluten free, vegan, and vegetarian options. If you’re not interested in the sesame chicken from Ginger Root, you can take a big bite out of the vegan Thai Noodle Salad! 

If you’re in a hurry and need something quick for breakfast, no problem! Check out the Badger Markets around campus for quick gluten free or vegan Grab ‘N’ Go foods. You can explore different menus on the Wisconsin Union dining website to see what options are suitable for you. Have questions? You can email us at union@union.wisc.edu for answers! 

Save Even More 

There are new and exciting deals recently released for Memorial Union and Union South. By using your Wiscard from Oct. 2-Dec. 15 a multitude of $5 meals and desserts can be enjoyed! Each day of the week corresponds with a different $5 deal which can be purchased using Wiscard money or a Dining plan meal exchange. Make sure to check out the deals so you can “Swipe and Save!”

Stop by Soon 

We hope to see you swiping, saving, and dining with us this semester at all of the Wisconsin Union food locations!

Author: Beth Shoop

Share This Post On