Duke Dining

NC State Tax Surcharge

The State of North Carolina recently made taxable many items that were previously excluded from sales tax, including food sold to students at higher education institutions, and admission fees to entertainment activities. These changes took effect  January 1, 2014.

Student dining plans are now being taxed at the combined state and Durham county rate of 7.5%. Both the charge for the dining plan and the tax surcharge will be listed separately on student’s bursar bills. The funds for the meal plan and the NC Sales Tax Surcharge are added to the students DukeCard food point account.  The money to cover the taxes of each sale is included in the balance each student will see on their food point account. Tax is charged at all On Campus Dining locations, Food Trucks and Merchant on Points and is applied at the actual point of sale as NC tax law requires.  

Students are not double charged for tax, since they are given credit for the NC Sales Tax Surcharge on their food account. If you receive a Duke University scholarship or grant aid (including need-based, merit, and athletic aid), you will receive additional grant aid from Duke to cover the tax expense. At the end of the academic year, students will receive a refund of any unused NC Sales Tax Surcharge money left in their account. The refund will go to student’s FLEX account, unless the student receives financial aid, to which the refund will be credited back to financial aid.

For example, Meal Plan A, priced at $2,124 for the Fall 2016 semester, will be assessed a tax surcharge of $159.30, plus a $50 contract fee for a total cost of $2,333.30. Plan profiles can be viewed here.

The tax surcharge applies to graduate and professional students who pay for food using a FLEX account, and will be assessed at the point of sale.

This page will be updated as new information on these tax changes is released by the State of North Carolina. For other dining questions, please contact dining@duke.edu.

As of January 1, 2014, admission to entertainment events will be taxed at the combined state and Durham county rate of 7.5%. This includes student-sponsored events for which admission is charged. Entertainment events include live performances, sporting events, movies, lectures, museums, cultural site visits, gardens, exhibits, tours, etc. The tax is applied to single tickets, multi-occasion tickets, season and annual passes, cover charges, etc. This tax will be collected at time of sale. For more information, contact tickets@duke.edu