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The Price We Really Pay To Eat At Penn State

Have you ever stood in line at Good2Go, The Mix, or any other campus spot that sells food and thought to yourself “Why is this stuff so expensive?” Well, you are not alone. Because while the dining commons offer a wide selection of foods, some of their prices are just a little too steep.

Thankfully, campus dining locations outside of the HUB all have a 65% discount. That makes a single slice of Big O pizza a glorious 87 cents. Each dining commons also has a convenience store, with every necessity a college student could ask for. From a roll of toilet paper to candy, these places are little slices of heaven scattered across campus.

But, there is a catch: these convenience stores are also extremely overpriced, especially compared to the superstores like Wal-Mart and Target just a short drive away. We decided to compare the prices from Good2Go to those from Wal-Mart to uncover the price difference. Some of the results are, in a word, staggering. Check them out:

1. Tropicana Orange Juice


Good2Go Price: $7

Wal-Mart Price: $3

Who doesn’t love a nice glass of OJ in the morning? Well, maybe you might love it a little less if it took $7 out of your meal plan. That’s some pricy Vitamin C.

2. A Can of Pringles 


Good2Go Price: $2.69

Wal-Mart Price: $1.30

Pringles are the perfect snack for some late-night snacking during a study session, but not at double the price.

3. Naked Smoothies 


Good2Go Price: $3.59

Wal-Mart Price: $2.68

While they might be a good pick-me-up in the middle of the day, these smoothies aren’t to kind to your bank account. Although the Wal-Mart price is slightly better, it’s still pretty steep.

4. Cough Drops/Toothpaste


Good2Go Price: $3.39 for one tube of toothpaste, $2.59 for 30 cough drops

Walmart Price: $5 for three tubes, $3.26 for 80 cough drops

PSA: Don’t stop brushing your teeth to save money. You don’t want a cavity, and you definitely don’t want morning breath during your 8 a.m.

5. Chobani Yogurt 


Good2Go Price: $1.89

Wal-Mart Price: $1

A single serving of greek yogurt will cost you almost double from the dining commons.

6. Butterfinger Bites


Good2Go Price: $5.29

Wal-Mart Price: $2.98

The price is no where near as bad as movie theater prices, but it’s still not cheap on campus.

7. Cheese Slices


Good2Go Price: $4.39 for 12 slice

Wal-Mart Price: $3.92 for 24 slices

Making a late night sandwich in your dorm can be a great snack when the dining commons are closed, so stocking up on meats and cheeses is a smart move. Just maybe do so at your friendly local superstore.

8. Nutella


Good2Go Price: $4.89

Wal-Mart Price: $3.48

Nearly five dollars for the tiny little jar just hurts.

9. Peanut Butter


Good2Go Price: $3.79

Wal-Mart Price: $2.48

Peanut butter goes with anything. Toast, oreos, ice-cream– you name the food, and peanut butter will enhance it. However, the Good2Go price for this Jif jar doesn’t go with your college student budget.

10. OreosIMG_8937

Good2Go Price: $6.29

Wal-Mart Price: $2.89

With our largest price difference so far, these cookies are one of the priciest treats on campus.

11. Cereal 


Good2Go: Varying prices between $5.49 and $6.29

Wal-Mart Price: $4

Whether it’s breakfast, snack time, or dinner, anytime is cereal time in college. But it’s also going to break the bank if you buy it on campus.

12. Halloween Candy


Good2Go Price: $14.99

Wal-Mart Price: $10

Just for comparison, you could buy three grande Pumpkin Spice Lattes with that money.


With prices like these, maybe you should think twice before doing your grocery shopping on campus. Instead, bum a ride from an upper class-man to Wal-Mart, where the food is just as delicious, and easier on your wallet.

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About the Author

Tim Reams

Tim Reams is a senior majoring in labor employment relations.

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