This year, Campus Services put in place a five percent discount to all vending machines when a BuzzCard is used to purchase products.
Not many students, however, are aware of this new promotion because there is no indication of the discount during purchases on either the machines or BuzzCard readers.
“Unfortunately, we can’t program the BuzzCard readers to show the discount at the time of purchase, it’s still showing the regular amount. But if you go online and check your BuzzCard account you’ll see that the adjustment is correct in your account,” said Tech Retail Manager Lara Sexton.
According to Sexton, the discount was put in place at the beginning of this semester to offset the increase in the prices of snacks and drinks.
“All the drink prices increased by a quarter while the vending snack items [price increases] vary from five to ten cents,” Sexton said. “Even with the increase, especially in the drink sales, they’re still less expensive than other venues on campus.”
Prices in vending machines on campus had not previously been increased for four years, but were forced to rise as vendors increased their prices this year.
“The reason…for the increase is that our vending machine company, Old Fashioned Foods…[has] increased their prices. Coca-Cola’s increased, Frito-Lay, across the board,” Sexton said.
As of this point in time, Campus Services sees this program lasting at least through the fiscal year with no set plans for future programs yet.
“We have not unveiled the campus-wide advertising program, we’re waiting right now on the cling-on stickers, we’re going to put them on every machine with a BuzzCard reader,” Sexton said.
These stickers had been ordered, but not yet received. When they are, the stickers will be displayed on every machine with a BuzzCard reader to inform users more about their actual payment with the BuzzCard at the vending machine.
Sexton also spoke on how it is a long-term goal of Campus Services to implement BuzzCard readers on all vending machines on campus. Because of the large costs, it will remain a multi-year process, as it has been since Campus Services began putting these BuzzCard readers, which can cost $1000 per reader, on vending machines.
“Every year we budget a certain amount of money, it varies year to year. But we are slowly but surely going to have BuzzCard readers on all of our vending machines,” Sexton said.