“Tapingo” comes to Campus Dining

GVL/Luke Holmes - A campus dining worker makes a salad inside of the Connection on Grand Valleys Allendale campus on Monday, Jan. 18, 2016.

GVL/Luke Holmes – A campus dining worker makes a salad inside of the Connection on Grand Valley’s Allendale campus on Monday, Jan. 18, 2016.

Meghan McBrady

Throughout the school year, students flood Grand Valley State University’s different dining establishments on the Allendale and Pew campuses. However, long lines and time crunches can often impede a student’s dining experience.

Emphasizing how technology can remove the stressors of everyday transactions, Tapingo, a free food delivery and takeout mobile app available for Apple and Android phones, has partnered with GVSU’s Campus Dining in order to streamline student meals.

With the app’s focus on easy mobile ordering to enhance customer experiences, Tapingo’s menu management section has allowed students from over 125 college campuses in the U.S. to order food from any of the national brands on campus, schedule pick-ups and skip lines.

“We’re excited to introduce this new technology,” said Deb Rambadt, marketing director for GVSU’s Campus Dining. “We expect it to enhance guest service and provide another level of convenience.”

Once the app is downloaded, students can create an account by indicating GVSU as their affiliated university. Also, by adding a cell phone number and the 14-digit number on the back of a student’s GVSU identification card, thereby adding the student’s meal plan onto the app as well, all the participating dining locations will become accessible for students to then place their order.

When a student’s order is ready, an email or text notification from Tapingo will be sent to the user.

Frequent use of the app will also allow the app to analyze ordering preferences and will note if a certain drink or sandwich is ordered on a particular day and will ask the user if they want to order it again.

Jen Joachim, a GVSU sophomore, said downloading the app will be convenient when pre-ordering food or drinks from her apartment and will spare her from having to deal with lines.

“I think that it would be a great thing because the lines can get ridiculously long,” Joachim said. “The Starbucks line can get really long in the mornings and between classes. I would definitely use the app because I don’t have time to wait in lines or be late to class.”

Beth Hopkins, the vice president of campus affairs for student senate and co-chair of the food committee with Rambadt, said she is excited about the partnership between Tapingo and GVSU’s Campus Dining.

Working with Campus Dining and the food establishments on campus, Hopkins said the food committee’s relationship with Campus Dining is one of their healthiest relationships with an on-campus department.

Hopkins said the app, which is responsive to student concerns and answers questions in a timely manner, is one way GVSU’s Campus Dining is working to create a worthwhile dining experience for GVSU students.

“In my opinion, the app will help shorten wait times for students and will allow students the opportunity to enjoy a greater variety of Campus Dining options in a more convenient way,” Hopkins said. “I, personally, am very excited to see how the app changes the way students eat on campus and am very excited to use it myself.”

For more information about future Campus Dining initiatives, visit www.gvsu.edu/campusdine/.