International students to be charged €350 for meal plan during isolation period

Students arriving from non-green list countries must restrict their movements for two weeks

International students arriving to Trinity are to be charged €350 for meals provided by College during a two-week isolation period ahead of the semester.

Students arriving to Trinity from countries that are not on the green travel list are required to restrict their movements for 14 days after they enter Ireland.

College has previously said that it will support students during those two weeks through the provision of a meal plan and a meet-and-greet transfer service from the airport.

In an email to international students today, the Accommodation Office said that there would be a €350 charge for the meal plan.

“This includes a continental breakfast, a light lunch and dinner, for a cost of €350 for the 14 day period,” the email said.

“You will also receive a €140 credit on your T-Card after you have completed your period of Restricted Movement. Your T-Card can be used to pay in various Trinity College facilities including the Buttery (on-campus restaurant) and on-campus cafés.”

Students can collect a meal pack from the Dining Hall between noon and 1.45pm on Monday to Friday.

Meals for the weekend will be given to students on Friday, and breakfast will be collected in the morning on Mondays only.

The email said that “students will need to re-heat the evening meal – food safety instructions will be included”.

Speaking to Trinity News, one international student in fourth year English said that the cost was “unethical”.

“My weekly shop with Lidl is €25 to €30. Trinity essentially wants us to pay seven times that for two weeks,” the student said.

During the two weeks of restricted movement, College is telling students that they “must stay in your apartment except to take brief outdoor exercise at 2 metre distance”.

International students are that those in on-campus accommodation must stay in their room, while students living off-campus have been told not to come on to campus until their 14 days are complete.

Among other restrictions outlined on College’s information page are to not enter any other buildings on campus or in Trinity Hall, to not take public transport, and to not have visitors or visit anyone else.

International students were told in August that Trinity would provide a “meet and greet service” between the airports and various accommodation buildings where students are spending their period of restricted movement. 

Vice-Provost Jürgen Barkhoff told international students that “all supports such as shopping and meals will be provided/in place”.

A programme of virtual orientation and social events has been organised for international students while they restrict their movements.

In June, College advised international students that “if you are planning to stay in Trinity accommodation all support in terms of shopping, meals and laundry will be provided”.

However, further correspondence a week later asked international students to arrive with sufficient “personal toiletries and medicines” for the two week period, as well as having “sufficient clean clothes”, as they would not be provided with individual laundry services.

Individuals arriving into Ireland are required to restrict their movements for two weeks after they enter the country, unless they are coming from a country on the government’s green travel list.

Countries on the list include Estonia, Finland, Greece, Greenland, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway and Slovakia.

Lauren Boland

Lauren Boland was the Editor of the 67th volume of Trinity News. She is an English Literature and Sociology graduate and previously served as Deputy Editor, News Editor and Assistant News Editor.