DenisKent005
Badges: 3
Rep:
?
#1
Report Thread starter 1 month ago
#1
I am potentially interested in applying to Cambridge in the future, and I have some enquiries about catering. If anyone could answer the following few questions that would be brilliant.

1. How many people self cater?
2. How much more expensive is catering than self catering?
3. What college offers the broadest range of options?

Thanks in advance.
0
reply
Paralove
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#2
Report 1 month ago
#2
1. it really depends; in my experience most people did a mix, few fully self-catered even at my college where we all had ovens which is not common (Newnham). I used to average one meal (lunch or dinner depending on menu) daily, in part for ease and being able to have stuff I wouldn't cook for myself but it's also quite a social time. Having the buttery there was a huge benefit of college life, especially when times were stressful and I didn't feel like i had much time to actually cook and just needed to grab and go.

2. Depends on the college but if your average meal is in the £3-4 range, and you had two meals a day in the canteen (cos, well, breakfast is easier yourself!) then that's around £40-£60 on that. You'd probably buy other stuff on top with that. If you cooked for yourself, depending on what you eat your weekly budget could be anything from £15 (quite low but knew a few like this) up to £30 per week. I'd be surprised if you'd spend more than about £30/week otherwise but again depends on what you're getting and where, if you include alcohol etc. Bear in mind some colleges have a purely pay as you go system, and others make you top up your account a certain amount or number of meals each term that you have to use (fewer do the latter afaik).

3. Can't comment on range of options but most colleges are pretty good. Probably worth getting in touch with students at the colleges that interest you (try the JCR, most have their own webpages). Each college will have different ways of working it, some better than others; some have brunch both days of the weekend, or have waffles and pancakes, or really good puddings, or unlimited sides. If you don't have particular allergies or diet then you'd be fine anywhere; vegan options can be variable, as can availability of halal or frequency of dairy/gluten free things.
1
reply
DenisKent005
Badges: 3
Rep:
?
#3
Report Thread starter 1 month ago
#3
(Original post by Paralove)
1. it really depends; in my experience most people did a mix, few fully self-catered even at my college where we all had ovens which is not common (Newnham). I used to average one meal (lunch or dinner depending on menu) daily, in part for ease and being able to have stuff I wouldn't cook for myself but it's also quite a social time. Having the buttery there was a huge benefit of college life, especially when times were stressful and I didn't feel like i had much time to actually cook and just needed to grab and go.

2. Depends on the college but if your average meal is in the £3-4 range, and you had two meals a day in the canteen (cos, well, breakfast is easier yourself!) then that's around £40-£60 on that. You'd probably buy other stuff on top with that. If you cooked for yourself, depending on what you eat your weekly budget could be anything from £15 (quite low but knew a few like this) up to £30 per week. I'd be surprised if you'd spend more than about £30/week otherwise but again depends on what you're getting and where, if you include alcohol etc. Bear in mind some colleges have a purely pay as you go system, and others make you top up your account a certain amount or number of meals each term that you have to use (fewer do the latter afaik).

3. Can't comment on range of options but most colleges are pretty good. Probably worth getting in touch with students at the colleges that interest you (try the JCR, most have their own webpages). Each college will have different ways of working it, some better than others; some have brunch both days of the weekend, or have waffles and pancakes, or really good puddings, or unlimited sides. If you don't have particular allergies or diet then you'd be fine anywhere; vegan options can be variable, as can availability of halal or frequency of dairy/gluten free things.
Thanks for the response - I have a few follow up questions -

1. What is a JCR?
2. If you know of the top of your head, which colleges have a purely pay as you go system?

Thanks again for the reply. I’m not halal or vegan, and I’m not particularly fussy in terms I’ll eat something I find tolerable, however unfortunately my taste buds reject a lot of things. For example I absolutely despise cheese.
0
reply
Paralove
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#4
Report 1 month ago
#4
(Original post by DenisKent005)
Thanks for the response - I have a few follow up questions -

1. What is a JCR?
2. If you know of the top of your head, which colleges have a purely pay as you go system?

Thanks again for the reply. I’m not halal or vegan, and I’m not particularly fussy in terms I’ll eat something I find tolerable, however unfortunately my taste buds reject a lot of things. For example I absolutely despise cheese.
1. JCR is the student committee/union at each college. They'll have various officers - I'd recommend contacting the access officer.

2. Not off the top of my head I'm afraid. Maybe try the alternative prospectus (applytoCambridge.com) as there's lots of info there; though, considering I helped write it in 2015-16, it hasn't been updated since then as an FYI! But a lot of general will still stand. Best to contact colleges directly tho for up to date info - the admissions offices should be able to help with any queries.
0
reply
threeportdrift
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#5
Report 1 month ago
#5
(Original post by DenisKent005)
I am potentially interested in applying to Cambridge in the future, and I have some enquiries about catering. If anyone could answer the following few questions that would be brilliant.

1. How many people self cater?
2. How much more expensive is catering than self catering?
3. What college offers the broadest range of options?

Thanks in advance.
The Colleges actively work to dissuade undergraduate self-catering. It's a core part of the Cambridge ethos that communal living enriches the learning environment. So they actively want people to eat in hall and mix with other students from different subjects, years, cultures etc. So self-catering facilities tend to be limited. There's also the practical issue that enough students constantly forget their cooking and so trigger fire alarms or forget to wash up and so trigger hygiene issues that it's more managerial trouble than it's worth!

All Colleges have pretty similar catering, it's modern, accommodates dietary requirements, accommodates student sleeping habits, has a very wide range of choices etc. You can easily avoid cheese!
0
reply
tinygirl96
Badges: 21
Rep:
?
#6
Report 1 month ago
#6
See if you can find out more online first
0
reply
DenisKent005
Badges: 3
Rep:
?
#7
Report Thread starter 1 month ago
#7
(Original post by Paralove)
1. JCR is the student committee/union at each college. They'll have various officers - I'd recommend contacting the access officer.

2. Not off the top of my head I'm afraid. Maybe try the alternative prospectus (applytoCambridge.com) as there's lots of info there; though, considering I helped write it in 2015-16, it hasn't been updated since then as an FYI! But a lot of general will still stand. Best to contact colleges directly tho for up to date info - the admissions offices should be able to help with any queries.
Ok thanks
0
reply
DenisKent005
Badges: 3
Rep:
?
#8
Report Thread starter 1 month ago
#8
(Original post by tinygirl96)
See if you can find out more online first
I have looked fairly extensively. This is my last resort.
0
reply
DenisKent005
Badges: 3
Rep:
?
#9
Report Thread starter 1 month ago
#9
(Original post by threeportdrift)
The Colleges actively work to dissuade undergraduate self-catering. It's a core part of the Cambridge ethos that communal living enriches the learning environment. So they actively want people to eat in hall and mix with other students from different subjects, years, cultures etc. So self-catering facilities tend to be limited. There's also the practical issue that enough students constantly forget their cooking and so trigger fire alarms or forget to wash up and so trigger hygiene issues that it's more managerial trouble than it's worth!

All Colleges have pretty similar catering, it's modern, accommodates dietary requirements, accommodates student sleeping habits, has a very wide range of choices etc. You can easily avoid cheese!
Ok thanks. Any particular colleges that are known for the most range of options?
0
reply
Peterhouse Admissions
Badges: 11
Rep:
?
#10
Report 1 month ago
#10
Off the top of my head: Peterhouse do a £100 minimum spend per term (if you go to brunch at the weekend and a couple of formals per term, that will use most of it!) and Caius have a minimum spend.

Queens', Murray Edwards and Newnham have pay as you go systems.

Obviously, this is a very small number of colleges, but it is quite hard to find more. I would recommend searching the name of the college + JCR on google, as JCR websites might give you more information.
0
reply
DenisKent005
Badges: 3
Rep:
?
#11
Report Thread starter 1 month ago
#11
(Original post by Peterhouse Admissions)
Off the top of my head: Peterhouse do a £100 minimum spend per term (if you go to brunch at the weekend and a couple of formals per term, that will use most of it!) and Caius have a minimum spend.

Queens', Murray Edwards and Newnham have pay as you go systems.

Obviously, this is a very small number of colleges, but it is quite hard to find more. I would recommend searching the name of the college + JCR on google, as JCR websites might give you more information.
Ok thanks. I might as well point out I’m a male so newham and Murray Edwards are no use obviously
0
reply
Peterhouse Admissions
Badges: 11
Rep:
?
#12
Report 1 month ago
#12
(Original post by DenisKent005)
Ok thanks. I might as well point out I’m a male so newham and Murray Edwards are no use obviously
I thought that could be the case from your name, but didn't want to assume
0
reply
DenisKent005
Badges: 3
Rep:
?
#13
Report Thread starter 1 month ago
#13
(Original post by Peterhouse Admissions)
I thought that could be the case from your name, but didn't want to assume
That’s ok thanks.
0
reply
X

Quick Reply

Attached files
Write a reply...
Reply
new posts
Back
to top
Latest
My Feed

See more of what you like on
The Student Room

You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

Personalise

Which of these would you use to help with making uni decisions?

Webinars (77)
11.81%
Virtual campus tours/open days (158)
24.23%
Live streaming events (52)
7.98%
Online AMAs/guest lectures (59)
9.05%
A uni comparison tool (153)
23.47%
An in-person event when available (153)
23.47%

Watched Threads

View All