Maggie’s is too costly

Illustration by Sarah Bradbury

By Linden Warling

We all love Maggie’s. Good music, comfortable chairs, open late for our midnight cravings and study sessions. We love the food, too — but what’s up with the prices?

To be honest, the first time I visited Maggie’s I was blown away at the high price tags on the late night or afternoon treats. For example, a can of Pringles at Maggie’s costs $3.40 vs. $1.39 for a can of the same size at Fred Meyer. As college students, we have limited funds to spend on food due to the steep tuition costs.

However, coming in as a new student this year, I have no experience with how the prices at Maggie’s used to be. So to get a more informed opinion, I talked to some other members of the campus community, both undergraduate and graduate students, as well as Lisa Rueth, this year’s German Language Assistant.

“Very expensive, too expensive. They aren’t student prices, like a normal cafe,” Rueth said.

Quinn Murley ’20 said that he understood why the prices were so high, but it would be nice if they were a little less.

In my opinion, as a freshman experiencing Maggie’s for the first time, the snack prices are pretty high – $6.00 for just a pint of Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream, compared to just $3.50 at the local Fred Meyer. But I think the dinners are set at a fair price: $4.50 for a frankly delicious sandwich. Michal Mandil ’19 agreed.

“I think the meals are well priced, $4 isn’t bad,” Mandil said. Some students even think that the current prices aren’t much of a problem. Gavin Holdgeriwe, a student at the Lewis & Clark School of Education and Counseling, said that for him, the convenience and quality of the snacks make them worth the price.

“We don’t decide on the prices,” Cheryl Roberts, a Maggie’s worker, said. “We get the bulk prices from corporate and are told what percentages to use, which then determine the prices.”

I am a big fan of the fact that Maggie’s is just a five minute walk from my dorm. Without Maggie’s, I would have no way to get a late night snack. As the Pioneer Express’s last round departs campus around 9:30 p.m. on the weekdays, a reward for completing a long, difficult study session would have to wait until at least the next day, if not later.

Even so, Fred Meyer is only accessible on weeknights, forcing students to pay large amounts of money for last minute food on campus. Maggie’s can effectively charge us whatever they want, which is unfair. Because of bus scheduling, we are forced to either wait for food until at least the next day, or buy from Maggie’s, causing us to spend large amounts of money. The convenience of Maggie’s is great, but it’s hard to justify the prices.

I’m glad to have Maggie’s. It’s a place to relax and do homework after a long day, or to get a decently priced dinner when the Bon hours don’t work out with my schedule. It’s a place to unwind with friends after a tiring day. Even so, the prices are too steep for my budget.

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