skip to main content
Pre-paid lunch questions and answers!
Posted On:
Tuesday, August 01, 2017


What is lunchprepay?

Lunchprepay is a website that Onslow County is using for the first time this year.  As a member of our school community you are able to use this website to ensure your child has enough money on their cafeteria account to cover their lunch and/or breakfast.  You are also able to see what this money is spent on.  Here are some FAQs that might help you decide whether or not to use this service:

  •  What is my student's Student ID?
    The Student ID is a unique number assigned by your school district office.  (It is usually not the same as the 3 or 4-digit lunch number that is used in the cafeteria.)  It is usually printed on report cards and correspondence that you receive from the school.  Please contact your district office if you do not know what number to use. 
  • Why are there fees for this service?  
    The fees cover the costs of maintaining the secure web site and the fees that are charged to us for processing credit card payments.  School districts usually do not have funds available for this type of expense. 
  • Most web sites use revenue from advertising and sales to maintain the web site.  Since there is no advertising on, and we never sell your information to anyone, fees are necessary to allow you the convenience of online payments. 
  • Fees vary because some school districts may subsidize some of the costs for you. 
  • How long from the time I register as a New User can I make a payment?
    This process usually takes less than a day.  Students must be "verified" before we can accept payments.  This can usually be done instantly; however, in some cases it can take up to 24 hours.  Once this process has completed, you can make payments directly to your student's account from
  • Why is the verification process necessary?
    This is how we make sure that your payment is credited to the correct student's account.  We check for a match on the student's last and first name, school, and student ID number.  This can usually be done instantly; however, in some cases it may take up to 24 hours.  
  • More than 24 hours has gone by and my student has not been verified yet.
    If it has been more than 24 hours, please contact your school district office and ask for the Student Nutrition Department.  They will be able to assist you. 
  • How long does it take for the payment to show at my student's school?  
    Generally, all payments are applied within 24 hours.
  • How do I know it is safe to enter my credit card information on has 128 Bit Encryption provided by Verisign. Verisign is the most trusted name in online shopping.  All information submitted is protected by our secure server, which automatically encrypts your personal information so that it can not be read while traveling over the Internet.
  • What do I do if I do not see all my students listed on the payment screen?
    If all the students you have entered do not show up on the payment screen, it is possible the information you supplied could have been typed incorrectly.  Please go to the Manage Student page and check the student's first and last name, school, and student ID.  Correct any errors and save your changes.  This student's account will be available as soon it is verified with the school's information. 
  • Why do I not see my district's name listed under Participating Schools?
    If your district's name is not listed under the Participating Schools page, then they have not signed up with Education Management Systems, Inc. to participate in  Please encourage them to contact us.
  • What if my student's school is not listed?  
    If your student's school is not listed in the drop down box you will need to check with your school district directly.  They will be able to tell you if the school will be added to our program. 
  • How can I tell what type of service is available in my district? 
    New Users
    : You will be offered a choice on the Registration screen.  The Premium option will not be available if your district only offers Basic service.  Some districts do not have the facilities to offer Premium service. 
  • Existing Users: If Premium service is available, you will be offered an opportunity to upgrade when you go to My Account - Meal History. 
    The cost depends on the level of service (Premium or Basic) that you choose and the school district that your students are in.  When you select your school district during registration, it will show the fees that apply in that district.  You will always be provided with the cost information before any payment is processed. 
  • For Premium service, there is a yearly registration fee.  This gives you access to your student's lunchroom balance and meal history, and offers e-mail notification when the account balance drops below a limit you have set.  The year begins on the day that you register.  The fee depends on your school district.  (This service is not available in all districts.) 
  • With Basic service, you can still make payments online, but you will not be able to look up your student's balance or meal history, and you will not receive "low balance" notifications.  The regular payment fees will apply but there is no registration fee.  You can upgrade to premium service at any time if the service is available in your district.  
  • When you make Payments, a percentage will be added to cover the cost of processing the credit card transaction.  One online payment can be split among all of the students attached to your account, with no additional cost. 
  • What does the registration fee include?
    The registration fee gives you access to your student's lunchroom balance and meal history, and offers e-mail notification when the account balance drops below a limit you have set.  The year begins on the day that you register.  It includes all the students in your family who attend school in the same district. 
  • What does the processing fee cover?
    The payment fee covers the fees that the credit card company charges for processing the transaction.  In some areas, the fee is partially paid by the school district. 
  • Do I have to pay a separate registration fee for each student?
    No, one registration fee covers all the students in your family who attend school in the same district for a full calendar year. 
  • How do I set up a low balance notification?
    Go to My Account - Manage Profile and enter the Low Balance amount.  Check Send Notifications.  You will receive an e-mail when the balance drops below the amount you set.  (You must have Premium service to use this feature.) 
  • How do I find out what my student has been buying for lunch?Go to My Account - Meal History and click on student name.  (You must have premium service to use this feature.) 
  • What if I forget my user name or password?
    Click on "Forgot User Name/Password?" on the Login screen.  Send us your registered e-mail address and we will send you a return e-mail with your information.
  • What if I can't remember what e-mail address I used or it is no longer available?
    Contact your school district administrator and they will help you. 
  • What if my student transfers to a different school during the school year?
    Most districts will transfer any existing prepaid balance to the new school automatically. 
  • After your student has enrolled in the new school (and before you make your next payment), go to Manage Students and change the school name.  Please contact your school district's student Nutrition office if you need assistance. 
  • What happens to balances left over at the end of the school year?
    The policy on year end balances varies from school district to school district.  Please contact your school district's student Nutrition office for assistance with this. 
View all Highlights