New Students

Welcome! One of the first tasks to complete as a new student is to get your Buff OneCard, as it serves as your campus identification. Depending on your student status and choices, it may also:

  • Give you access to your residence hall and room
  • Carry your meal plan
  • Allow you to pay for laundry and printing
  • Allow you to gain entry to the Rec Center and sporting events

* Residence Hall Students: You must update your Buff OneCard at least every seven days at a hotspot (located by each residence hall front desk) to ensure your data is refreshed. If you fail to do so, you will be locked out of your room. To restore functionality, visit a hotspot and follow posted directions.

Application Process

  • After you have confirmed your acceptance to CU Boulder, you are eligible for a Buff OneCard
  • Complete your application through the GET Mobile app:
    • Download the app from the Apple Store or Play Store
    • Log in using your identikey
    • Navigate to the settings tab and click on "Update Photo"
    • Upload photos of the front and back of your government-issued photo ID
    • Upload your desired photo (follow U.S. Passport photo guidelines when uploading your Buff OneCard photo)
    • The app includes a cropping feature so that you can adjust your photo before uploading
    • Submit  your photo for review
    • You will receive your card by mail at the mailing address you have on your Buff Portal profile
    • Your card will automatically be activated for all services you have signed up for when you arrive at CU

    Buff OneCard Photo Submission Guidelines

    Additional Buff OneCard Benefits

    Buff One Banking™  allows you to use your Buff OneCard as an ATM card within the PLUS network, and as a debit card within STAR merchant network just by linking it to your Elevations Credit Union account. It is one of our most popular and convenient card programs and allows you to use your Buff OneCard as an ATM and debit card. This program is optional for students. Funds are debited from your Elevations Credit Union checking account. Accounts are available to all new and current Elevations Credit Union members when you have a valid Buff OneCard™.

    Elevations Credit Union has convenient locations throughout Boulder, including the only banking branch located on campus in the University Memorial Center (UMC). They have served Boulder students, faculty, staff and alumni for nearly 60 years and are dedicated to serving the university community by providing its members with a full range of banking services provided at the lowest possible cost.

    On-campus no-fee ATM locations:

    • UMC: Three (3) locations
    • Center for Community: East courtyard
    • Regent Hall: South entrance
    • Williams Village: Main bus stop
    • Libby Hall: North entrance
    • CU Police and Parking Services: Main lobby
    • Farrand Hall: Farrand Market

    For more information about Elevations Credit Union and their services, call them at 303-443-4672 or visit them online at

    This optional account can be used for housing dining, laundry and printing anywhere on campus the Buff OneCard and Campus Cash transactions are accepted. This includes all housing and dining units, computer labs, housing laundry rooms and copy centers. 

    When you make purchases with your Buff OneCard using Campus Cash, the amount of the purchase will be electronically debited from your account. 

    By making any deposit to your Campus Cash account you agree to the terms and conditions listed in the agreement. All deposits are non-refundable and non-transferable.

    Access your meal plan with your Buff OneCard. 

    On-campus students generally have a 15 or 19-meal-per-week plan. Off-campus students may purchase a Block Meal Plan.

    Students can use their meal plan at a variety of dining centers and grab-n-go locations.

    Munch Money is included with your purchased meal plan. A 19-meal option includes $150 in Munch Money and the 15-meal option includes $200 in Munch Money.

    If you run out of Munch Money, you can use Campus Cash for the same purchases.

    You must be a full fees paying student to receive a new RTD CollegePass card.

    The CollegePass card allows you to ride all the local and regional buses generally at no charge. This includes the skyRide to Denver International Airport, all light rail vehicles and the Stampede to East Campus.

    As a student, you will need your Buff OneCard to enter campus sporting events like CU basketball and football games. Visit for the schedules!