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Winter Break Housing

Winter break: Pre-departure instructions

Residents who do not plan to stay for the break: Please review the slide show to prepare your room correctly for break



What is Winter Break Housing?

Student housing contracts for academic year 2023-2024 consist of two housing periods: Fall 2023 and Spring 2024. UC Merced housing and dining services are closed to students during this time. UC Merced Housing refers to the period of time between these as the winter break. Winter break housing dates for 2023-2024 are as follows:

Saturday, Dec. 16, 2023: Winter break housing begins.

Sunday, Jan. 14, 2024: Winter break housing ends.

Students with an Academic Year Contract are prohibited from accessing their housing assignments effective 4:00 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 16 through 10:00 a.m., Sunday, Jan. 14, 2024, without a winter break reservation. Winter break is a time of campus service reductions in all campus departments, including campus housing and dining. As a result, wnter break housing is only available for current campus residents who have no alternative housing. If you no alternative housing during the winter break, you can request winter break housing the Housing Portal.

By submitting a winter break request, residents agree to abide by all Housing & Residence Education policies during winter break housing period. If you have questions about billing, contracts, or the housing portal, please contact For questions about winter break services, including campus services during winter break, please contact

Costs for Winter Housing

Winter break is offered at the following nightly rates(including meals), based on contract types:

December 16-January 1, 2024

Fall daily rates for housing apply to winter break. There is no meal service on campus. Students with reservations between these dates will be billed housing-only as follows:

Winter Housing Rates, Dec 17-Jan 2
Fall Room type Winter Room Daily Rate
Single $69.91/day
Double (ADA Single) $58.31/day
Triple $52.85/day
Quad $48.00/day


January 2-January 15, 2024


Fall daily rates for housing apply. There is meal service on campus from January 2-January 15. Students with reservations betwee these dates will be billed housing AND meals as follows:

Winter Break Rates, Jan 2-Jan 14
Fall Room Type Winter Room Daily Rate Fall meal Type Winter Meal Daily Rate
Single $69.91/day ALL $21.00/day
Double (ADA Single) $58.31/day   *meals only; no Winter CAT Dollars
Triple $54.45/day    
Quad $49.45/day    

The slideshow at the top of this page contains examples on calculating your winter housing costs for rooms and or meals.

Students who need to return to campus early for work or program participation should apply for winter break housing for the needed dates. Fees will be assessed to student accounts after January 22, 2024.

EFFECTIVE FOR 2023-2024: Student accounts must be billed directly for the costs of break housing, including student employees. Your employer can arrange to pay housing fees after fees post to student accounts.

Dining on Campus during winter break

There is no campus meal service from Sunday, December 17-January 1, 2024

December 17-December 23: YWDC open (closes at 2pm, December 23)

December 17-January 1: Paviliion closed

January 2-January 14: YWDC open; Pavilion closed

Dining Hours

Winter break housing eligibility

Guardian scholars, athletes with competitions or practices, and housing and dining student employees with shifts scheduled during the break are eligible for winter break housing. Other students my request winter intersession, but their request will need to demonstrate a lack of alternative housing to be considered.

Winter break housing days are billed at the daily rate for fall term housing and dining. If you are currently living in a triple room, and you are approved for break housing, you will be billed the triple room rate for housing for the number of nights.

Requesting winter break housing

Reservations for the Winter break opens on November 16, 2023 after 5pm. 

Housing requests for the winter break are submitted through the Housing Portal. Students who need to stay on campus for all or part of winter intersession must request housing by 11:59 p.m. Wednesday, December 14th. Academic Year Contract residents may select any number of days for housing. After December 14th, residents will need to speak with their REC for winter break reservations. 

Students can directly modify or cancel requests until 11:59 p.m., January 2, 2024.

If your request is for the entire winter break, you would create one new reservation request for housing between Dec. 16, 2023 and Jan. 14, 2024.

If your request is for a portion at beginning of winter break and then a time closer to spring opening, you must create two housing requests. For example: December 16-21 and January 12-14.

You can choose a reason that best applies to you. If you're staying because it's the safest option or for reasons not represented in the choices, please select "other." More details are required to clarify why you are staying.

This short video demonstrates an example of how to create, edit and cancel reservations online through the Housing Portal:


Facility maintenance during break

Winter break is a time of significant campus maintenance. Residents considering break housing should be advised that maintenance staff may enter student rooms, fire and life safety systems will be tested during daytime hours, and there may interruptions in electrical service while work is completed. Every effort will be made to communicate these to residents by email as they are determined, but notice may be limited to 24 hours. 

Below are scheduled maintenance events during 2023-2024 winter break (subject to change):

ALL CAMPUS: Interruption and outage of campus internet access December 26-December 29

ALL CAMPUS: Temporary interruptions of electrical, including lights and heat, December 27-December 29

ALL CAMPUS: Inspection of room doors by fire safety teams. January 2-January 12. Short periods of access into all residential rooms between 9:00am-4:00pm to inspected doors, seals, and frames.

Valley Terraces, ALL BUILDINGS - No electrical or heat 5:00am-8:00pm, December 28.

Valley Terraces - Maintenance staff will be entering your unit to perform preventative maintenance - clean fan coils and change air filters as needed.

    Transportation during winter break

    The CatTracks Bobcat Express and Route UC will operate through December 21, 2023. There will be very reduced service December 22 through January 16, 2024. A shutlle for campus break residents will run 10am-3pm, December 26-29th, with limited stops to Promenade, SaveMart, Target, Walmart, and Amtrak 

    View the full CatTracks and Bus schedule.

    Desk and mail services during winter break

    The Residence Education Office will have limited hours during the break. Students who order packages should be aware package processing and availability will be limited by this schedule. After-hours assistance will be available through the RA on call (posted on your floor/entrances) for the community and University Police.

    Dec. 18 - 23: 10:00 a.m. - 6 p.m.

    Dec. 24 - 26: Closed

    Dec. 27 - 28: 1p.m - 6 p.m.

    Dec. 29-January 1: Closed

    January 2-January 7: 1p.m. - 6 p.m.

    January 8-January 10: 10:00 a.m. - 6 p.m.

    Normal hours of 8 a.m. - 8 p.m. resume January 11, 2024

    By submitting a winter intersession reservation, you are agreeing to abide by all Housing & Residence Education policies during winter break housing.

    For assistance outside desk hours, please contact the RA on Call