This page, Pandemic EBT (P-EBT), is offered by

Pandemic EBT (P-EBT)

Information about P-EBT, or Pandemic EBT.

P-EBT is a federal program. The Department of Transitional Assistance (DTA), in collaboration with the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE), received approval to operate this program in response to the COVID-19 related school closures. P-EBT provides food supports to help families with children who were receiving free and reduced-price school meals pay for food.

For more information, visit

Table of Contents

P-EBT Eligibility

1. Who is eligible for P-EBT benefits?
P-EBT is a federal program created in Spring 2020 to provide additional funds for families to buy food while schools were closed due to COVID-19. To be eligible, the student must qualify for free or reduced-price school meals under the National School Lunch Program. This includes any student in a school that provided free meals to all students (under a special rule called "Community Eligibility Provision"). 

Students must also be in a hybrid or fully remote school learning situation. Students attending school either half-day or fully in person are not eligible for P-EBT. Your student's school confirmed their learning situation. 

2. How do I find out if I am eligible?
If you previously received P-EBT benefits, check your EBT or P-EBT card on the 25th of the month. If you are newly eligible for P-EBT, you will get a letter and card in the mail from DTA.  

Additional Resources

Getting P-EBT Benefits

3. When will I get my P-EBT benefits?
On December 30, eligible students got funds for October and November school days. Eligible students will get P-EBT funds on the 25th of each month for the remaining 2020-2021 school year.

4. How will I get my P-EBT benefits?

You will get P-EBT in the same way as before.

If your family got P-EBT in the past on a DTA EBT card, you will get your P-EBT benefits on the same your DTA EBT card. You can check your balance on, the DTA Connect mobile app or by calling the number on the back of your card. Note that your P-EBT will be added to any SNAP on your account – your balance will reflect both.

If your family got P-EBT in the past on a P-EBT card, you will get your P-EBT benefits on your existing P-EBT card. You can check your balance by calling the number on the back of your P-EBT card.

If your family is newly eligible for P-EBT and your family does not currently receive DTA benefits and you did not get a P-EBT card in the past, you will receive a P-EBT card in the mail. If your family is newly eligible and receives DTA benefits, you will get your benefits on your DTA EBT card. .

5. I lost my P-EBT card. Can I get a new one?
Yes. visit to request a new P-EBT card.

6. How much will I get?
Eligible students in hybrid learning situations will get $58.60 per month. 

Eligible students in remote learning situations will get $117.20 per month. The P-EBT amount is based on each student’s school learning situation confirmed by their school and can vary from student to student, even within a family.

The P-EBT amount is based on each students’ school learning situation the month before. Example: your January P-EBT funds will be based on your students’ learning situation in December.

7. Will there be more P-EBT benefits?
The federal government extended P-EBT through the entire 2020-2021 school year. 

Using P-EBT Benefits

8. I got a P-EBT card in the mail. How do I activate it?
You will need the letter DTA mailed to you with your student’s case number to activate the card. The letter was mailed separately from the card. If you lost the letter, visit to view your student’s case number.

Visit for step-by-step guidance on how to activate (PIN) your P-EBT card.

9. Do I have to activate (pin) my student's P-EBT card by a specific date?
We encourage all families to activate each student's P-EBT card as soon as the card is received, but there is no set deadline to activate or pin the P-EBT card. 
10. Do I have to use all my P-EBT benefits when I get them?
No. The money will carry over from month to month. Benefits that are not used for over a year will be removed from the card.

11. How do I check my balance?
You can call (800) 997-2555 (the number on the back of your P-EBT card) to check your balance.

12. Where can I use my P-EBT benefits? What can I buy with them?
You can use your P-EBT benefits at any store that accepts SNAP, including online from Amazon and Walmart. Most retailers have signs saying they accept SNAP or EBT. 

P-EBT benefits can be used to buy any food that can be bought with SNAP. SNAP eligible food is most foods, except prepared foods and foods sold hot. 

13. Will getting P-EBT impact my family’s ‘public charge’ status?
No. Using P-EBT benefits does not impact your or your child's immigration status. The Public Charge rule does not apply to P-EBT benefits.

14. Do P-EBT benefits replace grab and go meal sites?
No. P-EBT benefits supplement grab and go meal sites. They do not replace them. Families can find a meal site in their community through Project Bread's School Closure Meal Site Finder.

15. Can I participate in the Healthy Incentives Program (HIP) with my P-EBT benefits?
No. P-EBT benefits are different than SNAP benefits and cannot be used to receive HIP benefits.

Community Outreach

16. I am a community organization looking to help spread the word on P-EBT. Where can I find flyers and other outreach materials?
Visit for flyers, social media graphics and more in multiple languages!

Questions & Extra Food Help

17. Who did I contact for questions on

Call the DTA Assistance Line at (877) 382-2363 or visit

18. I need more food help. Who do I contact?
For other food help, call the Project Bread’s FoodSource Hotline at (800) 645-8333 (TTY 1-800-377-1292).