COVID-19 (CORONAVIRUS) UPDATES:

  • Don’t miss out on your $1,200 (+ $500 per child) economic impact payment. Learn more here.
  • Some information on this site might be temporarily inaccurate due to coronavirus changes. Learn more here.
  • Food stamp offices might be closed to the public because of the coronavirus. Try calling before visiting.
  • Be aware of a scam using texting to obtain your personal information. Learn more here.
The fresh guide to EBT in New York.

Keeping track of all the EBT information out there can be overwhelming. So, we’ve broken down all the basics in one handy guide.

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How can I check my EBT balance online?
Download the Fresh EBT app to check your balance instantly. And while you’re there, explore opportunities to save and earn money.
What's the New York EBT Card?

EBT = electronic benefits transfer.

EBT card = a card that looks and works like a debit or credit card but is loaded with food stamps and/or cash benefits. You can use it at stores that accept EBT.

You’ll get the New York EBT Card once you’re approved for benefits.

New York’s EBT customer service number is 1-888-328-6399.

How do I apply for food stamps?
The easiest way to apply for food stamps is online.

If you’d rather apply in person, call your local office or the New York SNAP hotline (1-800-342-3009) to find out how.

Learn if you’re eligible for food stamps.

How do I renew my food stamps?
You’ll have to renew your food stamps before your certification period (the amount of time you’ll get food stamps) ends.

For most New York households, that period is 6 - 12 months. Confirm the length of your certification period with your caseworker.

You’ll get a letter in the mail when it’s time to reapply. To be safe, you could also put a note in your calendar or wherever you keep important reminders.

You can renew your benefits online with a myBenefits account.

If you’d rather renew in person, call your caseworker, local office, or the New York SNAP hotline (1-800-342-3009) to find out how.

When will I get my food stamps?

New York sends out benefits over the first 9 days of every month, based on the last digit of your case number.

For NYC cases, benefits are sent out over 13 days that are not Sundays or holidays, during the first two weeks of each month.

Check the full schedule to find out which day you’ll get your food stamps.

What household changes do I have to report and when?

You should report:

  • If anyone moves in or out of your household.
  • Financial changes like income, rent, savings, or child support.
  • Work changes. Does your household include an adult who doesn’t have a disability or a child (what the government calls an ABAWD)? Is this person required to work or train 20 hours/week? Then you should report if this person starts working or training less than 20 hours/week.

Most households have to report all changes no more than 10 days after they happen, but some don’t. Your caseworker can confirm which rules apply to your household.

If you are moving, you should report your new address ASAP to make sure you don’t miss any important letters.

You can report changes online with a myBenefits account.

How do I replace a lost or stolen EBT card?

If you can’t find your EBT card, call the New York EBT hotline as soon as you can: 1-888-328-6399.

If someone manages to use your card, you won’t be able to get those benefits back, so make sure you call right away!

What can I buy with EBT?

You can use food stamps to buy groceries, snacks, and seeds or plants that will produce food.

You can’t use food stamps to buy alcohol, tobacco products, vitamins, live animals, prepared foods, or any non-food household items.

WIC food packages typically include cereal, juice, eggs, milk, peanut butter, dried and canned beans, tofu, fruits and vegetables, and whole-wheat bread. WIC packages also include canned fish and cheese for breastfeeding moms, and baby food for babies.

Which stores and restaurants take EBT food stamps?
Download Fresh EBT to see nearby stores and farmer’s markets that take EBT. You don’t need an account to use the map.
Can I get any discounts with my EBT card?
Yes! Your EBT card can get you and your family discounted or free admission to museums, theme parks, zoos, aquariums, and more.
Can I get more food stamps if I’m pregnant or a new parent?

Once your child is born, your household size will increase. More household members = more benefits.

While you are pregnant, you can’t get more food stamps, but you can apply for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) benefits.

WIC provides food and resources for pregnant women, new parents, and children up to 5 years old.

My family can’t afford other basic needs besides food.

If you have a child who’s 18 or younger, you may qualify for cash assistance through the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program.

TANF provides monthly cash assistance to help families with children get by during tough times.

Am I eligible for other benefits?
Check out this benefit finder tool and find out.
This information was compiled by Fresh EBT from publicly available government websites. Please check in with your local office if you have questions.