Check out the frequently asked questions below for some of the common things we're asked about membership.
How do I take out a membership?
Memberships can be purchased in person at the Membership Office, online, over the telephone on 01244 650208 or by returning an application form by post to Membership Office, Chester Zoo, Upton-by-Chester, Chester, CH2 1LH.
If I come into the zoo today, can I take out a membership when I arrive?
Yes, you will see the Membership Office to the right before you go through the main entrance gate. Just pop in and we’ll take the details and process the membership there and then. You will be able to enter the Zoo with your membership cards on the day of purchase.
What date does a membership start from?
If a start date is not specified, the membership will start on the day it is purchased. Membership is valid for one year.
Can I purchase a membership as a gift?
Yes, a membership can be purchased on behalf of someone else. We will require the member’s full name, date of birth and a full address including postcode. This can be processed over the telephone on 01244 650208, in person at the Membership Office, by post or online. When purchasing the membership online you must specify that the membership is a gift and if you want the welcome pack to be sent to yourself or straight to the members. If you opt for the pack to be sent to the members, we can include a gift card message from you at no extra cost.
In the welcome pack which you receive to give to the members/ or for yourself there will be a letter containing a barcode which the member will need to take with them on the first visit to have their photograph taken in the membership office for their membership card. Please note the membership will start from the day of purchase or specified start date, not the date the photograph is taken unless of course these are the same date.
How long does the membership pack take to be delivered?
You should allow up to 2 weeks for your membership welcome pack to arrive in the post but you can start using your membership from the moment you purchase it by providing your post code details at the membership office. You may prefer to take out membership on the day of your visit at the Membership Office and take your pack away with you.
I am disabled, do I get a discount on membership if I need a carer?
Members who are disabled who require a carer can have an un-named carer added to their membership card for free. This will mean that any adult accompanying the member will be allowed access to the Zoo free of charge as the member’s carer.
The official confirmation required is sight of a letter verifying receipt of DLA or the standard blue badge for vehicles depicting the disabled person’s name and identification. You can still take out membership via the internet or over the telephone on 01244 650208 but the “plus carer” element will not be added to the membership card until the proof has been seen by the staff in the Membership Office. You are only required to provide this proof once a year upon taking out or renewing your membership.
At what age does my child need a membership?
Children are allowed free entry into the zoo until they are three years old and as such they do not need a membership until this date. We do not register or record their details until they reach the age of three.
My child has reached the age of three and I am part way through my membership, what should I do?
Children must be paid for once they reach the age of three regardless of whether it’s a day entry ticket or an annual membership. If you wish to join your child as a junior member, they can be added on a pro rata basis at a pro rata price to bring their membership expiry date in line with your own. This means you will benefit from the discounted family categories when renewing.
I have purchased a membership online, what do I do next?
If you have taken your membership out online, you will receive an email confirming your application and asking you to print out a confirmation letter to bring to the zoo on your next visit. Please present this letter at the Membership Office to have your picture taken for your membership card.
If I take out a single adult membership, can another adult be added as a joint member at a later date?
Yes, single memberships can be upgraded to joint adult memberships by paying the remaining cost. For example, if £69.00 has been paid for a single adult, the remaining £49.00 can be paid to upgrade the membership to a joint adult (both under 65). The new member will take on the original member’s expiry date so you must decide if this is cost effective for you to do so.
Do I have to have my photograph on my membership card?
Yes, all members will have a photograph on their membership card. The photograph will be taken at the Membership Office on the member’s first visit.
What should I do if I lose my card?
Don’t worry, it’s only £1 for a replacement card and this can be replaced at the Membership Office. All we need is your name and postcode. The photographic ID will prevent your card from being used by another individual.
Can friends and family members use my card to enter the zoo?
Unfortunately not. Memberships are sold on an individual basis and display your name and photograph. They are non-transferable and and cannot be used by other individuals.
Can I join as a new member by direct debit?
Unfortunately not – Direct debit payment options are only available for renewals and the membership must be continuous. New members must pay the full annual price for the first year of membership and then they will be offered direct debit options with their renewal letter for the following year.
When will I know that my membership is due to expire?
Four weeks before your membership is due to expire we will post out a renewal notice with different payment options for you to choose from if you wish to renew.
How much does membership cost for one year?
Please see the membership categories and prices below:
Junior (3-17 years)…£40
*Single Adult …£69
*Joint Adult… £118
*One adult families
One Adult, 1 Junior…£104
One Adult, 2 Juniors…£139
One Adult, 3 Juniors…£174
One Adult, 4 Juniors…£209
*Two adult families
Two Adults, 1 Junior…£153
Two Adults, 2 Juniors…£188
Two Adults, 3 Juniors…£223
Two Adults, 4 Juniors…£258
*Discounts of £10 per adult apply for adults aged over 65 and adults who are full time students. Students must provide a valid student ID card on their first visit.
What are the benefits of membership?
• Unlimited entry: The main benefit of membership is unlimited, free entry to Chester Zoo for 12 months (during normal opening hours). We are only closed Christmas Day and Boxing Day and open at 10am daily.
• Visits to other Zoos : You will also benefit from at least one free annual entry to other zoos and attractions: Belfast Zoo, Bristol Zoo, Colchester Zoo, Dublin Zoo, Edinburgh Zoo, Newquay Zoo, Fota Wildlife Park, Living Coasts, Marwell Zoo, Paignton Zoo, Twycross Zoo and Woburn Safari. Membership cards and membership welcome letter must be shown to gain free entry to these attractions.
• Discount in main shops and cafes : You will also receive a members' discount in Zoo shops and cafes (excluding kiosks). Excluded items are specified at retail outlets and include products such as books, DVDs and sale items.
• Quarterly 'Z' magazine : As part of your membership, you will receive a subscription to our 'Z' magazine (quarterly) either by post or email. Adult members will receive a car sticker and junior members will receive a set of animal stickers.
• Members’ Talks : There are members’ talks and presentations advertised in our 'Z' magazine, and junior members will have the opportunity to take part in events and days out (age restrictions and additional costs apply).
• Members’ Days : There will be two members’ days held throughout your membership year. Each one featuring a series of ‘Meet the Keeper’ opportunities. Members are able to bring in guests on these days for half price (maximum of 12 half price guests per member).
What happens on Members’ Days?
Members can bring up to twelve guests in at half price on these special days. There will also be opportunities to meet the animal keepers and ask any questions about the animals. During 2013 these will be held on Saturday 20th April, Friday 28th June and Sunday 3rd November. Members will be reminded of these dates in our Z magazine.
What if I have already paid for day entry and decide to become a member?
Just pop in and see us on your way out with your admission receipt and we will deduct your admission off the membership price (on a like for like basis). This can be done within 30 days of your visit by either returning the receipt to the Membership Office in person or with an application form by post. The receipt must be produced at the point of membership purchase as it cannot be refunded once membership has been taken out.