FAQs & Parking
Does a membership need to be purchased in advance of my visit?
No, you can purchase your membership at the North Gate when you arrive at the zoo.
To make your trip seamless and avoid a lineup, you can purchase your membership ahead of time here. If you purchase your membership online, will receive your membership cards in the mail, but if you visit the zoo prior to receiving them, you will need to present proof of purchase and valid identification for entry.
When does my membership start and how long does it last?
Your membership begins on the date you purchase it or redeem a gift card, and it is valid for one year.
For example, a membership purchased on July 1st, 2023 will expire on June 30th, 2024.
How do I find my membership number and expiration date?
Your membership number is located on your membership card and your online membership account, expiration dates will be in your online account.
When can I access the zoo with my membership?
Your membership begins on the date you purchase it or redeem a gift card. You can access the zoo 364 days a year.
Please note that we are closed on December 25th. Our hours of operation change seasonally. To view current hours of operation and closure updates, please click here.
Please note that to accommodate special events like ZooBrew or ZOOLIGHTS, some spaces and habitats may close early or be unavailable. To view closure updates, please click here.
Can I bring a guest with me when I visit?
Your membership only provides access to the membership card holder. However, all members receive discounted guest admission as a member benefit.
If you are interested in bringing a guest with you regularly, we recommend upgrading to a Dual Flex membership. This bundle allows you to purchase an individual membership and a flexible guest membership at the same level.
Flex memberships provide the ‘flexibility’ to visit with whomever you want. Flex membership guests must be accompanied by a valid zoo member (adult or child).
I can’t login to my membership account. What do I do?
If you are having trouble logging into your membership account and you have already tried resetting your password, please reach out to Guest Relations at (403) 232-9300, extension 2. Guest Relations is available daily from 9am to 5pm.
Why does the zoo close early for ZOOLIGHTS? Why do I need to leave between day admission hours and ZOOLIGHTS hours if I am a member?
Zoo grounds are closed early and swept daily between day admission hours and ZOOLIGHTS hours to allow staff and volunteers time to prepare for the evening.
ZOOLIGHTS is a special event and requires a separate ticket. Check out Member Perks to learn more about available ZOOLIGHTS benefits.
If my child has a membership, can they visit without me?
Children under the age of 12 must be accompanied by an adult when visiting the zoo.
Can I apply my admission ticket to the cost of a membership?
Yes. Upgrade your day admission ticket towards a Wild Journey Membership or Wild Access Pass within seven days of visiting. To upgrade your ticket, please visit a ticket window or contact the Guest Relations team at (403) 232-9300, extension 2, daily from 9am to 5pm.
Can I upgrade my Wild Access Pass to a membership?
Yes, you can upgrade your Wild Access Pass to a Wild Journey Membership. You will be required to pay the difference. Please note that the expiry date will remain the same as the initial purchase date.
To upgrade to a Wild Journey Membership, please visit a ticket window or contact the Guest Relations team at (403) 232-9300, extension 2, daily from 9am to 5pm.
Can I remove a name from a membership account?
Yes. To make the change, please email Memberships@CalgaryZoo.com or contact Guest Relations at (403) 232-9300, extension 2, from daily from 9am to 5pm.
Can the Wild Access Pass or Wild Journey Memberships be shared or transferred?
No, the Wild Access Pass and Wild Journey Memberships are non-transferable. If you have a Dual Flex membership you have the ‘flexibility’ to visit with whomever you want. Flex membership guests must be accompanied by a valid zoo member (adult or child).
What is the refund policy?
All Wild Access Passes and Wild Journey Memberships to the Wilder Institute/Calgary Zoo are non-refundable. As a registered non-profit, we rely on memberships as a critical component to our funding model. This allows us to deliver exceptional ongoing animal care and conservation programs.
To view full membership terms and conditions, please click here.
What is a Dual Flex membership and why is it more expensive?
A Dual Flex membership allows you to purchase an individual membership and a flexible guest membership at the same level. Flex memberships provide you the ‘flexibility’ to visit with whomever you want, including adults and children, while still offering the same benefits as your named membership level. Flex membership guests must be accompanied by a valid zoo member (adult or child).
Do you offer accessible memberships and discounted memberships to persons with a disability?
Though we do not offer membership discounts for persons with a disability, the zoo is accessible to guests with disabilities who are accompanied with a support person. Qualified attendants receive complimentary zoo access. Proper identification, such as the Access 2 Entertainment Card, is required.
How do I sign up for free parking?
- To register for free parking, you will need to create an account through ParkPlus.
- If you have a Residential Permit, TELUS Spark, Heritage Park, or Fort Calgary parking services account, and your Wilder Institute/Calgary Zoo account uses the same email address, you do not need to create a new account.
- Due to system processing times, please allow a minimum of two hours from the time of your membership purchase before registering for parking.
- To create a new account for parking, please click here.
- This will take you to the Parking Services login page, where you will click “Create an Account”.
- Fill out the following information:
- First name
- Last name
- Click “Sign Up”.
- An email will be sent to you with instructions to confirm your email and activate your account.
- If you already have an account, go to https://calgaryzoo.permit.parkplus.ca and sign in.
- Click “My Permits” and on the side panel click “Register Membership”.
- Enter your last name and your Wilder Institute/Calgary Zoo membership number, then click “Submit”.
- The last name must match the last name on your Wilder Institute/Calgary Zoo membership card.
- If you do not have your membership number, please contact Guest Relations at GuestRelations@CalgaryZoo.com or (403) 232-9300, extension 2.
- Click “My Permits” on the left panel, then “Manage Permits”.
- Click on “Edit My License Plate”.
- Under “New Plate”, add your license plate number, the province, and click “Add Plate”.
- Click on “Edit” under the membership/permit number you want to edit.
- Click the toggle switch beside the license plate you want activated until it turns green and click “Save”. You can activate up to two license plates at a time.
- Make sure you edit the active plate list for each membership/permit number.
- Ensure the correct license plate(s) are activated before parking at the Wilder Institute/Calgary Zoo.
- You will be able to see your currently active license plates listed next to your membership under “Active Plates”.
How many license plates can I register for free parking?
You can register as many license plates as you like in your account.
However, you can only have two license plates active at a time per membership. Only one active registered vehicle can park at a time.
If you have multiple plates registered, please make sure to activate the correct plates prior to parking at the Wilder Institute/Calgary Zoo to avoid tickets and fines. If you are parking a second vehicle, you must pay to park that vehicle.
I do not have a membership. How much does parking cost?
Parking is managed through ParkPlus by the Calgary Parking Authority, and costs $13 per day.
I have a Wild Journey membership. Can I park at the Wilder Institute/Calgary Zoo at any time?
Members can park for free at the Wilder Institute/Calgary Zoo from 8:45am until one hour past zoo closure (this includes extended hours for ZOOLIGHTS and special events).
I have a membership but I received a parking ticket. What can I do?
Members are responsible for ensuring their license plate is registered properly with ParkPlus. If you pay for parking the day you purchased a membership, you will not receive a refund, but parking on your next visit will be complimentary. If you are already registered and received a ticket, you can appeal your ticket online here.
Can you tell me which car I registered for parking?
The Wilder Institute/Calgary Zoo does not have access to the ParkPlus system. To see which vehicle(s) you have registered for parking, please login to your parking account at https://calgaryzoo.permit.parkplus.ca.
If you have issues logging into your ParkPlus account, you can contact them at (403) 537-7000.
Does my Flex Membership qualify for free parking?
Yes, a Flex membership is eligible for free parking. You will need to follow the registration steps twice, once for each membership number.
Does parking automatically renew when I renew my membership?
Yes, parking renews automatically when a membership renews.
What do I do if I have issues registering for parking?
If you are experiencing issues with ParkPlus, please contact the Calgary Parking Authority at (403) 537-7000.
What is auto-renewal, and how do I sign up?
Auto-renewal is an easy and convenient way for you to enjoy uninterrupted membership benefits, while also providing us with consistent funding for animal care and conservation programs. Your membership will automatically renew within 10 days of its expiry date.
Members have the option of opting-in for auto-renewal through their online member account. Login to your membership account and click “Auto-Renewal” on the left, follow the applicable prompts.
Can I opt-in some of the people in my account for auto-renewal, and opt-out others?
Auto-renewal is applied to all memberships on the same account, so all members must be either opted-in or opted-out.
What happens if my memberships expire on different dates?
Each individual membership auto-renews within 10 days of expiration.
My membership needs have changed, will auto-renewal still work for me?
If you have a member that has aged into a new membership category (child to adult, or adult to senior), or you are looking to change your Wild Journey Membership level, you will need to contact Guest Relations as auto-renewal will simply renew you at the current level.
To renew these Wild Journey Memberships, please contact Guest Relations at GuestRelations@CalgaryZoo.com or (403) 232-9300, extension 2.
How do I update my contact or credit card information?
You can update all your relevant information through your online membership portal. Please keep your credit card up to date so we can successfully auto-renew your membership.
What happens if my credit card payment does not go through automatically?
If your credit card is declined, you will receive an email notification right away. You will be prompted to update your information, and we will attempt a charge again in three business days. If your card is declined a second time, you will be notified and Guest Relations will contact you by phone within 10 days.
I did not opt-out of auto-renewal and my membership has been renewed, but I did not want to renew my membership. Can I get a refund?
All Wilder Institute/Calgary Zoo memberships are non-refundable. If you have any concerns, please email Guest Relations at GuestRelations@CalgaryZoo.com.
How will I know that my membership is about to auto-renew?
Members that opt-in to auto-renewal will receive email notifications five weeks and three weeks before the expiration date of each of their memberships. If all memberships on the account are set to expire at the same time, you will receive email notifications only once for the whole group of memberships.
What happens if membership prices increase?
You will be automatically renewed at your current membership level with its price at the time of your membership expiry. If prices increase, your membership will be renewed at the new price. Price increases on memberships are communicated via email prior to the increase.
Is there a discount for renewals?
No, there are no discounts for renewed memberships.
Do I receive a new membership card when I renew my membership?
You will not receive a new membership card when you renew. Please continue to use your existing membership card.
I lost my membership card. What do I do?
If you lose your membership card, you can get your card reprinted by visiting the ticket window at the North Gate or by contacting Guest Relations at (403) 232-9300, extension 2, daily from 9am to 5pm, or emailing GuestRelations@CalgaryZoo.com.
If you lose your card within one month of renewal, you can receive a complimentary card.
If you lose your card after one month, the cost to reprint a membership card is $5.25.
How many membership cards will I receive when I become a member?
Each member will receive a membership card in their name. If you have purchased a Flex membership you will also receive a guest membership card.
How do I renew my membership?
There are three ways to renew your membership:
1. Online: Login to your membership account here.
2. Over the Phone: Contact our Guest Relations team at (403) 232-9300, extension 2, daily from 9am to 5pm.
3. In-Person: Visit the ticket window on your next visit. Please note that you will not receive a new membership card upon renewal.
Please note that you will not receive a new membership card upon renewal.
I can’t login to renew my membership online. What do I do?
If you are having issues logging into your Wilder Institute/Calgary Zoo account and have already tried resetting your password, please reach out to Guest Relations at (403) 232-9300, extension 2, daily from 9am to 5pm.
Gifting Memberships and Gift Cards
How do I gift a membership?
To gift a membership, you must purchase a gift card with the exact value of the membership(s). Please click here for more information.
By purchasing a gift card, you can ensure that the membership does not activate until the gift card is redeemed, and no time is lost prior to activation.
How do I redeem a gift card for membership?
To redeem a gift card for membership, follow the steps for purchasing a new membership.
Once you are logged into your account and have a membership in your cart, your gift card information can be added when you reach the payment process.
What kind of benefits do I get with my Wild Journey Membership?
What is the AZA Admission Discount? Do I get discounts at other zoos or aquariums?
The Wilder Institute/Calgary Zoo is an AZA accredited organization. The AZA Admission Discount refers to the discount that our members receive if they visit other AZA accredited organizations that participate in the AZA Reciprocal Admissions Program. Through this benefit, you can receive a discount when accessing other AZA organizations across North America.
How can I learn about member events?
To stay updated about member events and other benefits, ensure that you are subscribed to the member newsletter.
If you are unsure whether you are subscribed, please contact Memberships@CalgaryZoo.com.
Are membership benefits transferable to other people?
No, member benefits are non-transferable between members, Wild Access Pass holders or daily admission ticket holders. With the exception of Flex memberships which provide the same benefits as your named membership level.
Is ZOOLIGHTS access included with my membership?
Wild Scouts and Wild Explorers can take advantage of 50% off ZOOLIGHTS a single ticket for themselves.
Wild Adventurer members receive two complimentary ZOOLIGHTS tickets for each member and receive 50% off additional visits for themselves.
What is the birthday party discount?
Members receive a $5 discount per guest for birthday parties, for both adult and child guests.
How does the guest admission discount work?
Members receive 20% (Wild Explorer) or 25% (Wild Adventurer) off guest admission, valid for up to two guests per visit, purchased through their online account only.
The New Membership Program
Why did the program change?
The Wilder Institute/Calgary Zoo membership program is a staple in the Calgary community. While this program has not undergone any changes in over a decade, our members and their values have changed significantly. To better align our membership offering with the values of our members, we decided to undergo a reimagining of the membership program.
Through member surveys and years of feedback, we discovered areas where the membership program could change to better suit you, our members. Through our new Wild Journey membership program’s clear messaging and updated benefits, we hope that you will get the most out of your Wilder Institute/Calgary Zoo membership! You are a part of a community of wildlife advocates, supporting wildlife conservation through each membership.
What’s the meaning of the new program name?
Our aim is to celebrate the conservation work being done by the Wilder Institute/Calgary Zoo! The Wild Journey membership program invites our members to connect on a deeper level with the important work that your memberships help make possible.
Did the member benefits change?
Yes. We have made modifications to the benefits based on common feedback from members, which included that members often felt confused and unaware of the benefits they received. By aligning our member benefits with the core values of our members, we’re aiming to ensure that you can easily understand the benefits available to you.
Why are the prices going up?
The last price increase for zoo membership happened in 2018. Since then, costs have risen in every aspect of our operations. The price increase for the new Wild Journey membership program, varying from $5 to $10, will allow us to maintain the highest level of animal care and welfare, pursue critical conservation work, and continue to offer a valuable membership experience to our members.
We are aware that this change comes into effect shortly before the opening of Wild Canada and the arrival of our resident polar bears, ‘Baffin’ and ‘Siku’, however the change in pricing is not connected to this. The reimagining of the memberships program has been underway since November 2022 and the timing of the launch happens to coincide with the launch of the newly redeveloped zone.
How will members know what their new membership benefits are?
All current and new members moving forward will receive a digital welcome package to your email that outlines all the member benefits you receive based on the memberships in your household.
How have the ZOOLIGHTS benefits changed?
We are pleased to be able to continue to offer members a special benefit during the festive season. However, the ZOOLIGHTS benefit for Wild Adventurer (previously Inspire) members has changed from unlimited access to ZOOLIGHTS to two complimentary ZOOLIGHTS tickets, plus 50% off your additional visits.
Through research and past attendance records, we discovered that Inspire members came to ZOOLIGHTS twice, on average, so we are confident that this change will continue to meet our members’ needs.
Note: Current Inspire members and Inspire Child members will be grandfathered into the new membership program and continue to receive unlimited ZOOLIGHTS access for the remainder of the 2023-24 ZOOLIGHTS season.
Why is the camp discount changing?
Through feedback from members, we learned that you value being able to register for camps early more than the discount. By offering early registration to members instead of a discount, we’re offering you the benefit you value the most.
Why is the concessions discount being discontinued?
The concessions discount in our current membership program was limited to only certain items, due to cost margins and availability. This created an immense amount of confusion for members, as well as our staff.
Instead of offering a limited concessions discount, we’re committed to offering concessions discounts on an ongoing basis through periodic Member Moments. Stay tuned for more information on these exciting new perks.
Why did Connect Membership change to a Wild Access Pass?
The Connect membership offered 364 days of zoo access but few other membership benefits, which often caused confusion. Changing the name to Wild Access Pass allows us to accurately describe this level and honour our commitment to making the benefits of each of our membership program levels easier to understand.
Can the Wild Access Pass be shared or transferred?
No, the Wild Access Pass is non-transferable and cannot be shared with others.
I have a Connect Guest Pass, can I keep using that?
Yes, current Connect members with a guest pass will be able to use it for the remainder of their membership term. However, we no longer offer guest passes under the new program, so you will not have the option to purchase another one when it comes time to renew.
Why are Inspire Child memberships being discontinued, and why did the price of Wild Scout jump by $10?
We discovered that the benefits of the Inspire Child membership often caused confusion for members. The Wild Scout membership simplifies this option by being a true child membership – one level for all children aged 3-15 – at a reduced price.
Will there be a refund for members who have Inspire Child Memberships?
No, as per our Membership terms and conditions, memberships are non-refundable. However, as we are evolving the child membership to a single tier with different benefits, we will continue to honour the current Inspire Child benefits until the membership is up for renewal. When you renew at the Wild Scout level, you will then receive the Wild Scout benefits.
I have a gift card for a membership, what happens now?
Any unredeemed gift cards can still be used for purchasing Wild Journey memberships, but you will be required to pay the difference of the new membership level you select.
Is there no longer a student discounted price for memberships?
No. The Wilder Institute/Calgary Zoo no longer provides a student discount on the purchase of a membership.
What are the new bundles? Why were they introduced?
The Wild Journey membership program is introducing three new pricing bundles – Dual, Dual Flex, and Wild Pack.
The Dual bundle offers members a small discount for purchasing two memberships at the same level (for example, two Wild Explorer adult memberships or two Wild Adventurer adult memberships).
The Dual Flex bundle is equivalent to our existing Guest membership. The Dual Flex bundle includes an adult membership at any tier and a “flex” membership that offers members flexibility in whom they bring to the zoo with them.
Note: As a flex membership includes benefits such as parking and can be used by different people, it is priced slightly higher than a single adult membership.
The Wild Pack bundle is for groups and can include either a Dual or Dual Flex bundle, as well as two Wild Scout memberships. You’ve often asked us why we don’t have a family membership option, so our intention with Wild Pack is to give you an option for your group that is customizable to fit all family types!
Will accessible memberships and discounted memberships be offered to persons with a disability?
Though we do not offer membership discounts for persons with a disability, the zoo is accessible to guests with disabilities who are accompanied by a support person/attendant. Qualified attendants receive complimentary zoo access. Proper identification, such as the Access 2 Entertainment Card, is required.
Will free Connect memberships still be offered to refugees?
Yes, we will continue offering Wild Access Passes (the new Connect membership equivalent) to refugees in the new Wild Journey membership program.
Is the auto-renewal program changing?
No, auto-renewal is not changing for members who are currently opted-in. We will continue to offer and highlight auto-renewal as an option for members wanting to enjoy 364 days of access to the zoo.
Will I receive a digital membership card?
Yes, we are very excited to be offering digital membership cards with the new program. We will continue to offer physical membership cards for those who request them, and they will be available upon renewal.
Will the current membership cards still work?
Yes, current membership cards will continue to work with the new membership program. We will provide new membership cards on request at the time of renewal.
Will new membership cards be given to members?
No. New membership cards will only be printed for new members who request a physical card. Members may also request new membership cards at the time of renewal.
Can my child come to the Wild Adventurer Conservation Talks and Tours?
If the adult(s) in your household hold Adventurer level memberships and your children are Wild Scout Members, they are welcome to attend the Adventurer Conservation Talks and Tours, subject to space and availability.
Why is the ‘Get Spotted’ program going away?
The Get Spotted program was created with the intention for staff on-park to “spot” members wearing their Get Spotted pin.
While this program had wonderful intentions, the number of members on zoo grounds, coupled with staff capacity, meant that members were being promised that they would be spotted, and we were unable to deliver on this promise.
By discontinuing the Get Spotted program, our intention is to create surprise and delight moments for members on zoo grounds through “Member Moments” that allow us to celebrate members and your support for the Wilder Institute/Calgary Zoo.