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Support Conservation and the National Zoo

 

A Friends of the National Zoo (FONZ) membership is the best way for you and your family to enjoy the Smithsonian's National Zoo and learn about wildlife conservation. Your membership provides a full year of special access and other great benefits–plus free parking at certain levels.

By becoming a FONZ member at any level, you help support the National Zoo's commitment to providing leadership in animal care, science, education, and sustainability.

Don't live nearby? We have a special membership option just for you. The National FONZ membership covers one named adult living more than 200 miles outside of Washington, D.C. Click here to join or renew.

Standard FONZ Member Benefits

All FONZ memberships include the following benefits:

  • Smithsonian Zoogoer magazine with calendar issue
  • Discounts on event ticket sales, education programs, and gift shop purchases
  • Access to exclusive member events, animal previews, and exhibit openings
  • Free or reduced admission to other zoos and aquariums nationwide

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Membership Benefits

Green $55 Basic $60 Premier $80 Premier Plus $110 Donor $250+
One cardholder 1/2 off parking
One cardholder
Free parking
Up to 2 cardholders
Free parking
Up to 3 cardholders
Priority registration
Free parking
Up to 3 cardholders
Priority registration
Exclusive Events
& More
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Give as a Gift Give as a Gift

Join at the donor level and become part of a prestigious group that offers significant support to the National Zoo. Donor memberships include all of the membership benefits above as well as priority registration for special programs, donor recognition, special guided tours, VIP events, and much more.

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  • Eliminate frequent renewal reminders and help us reduce costs and environmental impact.
  • Receive new membership cards and all of the benefits of membership at your selected level, without interruption.
  • Convenience! Joining this program saves you time and resources.

An email giving you the opportunity to upgrade your level and accompanying benefits, update payment or contact information, or cancel your auto-renewal participation will be sent at least two months prior to your annual membership renewal date. This program is valid for credit card purchases only. We charge the same card annually before your membership expires.

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Green Basic Premier Premier Plus  
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Is my membership payment tax-deductible?

Yes. The amount you may deduct varies by membership level.

Membership Level   Deductible Amount
National   $50
Green   $55
Basic   $60
Premier   $80
Premier Plus   $110
Patron   $250
Sponsor   $500
Benefactor   $1,000
Director's Circle   $2,100.00
Conservation Circle   $4,200.00
Wildlife Society   $8,800.00

Can memberships be refunded?

Memberships are non-refundable. If you are moving out of state, check our reciprocity list for zoos and aquariums in your area.

Is free parking included with my membership?

Premier, Premier Plus, and Donor membership levels include free parking when visiting the National Zoo during regular visiting hours. The Basic membership level includes half off parking fees. Green and National membership levels do not include parking benefits.

Please note: A valid FONZ membership card with matching photo ID is required for free or discounted parking. Parking spaces are limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis during regular National Zoo hours, so we cannot guarantee that parking will be available. Plan to arrive early when weather is nice. National Zoo parking gates open at 6:00 a.m. April through October and many animals are in their outdoor exhibits before 10:00 a.m. during the summer season.

Can I get a refund for parking?

A valid FONZ membership card with matching photo ID is required for free or discounted parking. Parking spaces are limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis. Plan to arrive early when weather is nice. National Zoo parking gates open at 6:00 a.m. April through October and many animals are in their outdoor exhibits before 10:00 a.m. during the summer season.

Members who forget their membership cards, do not have matching IDs, or present illegible or expired cards or IDs, will be charged the full parking fee.

Need a temporary replacement card? Please contact the FONZ Membership Office at least 1 business day in advance your visit if notice your card is damaged or missing so that we can send you a temporary membership verification letter via email. The FONZ Membership Office can be reached directly via email or phone at (202) 633-2922, Monday through Friday, 9am to 5pm.

Can memberships be shared?

Memberships may not be shared by more than one household. Member households include all named adults and their children, and are only valid for the individuals named on the card.

Do you offer discounts for seniors?

Yes. Seniors receive 20 percent off Green, Basic, Premier, and Premier Plus memberships.

How can I renew my membership?

You can renew your membership online, at the Zoo, or by mail. You will receive renewal notices by mail and by email, if you provide your email address.

Do I have to join online?

If you do not wish to join online, contact the FONZ Membership Department directly at 202.633.2922, complete and mail this printable application form, or join at the Zoo at any information booth or gift shop.

Can I redeem my FONZ benefits before my permanent membership card arrives?

Yes. Your membership is active the day you join FONZ. Please present your temporary card or confirmation email with photo ID to use your benefits.

You may print that email and bring it to the Zoo to enjoy your benefits. If you join during a visit to the Zoo, you will be given a temporary card valid for up to three months.

When will I receive my permanent membership card?

Please allow 10-15 business days for your membership card and welcome package to arrive in the mail. Still haven't received your card? Don't hesitate to call us at 202.633.2922 or email us to let us know.

How many membership cards will I receive?

You will receive one membership card if you join at the National, Green, or Basic membership level. You will receive two membership cards if you join at the Premier level. Premier Plus level members and higher may also order a third membership card in the name of their nanny/caregiver or other adult family member.

What if I lost my membership card?

Lost your membership cards? Replacement cards are available online for a $5.00 reprinting fee.

What do I do if I misplace my membership card?

If you misplace your membership card, you can request a new card online. There is a $5 charge for printing a replacement card. Please allow two to three weeks for delivery. Please email the FONZ Membership Office to request proof of membership prior to your visit.

I've already renewed my FONZ membership, but I continue to receive renewal notices. Should I be concerned?

If you have recently renewed your FONZ membership, please disregard any further renewal notices. Although we work to process renewals as quickly as possible, it is possible that your payment and our notice may cross in the mail.

How can I change my mailing and email address?

You can change your mailing and email address by sending us an email with your name, old and new addresses, and FONZ member number.

Is my membership good at other zoos?

The National Zoo participates in a reciprocal program that includes more than 100 zoos and aquariums nationwide. As a FONZ member, you are eligible to receive benefits from other participating organizations. Benefits may vary. We recommend that you call ahead to the zoo or aquarium you plan to visit to confirm what benefits are offered. Visitors to the National Zoo who are current members of one of these reciprocating zoos or aquariums receive ten percent off purchases at National Zoo gift shops on the grounds of the Zoo. This discount does not apply to items on sale. See a list of reciprocating zoos and aquariums and their current benefits.

Can I support FONZ if I live outside the D.C. Metro area?

By becoming a FONZ member at any level, you help support the National Zoo's commitment to providing leadership in animal care, science, education, and sustainability. The National membership level is only available to individuals living more than 200 miles outside of Washington, D.C.

Does FONZ exchange mailing lists with other organizations?

FONZ does not sell membership information or sell or trade phone and email information. FONZ occasionally shares membership addresses with organizations we believe might be of interest to our members. If you do not wish your mailing address to be shared with other mailers, please email us or call 202.633.2922, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m-5 p.m.

Please email us or call 202.633.2922, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m-5 p.m. if you have any questions.

FONZ members can join these clubs:

  • SCBI Club (Smithsonian Conservation and Biology Institute) $30
    Help support the critical efforts of the Smithsonian Conservation and Biology Institute (SCBI) scientists who specialize in saving wildlife, conserving habitats, and restoring species to the wild. SCBI Club members receive a free parking pass to the Autumn Conservation Festival at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute in Front Royal, Virginia.

  • SMBC Club (Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center) $30
    SMBC members are invited to local and regional bird walks and field trips with a Smithsonian ornithologist and bird-themed lectures. Members also receive the Smithsonian Flyer e-newsletter, and more.

  • FONZ Photo Club
    The FONZ Photo Club brings photographers of all skill levels together to share and learn about zoo photography. The club also raises money to support the Zoo by selling members' photographic work at special events. This club is free to FONZ members.

  • YP Club (Young Professionals Club)
    The Young Professionals Club invites you to meet and mingle with like-minded conservationists who are 21 to 35 years old. YP members receive YP Happenings e-newsletter. This club is free to FONZ members.
 

Questions about joining or renewing? Call us at 202-633-2922 or email us.