Frequently Asked Questions

How do I register for a field trip that includes an education program?

For program registrations call 414-258-5058, Mon.-Fri., 8:15 a.m.-3:45 p.m. For desired programs, register at least 4 weeks prior to your visit date.

How do I register a self-directed field trip?

A self-directed field trip is one where you tour the Milwaukee County Zoo on your own without a Zoological Society educator/tour guide. For self-directed Zoo visits ONLY, please register via our website at You will receive an email confirmation of your registration. Field trip packets filled with ideas are available for you to download here

What academic standards can field trips meet?

Our education programs are aligned to the Next Generation Science, Common Core and Wisconsin Academic Standards. Click here to see a chart showing how each program corresponds with state standards.

How many chaperones do I need to bring?  Does that include teachers?

All adults including teachers are considered chaperones. The Zoo requires 1 adult chaperone for every 10 students, regardless of age level. The chaperone must remain with the group at all times.

What if I have students with special needs?

Please indicate when you register if you have students with certified special needs by including those numbers in the special needs category under Gate Admission. Children with certified special needs (physical or cognitive disabilities) and their chaperones receive complimentary admission/parking. Registration and Principal’s testimonial is required.

What will I need at the admission gate?

  • Show your Zoo invoice form. Admission and parking must be prepaid. You can pay with credit card or by school check payable to Milwaukee County Zoo. Personal checks are no longer accepted.
  • Gate hours change November-February. During these winter months, the entrance gate opens at 9:30 a.m. and closes at 1:45 p.m.
  • Anticipate lines at the entrance gate. The time required to enter the Zoo varies depending on weather and events.

Can memberships be used to enter the Zoo with a school group?

For members visiting the Zoo with an organized class field trip or company picnic, members’ free-admission benefits do not apply. Due to the many busloads of school groups visiting the Zoo, county policy does not permit Zoo gate attendants to verify individual memberships among busloads of people.

Can we bring our own lunches to the Zoo?

  • Visitors are allowed to bring their own food and beverages. There are eating areas outside both restaurants, across from the Train Station and near the Small Mammals building. The Flamingo Café restaurant is available for food purchase but may not be available for seating school groups.
  • Plan to leave lunches in a bus/vehicle or carry them in backpacks.
  • Groups may store a box or cooler of lunches, at their own risk, in the US Bank Gathering Place. Food and drinks are not allowed inside animal exhibit areas.

What are the rules we should follow while at the Zoo?

  • For the safety of the Zoo's animals and its guests, pets, radios, skateboards, bicycles, roller skates, and in-line skates are not allowed in the Zoo.
  • Please do not feed any of the animals at the Zoo. Zookeepers work very hard to make sure the animals have balanced, nutritious diets.
  • Please be respectful to the animals by not yelling at them, banging on the glass, climbing on the exhibits, or throwing items into their exhibits.
  • Help do your part by recycling your soft drink bottles and cans in specially marked containers and putting trash in the proper receptacles throughout the Zoo.

Will we be given Zoo maps when we arrive?

No. Zoo maps are available at the Guest Services desk inside the US Bank Gathering Place. You can also download a map here.