Helping more people visit our Zoos: our Community Access Scheme

We want as many people as possible to be able to enjoy a brilliant day out with us, to benefit from the amazing animals who live at ZSL London and Whipsnade Zoos, connect with nature and help us create a world where wildlife thrives.

To help people who might find cost or other challenges a barrier to visiting ZSL London Zoo and ZSL Whipsnade Zoo, our Community Access Scheme provides discounted tickets.

Who can get a Community Access ticket? 

The Community Access scheme provides discounted tickets to:

  • Low-income households
  • People with additional needs or disabilities
  • People over the age of 60 and may be at risk of isolation.

See amazing animals including our elephant herd at Whipsnade

How to get a discounted ticket through the Community Access Scheme

Via one of our partner organisations

We work with a wide range of local councils, charities and community groups who apply for tickets and distribute them to the individuals and families they work with. Organisations in 31 out of the 33 London Boroughs are currently participating in the scheme and for Whipsnade, Central Bedfordshire Council is our lead partner. If you already have a relationship with such an organisation, please ask them if they’re already one of our partners. If not, we’d love to hear from them – please email us at CommunityEngagement@ZSL.org.

Help for Households scheme

In support of the Government’s Help for Households scheme we are providing an additional 500 tickets every day to both London and Whipsnade Zoos, from as little as £3 per person. These are available on a first come, first served basis and are strictly limited. Please arrive early to avoid disappointment.

These tickets can only be purchased from our admissions kiosks at the time of your visit – they are not available online or in advance. We are operating a cashless system on our sites and we ask that you pay with credit or debit cards, or contactless payment methods only. Regular admissions tickets, including those for anyone coming along with you, must still be booked online and in advance.

To be eligible for the £3 ticket, you must meet certain criteria and be able to prove that you are currently receiving Universal Credit, Employment and Support Allowance, Income Support or Jobseeker’s Allowance.

You will need to bring your proof of benefit letter along with you to the zoo when you buy your ticket from our friendly staff at the admissions gate. Unfortunately, we won’t be able to issue discounted tickets unless you bring along one of these documents per household as proof of eligibility.

A young boy and girl stand behind a fence watching giraffes eat leaves in their enclosure  

Visitors with additional needs and disabilities

As well as low-income households, our Community Access Scheme is keen to provide reduced price tickets (priced at £6.50) to people that have additional needs or disabilities. 
We are working with organisations to provide reduced price tickets to those who have additional needs of disabilities. Our partners have a wealth of experience in supporting disabled people and have been offering advice and support to us in approving accessibility.      


People over the age of 60 who may be at risk of isolation

Our scheme is also for eligible people over the age of 60 and may be at risk of isolation (priced at £6.50). If you are part of a community group for older people, why not contact the group organiser and see if the group is part of the Community Access Scheme. If not, please share this page with them so they can apply.

An elderly gentleman explore our squirrel monkey exhibit

Refugees

If you are an organisation that supports refugees from any background, you are eligible to apply for low-income household's vouchers even if the family you are looking to support are being hosted by a family who are on a higher income.  Please get in contact with us at communityengagement@zsl.org to enquire about providing tickets to your community. In these cases, we are not able to offer discounted tickets direct to individuals; instead, all Community Access tickets are provided by community organisations.
 

Ticket validity

Tickets obtained through the Help for Households scheme are valid for entry to the Zoo on the date of issue only.

Community Access Scheme vouchers obtained through a partner organisation are valid for 365 days from the date they’re issued and must be exchanged for a dated zoo ticket. For further details on tickets please refer to our Terms and Conditions.

Information on vouchers and pricing

We have 2 types of Community Access Scheme (CAS) vouchers and tickets:

  • Flexible use vouchers which will be valid for 12 months, allowing individuals to visit at a time that suits them best.
  • Alternatively, you can now book dated group CAS tickets which would save you from converting your CAS vouchers to General Admission tickets. You can do this by contacting us via generalenquiries@zsl.org with the date of your visit and the number of tickets per CAS group category.

Below is the pricing breakdown per person for organisations purchasing an allocation of vouchers (minimum of 10 vouchers). 

People from low-income households £3.00
People with additional needs and disabilities* £6.50
Older people £6.50     

Please note: Vouchers will require payment at the time of booking which is after your application has been accepted. Our team will contact you to confirm the total price before taking payment details. Vouchers will be sent via email for the organisation to distribute to service users. 

*Subsidised price includes a free carer

Can we buy more vouchers?

Once all the vouchers from you first purchase have been redeemed, you can email our Supporter Contact team via generalenquiries@zsl.org to reserve more vouchers and request to pay via BACS. Please ensure that you include your unique account number from your previous booking and number of vouchers per category required. Once the payment has cleared, your vouchers will be sent to you via email, this is most accessible option as our call centre can sometimes have long wait times.

Alternatively, you can call us on 0344 225 1826 to speak to our Supporter Contact Team and purchase more vouchers, this route would enable you to pay for your vouchers via credit card. Check our Contact Us page for our phone line opening times.

How to apply to the scheme as a community organisation

If you are an organisation wanting to provide Community Access tickets to your community, please apply to the scheme on the button below. We provide tickets to a wide range of organisations that meet the following criteria:

1.Your organisation works with or supports one or more of the following: 

  • People from low-income households 
  • People with additional needs or disabilities 
  • Older people (60+) 

2. Your organisation works with people living in any of the 33 London Boroughs. 

If you would like to enquire about the scheme, please contact the Community Support Scheme advisor.

If you would like to apply directly, please do so on the link below:

Apply now

 

How to give us feedback

We require that individuals visiting through the Community Access Scheme complete a post-visit survey to share their experience of ZSL London Zoo. This feedback will support in developing our offering and in delivering on our commitment to becoming more accessible for everyone.

The survey link will be sent to the applying organisation at the same time we send the vouchers, it is up to the organisation to ensure all individuals complete the survey. We will review completed surveys and if an organisation chooses to apply for more vouchers we will consider their completed survey rate.

We also aim to make the application process as easy as possible, if you also have any feedback on this please email communityengagement@zsl.org.

Information for schools

If you are planning an educational visit, please visit our Education pages.

We are proud to be working with the National Lottery Heritage Fund

We're proud to be working with The National Lottery Heritage Fund.

Heritage Fund

Photo - An older gentleman wearing glasses standing in front of a leafy green bush

Planning a visit?

We’ve got a range of information available to help plan a visit