Chaperone Policies

  • Chaperone participation is critical to ensuring that all students have a safe and enjoyable educational experience. A school group visiting through the grant-funded Free Field Trip Program must bring a minimum of one (1) adult chaperone for every eight (8) students. These required adults are admitted free. Adults beyond the 8:1 ratio are considered “extra adults.” Extra adults are not admitted free, but can receive a discounted group reservation rate.
  • Chaperones must directly supervise their assigned students at ALL times, regardless of the age of the students. Failure to comply with this policy may result in removal from the Zoo. Siblings and other children not part of the class officially booked for the field trip do not count in the calculation of the free chaperone ratio. Teachers are not automatically free, though most groups choose to allot their free chaperones slots to teachers first.

Payment Policies

  • The Zoo cannot invoice for any field trip fees and we cannot accept purchase orders.
  • The estimated fees provided with the Entry Pass were based on the attendance numbers you provided at the time of booking. If your numbers change, the fees you owe may also change. The group leader is responsible for completing the Entry Pass based on the actual day-of attendance and for calculating what your group owes (if applicable) based on those numbers.
  • All group members must enter the Zoo together to receive free admission (or the group rate, as applicable). To receive discounted admission, extra adults and other children must all be accounted for on the Entry Pass and must all be paid for by the group leader in one transaction at the Gate. Anyone NOT accounted for in this way will be required to pay the full regular admission.
  • Siblings and other children not part of the visiting class do not count in the calculation of the free chaperone ratio.
  • Payment for any field trip fees must be made on or before the date of your visit. The group leader is responsible for making sure all fees owed are covered at the time of the visit. The Zoo does not accept purchase orders and does not invoice for unpaid field trip fees.
  • Group leaders must pay any fees owed in one transaction. Parents/guardians cannot pay separately if they are receiving the discounted group rate.
  • Payments can be made using a check or credit card. Credit card payment is strongly preferred. Checks should be made payable to The Maryland Zoo in Baltimore. Use of cash is strongly discouraged.
  • If the amount due increases after an advanced payment has been made or a check has been cut, the group leader is responsible for making sure remaining fees owed are paid at the time the group enters the Zoo.
  • Refunds for overpayments will not be issued, and overpayments cannot be applied to future field trip visits. Overpayments will be processed as a donation to the Maryland Zoo.

General Zoo Rules

  • Respect the animals. Please do not yell or throw things at the animals, bang on their enclosures, or otherwise harass them. Just like us, animals need rest and privacy. Animals may have access to off-exhibit areas during the day and may not always be visible.
  • Do not feed the animals. All the Zoo’s animals are on special diets, and outside food and other objects can be harmful for them.
  • Do not feed the local wildlife. It changes their natural behaviors and can harm them. Refrain from running, shouting, pushing, or using offensive language. Observe all posted signs and remain on paths.
  • Smoking (including e-cigarettes) and use of other tobacco products are prohibited in the Zoo. Smoking is permitted only in the designated smoking area outside Zoo gates.
  • Stay on marked pathways and respect all barriers.
  • ALL students visiting as part of a school group must be directly supervised by adult chaperones regardless of children’s ages.
  • Please help keep the Zoo clean by placing trash in the proper trash/recycling receptacles.
  • Do not attempt to retrieve any items that fall into an exhibit. Zoo staff will retrieve it for you.
  • First aid is provided by the Zoo’s Security team. If you require assistance, please ask a Zoo staff member or volunteer to notify Security for you.
  • If you become separated from a student in your group, please find a Zoo staff member or volunteer who will contact Zoo Security.
  • No items from animals (e.g., feathers) may be taken from the Zoo.

Thank you for helping us ensure that all guests have a safe and enjoyable visit to the Zoo!