Saturday, December 9, 2023

San Antonio Zoo introduces unique driving experience to view animals during closure

This weekend San Antonio Zoo will launch Drive Thru Zoo, a one-of-a-kind experience where families can get the chance to see the zoo while it remains closed from the comfort, safety, and security of their own vehicle. The experience will include a guided educational audio tour and food and beverage curbside options featuring favorite zoo treats along the route. A part of zoo history, guests have not been able to tour the zoo on four wheels since there were carts led by donkeys then later trams. 

Since closing on March 14, San Antonio Zoo has lost virtually all ability to generate income. Still, the team has been working to find creative ways to generate revenue in any way that can help the zoo survive this closure. From baskets filled with zoo gifts to Adopt-An-Animal kits and even a new monthly membership for as low as $3.00 per month, the team has a no-fail attitude. Unlike most zoos in the country, San Antonio Zoo is 100% dependent on ticket sales, guest visitation, donations, and grants creating the need for the zoo to start an emergency fund donation campaign and unique opportunities like Drive Thru Zoo. The zoo has a long road ahead to recovery and is asking that people donate to its emergency fund. Donations can be made at

“This is a very unique and safe way for families to see the zoo while we are closed from the comfort of their own car,” said Tim Morrow, President & CEO San Antonio Zoo. “Proceeds from this event will help fund the care of our animals through this closure. This new, creative way to see the zoo will be a gradual step towards our plan to reopen to foot traffic when we are given the ‘green light’ and the time is right.” 

Drive Thru Zoo will be offered May 1 – 3 from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Guests are encouraged to purchase tickets online before their arrival. Admission per vehicle is $40 for non-pass holders and $32 for Annual Pass Holders and Members. Annual Pass Holders and Members will need to purchase their discounted admission upon arrival at the zoo. The zoo will offer curbside ticketing for Annual Pass Holders and Members so that admission can be purchased safely from their vehicle. While driving a sloth’s pace and hearing about the zoo’s history and animals, guests will get the opportunity to purchase and enjoy some of their favorite zoo snacks and beverages along the route that will be brought to their vehicle. 

The vehicle size will be limited to 198” Long x 78” Wide x 76” High (approximate size of a Chevy Tahoe).

Joe Kleiman
Joe Kleiman
Raised in San Diego on theme parks, zoos, and IMAX films, InPark's Senior Correspondent Joe Kleiman would expand his childhood loves into two decades as a projectionist and theater director within the giant screen industry. In addition to his work in commercial and museum operations, Joe has volunteered his time to animal husbandry at leading facilities in California and Texas and has played a leading management role for a number of performing arts companies. Joe previously served as News Editor and has remained a contributing author to InPark Magazine since 2011. HIs writing has also appeared in Sound & Communications, LF Examiner, Jim Hill Media, The Planetarian, Behind the Thrills, and MiceChat His blog, takes an unconventional look at the attractions industry. Follow on twitter @ThemesRenewed Joe lives in Sacramento, California with his wife, dog, and a ghost.

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