Membership FAQs


Do I need to make a reservation to visit the aquarium even if I am a member?

Yes, advanced reservations are required for all guests, including members. Walk-up sales are not available.

How do I make a reservation?

Follow the steps below:

  1. Visit and click Tickets. 
  2. Click Member Admissions. Here you can select tickets covered by your membership.
  3. Pick your member tickets, then click Add Selected to Cart. 
  4. In the pop-up window, enter your member number and last name for verification. 
  5. Select the calendar date of your intended visit, then select an available time and click Continue. 
    • To RSVP for Guest Passes or for children ages 2 and under, click Back to Shopping and add these tickets from the Member Admissions: Extras section. 
  6. After adding the necessary tickets to your cart, click Checkout.
  7. Tickets will be emailed upon completing your order. No need to print; tickets are mobile-friendly!

Make Reservation

How do I cancel/reschedule a reservation?

If you need to cancel your reservation, please email with your order number and name. To reschedule, include the date and time for your new visit along with your order number and name.

How do I use my member guest passes?

Guest passes are a one-time use ticket for general aquarium admission. If you plan to use a guest pass, RSVP for your guest online under the Member Admissions: Extras section. For entry into the aquarium, the RSVP and guest pass will need to be presented. Guest passes have the same expiration date as your membership.

How do I know my membership expiration date?

Your membership expiration date can be located on your membership card. If you do not have your card, you can contact or 858-534-5771 for assistance.

How do I become a member/renew my aquarium membership?

There are several ways to become a member of the aquarium!

  • Join/renew online. If you are renewing, enter your member number and last name to link to you account.
  • Call Guest Services at 858-534-5771.
  • Visit Guest Services next time you stop by the aquarium.
  • Mail in your renewal form with check payable to UC Regents.
Can I use my membership right away?
  • If you purchase your membership online, by phone, or by mail, a PDF will be emailed to you with your mobile membership card (with your member number), instructions for visiting to the aquarium, and your guest passes. If there is no email on your account, we will mail your membership cards and guest passes.
  • If you purchase your membership in-person at Guest Services, you will receive your membership cards and guest passes right away, all which can be used the same day.

To allow us to be sustainable, membership cards and guest passes are not automatically mailed but can be mailed upon request.

How many cards are included with my membership?

There will be one card issued for each named adult on your membership. If your membership includes a Caregiver, that person will also receive their own card. 

Why do I have to show a photo I.D. when I use my membership card to enter the aquarium?

Your membership has tremendous value. To prevent misuse of memberships and to protect the rights of our members should their cards be lost or stolen, we ask to see a photo I.D. from at least one adult cardholder at the time of your visit. 

Can I get a refund for my membership?

No, memberships are non-refundable.

Can I cancel, transfer, or share a membership with a friend, neighbor, or co-worker?

Our memberships are non-transferable and only the adult named on the membership can use the card for entry. In addition, memberships are tax deductible (see Is My Membership Tax Deductible below) and if you should choose to cancel your membership at any time your membership is non-refundable. Memberships are designed for the individuals specified at time of purchase and ARE NOT open-ended admission passes. If you would like the option of bringing a guest when you visit, you may opt for the Host option on Dual and above levels, which gives you ongoing substitution flexibility for the duration of your membership. If you choose to name the second adult, it locks you into that option and therefore gives that second adult equal rights to the membership. Please feel free to call us with any questions or concerns regarding this policy.

Do you have a children's membership?

At this time, we do not have a special membership for children. All Birch Aquarium memberships must have an adult (ages 18 and up) named on their membership. We do not collect children's names or information.

What benefits can my children use during their visit to the aquarium without me?

If you are sending your covered children to visit without you please notify Guest Services at 858-534-5771 or have the adult bringing them check in at Guest Services (verifying questions will be asked) and have the guest bring the membership card that the children are covered under. Children cannot host any guests; if you would like a caregiver to have easy access to your membership, you can add them to your membership for $55. Otherwise, the guest will need to purchase a ticket or bring a guest pass.

Can my child use my membership for admission for a school field trip?

No, school group admission cannot be combined with membership benefits. 

How can I add a nanny or other caregiver to my membership? If I have a nanny, which level is best for me?

When purchasing a membership, please select the level that is best for your family.  Once on the purchasing page, please look for the "Need to add a caregiver to your membership?" text and follow the instructions. 

Is parking included in my membership?

The Aquarium offers complimentary 3 hour parking for all visitors including members. As part of the UCSD campus community, there are parking restrictions in and around the aquarium parking lot. Please be mindful of signage and time limits as UCSD parking rules are enforced 24/7. If you have questions or concerns regarding parking, please feel free to call the Membership Office at 858-534-4109 or UCSD Parking at 858-534-4223.

Is My Membership Tax Deductible?

Birch Aquarium is a part of UC San Diego which is a 501©3 nonprofit organization. Contributions are tax-deductible as allowed by the law. For more details specific to your membership purchase, please contact the Membership Office at

Our EIN number is 95-2872494

Please contact our Membership Department via email for any additional questions.