“That causes trouble,” tweeted left-wing politician Sebastian Schlüsselburg on Wednesday morning. He complains about the increased entrance fees to the Berlin Zoo – and that the family ticket has been completely abolished. Below that he links to a current report from “BZ”, which addresses these apparently secret price increases.

At the Berlin Zoo, one reacts with irritation: “What the BZ writes is only partially true,” says the press office. “The article refers to price adjustments that have been made within the past two and a half years and not secretly, but publicly visible.”

The current admission prices have been in effect since March 2022, and the family ticket was abolished in February 2020. The reason for this was the proof of entitlement that was required for the family ticket. “There were always discussions and long queues because employees had to turn people away,” explains press spokeswoman Philine Hachmeister.

In fact, the price increase means that adults in the zoo currently pay 17.50 euros instead of the previous 16 euros, children pay 9 euros instead of 8 euros and other discount groups such as pensioners and students pay 12 euros instead of 11 euros. Hachmeister points out that the price – with the exception of the reduced tickets – includes a species protection fee of 50 cents, which visitors can opt out of when purchasing.

The reason for the price increases is basically rising costs: “For salaries, system improvements, energy costs,” says Hachmeister. “We are a non-profit association and don’t do it to rake in more money.” Left-wing politician Schlussselburg is not satisfied with this explanation: “In September 2021, the zoo received 16.5 million euros from the Senate to cushion losses from the pandemic.”

It was also agreed that future price increases would be discussed with the Senate. The Senate Department for Finance, in consultation with the Berlin Zoo, set the deadline for 2023. Schlüsselburg is convinced: “The zoo in bad faith increased the prices shortly after the agreement and before 2023”.

[If you want to have all the latest news live on your mobile phone, we recommend our app, which you can download here for Apple and Android devices.]

Hachmeister denies this. Ticket prices are always decided about a year in advance. “The economic negotiations for 2023 are currently underway, so the increases for this year were probably agreed in the summer of 2021, before the deal with the Senate,” she estimates. She cannot give an exact date.

In any case, Schlüsselburg would like to put the topic on the agenda of the next main committee and calls for the price increase to be withdrawn, at least for children and reduced tickets.