Frequently Asked Questions about Membership

Dadandkids 455

If you have a question that is not listed below please feel free to call the Membership Department at 804.340.1520 or send an email to membership@vmfa.museum.

Office hours are Mon- Fri, 9am – 5pm.

Questions on Becoming a Member

How can I become a VMFA member?
You can purchase memberships online, call the Membership Office at 804.340.1520 or stop by the museum’s Visitor Services desk.

What are the benefits of becoming a member of VMFA?
Membership benefits include free admission and member previews to special exhibitions, free parking in the parking deck, invitations to member events, and discounts on purchases at the VMFA Shop, in the museum’s restaurants, and on classes, programs, and performances.

Can I give a membership as a gift?
Yes! You can purchase gift memberships online, call the Membership Office at 804.340.1520, or stop by the Visitor Services desk in the lobby of the museum. The recipient will receive a gift packet and a letter identifying you as the donor. You can even add a special message to your gift.

Please note that special discounts for Teachers, Military, OOT, and State Employees are not valid on gift membership purchases.

What is the Share the Museum Program?
The new Share the Museum program provides donors with an opportunity to purchase gift memberships onsite and online without having to provide the gift recipient’s information at the time of purchase. The program also allows the donor to purchase multiple gifts in one transaction. These gifts are fully tax deductible.

The membership is not active until the activation form is returned and processed. The recipient of the gift will have 18-months to return the form. Once the form is processed, the membership will be valid for one year. If the recipient is an existing member, the newly purchased membership will be valid for one year after their existing membership’s expiration. Please allow a couple days delay in activation.

I am a member.  How do I access my benefits?

How can I find out about Member programs and events? 
Look to the Member Events page of our website, the current issue of myVMFAmagazine, and Member emails.

How do I sign up to receive the Member News e-communication?
Send an email with your full name and member ID number to membership@vmfa.museum.

When are the member previews for special exhibitions? 
Member exhibition previews typically occur on the Thursday and Friday before an exhibition opens to the public.

How do I reserve my free exhibition and member preview tickets?
Members can easily reserve tickets online by visiting the tickets page of the VMFA website.  Members can also call the membership office at 804.340.1520 or stop by the Member Services desk in the lobby of the museum.

How do I get my free exhibition tickets online?  
Simply log into your account here using your email address and password.  It’s easy!

I don’t have an account online. How do I set one up?
Please refer to the instructions in this document to set up your account online.

How do I access my member profile?
Please refer to the instructions in this document to access your member profile online.

How many free exhibition tickets do I get? 
Members at the Individual and Student levels receive one ticket, members at the Dual level receive tickets for two adults, and members at the Family level and above receive tickets for two adults and all children under 18 in the household (or up to 4 grandchildren).

In addition, Supporters Circle members receive two guest tickets (per visit) and Partners Circle members and above receive four guest tickets (per visit).

Can I see the exhibitions for free more than once? 
Yes! But you may only enter an exhibition once per day.

What should I do if I lose my membership card?
To obtain a replacement card, simply contact the Membership Department at 804.340.1520 or email membership@vmfa.museum. Temporary cards can be obtained at the Visitor Services desk inside the museum.

Can I lend my membership card to a friend?
No. Membership cards and benefits are non-transferable

I have a question that is not on this page…
We’d love to help you. Just call the Membership Department at 804.340.1520 or send an email to membership@vmfa.museum.

Reciprocal Memberships

VMFA members who join at the Friends Circle ($175) level and higher enjoy reciprocal benefits through the North American Reciprocal Museum (NARM), Reciprocal Organization of Associated Museums (ROAM), and the Metropolitan Reciprocal Membership Program.

The Metropolitan’s Reciprocal Membership Program offers reciprocity at 17 major, metropolitan museums:

Several Statewide Partner institutions offer a free VMFA membership as a benefit of their own membership programs. This ongoing dual-membership program will convey the following VMFA benefits at the General Level:

  • digital membership cards
  • free tickets to all exhibitions
  • free parking
  • discounts on shopping, dining, and classes and programs
  • a subscription to the VMFA magazine for members; and invitations to member-only events

Participating Statewide Partners:

What does it mean to have reciprocal benefits?
When visiting participating institutions, members with reciprocal privileges typically receive:

  • Free admission
  • Discounts on purchases in the art and book shops (excludes online sales)
  • Discounts on tickets for programs and events (excludes online purchases)
  • Free admission to special exhibitions where an advance ticket is not required
  • Admission to members’ previews where an advance ticket is not required

Please contact the participating institution prior to your arrival for specific details, some special exhibitions and events have restrictions.

Questions about Digital Membership Cards

What are digital membership cards?
Digital membership cards offer convenience and ease of use for members. Eco-friendly and fully integrated with mobile wallets, digital cards streamline the membership process and reduce the costs associated with physical card creation and distribution. Digital membership cards can be downloaded and saved to your smartphone or tablet without the use of a third party app. Going digital means you never have to worry about forgetting your membership card.

How will I receive my digital membership card?
Your Digital Membership card will be sent to the email address provided when you join. When you receive the email with your digital cards, click the included link to download your card to your smartphone or tablet. If you are renewing your membership the expiration date on your digital membership card will automatically update within 7-10 business days. If you have not yet installed your digital membership card, please email membership@vmfa.museum.

iPhone | iPhone users will access digital cards through the Apple Wallet.

  1. Access your email through your smartphone or tablet, click the “Download” button, then “Add to Wallet” and “Add”.
  2. Your new digital membership card will automatically appear in your Apple Wallet, where it can be accessed at any time.

Android | Android users will access digital card through Wallet Passes.

  1. Download Wallet Passes from the Google Play Store. This app must be downloaded prior to downloading your digital card.
  2. After downloading Wallet Passes, open digital card email from your smartphone or tablet and click “Download”. Your new digital membership card will automatically appear in the Wallet Passes app, where it can be accessed at any time.

How many member card(s) will I receive?
Individual and Senior Individual members receive one membership card.
Starting at the Dual level, two cards are issued per membership. If a second name is not specified for the membership, the second card will read “Guest of [Member Name]” and the primary member must be present for the guest to receive member benefits.

How do I use my digital membership card?
Open your digital card in your Apple Wallet or Wallet Passes, and present your device just as you would a physical card.

What will be on my digital membership card?
The front of your digital cards list your Name, Member Level, Member ID, and Expiration Date.
The back of your digital card will provide highlights of your member benefits, as well as reciprocity information for members in the Friends Circle and above.

How will my secondary member receive their digital membership card?
(For Members Dual and above) For memberships with two names listed, you will receive two separate emails and cards at the email address provided when you join or renew. You may forward the secondary member their email and card. Or, download both cards and “share” the card through Apple Wallet or Wallet Passes.

How do I update information on my digital membership card?
To update your membership information please contact us by phone at 804.340.1520 or email membership@vmfa.museum. Once your information has been changed, your digital card automatically update (no need to download the card a second time).

Please allow 7-10 days for the updates to apply. If you notice that your digital membership card did not update, refresh your wallet or turn on the automatic updates tab.

I want a physical membership card, how do I request one?
If you would like to receive a physical membership card, please contact us at 804.340.1520 or email membership@vmfa.museum.