The aim of this study is to investigate the performance of combined solar photo-catalyst of titanium oxide/zinc oxide (TiO2/ZnO) with aeration processes to treat petroleum wastewater. Central composite design with response surface methodology was used to evaluate the relationships between operating variables for TiO2 dosage, ZnO dosage, air flow, pH, and reaction time to identify the optimum operating conditions. Quadratic models for chemical oxygen demand (COD) and total organic carbon (TOC) removals prove to be significant with low probabilities (<0.0001). The obtained optimum conditions included a reaction time of 170 min, TiO2 dosage (0.5 g/L), ZnO dosage (0.54 g/L), air flow (4.3 L/min), and pH 6.8 COD and TOC removal rates of 99% and 74%, respectively. The TOC and COD removal rates correspond well with the predicted models. The maximum removal rate for TOC and COD was 99.3% and 76%, respectively at optimum operational conditions of TiO2 dosage (0.5 g/L), ZnO dosage (0.54 g/L), air flow (4.3 L/min), reaction time (170 min) and pH (6.8). The new treatment process achieved higher degradation efficiencies for TOC and COD and reduced the treatment time comparing with other related processes.