Getting a Library Card

Nowadays some people may think that the library is obsolete due to the Internet, but that is not the case at all. Many people still love to peruse the aisles and check out real books or do research or even use the library to go online. But in order to do this, you will need a library card as your ticket of entry.

What is a library card?

A library card is a type of identification card that entitles the bearer to use their local library, as well as borrow things like books, videos, CDs, or other materials at no cost for a prescribed amount of time. The specifics of the rules for using a library card differ somewhat from library to library, but for the most part, they are very similar.

In some cases you can even borrow materials from interconnected libraries all over your state or elsewhere. Some libraries also have agreements with area colleges. This makes the library a very valuable and cost saving place to go for many things from recreation to college homework or more.

How do I get a library card?

In order to get a library card for your area library you first must be a resident of that town, or in some cases, that county that the library is located in. You will need to bring two pieces of identification to show both who you are with a picture ID such as a driver’s license or military ID, and where your legal residence is. For the latter you need something like a voter registration card, a utility bill or some sort of official document that has your current address on it.

There is also a fee in some libraries to get a library card, while other localities have free cards for residents. You will have to ask in advance to see if your library of choice requires a fee. If so, the annual fee is normally between about $10 and $50. Sometimes there is a family fee and that can save you money as well.

Once you know the answer to that question and have your IDs ready, you must then fill out an application to get your library card. You can usually get the application either at the library itself, or perhaps download it from the library’s Internet site. Then, fill it out and bring in or send in as required by your particular library location. Be careful to fill out the application correctly.

Library rules vary for checkouts, fines, etc

Once you have gotten your library card, you need to study the library’s policies on things like how long you can keep materials, how to renew keeping materials, any overdue fine rules, rules on using the library for research, or using the library Internet facilities. These are a few of the possible rules and regulations to get for most libraries.

Who Can Use the Library Card?

One thing to remember is that only the person listed on the card can use the library card to borrow materials or use the library facilities. You should not share your card with anyone, because if you are discovered to be doing this, that your privileges could be revoked. If you happen to lose your library card or move to a different address, you need to let the library know so that a new card can be issued.

Everyone in the family needs their very own library card and this is simple to do. Check with your local library to find out the age when your child is required to have their own library card as this varies from library to library, but will most likely be when they reach school age.

Renewing a Library Card

Library cards are good for varying timeframes depending on the rules of your local library. Some are good for only a year and must then be renewed through your library desk or online, while in other communities the library card may be good for differing amounts of time. Either way, you should be sure to check the date it expires so you won’t lose your privileges for using and enjoying your library.


All in all, a library card can open the door to a world of adventure and delight, as well as provide a quiet place to study or read, or a good place to do research for homework or browse online using the library’s Internet. Whatever you do at your local library, they haven’t gone out of style just yet. So, be sure to apply to the library to get your very own library card, your ticket to using their services.



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