Your Card

Click here to apply for a Library CardComplete the application process by presenting a current photo ID in person at your local library. If your photo ID does not show your current address, you must present mail that shows your home address.

Keep Your Card Current and Protected

  • If your address changes, notify us immediately.  You can always update your phone number and email in my account.
  • Cards expire after four years. Renew for free at any of our libraries with a current photo ID.
  • Notify us immediately if your card is lost or stolen.  You are responsible for all items checked out on your card.
  • Tool Lending is available to Berkeley residents and Berkeley property owners. 

Adult and Senior Cards

  • Can access Discover & Go, an online resource that provides free and reduced price tickets to local museums and venues. 

Teen Library Cards

  • Teens ages 14 - 17 aren't required to have a parent's or legal guardian's signature.
  • Teens must present photo ID and proof of address, for example, California ID or Driver's License, school ID, or passport. If your photo ID does not show your current address, you may present a report card, or mail that shows your home address.
  • Can access Discover & Go, an online resource that provides free and reduced price tickets to local museums and venues. 

Children's Library Cards

  • All children are invited to get a library card.  Yes, even babies!
  • For children up through age 13, parents or legal guardians may fill out our online application here. The child must come to the library in person to receive the card.  The form must be electronically signed by the parent or legal guardian.
  • Teachers, learn about getting cards for your students for a class visit!

Loan Periods and Fines

Most materials go out for 21 days and can be renewed two times. Materials can be renewed within 7 days of their due date. The new due date is calculated from the time of renewal, not from original due date. Materials can be returned at any Berkeley Public Library location, regardless of where they were checked out. 

There are no fines on the majority of materials you can check out at The Berkeley Public Library. (Read our FAQ). Exceptions are listed below:

Materials Fines  Loan Period  Renewals
Laptop $1.00 per hour 2 hours Non-Renewable
Link+ $1.00 per day 7 or 21 days 1 Renewal
Science Kit $1.00 per day 7 days Non-Renewable
Tool $1.00, $5.00, $10.00 3 or 7 days Non-Renewable


Lost, Stolen and Damaged Materials

The library charges the replacement cost for lost and stolen items. Your account will be blocked when you have not returned an item by the time a bill is sent for it. If the items are not returned within 8 weeks after the due date, and you owe $50.00 or more, your account will be referred to a collection agency. If so, the account will be charged a $10.00 non-refundable Collection Agency Fee in addition to the bill.

If an item is returned damaged, the account will be charged the replacement cost.

Link+ is a cooperative project among dozens of academic and public libraries that allows for us to share materials. As part of a member library, you can electronically request materials not available in our library system and it will be delivered to one of our libraries. There is no charge to request or borrow Link+ materials.

  • Link+ may be accessed directly, or by clicking on “Link+” when viewing local search results.
  • Materials may be borrowed if they are listed as "available" in the Link+ catalog. (Some materials may not be available for request based on the lending libraries discretion)
  • The materials usually arrive at one of our libraries in 2 to 6 days and will be held for 10 days.
  • The loan period is 7 or 21 days, with the option of one renewal. Items can be renewed 3 days before their due date. When there is a hold on the item at its lending library, it cannot be renewed.
  • The overdue fine for Link+ materials is $1.00 per day.
  • The fee for lost or damaged Link+ materials is $115.00.

Circulation Notices

We send notices by email, phone, and mail. You may update your method of notification at any of our libraries or by accessing my account.

Email notifications include:

  • Hold pick-up or cancellation
  • Notice of overdue materials (14 days after due date)
  • Courtesy notices reminding you that items are due within 7 days for all materials except tools, which generate notices 3 days before the due date. Items that circulate for less than 3 days do not generate courtesy notices.

Phone notifications include:

  • Hold pick-up
  • Notice of overdue materials (14 days after due date)
  • Courtesy notices are not available for patrons who choose phone notification.


  • Hold pick-up and cancellation
  • Notice of overdue materials (14 days after due date)
  • Item replacement bills
  • Courtesy notices are not available for patrons who choose this mail notification.

All replacement bills are mailed to patrons regardless of notification preference.

When email and phone notices are undeliverable after the first attempt to send, a print notice is generated and mailed.

The Library strives to ensure that notices are sent out in a timely manner. Notices are generated and sent daily Monday through Saturday. Delivery and receipt of a circulation notice is not guaranteed. Factors not under the direct control of the library can hinder delivery of e-mail, telephone messages, and notices sent by post; therefore, the Library is not responsible for circulation notices that do not reach patrons in a timely manner. Please make sure that email addresses, phone numbers and mailing addresses are kept current. Account information may be updated at any Berkeley Public Library location.

Some email programs and system servers identify email from Berkeley Public Library as spam. To help ensure that you receive notices, place this address in your contacts list or address book:  Do not send email to this address or reply to email notices you receive from the library.