Borrowing

Borrowing limits for members

Your membership allows you to borrow up to 30 items for 3 weeks. The following limits for each category apply: 

  • books (30 a card)
  • magazines (30 a card)
  • CDs (30 a card)
  • audiobooks (30 a card)
  • DVDs (30 a card)
  • language kits (30 a card)
  • ebooks (5 a card)
  • eaudiobooks (5 a card)
  • ecomics (unlimited)
  • emagazines (unlimited)
  • enewspapers (unlimited)
  • emusic (download limit 3 songs a week and 5 hours streaming a day)
  • emovies on Beamafilm (unlimited) 
  • emovies on Kanopy (5 plays a month)
  • GoChip Beam (3 a card)
  • video game consoles (1 a card)
  • ukuleles (1 a card)
  • musical instruments at Green Square Library (5 a card)
  • toys (10 a card)
  • reservations (20 items at a time)
  • inter-library loans (5 items at a time).

Borrowing limits for temporary members

If you’re a temporary library member – an interstate or international visitor, or you have homeless or refugee status – your borrowing limit is 5 items over a 3-week period, with up to 2 renewals.

Reservations and inter-library loans are not available in this membership category.

Self-checkout

Self-service kiosks installed at our library branches help make borrowing faster and easier while improving services for our members.

All library items have electronic tags, so when checking out your items you can scan them all at once. 

Library staff are on hand to help members with the self-service kiosks.

Returns

Borrowed items can be returned to any library branch during opening hours or in the after-hours return chute.

Items from any of the toy collections must be returned to the original branch. 

Toys and makerspace kits are to be returned to a staff member during opening hours.

The new return chutes and shelves register returns immediately, so you can keep on borrowing straight away.

Online catalogue

Search our online catalogue to find the title/s you want to borrow. Our collection of books and ebooks, magazines, audio and eaudiobooks, music CDs, DVDS, language and makerspace kits are all searchable in the online catalogue.

You can also suggest items you want the library to purchase and review items you have borrowed.

Login using your member barcode number or alias and your password. Visit member recovery if you have forgotten your login details or visit one of the branches.

Loan renewals

Each item can only be renewed twice. If another library member has reserved it, you won't be able to renew your loan.

To make the renewal process easier we've introduced automatic renewals. This means if you have an email address in your membership account, your loans will automatically renew on the day the item is due.

Automatic renewal will not occur if the item has been reserved by another borrower, or if it has already reached the maximum 2 renewals. You'll receive an email confirming if the loan has been renewed or not.  

If you don't have an email address, you can renew your loan online or at any branch (in person or by telephone).

Overdue loans

We are waiving fines for overdue loans for until 30 June 2021. As long as overdue items are returned, you won't be fined, no matter how overdue they are.  If you have an overdue item or outstanding fee, your library membership will be temporarily suspended.

Lost or damaged items

Fees remain for ‘lost or damaged items’. Members can pay their fees at any library branch.

How to reserve an item online

Find the title in the online catalogue.

  1. Check to see if it is already reserved (see below)*
  2. Click the ‘Reserve’ option
  3. Login and click ‘OK’
  4. Under ‘Collect At’, select your preferred library branch
  5. Click ‘Reserve’
  6. If you want to cancel your reservation, login, click ‘Reserve’, tick the box next to the title and then click ‘Delete’.

*If the item is already reserved it will display as ‘red text’ under the title information. For example, it might say: '0 of 3 items available. 5 Reserves' .

Other reserve options

You can also email library@cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au to make a reservation, telephone us on 02 9265 9333, or visit one of the branches.

SMS and email alerts

To register to receive email or SMS alerts when your items are ready to be collected, please send a message with your details to library@cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au.

Join the library

Membership is free for NSW residents. Complete the online application form and enjoy borrowing up to 30 items for 3 weeks.

Last updated: Thursday, 14 March 2019