Boston Public Library
Where to get a Library Card?
Borrowing and Circulating Information


Central Library

A registration desk is located in the lobby area of each of the two central Library buildings. If you enter the building from Boylston Street, the desk is located in the alcove to your left, just after passing through the security gates. From the Dartmouth Street entrance, the registration Desk is located in the McKim building first floor lobby at the bottom of the grand staircase.

To get a library card, you must furnish photo identification which includes your name, present address, and has your signature. In addition to card registration the following services are also available at this desk: return items, renew items, pick-up requests, pay fines, replace lost cards, reserve and pick-up museum passes. A library card may only be used by the person to whom it is issued.

Neighborhood Branches

Each neighborhood branch has a Circulation Desk. The Circulation Desk is generally located at the front of each building. To get a library card, you must legibly fill out the Library's application form and furnish photo identification which includes your name, present address, and has your signature. In addition to card registration the following services are also available at circulation desks: return items, renew items, pick-up requests, pay fines, replace lost cards, reserve and pick-up museum passes. The Circulation Desks at the branches are staffed all of the hours that the branch is open. A library card may only be used by the person to whom it is issued.

Register for an eCard
online

Massachusetts residents can sign up for a Boston Public Library eCard via the web. BPL eCards are virtual library cards that allow users immediate access to all of the Boston Public Library's electronic resources, including magazine databases, downloadable audio, video and music.  eCard users who wish to check out library materials will be asked to upgrade to a standard BPL card.  For more information about eCards, please visit our eCard FAQ.