Library Cards & Borrowing

Explore the world with your library card! With a library account, you can check out books and movies, use Internet computers, and download e-books, audio books, and music!

You can also login to your account online to place holds while searching the catalog, renew materials, and change your PIN.


How do I get my library card?

If you are an Anchorage resident, fill out this registration form and then bring photo ID to the front desk at any APL location to verify your account and get your card. You will also need to bring a postmarked piece of mail that confirms your address. Mail must be addressed to you, in the envelope and postmarked within the past 2 weeks (i.e. this month’s utility bill).

Youth Cards

Youth can get a limited library card without a parent present, which gives them access to online resources and up to 3 items checked out at a time. For a card with full privileges, the parent/guardian needs to come to the library to present their ID, Anchorage mail (if they don’t already have a verified card themselves) and to authorize the full checkout limit for the child. The child does not need to accompany the parent to return the registration card.

Other Card Types

Alaska reciprocal library member: free card, 3-item limit.
Non-Resident: $90 yearly, full borrowing privileges at APL.
Visitor/guest cards: $25 for 3 months, 3-item limit.

Partner library members:  Patrons, other than University, State Library and Museum patrons, may not have duplicate accounts.  Patrons must sign up with their home library, but will have access to most resources available at other libraries. Patrons with blocked or barred accounts must contact their home library for resolution.

Anchorage School District Library Card Partnership

During registration with Anchorage School District, caregivers have the chance to get their student a library card. If they choose yes, then their student's directory information (name, address, phone number, etc) is transferred over to the public library and we create an account for them.  These cards are the same number as their ASD library card number and use the last four digits of the card number as a PIN. They are limited to three items for check out, but do allow access to all our digital resources. If the student wishes to check out more than 3 items, they must come in with their guardian and open a traditional library card account. A student may have two accounts with us, one with their ASD card number and one traditional APL account. These accounts are renewed or purged every year based upon ASD registration.

How do I replace my library card?

If your library card is lost or stolen, please let library staff know as soon as possible to prevent unauthorized use. Bring your photo ID to the front desk at any APL location and library staff will cancel the card and issue a replacement. The first lost card will be replaced free of charge. Subsequent replacement cards cost $1.00. Once a replacement card has been issued, the previous library card is no longer valid.

What's a PIN and how do I get one?

Your PIN is your password to access your library account online. To get your PIN, go to any library information desk or call 343-2975, select #4 OR click below to change your PIN. Once you login with your library card and PIN at My Account, you may renew items, change your PIN, and place holds.


Borrowing Time Limits

Anchorage residents may check out up to 50 items at a time including:

  • Books — 21 days
  • Magazines — max 5 for 7 days (no renewals)
  • DVDs — max 5 for 7 days
  • CDs/Audio Books — max 10 for 21 days
  • Book Club Bags  max 2 for 42 days (no renewals)
  • Read with Me, Lapsit, and Storypacket Bags — max 1 each for 21 days
  • Holds — up to 10 holds at a time
  • Partner library limits will vary by location.

You can renew most items up to two times. Magazines, Book Club Bags and items with holds can not be renewed.

Late & Damaged Materials Fees

If you return library materials late, or if you damage or lose library materials, you will need to pay a fee accordingly. For damaged/lost material, you will be charged retail price in order to replace the item in the library.

  • 50¢/day - adult books
  • 25¢/day - magazines, youth books and story packets
  • $1/day - all media (DVDs, CDs, VHS, audio books, Playaways) and Book Club Bag kits
  • $5 maximum fines per item; items over 17 days late will be charged a replacement fee, plus a $5 processing fee per item. See staff for details.
  • Fines may be paid through your online account, at a library self-check machine or at a library desk.
  • Fines of $100 and more are sent to a collection agency.
  • Replacement fee payments can only be made at home libraries or online.
  • Please note: Materials owned by partner libraries are subject to the owning libraries fines, fees and limits.