Interlibrary Loans

Photo of book with pages folded into the shape of a heart

If an item you need is not in our library system, we can still get the book for you using an Interlibrary Loan (ILL). We borrow the book from another library on your behalf, and in 2-6 weeks we can have the book available for you to check out.

What is Interlibrary Loan?

Interlibrary Loan Service (ILL) is a network of participating libraries that allows cardholders with full borrowing privileges the ability to request materials* from libraries across the country.

*Materials that can't be found in our Alaska Library Catalog. If an item is available through our own catalog, you do not need to complete an Interlibray Loan. You can usually place a hold on it. With a hold, we find an available copy of an item whether its at the Gerrish Branch of APL or the Kodiak campus of UAA or even Juneau Public library and have it delivered to the branch of your choice.

What is available through Interlibrary Loan?

Each library sets its own policies about what it will lend. Most libraries will not lend genealogical material or unbound periodicals but may make a photocopy of the relevant entry or article, or they might send a reel of microfilm. Some libraries will stipulate that their material must be used in the library (like a reference book). Many libraries will not lend new items (six months or less).

Who is eligible for ILL requests?

Card Holders with an Anchorage Public Library card may make Interlibrary Loan requests. Cards that are blocked due to fines, or cards without verified addresses will not be able to request ILL materials. Guest and Alaska Resident cards do not have Interlibrary Loan privileges (these services may be available through your home library). 

How do I start?

First you will need to set up an online Interlibrary Loan account.

  • Go to the library website
  • Select INTERLIBRARY LOANS from the list
  • Click on Create an ILL account
  • Read the terms and conditions of this service
  • Click on Registration and fill out the registration form with your current information
  • Submit information

How do I place an ILL request?

  • Go to the library website



  • Select Look up an item in WorldCat

  • Type your search in Search Anchorage Public Library and beyond

  • You can choose the format and limit the search to Books, DVDs, etc.

  • Select the item that you are looking for

  • Select Request item through Interlibrary Loan

  • Type your library card and ILL PIN and Logon

  • The request will automatically be filled in

  • Submit the request

What are the fines for overdue and lost items?

  • $1.00 per day for Media items (audio and visual recordings).
  • 50¢ per day for all other items.
  • Fines for Interlibrary Loans are not capped at $5.00.
  • If an ILL is damaged or lost, fees will be determined by the lending library plus a $5.00 processing fee from APL.

Is there anything else I should know about ILL?

  • Due dates are set by the lending library.
  • Renewals are always at the discretion of the lending library. Please request renewals at least three days in advance of the due date by contacting the ILL office or through your online ILL account.
  • Sometimes the lending library charges more than ILL will cover. It is our policy that if an item exceeds a certain amount we will ask the patron if they are willing to pay said amount.
  • You need to log into Interlibrary Loan to see your ILL items. These items will not show up when you log into your APL library account. 
  • There are no pre-due date reminder e-mails. Overdue notices are sent only once a week.
  • All ILL materials MUST be returned to an Anchorage Public Library location: Z.J. Loussac Library, Chugiak-Eagle River Library, Mountain View Library, Muldoon Library, or Scott & Wesley Gerrish Library. Please give the item to library staff. Don't return it in a book drop.

Interlibrary Loan Terminology

  • WorldCat: The online catalog of items from over 72,000 libraries around the world. 
  • Alaska Library Catalog/ALC (formerly Joint Library Catalog): The listing of items held by Anchorage Public Library (including all of its branches) and the libraries we share our catalog with, such as the UAA /APU Consortium Library or Juneau Public or UAS.
  • Hold: A request for an item in the Alaska Library Catalog.
  • ILL: Interlibrary Loan

ILL Contact Information

For ILL questions, please call  907-343-2826 or email:

Tuesday – Friday 9 am – 3:30 pm