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How to Get a Library Card

A current library card is required to check out materials from the Debra S. Fish Library. Library cards are free.

Saint Paul Residents

Saint Paul residents can apply for a card at any SPPL library.
To get your library card, bring in a picture ID with your name and current address or a picture ID and a piece of recently posted mail with your current address.
Your Saint Paul Public Library card may also be used at most public libraries in Minnesota. You will need to register the card in each system you want to use. When using your card in another library system, you must abide by its rules.

Twin Cities Metropolitan Area Residents

Residents of cities or counties whose libraries are served by MELSA may use their library cards free of charge in the Saint Paul Public Library system. Bring in your library card, along with a picture ID with your name and current address or a picture ID and a piece of recently posted mail with your current address.
If you do not have a library card in your home system, you may apply for one at the Saint Paul Public Library. You will be issued a temporary card, good for checking out up to 2 items and for accessing other Saint Paul Public Library services. A permanent card will be mailed to you from your home system.

Other Minnesota Residents

Most other residents of Minnesota may use their home library cards free of charge at the Saint Paul Public Library. Bring in your library card, along with a picture ID with your name and current address or a picture ID and a piece of recently posted mail with your current address.

Identification Requirements for Children

There is no minimum age for a library card. The child must be present when being issued a card.
Children may apply to receive a library card by meeting the adult requirements, or one of the following:

  • They are accompanied by a parent or guardian who has valid identification (see above).
  • The library card application is part of a school class visit.
  • Valid State ID.

Expiration & Replacement

Expiration Dates

Most library card registrations are good for 2 years. After two years, you will need to re-register your card by verifying your address with one of the identification options listed above.
Registrations for non-Minnesota residents are good for 1 year.
Library cards with Teacher status are good through the school year and need to be re-registered each August.

Replacement Cards

If you have lost your library card and need to get a new one, the charge is $1.00 for a replacement card.
Bring a photo ID and second proof of residence (e.g., a bill mailed to your address) to any library branch.

Onsite in St. Paul: St. Paul Library card holders are already registered to check out materials.

All others with existing cards from public library branches in Minnesota: Bring your library card and photo ID to any St. Paul branch (including the Debra S. Fish Library) to be registered.