During COVID-19, BPL is still here for you! Explore our current branch services below, learn about digital materials and resources you can access from home, and read the polices and procedures we've implemented to keep our staff and patrons safe.
You can now visit select BPL locations for additional library services! Browse the collections on the first floor, access computers and printing, and sign up for library cards.View Locations
Join us outside for traditional library services and creative programming, from outdoor seating to library card registration, storytimes to laptop loans and more.Learn More
BPL is now offering expanded library services at select locations. Patrons can browse the collections on the first floor, access computers and printing, and sign up for library cards.
Seating, meeting rooms and programming are not yet available indoors.
Expanded services available at select locations:
- Computer reservations
- Holds pickup
- Library Card signup
- Print on Demand
- Reference assistance
- Public restrooms
For your safety and the safety of staff, please follow these guidelines when you visit BPL.
Wear a mask at all times. Masks must cover your nose and mouth.
Follow social distancing guidelines with other patrons and staff.
Please refer to our complete list of safety guidelines and procedures when planning your visit.
Frequently Asked Questions
Last updated June 11, 2021
Can I come inside the library again?
Yes! All open BPL branches will be offering limited access services by the end of June. See branches offering expanded services here. You are welcome to browse, use computers and printing services, and get assistance at the service desk. Please be mindful of posted signage and guidance, and keep your time inside to no longer than an hour.
Can I use a computer?
Yes! Due to social distancing requirements, a limited number of computers are available for 30 minute reservations. Children and teen computers are available too! Learn more about scheduling your computer reservation. Plus, find outdoor Laptop Loan events here.
Can I bring the whole family?
Yes! However, if the branch is at capacity, you may have to wait outside until other patrons complete their business. Library staff will ensure that traffic keeps moving so that patrons outside do not have to wait long to enter.
Are group visits allowed?
Unfortunately, no. Due to capacity requirements, we are not able to accept school or camp visits at this time.
Is seating available?
Unfortunately, no. For the time being, indoor seating is not available at our libraries. Many of our branches provide outdoor seating! See a complete list here.
Can I reserve a meeting room?
Unfortunately, no. For the time being, room reservations are not permitted.
Are you offering programs again?
For the time being, indoor programming is not available at our libraries. Please join us outside for our many wonderful outdoor programs and services! See a complete list of outdoor programs here. And explore all our Virtual Programming here.
Returns, Overdue Items and Fines
I checked out materials before you closed in March 2020. Are they overdue now?
Items borrowed between January 30 to March 16, 2020 were due March 15, 2021. Please return or renew any overdue items as soon as possible. Late fines on overdue items are suspended, but our policy on lost items is still in effect. Learn more here.
How do I return my items?
You can return borrowed materials to any open BPL location. Our locations map always has up-to-date hours information. There are also select locations with 24-hour book drops where you can return materials at any time.
I returned my materials but my account says they're still checked out.
Because BPL quarantines materials upon their return, it may take longer than usual for materials to be checked-in. Please allow a few days for your returns to clear from your account.
Do I have late fines on my account?
Late fines for overdue material are suspended through Summer 2021, and all previously accrued late fines have been cleared. Fees on lost items and other library card charges are still in effect. Learn more here.
Who can get a library card?
Brooklyn Public Library's card is free for anyone that lives, works, pays property taxes, or attends school in New York State. NYS residents ages 13 and older may apply online for a library card. Once your application has been submitted, please visit one of the open branches. Children 12 and under may not apply online; their parent or guardian must accompany them to a branch to apply for a library card.
What’s the difference between an eCard and a full access library card?
eCards can be issued fully online, with no need to visit a branch. eCards offer immediate access to eBooks and audiobooks, our online resources and electronic databases, and Print on Demand services. Apply for an eCard here. Regular library cards provide all the same access as an eCard, plus the ability to place holds on physical library materials such as books, DVDs, and CDs. Apply for a physical library card here.
Can I convert my eCard into a full access BPL library card?
Yes! Visit one of our Brooklyn Public Library branches and bring a current photo ID with proof of address. For a list of other acceptable proof-of-address documents, please click here.
What if my card is expired?
All BPL library card accounts for New York State residents with an expiration date from January 1, 2019 onward are being automatically renewed. Please check your account for your new expiration date. If your library card expired before 2019, you must visit a BPL location in person to renew; find open branches on our locations map.
What if I had a card but lost it?
You can get a replacement card at any open branch. Please bring a valid photo ID with your current address. For a list of other acceptable proof-of-address documents, please click here.
How do I access eBooks and Audiobooks?
Learn how to access digital library materials, what apps you can use, and how to put books on your eReader device on our eBook & Audiobooks webpages.
What are online resources and how do I use them?
BPL subscribes to a variety of digital databases and learning tools, with topics ranging from language learning apps to scholarly research archives. Most are fully free and accessible with your library card; start exploring here.
Are you hosting online events?
Yes! Explore all our Virtual Programming here.
How do I sign up for an online event?
Many of our virtual programs do not require registration and can be streamed directly. All of our events are free to the public, but some do require advance registration. Simply click the online calendar listing to find out where the virtual programming is streaming or if registration is required.
Holds and Pickups
Can I place new holds?
Yes. You can place new holds for pickup at any of our open library locations! Holds can be made via bklynlibrary.org; the BPL app; phone; or, in limited locations, in person. Learn more here.
How do I know when to pick up a hold?
We will notify you by email, text message, or telephone when it is time to pick up a hold. Update your notice preference by logging into My Account and clicking on "Account Details" and then on "Contact Preference."
How do I pick up my hold?
Holds will be available for pickup near the library lobby. Patrons may checkout their items using our self-check kiosks, using the BPL app on their mobile device, or at the Service Desk at branches open for limited access. Holds ready for pickup at a closed location will be held there until that location reopens, or for long-term closures, moved to a nearby location.
When can I pick up my hold?
We suggest you double-check your branch’s hours before visiting. Our locations map always has up-to-date hours information.