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Enhanced Library Card

Want to apply for an Enhanced Library Card (a library card with your name, photo, and personal information)? This guide will walk you through the process!

Enhanced Library Card FAQ

Enhanced Library Card

San Antonio Public Library

FAQs

What is the Enhanced Library Card?
The Enhanced Library Card is a San Antonio Public Library Card that  includes your photograph, address, and date of birth

What can I use the Enhanced Library Card for?
The Enhanced Library Card is a San Antonio Public Library Card and so can be used to access all the resources that are available to Library card holders – this includes books, DVDs and other physical materials in our collection, as well as our various electronic resources (such as e-books, databases, and more).

The Enhanced Library Card is a document with your name and picture that could possibly be used as a supplement with other documents to prove your identity. Please check with organizations/ entities with which you would like to use the Enhanced Library Card as part of establishing your identity to find out how the Enhanced Library Card can be used for this purpose.

Is there a cost for the Enhanced Library Card?

If you are able to receive a San Antonio Public Library Card for free, you can also receive an Enhanced Library Card for free. More information about getting a San Antonio Public Library Card can be found at the following links:

There is no additional fee for an Enhanced Library Card.

At which libraries can I apply for the Enhanced Library Card?

The following libraries offer the Enhanced Library Card

Which libraries can I use my Enhanced Library Card at?

The Enhanced Library Card is a San Antonio Public Library Card and can be used at all San Antonio Public Library locations (as well as online to access our e-books and other digital resources)

Am I required to get an Enhanced Library Card?

No, the Enhanced Library Card is an optional Library Card and is not required. If you would like a standard Library Card, please visit any San Antonio Public Library branch and staff will be happy to assist you.

What do I need to bring with me  to apply for an Enhanced Library Card?

In order to apply for any library card, including the Enhanced Library Card, library staff will need to verify your identify. The easiest way to verify your identity is to bring a photo ID (the original physical document) to your appointment. We can accept a variety of photo IDs as long as they have the following information on the ID:

  • Your Name
  • Your Photo
  • Name of the organization, agency, or business that issued the ID

Some examples of photo IDs we accept are: Driver’s License or ID from any state, temporary driver’s license or ID from Texas Department of Public Safety, passport, Consular ID / Matricula Consular, a school ID, a work/employee ID, a Club Card (such as from Sam’s Club), a Membership Card (such as from the YMCA or other gym), Haven for Hope ID, and others.

What if I don’t have a photo ID – can I still apply for an Enhanced Library Card?

If you don’t have a photo ID, we would be happy to accept another document to verify your identity. We would be happy to accept a letter from an agency or government entity that states that you do not have a Photo ID. We ask that this letter is the original, be on the letterhead of the agency/government entity, provide your name, state that you do not have a photo ID, and be signed by a staff member of the agency / government entity.

If you do not have a photo ID or a letter from an agency / government entity stating that you do not have an ID, you may want to consider ID Recovery. Here are some organizations in San Antonio that offer this service: https://sacrd.org/directory/subcategory/identification-recovery?zipcode=78205

Library staff can assist you in finding an organization that offers ID recovery.

When will I receive my Enhanced Library Card?

We’ll mail your Enhanced Library Cards the next business day after your appointment, and it should arrive in the mail within seven business days. When you apply for an Enhanced Library Card, our library staff will provide you with a receipt that includes your name and picture and can be used as a temporary Library card.

I want to be able to check out library materials – can I receive my Enhanced Library Card sooner?

If you would like to have your Enhanced Library Card faster so that you can check out materials, we would be happy to assist you with checking out materials at the end of your Enhanced Library Card appointment. If you would like to check out materials before your Enhanced Library Card arrives in the mail, we would be happy to assist you in checking out materials using the temporary library card you will receive at the end of your appointment.

I need my permanent Enhanced Library Card sooner for a reason other than checking out library materials – is this possible?

If you would like to have your Enhanced Library Card sooner for reasons other than checking out materials, library staff can assist you with picking your library card up at Central Library during library hours, two (2) library operating days after you apply for it (ie if you apply for your Enhanced Library Card on a Tuesday, you can pick it up on a Thursday). The Library staff member that assists you during your appointment will let you know the earliest you can pick up your Enhanced Library Card. Enhanced Library Cards must be picked up at Central Library.

In order to pick up your Enhanced Library Card at Central Library, please verify your address at your appointment to have the card be valid for check out of library materials for five (5) years. Documents that you can bring with you to verify your address are any postmarked mail, pre-printed checks, apartment/property lease, insurance card, bank statement, pay stub, etc. If you are not able to bring address verification to your appointment, we will still issue the card but it will only be valid for checkout of library materials for 30 days. Once we receive verification of address of address from you, your Enhanced Library Card will then be valid for checkout of library materials for five (5) years.

Please bring either your temporary Enhanced Library Card (receipt of the Enhanced Library Card when you apply for it) or the proof of identity you used to apply for the Enhanced Library Card to pick up your permanent card at Central. You can pick up your Enhanced Library Card at Central during Library Hours (Mondays and Tuesdays from 12-8 pm and Wednesdays-Saturdays from 10 am – 6pm)

I don’t have a permanent residence and can’t receive mail – how can I receive my Enhanced Library Card?
Please speak with the library staff member during your appointment for your Enhanced Library Card – we would be happy to assist you in identifying ways to receive mail if you do not have a permanent residence.

How long will it take to apply for an Enhanced Library Card?

Appointments to apply for Enhanced Library Card should last roughly 15-20 minutes. Only very rarely should an appointment last more than 30 minutes.

Can my minor child apply for an Enhanced Library Card?
At this time, Enhanced Library Cards are only available to adults (individuals who are at least 18 years old). The only exception to this would be a minor who is legally emancipated.

Are there any risks with the Enhanced Library Card?

The Enhanced Library Card is a document that contains your name, picture, and other personal information. Should your Enhanced Library Card get lost or stolen, it and the information on it could be used to perform identity theft. At your appointment, you will be asked to accept the responsibility and risk of this document, and that you will take appropriate steps to protect your identity should the card get lost or stolen. If at any time you decide you no longer want your Enhanced Library Card, you can contact the Library and we will issue you a standard library card.