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enhance library card

Enhanced Library Card

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The Enhanced Library Card is a library card for adults (18 or older) that includes your Library Card number, photograph, address, date of birth, the expiration date, and a scannable barcode. The card can be used to check out items from APL's physical collection and/or digital resources, depending on your membership type.

Starting May 1, 2023, the card will be available at three Austin Public Library locations, which include:

  • Little Walnut Creek Branch, 835 W. Rundberg Ln
  • St. John Branch, 7500 Blessing Ave.
  • Southeast Branch, 5803 Nuckols Crossing Rd.

What is required to apply for an Enhanced Library Card?

What is required to apply for an Enhanced Library Card? link

To apply for the Enhanced Library Card, you will need to complete and sign an Adult Library Card Application at a participating location and library staff will need to verify your identity and residency. You must be present to verify documents and have your photo taken on-site. Here is the list of eligible documents:

Acceptable Photo IDs
APL accepts the following types of valid (or expired for one year or less) photo IDs:

  • Texas Driver License
  • Texas Department of Public Safety ID
  • Non-Texas State Issued License or ID
  • Passport
  • Military ID
  • International Driver License
  • Non-US Driver License or permit
  • Credencial Para Votar ID (Mexico voter registration card)
  • Non-US Consular ID
  • Resident Alien Card
  • Austin Police Department ID
  • Texas Offender ID
  • Texas Concealed Handgun License
  • Educational Institution Photo ID
  • Service Point ID
  • Government issued ID with an identifying number
  • Written verification issued by a homeless service agency, hospital, health clinic, social services agency, or faith-based agency within Austin confirming residency (original, signed copy on official letterhead)

*Digital forms of identification are accepted

Acceptable Proof of Address Documents

  • Driver license, temporary Texas Driver's License or Learner’s Permit
  • Texas Department of Public Safety ID
  • Bank or credit union statement
  • Utility deposit receipt or utility bill from the past 60 days
  • Credit card bill from the past 60 days
  • Current Voter Registration Card or notarized temporary Voter Registration Permit
  • Current vehicle registration or liability insurance
  • Official rent receipt; rental agreement, contract or lease
  • Employment pay stub from the past 60 days
  • Written verification issued by a homeless service agency, hospital, health clinic, social services agency, or faith-based agency within Austin confirming residency (original, signed copy on official letterhead)
  • Mail postmarked within the last 60 days (if none of the above is available)

*Digital forms of proof of address documents are accepted

*Non-resident membership fees apply for customers who do not live in Austin.

What organizations and institutions accept the APL Enhanced Library Card as a form of ID?

What organizations and institutions accept the APL Enhanced Library Card as a form of ID? link

Austin Public Library has received confirmation from the following government agencies and community organizations that they will accept the Enhanced Library Card as a valid form of identification:

City Departments:

  • Austin Police Department​
  • Austin Energy (accepted at Utility Customer Service Centers for maintenance or inquiries on actively billing accounts)
  • Austin Public Health​
  • Austin Municipal Court (for services that do not require a state-issued ID by state.)​
  • Austin Parks & Recreation​
  • Downtown Austin Community Court​
  • The Resilience Office​
  • Austin Animal Services​

Community Organizations:

  • Central Health
  • ECHO​
  • Foundation Communities​
  • Integral Care​
  • Central Health​
  • Lifeworks​
  • Sunrise Navigation Center​
  • YWCA Greater Austin

Partner Organizations

  • American Gateways​
  • Austin Asian Community Health Initiative​
  • Go Austin Vamos Austin​
  • Girasol Texas​
  • Grassroots Leadership​
  • Todos Juntos Learning Center​
  • Truc Viet​
  • Workers Defense Project

Note: the Enhanced Library Card is not a valid form of voter ID.

When will I receive my Enhanced Library Card? Do I need to make an appointment?

When will I receive my Enhanced Library Card? Do I need to make an appointment? link

Cards are printed at the time the application is accepted, and the applicant’s photo is taken. It should take 15 – 20 minutes to apply for and receive your Enhanced Library Card. You will leave with your Enhanced Library Card after your application is accepted. There is no need to make an appointment.

Enhanced Library Cards are printed at three Austin Public Library locations, which include:

  • Little Walnut Creek Branch, 835 W. Rundberg Ln
  • St. John Branch, 7500 Blessing Ave.
  • Southeast Branch, 5803 Nuckols Crossing Rd.

Am I required to get an Enhanced Library Card?

Am I required to get an Enhanced Library Card? link

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

Are there any risks with the Enhanced Library Card?

Are there any risks with the Enhanced Library Card? link

The Enhanced Library Card is a document that contains your name, photo, and other personal information. Should your Enhanced Library Card be lost or stolen, it and the information on it could be used to perform identity theft. When you apply for the card, you also take responsibility for it and for protecting your identity should the card be lost or stolen. If at any time you decide you no longer want your Enhanced Library Card, contact APL to have your account updated to a standard, traditional library card.

I lost my Enhanced Library Card. What do I do?

I lost my Enhanced Library Card. What do I do? link

Please call Customer Service at 512-974-7475 or email circ.link@austintexas.gov to report your card lost. Staff will block the account to prevent any unauthorized use. Please note you are responsible for all materials checked out to your account prior to the card being reported lost.

To receive a replacement for an Enhanced Library Card, please visit one of our Enhanced Library Card locations to apply for a new card.

Can I use my APL Enhanced Card to check out items from all Austin Public Library locations?

Can I use my APL Enhanced Card to check out items from all Austin Public Library locations? link

Depending on your membership type, you can use your Enhanced Library Card at any APL location and/or the Virtual Library. APL has integrated online catalogs. You can check out print materials, and you can also place holds on many items from other APL library locations and pick them up at your preferred APL location.

Want to find out if you already have a Library Card or if your residence address is within the city limits of Austin before applying? Call Customer Service at 512-974-7475.