23.7 million media items from books to DVDs, to films, overflow the Boston Public Library, making it one of the top 2 largest collections in the entire country second only to the Library of Congress in Washington D.C. and followed by Harvard University. If that isn’t enough to spoil us, owning a Boston Public Library card has its own set of benefits.
As the nation’s second-largest library in resources (this encompasses all of the BPL branches) you can learn a whole lot about Boston with this one card. The cards are free to own and grant 100% free or heavily discounted access to many exhibits, amusements, and museums like those listed below:
Boston Public Library card benefits:
- Free entry to most Boston museums, and discounted entry to others
- Free entry to the New England Aquarium
- Discounted access to Zoo New England
- Massachusetts temporary DCR Parking Pass for free parking at all DCR parks and beaches
- Free entry to the USS Constitution Museum
- Long-term free loan of Chromebook laptops
- Free English fluency ESOL courses
- Entry for kids to the Future Readers Club with the goal to read 1,000 books aloud before kindergarten
- Free entry to Kirstein Business Library & Innovation Center (KBLIC) events on financial leadership, innovation and more
- Free 1-hour kayak at any one of five Boating in Boston locations—Newton, Hopkinton, Natick, Stoneham, and Wakefield
- App to e-download virtually any book on a digital device
- Harbor Islands ferry ride at half-price
- Hoopla– digital media lending service to watch your favorite films
- Use Little Pim to introduce your kid to a new language
- Get test prep and homework help digitally for free with LearningExpress Library
- Enjoy a dedicated personal book shopper-fill out a form and a librarian will send you a selection of books that match your taste
- Free parking at Hail Reservation
- Free entry to the JFK Presidential Library and Museum
- $2 one-day pass for 4 to the Mass Audubon Wildlife Sanctuaries
- Trustees GO Pass to the 116 trustees properties
How to sign up for a Boston Public Library card?
Most of these benefits apply only to physical library card (not the eCards), as it is often required for validation. Any Massachusetts resident can obtain a Boston Public Library card at a BPL circulation desk at any of their branches. You don’t need to live in Boston.
You’ll require proof of residency in the form of an ID. The best options to bring are:
- Massachusetts Driver’s License
- or Massachusetts State ID
If those are unavailable to you, you can bring a photo ID along with recent mail sent to your current Massachusetts address.
Children under 12 may obtain a library card with the signature of a parent or guardian. Moral of the story, run, don’t walk to get your Boston Public Library card today to start taking advantage of just another beautiful reason to live in Boston!