While there continues to be no fines for overdue material, we have started to send out overdue notices to remind you to return your items.

How to Borrow

Bring your library card to any of our 39 Library Branches, browse our stacks or use the catalogue to find materials, and sign them out at the circulation desk or at our self check out stations.

Most materials may be returned to any branch, with book drops available for after-hours returns.

How long can I borrow materials?

Please let us know if you are leaving our service area. You can disable your account by contacting any of our branches.

What happens if an item is overdue?

There are currently no overdue fines on library materials. However, we ask that you still return your items by their due dates so others can enjoy them.

 

To help remind you when it’s time to bring your materials back, we’ll resume sending overdue notices January 9, 2022.

If the book is not returned after 120 days or the item is lost or damaged, the library user will be charged a replacement cost for the item(s).The replacement cost is what VIRL pays for materials.

 

If there are no overdue fines, why am I receiving an overdue notice?

While there are no late fees, we ask that you return your books on time so others can enjoy them. To help remind you when it’s time to bring your materials back, we’ll resume sending overdue notices January 9, 2022.

If the book is not returned after 120 days or the item is lost or damaged, there is a replacement cost.

When will I get an overdue notice? 

A notice will be sent to the library user 3, 7, 21, 35 and 106 days after the item was due.

When will I be billed for an overdue item? 

A billing notice will be sent out 120 days after the library item was due.

What is the replacement cost? 

The replacement cost is what VIRL pays for materials.

Is there a processing fee? 

No. All processing fees are being waived.

No Fines on Children's Materials

As of January 1, 2019, all Children’s materials checked out will not incur fines and any outstanding fines on children’s materials  have been deleted. Adult materials checked out children’s cards will still accrue fines, and outstanding fines will not be waived on these materials.

Why did VIRL Eliminate Children’s Fines?
Eliminating fines for children shows leadership in the library profession by responding to a demonstrated community need with a simple and innovative solution. This solution removes a potentially significant barrier to access and helps ensure that library services are available to some of the customers who need them most.

Don’t Children’s Fines Help Teach Lessons About Responsibility?
We believe that children are better served by the actual lessons and knowledge they can gain through unencumbered access to library resources. Children should not be faulted or punished for library card fines; rather, they should have barriers to access removed so that they can grow and learn without limitations.

What about children’s materials checked out on Adult Cards and Adult Materials checked on a Children’s Cards?
No fines will be accrued on children’s materials checked out on adult cards. Adult materials checked out on children’s cards will still accrue fines.

Does this apply to Literacy Kits?
Yes, no fines will be accrued on Children’s Literacy Kits.

What if long overdue items are returned?Outstanding fines on children’s materials were eliminated on December 31, 2018. We will periodically batch delete any fines that may accrue when long overdue items are returned.

Staff may also waive these fines if they see them.

Won’t this cut into VIRL’s revenue?
Fines do not represent a significant portion of VIRL’s revenue. Eliminating children’s fines is not forecast to have a meaningful impact on VIRL’s budgets or service deliveries.

No Fines on Young Adult Materials

Starting January 1, 2022 all Young Adult materials checked out will not incur fines and any outstanding fines on Young Adult materials have been deleted.

Why did VIRL eliminate fines for Young Adult materials? 

We want to ensure equal access to the important services and resources we provide and we know, in many of our communities, fines can mean the difference between accessing the library or not. This is one more way we are removing potential barriers and prioritizing literacy and opportunity over punitive fines.

Like children’s materials, will YA materials be subject to replacement costs if they
are not returned?
Yes. However, the replacement cost will be reduced to VIRL’s cost for the materials.

Won’t this cut into VIRL’s revenue?
Fines do not represent a significant portion of VIRL’s revenue. Eliminating fines for Young Adult material is not forecast to have a meaningful impact on our budgets or service deliveries.

Will the moratorium on adult fines continue?

Yes. VIRL has not charged late fees for Adult materials since the onset of the pandemic and the moratorium will continue in 2022.

Since we are not charging fines on adult materials in 2022, will all adult overdue fines also be waived?
Yes. All overdue fines associated to adult materials will be retroactively waived.

Will Adult materials be subject to replacement costs if they are not returned?
Yes. However, the replacement cost will be reduced to VIRL’s cost for the materials.

How do I renew items?

Renewing items is easy. Here’s how:

On the Internet:

Connect to My VIRL through the catalogue.

Self Checkout

Self checkout stations are available at most branches, and you can use Self Checkout to renew items.

In Person

Just bring in the items and our staff will be happy to renew them for you

Over the Phone

Call our renewal line at 1.888.988.VIRL.

How do I place and freeze holds?

Items not available or available at a different branch location may be requested.

Simply click the “Request it” button beside the item details.

If you require the item by a specific date and do not wish to borrow the item at a later date, click “I have a deadline for this material” and you will then be able to choose a specific date that your request will be cancelled.

If you wish to suspend your holds into the future, access your holds list, click “Freeze” and save changes for the item(s) you wish to suspend. You will continue to move up the queue. Your request will not be filled until you deselect “Freeze” and save changes.

How do I get email notifications?

Please contact your local branch if you wish to register to receive email notifications.

You can register for three types of email notifications:

1. Hold Notifications
You will receive an email when your request becomes available,including  the last day it will be held for you.

2. Due Date (Courtesy) Notices
Courtesy Notice emails are sent three days before your item is due. Please note: not receiving a Courtesy Notice does not exempt fines from being applied to your account.

3. Overdue Notices
Overdue notices are sent 3, 7, 21, 35 and 106 days after the item was due.

Email messages are sent from: donotreply@virl.bc.ca

Use My VIRL to keep your email address up to date.

Questions about your holds or overdue items should be directed to your local branch.

How do I get telephone notifications?

Please contact your local branch if you wish to receive telephone notifications.

You can receive telephone notifications if your number is listed in our service area.

Customers registered for this method of notification are called when:

1. Requests are available for pickup

2. An item is overdue: 3, 7, 21, 35 and 106 days after the item was due.

If you register, the telephone notification and renewal system phone number that you will see on your call display is 250-758-4697.

To renew items, call: 1-888-988-8475 (VIRL)

Contact info@virl.bc.ca with questions about telephone notifications.

Questions about your holds or overdue items should be directed to your local branch.

Catalogue Privacy Statement

VIRL customers have a right to privacy and confidentiality regarding the collection of personal information and the use they make of our collections, facilities, and websites. The release of such information would contravene the BCFreedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act.

When using VIRL‘s new catalogue, there are instances where customers can interact with third party vendors. These third party vendors use a process of authentication that does not include the release of customer personal information to authenticate.

If you have questions about the protection of your privacy, or to request access to your personal information, please see VIRL‘s Privacy Policy. If you have any further questions or concerns, please contact VIRL‘s Privacy Officer.

Please note that if you actively subscribe to an account with a third-party vendor, such as OverDrive or Ebsco, to access library materials, your records may be subject to the policies of that vendor. We encourage you to become familiar with the privacy policies of the websites you visit and the digital services you use, including those of our third party vendors:

How much does it cost to replace a library card?

Replacement library cards

  • Adults $2.00
  • Children $1.00