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.

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.

Renewing 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.

Placing Holds and Freezing 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.

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, and 35 days after the item was due.

Email messages are sent from:

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.

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 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 with questions about telephone notifications.

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

Overdue Items

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.

Late charges are assessed if you return your materials after the due date. There is a maximum fine per item.

Late charges are not levied against Children’s materials, Talking Book users, Books by Mail users, employees, institutions, Homebound customers or Home Delivery Volunteers.

Late charges on Adult and Young Adult materials – $0.30/day

Reference, Interlibrary Loans, Express Reads, Kits, Book Club Sets – $1.50/day

Maximum late charge: $10.00/item (Your balance must be less than this amount to borrow library materials).

Lost and damaged charges

  • You will be assessed charges ranging from $1.00 to the full replacement cost of lost or damaged materials.
  • All lost items are subject to a processing fee of $8.00

Replacement library cards

  • Adults $2.00
  • Children $1.00

Payment Plan

If the amounts are such that you are prevented from borrowing, then, in consultation and with the approval of the Library Manager or designate, a payment plan may be offered.  Borrowing limits may be applied during the course of the payment plan.

For a complete list of fees and charges, including non-resident rates, visit our Fees and Charges Policy.

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.

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: