Portland Public Library (PPL) is currently providing contactless To-Go services at branch libraries and limited inside services at the Main Library. Here are some answers to Frequently Asked Questions about PPL To-Go.
Who can use PPL To-Go?
To Go service is available for current physical library card holders whose account is in good standing. If you have a balance due, you must pay this before you can pick up any held items. We require you to wear a face covering when picking up your materials.
How do I place a new hold? Can I still get recommendations from staff?
You can place a hold online in our catalog, or by calling our Lending Desk (871-1700 x 730) for assistance.
When can I pick up my holds?
After you get the notification that your holds are available, visit your chosen pick-up location. Make sure you receive the notification that your hold is ready before coming to pick up your item(s).
Are library books safe?
According to scientific best practices in handling library materials, we are quarantining books returned in our book drops for 3 days before returning them to circulation.
How are you keeping patrons and staff safe?
All of our staff are wearing face coverings as they work, and we request that you to do the same when you arrive to pick up materials. We will frequently wipe down all hard surfaces and provide hand sanitizer for use by both staff and patrons. Our To-Go services are completely contactless.
Can I come in and browse the books first?
Due to the continued presence of COVID-19 in our community, we offer mini-browsing of designated shelves at the Main Library only.
What if I have mobility issues and can’t leave my vehicle to come inside?
If you are unable to use our To Go service, please call Lending at 871-1700 x 730, and we will try to make other arrangements with you as staffing allows.
Do I need a library card to use Library To-Go services?
Yes, you do! If you need to apply for a new card, please email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
I need to use the computer, can I come in?
We are currently admitting people at for 30-minute computer sessions at the Main Library only. Please see this page for more details: PPL Public Computing
For the safety of our staff and the community, we require face masks and social distancing at all times.
Can I come in quickly and use the restroom?
Yes, at the Main Library only.
How do I check out materials?
Use your card to borrow books, e-Books, audiobooks, movies, music, games, and magazines, and also use the Library’s online resources and public computers. Once you have selected materials to borrow, bring them to the Lending Desk and present your card. See the chart below for lending periods and lost item fees.
How do I renew my items?
Most items can be renewed twice if no one has placed a hold. If you owe more than $5.00 in fees, you must speak with Lending Services staff by phone at (207) 871-1700 x730 or in person to renew. You cannot renew online if you owe more than $5.00.
Please note: For items with a 3-week loan period, you may renew any time after the first week you have it out. However, the new due date will always be 3 weeks from the renewal date, not from the original due date. You may renew videos with a 7-day loan period after the first four days, and the new due date will be calculated from the renewal date.
Where can I return my items?
Return items to any location or into the book drops located at each. Items returned after closing will be checked in on the next business day.
Checkout & Return Policies
We do not charge overdue fees. However, if an item is not returned or is returned damaged, the Library may bill you for its retail value plus a $10 processing fee. If you owe more than $5.00, you may not borrow or renew materials or use public computers until the fees are paid.
||Max #||Loan Period||Renewals||Replacement|
|Books||100 items||3 weeks||2||Retail cost plus $10 processing fee.|
|Audiobooks & Music CDs||6 items||3 weeks||2|
|Magazines||6 items||1 week||2|
|DVDs||6 items||1 week||2|
|Videogames||1 item||1 week||2|
|MaineCat Item (from other Maine libraries)||local library rules||3 weeks||1|
|3 titles||2 weeks||Re-download,
retains last page read
|3 titles||3 weeks||Re-download||none|