Your Library Card

Get a Library Card

  • Free of cost
  • Use at any public library in Waukesha or Jefferson County (Bridges Library System)
  • Valid for 18 months, then you will need to renew
  • What you need to bring
    • Photo identification (e.g. driver’s license, school ID, passport, etc.)
    • Proof of residency (e.g. driver’s license, phone bill, lease, etc.)
    • If you are under 18, a signature of a parent or guardian
  • You may register here for a temporary card number to use until you are able to come in to the library to receive your permanent card. With this temporary number you are able to:
    • Place 2 items on hold
    • Fully access the digital library of ebooks and audiobooks
  • Printable Membership Benefits & Checkout Information

Renew Your Library Card

  • Cards expire every 18 months
  • To renew:
    • Call or visit the library
    • Confirm all contact information (address, phone number, etc.)
  • You will keep the same physical card and card number

Replace Your Library Card

  • Show proof of residency
  • Pay $1.00 replacement fee

Get a Visitor Library Card

  • For people only in the area for a short while
  • Valid for 3 months
  • Limited to 5 items at a time

Your Password

  • Every library card has a password assigned
    • Your password is most likely the last four digits of your phone number
    • Older cards may have a birth date password in the format of “mm/dd/yyyy”
    • If you do not know your password or would like to change it, please call us at (262) 646-6230
  • When entering your barcode, include the “CAFE” and all numbers, with no spaces

Held Items

  • Your library account will tell you the status of your hold
    • Active – you are on the list but there are no copies currently available
    • Pending – you are on the list and there is a copy currently available just waiting to be pulled from the shelf at another library
    • In Transit – your item has been pulled from the shelf at another library and placed in the van to be delivered Monday-Friday
    • Held – your item is on our hold shelf waiting for you to pick it up
    • Inactive – you have suspended your hold and, while you keep your place in line and keep climbing the list, the hold will not come in for you until after the date you have chosen
  • Your held items are located on the self-service hold shelf near the public computers, just past the study rooms on the left
    • Held for 7 days
    • Organized by the first four letters of your last name
  • You may suspend your holds
    • Holds will not arrive until the date you specify
    • Your hold position will continue to rise even when suspended
    • To suspend:
      • Log in to your account 
      • View “Holds” (on left)
      • Check the box next to any holds you wish to suspend
      • Click “Suspend/Reactivate Selected” at bottom and choose your new activation date

Loan Periods

  • The following materials have a 3 week loan period:
    • All books (including browsing books)
    • All audiobooks (including Playaways & MP3-CD books)
    • Music CDs
    • Magazines
    • Science book bag kits
    • Digital books from Libby
    • Digital audiobooks from Libby
  • The following materials have a 2 week loan period:
    • Television series
  • The following materials have a 1 week loan period:
    • DVD and Blu-ray movies
    • Board games
    • Hotspots
    • Rokus
  • The following materials have a 5 day loan period:
    • Special collection passes (Milwaukee County Zoo, Milwaukee Art Museum, Betty Brinn Children’s Museum)
  • Details on all of our collections
  • Renewals
    • Most items have 3 renewals (only if there are no holds on the item)
    • No renewals on browsing books
  • Item borrowing limits
    • Physical items – 250 per card
    • Digital items – 10 per card
  • Grace period
    • All items checked out at DPL have a 3-day grace period
  • Inter-Library (out of county) Loans
    • Loan periods vary
    • No 3-day grace period
  • Items returned after 1/2 hour prior to closing will be checked in the following day

Returning Your Library Materials

  • There are two book drops for returning materials
    • Outside drop on the east side of the building, near library parking lot (available all hours)
    • Inside slot in the wall between the library entrance doors and the circulation desk (available during library open hours)
  • You may return materials to any public library in Waukesha or Jefferson counties, unless otherwise noted on the item

Fines & Fees

  • Fines
    • $0.15 per day for books, CDs, CD books, and other items except DVDs and games
    • $0.50 per day for DVDs and games
    • $1.00 per day for Inter-Library Loans
    • $50.00 per day for hotspots, Rokus, and special collection passes
    • $5.00 maximum fine per item
    • $10.00 blocking limit (after $10.00 in fines your card will be blocked)
  • You will be charged a fee for damage to or loss of items checked out
  • A service charge of $15.00 will be added to your overdue account if it is sent to the Unique Management Service for collection

Detailed Circulation Policy