Curbside Holds Pickup

Curbside Holds Pickup Banner

We are excited to launch our curbside pickup service to offer a contactless and convenient way to access books and other materials. During this time, access to our library buildings remains closed to the public.


Who can use this service?

Anyone with a Peninsula Library System card can make an appointment to pick up requested items from the Main Library located at 55 W. Third Avenue.

How do I request items? 

Place a hold on items that you want through the catalog, just like you used to before.  You can place up to 25 items on hold on your account.  Once your item is ready, we will email you and direct you to a website where you can book an appointment online to pick up your materials.

Am I still limited to items at San Mateo Main?

No, most items throughout the Peninsula Library System will now be eligible.  Due to varying staffing levels at the PLS libraries, some items may take longer to arrive than others.

How long before I can pick up my requests?

Our staff are working on fulfilling holds as quickly as possible.  The wait time may be a little longer than what you were used to prior to the library closing due to varying staffing levels and limited deliveries.  Please allow up to two weeks for your holds to arrive from other PLS libraries.  You will receive notification when your holds are available for pickup.

When can I pick up my requests? 

The following pickup times are available by appointment only: 

  • Tuesday: 2:00 PM-6:00 PM
  • Wednesday: 10:00 AM-2:00 PM
  • Thursday: 2:00 PM-6:00 PM
  • Friday: 10:00 AM-2:00 PM
  • Saturday: 10:00 AM-2:00 PM

I have multiple items on hold, and email notifications are coming in individually for each one.  Do I need to book an appointment for each item?

You can book an appointment for each item as you receive the email notifications.  Or you could wait to book an appointment when several or all of your holds are ready.  An item on hold will expire 12 days after you receive your initial email notification.  

What if I have phone or text notification instead of email?

You will receive the link to make an appointment via text if you have text notification set up.  If you have phone notification, please call us at (650) 522-7818 for assistance in making an appointment.

What is the process when I arrive during my appointment time?

  • You must wear a mask to pick up your holds. Staff will also be wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) and observing social distancing. We cannot provide service to patrons who do not follow mask and social distancing policies.
  • When you arrive at the library, park in one of the street parking spots on W. Third Avenue in front of the building. The library parking lot is not currently open.
  • If there is no street parking available, you may use the book drop drive through area, but please pull forward to where the white divider pylons are. You may need to wait to leave if there is another person parked in front of you.
  • Once parked you will need to exit your vehicle and walk towards the front entrance where the line forms, near the fountain.
  • If there are other patrons waiting to be assisted, please observe social distancing protocol, and stand 6 feet away. There will be markers on the concrete so that you know where to stand when in line.
  • When it is your turn, you will walk up to the table, state your name and the staff member will provide your items to you.

Can I return items that I currently have checked out?

Yes, you can return any materials you have checked out to the Main Library from Monday-Friday, 10:00 AM-5:55 PM, Saturday 10:00 AM-5:00 PM.  The library quarantines returned items for 72 hours before they are checked in, re-shelved, or returned to their home library. There may be a delay in your items being cleared from your account. No overdue fines will be accrued during that time.

Can I drop by and request items? 

This service is by appointment only. If you have questions about the library or your materials, please ask over the phone or email as we are trying to keep these appointments contactless.  

Can I pick up Summer Prize Books with my holds?

Yes, you can schedule to pick up your free Summer Prize Books with your holds. Please submit this form and a staff person will contact you to schedule the appointment. If you already have an existing appointment, please confirm the date and time with the staff member. Children 12 years and under are eligible for a total of two (2) free Summer Prize Books and teens 13-18 years are eligible for one (1) free book.

When will you offer curbside pickup and return at the Hillsdale and Marina branches?

We are working on adding on this service and hope to do so very soon.  Stay tuned on our website, social media, and e-newsletter for details.

What if I need help requesting items or do not have a computer or internet access at home? 

You can contact us by phone from Monday-Saturday, 10:00 AM-4:00 PM at (650) 522-7818.