Borrowing Policy

Library Cards: Library cards are free. Bring photo identification and proof of current address. A parent's signature and proper identification are required for those under the age of 18 years of age. Students over 14 may use their current San Mateo school ID card as identification.  Apply for a card online

Loan Periods:

  • 7 Days: Adult Magazines
  • 21 Days: All other materials

Most items may be renewed 5 times except Quick Picks and Technology Lending.

Loan Limits:

  • Maximum of 50 library items checked out on a card

Overdue Fees:  The San Mateo Public Library no longer charges overdue fees for items that belong to the San Mateo Public Library.  This does not include lost or damaged items, or the late return of items in the Technology Lending collection (see "Fees" below).


  • Technology Lending: $ 1.00 a day per item
  • Lost Materials Processing Fee: $5.00