Interlibrary Loan Services

Notice: We’re going green! On July 1, 2016, the library will phase out paper hold pickup notices and the $1.00 restocking fee for unclaimed holds. To continue receiving hold pickup notices, please add your email address to your library account in the new catalog or contact your local branch library.

The San Diego Public Library belongs to the Circuit, a consortium of local public and university libraries. When an item is unavailable in our collection, you may be able to borrow it through the Circuit free of charge.

Use Interlibrary Loan (ILL) to request items that are available neither from the San Diego Public Library nor the Circuit. To have a book delivered from another San Diego Public Library location, place a "Hold" on the item using the Library Catalog.

When placing a request online, a non-refundable $5 fee will be added to your account for each interlibrary loan request. Additional charges may be required by the lending library and you will be asked on the request form to indicate and agree to a maximum charge. Charges are assessed for the request whether or not the item is picked up.

To make a request, find the item in the WorldCat catalog and select either...

  • Borrow this item from another library system (Interlibrary Loan), or
  • ILL graphic ILL

Please note:

  • You must have a San Diego Public Library card in good standing. A maximum of six requests per week may be submitted.
  • Expect items to arrive in two to four weeks for most requests.
  • Items borrowed through ILL must be picked up and returned to the same location. Please return the item directly to library staff.
  • Most items borrowed through ILL cannot be renewed.
  • Titles published within the past nine months are not available via ILL.
  • Most libraries will not lend reference material or particularly valuable or fragile material.
  • If you need to cancel a request, contact the Interlibrary Loan staff at (619) 236-5846 and we will attempt to do so. Fees will still apply if the item has already been sent from the lending library.

To request an article from a magazine, journal, or newspaper you will need a citation to when and where it appeared. Find the periodical title in WorldCat and place a request for the periodical, adding citation information for the specific article in the "Comments" field. The issue date and/or volume and issue numbers, page numbers, and article title are required. Libraries generally do not lend full periodical issues. Be sure to check the Magazines and Newspapers databases and the Gale Power Search for availability of the article in San Diego Public Library print and online resources.

Microfilm/fiche can be requested from other library systems but cannot be checked-out. It can be used at the Central Library only and is held at the Circulation desk on the first floor.

Additional information is available from the Interlibrary Loan staff at the Central Library by calling (619) 236-5846, or from your local branch library.

Proceed to Worldcat.