Using the library

Library card

library card

You will need your library card whenever you wish to borrow items from the library. You can obtain a personal library card and PIN code at any Vaara library by presenting a valid photo ID and by complying with the Rules of Use. The first library card is free of charge. Any library cards issued subsequently are subject to a charge. You can use your card at any Vaara library. To speed up your request, please print the library card application form and fill it out in advance. A person under the age of 15 will need a guardian’s written approval to obtain a library card: The library card application form for children

Card holders are responsible for material borrowed on their library card. The guardian is responsible for material borrowed by a person under the age of 15.

If you lose your library card, please notify us immediately. According to the library Rules of Use you will be held responsible for material borrowed on the card until you have reported it as lost.

Keep your contact information up to date

Please let us know right away if your phone number or email address changes, or update your contact details online in your web library Profile (login via My Account).

  • Your new address will not be updated automatically. Instead, you fill in an online form which is automatically forwarded to the library staff that will update your contact details.
  • If you wish to change the name on your library card, you need to visit the library in person and present a valid photo ID.

PIN code

The PIN code is a password containing at least four numbers and can be obtained at any Vaara library by presenting your library card and a valid photo ID. You will need your PIN code in several situations, e.g. when you:

  • log in to the web library
  • check out items with a lending machine
  • visit an Open Library

If you forget your PIN code you will obtain a new one at the library service desk by presenting your library card and a valid photo ID. Due to security reasons, PIN codes are not granted by e-mail or over the phone.

Using the web library

The web library can be used without logging in. However, many services, such as renewing your loans and administering your profile, require that you log in with your library card number and PIN code. After your first login, an account in the web library is automatically created. After this you will automatically be able to use the services requiring user login.

Library cards

You can attach several library cards to your user account and administer them all with a single login. In order to make use of this feature you will need, besides the number of the library cards, also the PIN codes for all the cards you wish to attach. You can also give individual names to all attached library cards.

Logging out

When you wish to log out of the web library, first click on your name on the top bar, then click Log out.

Loans and renewals

You can see the due dates of your loans on the loan receipt or online on the Loans tab. Return or renew your loans by the due date during library opening hours. Loans can be returned to any Vaara library. There are overdue charges for items returned or renewed after the due date.

Some libraries have drop boxes for returns. Returning material through a drop box is at your own risk. The material deposited in the drop box is registered as returned on the next opening day of the library.

You can renew your loans via the Loans tab in the web library. Select the items you wish to renew, then press “Renew selected items”. You can renew your loans five times unless there are reservations on them. You can also renew your loans by phoning your library. You will find library contact information in Libraries.

Library notifications help you remember

  • Notifications of due dates are always sent by e-mail. The notification is sent 1-5 days before the due date according to your choice.
  • Overdue notifications are sent by mail.
  • You can see your selected settings in your Profile.
  • If you wish to change your settings, fill in the form "Notification Settings Change Request" in your Profile. The information is forwarded to the library staff that will make the changes.

How to make a reservation

It is convenient to make reservations and administer them via the web library. The first step is to make a search. You can reserve an item either directly on the search result list or by clicking the title and going to the item page. Press "Make a reservation" and select your pick-up library. It is possible to set a default pick-up library, but you can also ignore this option and select your pick-up library every time you make a reservation.

If you were not logged in, you will get a request to do so at this point.

The reservation is free of charge. The item you have reserved may be transported from any Vaara library. There is no separate fee for transport.

You can cancel your reservation in the web library if it has not yet been processed and the item is not yet available for collection. If your reservation has already been processed and you wish to cancel it, you can do so by contacting the pick-up library. The fee of an uncollected reservation is 2 €.

Pick-up notice for reserved item

  • You will receive a pick-up notice when an item you have reserved is available for collection at the library.
  • The pick-up notice is sent as an e-mail, as an sms or by mail depending on your account settings. You can see your settings in your Profile.
  • You can change your pick-up notice settings in your Profile by filling in the form "Notification Settings Change Request". The information is forwarded to the library staff that will make the changes in your account.
  • Please note that pick-up notices sent by mail may in some cases arrive very close to the last pick-up date.

If you do not wish to make the reservation by using the web library, you can also phone the library customer service.

How to change your holds identifier

To change your holds identifier you must be logged in to the web library. You can change the identifier on your profile page under ”Request address change”. The library staff will take care of the requested change shortly. The identifier must be unique and therefore the most common names might already be taken. In such case, you have to come up with a new identifier, for example by adding numbers or by using a nickname. Changing the holds identifier does not affect the reservations that are already available for collection at the library.


The charges that are shown in the web library contain late fines for unreturned material. You may pay your fees online if you have fees more than 1 €.

Alert schedule

The web library saves all your searches even if you are not logged in. You can delete this saved information by clearing the cache or closing your browser.

You can also save your searches permanently by making an alert schedule on the “Saved searches” tab: select a search and, from the dropdown menu, set the alert interval at once a day or once a week. The notifications will be sent to the e-mail address you have provided in association with the alert schedule in your Profile.


You can create one or several lists of favourites in your account. Items can be added to the list by clicking the pin-shaped button either on a search result list or on an item page. To add a new list, go to Favourites in your account. You can also give your list an individual address that you can share with your friends, e.g. via social media.

Interlibrary Loans

Interlibrary loan request form (Joensuu, Karsikko, Nepenmäki and Rantakylä)
Interlibrary loan request form (other Vaara-libraries)

If you require an item not in stock in any of the Vaara libraries, it can be requested from other libraries through interlibrary lending. Interlibrary loan requests cannot be made for items which are included in the collections of the Vaara libraries but are currently on loan. If the item you wish to borrow is on loan, you can place a reservation for it. We will send you a notification when it becomes available.

Interlibrary loan requests can be made at all the Vaara libraries.

There are charges for interlibrary loans

In addition to the regular interlibrary loan charges collected by the supplying library, there is a reservation fee payable upon collection. You will also need to pay any additional costs (e.g. postage and copying).

Delivery times may vary

The usual waiting time for an interlibrary loan to arrive is about two weeks, but the delivery time may be longer if, for example, the supplying library has reservations for the same item. When the requested item is available for pick-up, you will be notified by phone, e-mail or post.

Interlibrary loans follow the general terms of use for the supplying libraries' loans and loan times

All materials are not necessarily loaned to other libraries, and sometimes the loans can only be made for reference library use.

Interlibrary loans are returned through the requesting library

The date that the item must be returned by (the due date) is shown on the loan slip accompanying the item. Interlibrary loan renewals are also made through the requesting library.

Interlibrary lending

This service is for libraries.

Acquisition request

Acquisition request

If the item you are searching for is not in the library collection, you can leave an acquisition request. Please check the library catalogue before filling in the form.

Providing additional information and your contact details is not required, but will help the staff to process your request. Please note that reservation is only possible after the material is purchased by the library.

Rules and Regulations in Vaara libraries

Upon receiving a library card, you agree to comply with the Rules of Use of the Vaara libraries. Please click below to study the rules.

Rules and Regulations in Vaara Libraries from 1.1.2023: