Getting Started at the Library

What can you do at your library?

At our many convenient locations in Mecklenburg County you can find books, movies, music, internet connections, computers and rentable Wi-Fi hot spots, programs for children and adults, and staff trained to find the answers you need. You can also use our web site to access a wealth of digital material and online resources any time of day or night - this includes ebooks, audiobooks, streaming music, videos and movies, and access to online movies, journals, magazines and more.

It's all available with your library card

Your library card is your key to using library services and is good at all Charlotte Mecklenburg Library locations. You will need to present your card when you check out materials and when you use library computers, so be sure to bring your card with you each time you visit.

  • Standard Library cards are free to Mecklenburg County residents, property owners and students. Library cards expire every three years, and can be renewed over the phone or in person. Parents have the option to customize their child's library card account to limit access to materials; just ask for details.
  • Non-residents of Mecklenburg County can obtain a library card for an annual fee. (No fee is charged to non-residents who own property in Mecklenburg County or who are students in Mecklenburg County.) Learn more.
  • Teacher Loan cards are available to Mecklenburg County teachers for materials to be used for classroom use. These cards allow an extended borrowing period and must be renewed yearly in August by providing confirmation of eligibility. Learn how to apply.
  • ONE Access™ accounts.  Students of Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools can use their Student ID number to access and check out Library resources. There is also a ONE Access™ e-account for CMS staff. Learn more at

Get your library card

If this is your first Charlotte Mecklenburg Library card
  • Apply in person at your local branch and get your card immediately. Be sure to bring a current picture ID and proof of your current address.
  • Apply online and you can get a Virtual Card for immediate use or a Physical Card that you can pick up at one of our 20 locations. (Non-residents who have paid the annual fee will receive an activated card, ready for use.) More details can be found on the application page
If you have ever had a Charlotte Mecklenburg Library card
  • If you have ever had a library card or have lost your card, please do not fill out an application. Instead, contact your local branch for information on getting a replacement card.

Learn more about using your Library

Visit our Borrowing Policy page for details on borrowing times and renewals, information on fines and fees, and more.