5 Ways to Make the Most Out Of Your Library Card

5 Ways to Make the Most Out Of Your Library Card

Make the Most of your Library CardWith the start of the new year, many of us like to start everything with a blank slate: lose weight, get healthy … SAVE MONEY.

What if I told you I had a perfect way for you to stream movies, music, listen to audio books, have access to thousands of books and magazines both online and in person FOR FREE?

It’s TRUE! All you need is a library card!

I know, you are probably like, wait a minute, I have a library card, but I don’t have time to get to the library to check out books or magazines.

That’s the awesome thing: You don’t even have to get out of your pajamas to start the next book in that series you are loving that you finish at 1 in the morning. You can binge read if you want, just like when you started watching Making a Murderer on Netflix. (Don’t lie, you know you did it too during the holiday break.)

Seriously, pin this post or save it to your Facebook links because here are five ways to make the Most out of your Library Card!!!


Hoopla is an app available through the library that is like Netflix, Audible, iTunes, and Kindle all bundled into one, but FREE. Yes, you read that correctly, FREE. Most of our local parishes (St. Charles, St. Tammany, Orleans, Tangipahoa  and Jefferson) offer Hoopla access. Download the app to your computer, tablet, or phone; create a user id and log into your library’s account. From there you will have access to hundreds of movies, audiobooks, ebooks, tv shows, comic books, and music. All of the downloads are FREE with your library card through the app. You can borrow up to 30 titles a month, too! Some of the movie downloads available include Silver Linings Playbook, Django Unchained, Duck Tales: Treasure of the Lost Lamp and A Goofy Movie. They have television show downloads like Thirtysomething, The Librarians, and most of Jillian Michaels’ Shred workouts! The Hoopla app was a life saver for us on our September drive down to Disney. Before we left, I downloaded a couple of movies onto the tablet and that helped tremendously to entertain our son. Hoopla also features music downloads (so you can try before you buy!), comic books, ebooks, and audio books. I always check Hoopla first when I am looking for a new book to read, and if it isn’t available there, I move on to the next way you can make the most out of your library card …


Overdrive is another app that available through your library and it likely offers the widest selection of ebooks and audiobooks for download. Overdrive allows you to borrow ebooks and MP3 audiobooks from your library without even having to leave your house! All you need to access the library on Overdrive is a library card and a PIN to your library card account. Once you have this, you have full access to all of the awesome books available through your library. Recently, I started reading a series by Tess Gerritsen and I have read 6 books in the last month, yet have not stepped foot in the library. In fact, I have been staying up late finishing the books, and anxious to start the next one, go into Overdrive, borrow the next in the series, download it into the kindle app from Overdrive, and get start binge reading in a matter of minutes. It is really that easy, and FREE with your library card. If you don’t have time to physically read books, though, I also recommend checking out audiobooks through Overdrive. I also do this frequently – especially on my daily work commute and on my lunch hour walks. There are literally THOUSANDS of books at the ready for you to get lost in and they are available with the swipe of your finger!


If you aren’t really into books, but you sure do love to check out magazines, check out the Flipster app. Like Hoopla, Flipster is an app that allows patrons access to all of their favorite magazines. Download the Flipster app, go to the link from your library’s website, enter your library card number and select the magazine you are looking for. It’s that easy to have access to all of your favorite magazines! Some popular titles included are Cooking Light, Sports Illustrated, Ranger Rick, People, and Southern Living!5 Ways to Make the Most out of your Library Card I New Orleans Moms Blog

Online Catalog Request

If you are old fashioned and don’t mind heading over to the library to pick up a paper book or DVD, but as a mom, you don’t really have time to walk through the shelves to search for a book or movie, consider using the online catalog of your library. All local public libraries have an online catalog available for browsing. You can use your library card and PIN to select which books, audiobooks, and DVDs you would like to request. A hold will be put on the books, a library employee will pull them from the shelves, and they will call you or email you when your book selections are ready for pickup. I liken this method to the “buy online, pick up in store” option you get when you shop online. Don’t forget, your library has a large collection of books, magazines, audiobooks, and DVDs, all available for you to check out to enjoy with your family! Or, if you are ever looking for some quiet “me” time on a Saturday afternoon, head on over to your library to browse the shelves, grab a cup of coffee, and relax in the peace and quiet while you flip through a good magazine or book. Rumor has it, the East Bank Regional branch of the Jefferson Parish Library even has a coffee shop!

Library Programming

Most importantly, check into your library’s programming! Most local libraries offer computer classes, story time for children, craft events, movie showings, book clubs and discussions, and other fun programming that is free to the public. In additional to the Annual Summer Reading Program, libraries offer events all year long! Just this month, my local library had a really fun “Let it Snow” craft and story time for kids of all ages as well as an Adult Coloring Meetup that included refreshment and all of the materials required for some coloring therapy with friends. All local libraries have Facebook pages and online calendars you can check regularly to get updates on upcoming events and programs, and you can even set it up to send you a reminder via email so you will not miss out on the fun!

So there you have it! No matter whether you love books, movies, music, or in person programs, there is something for everyone in your family at your public library, and it is all FREE in your own community library.

Helpful Links


Local Libraries 

New Orleans Public Library
Jefferson Parish Public Library
St. Charles Parish Library
St. Tammany Parish Library
Tangipahoa Parish Library
St. John Parish Library 
St. Bernard Parish Library 
Plaquemines Parish Public Library 


  1. Family membership cards to the Ogden Museum of Southern Art are also available to be checked out at any New Orleans Public Library! Borrow one today and explore the largest collection of Southern Art in the world. The cards can also be used to for free admission to Ogden After Hours, a weekly concert series featuring live musical performances by Southern Musicians.


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