You can normally borrow National Library (NL) publications that appeared less than 50 years ago to take home with you. Upon request, we will also be happy to send your order to you free of charge. However, newspapers, periodicals, printed music and audiovisual and electronic media can only be consulted on site.

The Swiss National Library circulation desk
You can collect the documents you have ordered from the circulation desk (photo: NL, Simon Schmid)

To borrow documents from the NL you need a library card, which will be issued to you free of charge once you have registered as a user.

Registration is open to:

  • Any person aged 15 years or over who is a permanent resident of Switzerland or Liechtenstein and has proved their identity.
  • Swiss citizens must present a valid identity card (passport, ID card) for enrolment, foreign citizens a Swiss residence permit B or C.
  • Foreign citizens residing in Switzerland without a B or C residence permit may obtain a user card by producing a written guarantee signed by a person over the age of 18 who is a permanent resident of Switzerland or Liechtenstein and has proved their identity.
  • Legal entities and other collective bodies (libraries excluded) must supply the name of an individual who is empowered to represent them in order to obtain a user card.

Membership cards of NL partner libraries and BibliOpass are not automatically valid in the NL. However, you can use them to register by completing the registration form and entering your existing user number.

People not permanently residing in Switzerland or Liechtenstein may borrow documents for a day in the NL reading room. To do so, you must deposit an official identity card at the circulation desk.

Last modification 01.05.2023

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Swiss National Library
Hallwylstrasse 15
3003 Bern
Phone +41 58 462 89 79

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