It’s the age of Netflix, Amazon Prime and Hotstar subscriptions. In the frenzy to consume more video content, many of us have forgotten one dear friend: library cards! Over the course of my two-decade long life, I have accumulated a total of four library cards, including my school library card.

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After I moved from my quiet small town to a bustling city for college, I felt oddly vacant because I could no longer go on my bi-monthly library visits. After the excitement of the first year passed, I was quick to get a membership at a lending library. This was not because I missed reading, I was a literature student who had plenty to read. But my library card offered much more! So here are a few benefits of getting a library card. I hope it’ll inspire you to add another subscription to your OTT bag.

A wide spread!:

This is the most self-evident advantage you can get out of a library card. You get access to shelves and shelves full of books. Books that you have never heard of before, authors you have never heard of before, genres you have never come across before. This variety, and the fact that you have already paid the subscription fee, will allow you to experiment so much more than what a book shop or online shopping platform would allow. You won’t be incurring any monetary losses if you take a bad book, which will naturally allow you to not be inhibited when you choose books. Your library might even gift you a new favourite author. It surely gave me a few dear ones!

Beyond a hobby:

Surely, the number one reason why most of us take library cards is because we love reading. But it is also the number one place to go when you are searching for academic books that you can’t get a hold on. Libraries have access to many expensive academic books. If the book is not available at the moment, you can always reserve it for when it becomes available. What’s more, libraries can also double up as a quiet study hall!

Staying up-to-date:

Libraries are the best way to stay up-to-date with the literary world. You will be informed of the latest arrivals, brand-new books will be stacked in separate sections and you can even reserve books that are yet to be released! Smaller neighbourhood libraries might even add a book to their catalogue if you ask for it. Talk about VIP treatment!

Easy on your pocket:

Library memberships are not expensive. You would spend a lot less on a library card, than you would if you chose to buy all the books for yourself. As an added benefit you will also be getting constant inspiration to finish reading your books since you’ll have to return them sooner or later. The money you spent on a library membership comes with freebies such as this!

It’s an event!:

Going to a library is something that you’ll eventually grow fond of, and it can always be converted into a little event. It’s always a pleasure to be in the middle of books, between huge shelves without a sound to disturb you. It’s a great way for a family to do something productive and fun together. Libraries are also communal spaces. The little scribbles and messages a  stranger has left on the book are just as exciting as the many events, workshops and camps libraries often organize.

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