If you’re a frequent traveler, you probably have an electronic device for reading books on the road. I can’t imagine the luxury this would have been when I split time between the US and Spain nearly a decade ago. I would pack my bag full of books and magazines just so I would have enough to read and do. I even had my mom send care packages with magazines (I am a recovering magazine addict). Now, in the age of Kindles, Nooks, and iPads, you can add books and magazines to your device as long as you have an internet connection. BUT, did you know, you can often check out ebooks for free from your local library?
With a library card to our local library, I’m able to check out library eBooks and content. While my two kiddos don’t leave me tons of leisurely reading time, I have been known to use it to glance at cookbooks I’m interested in, check out kid books while on a trip, and I’ve even read a book or two for myself. Our online library doesn’t offer as many books as they would in the physical library, but there is certainly a large collection to choose from.
I won’t go into too many specifics, as I’m sure there are many systems out there, but our library uses an app called OverDrive. I installed it on my iPad, logged in with my library credentials and can browse books and other eContent from there. You can search, hold, and do all the typical library tasks from the app. On my app, the books are listed with little dark book icons in the corner if the book is available and a lighter icon if it’s checked out. If a book you want is checked out, you can place a hold so you can be notified and check it out when it’s available.
There are a couple of ways to read the books, but I generally download the book to my Kindle app and read from there. I’m using an iPad, so your experience will be different if you’re using a Kindle Fire or other device. One thing to note is that I believe you can only download a book to one device, so you can’t have it on your phone and your iPad and sync between the two. (Last I tried anyway).
Book checkout time is typically two or three weeks, when it becomes no longer available on your device. You can also return the book early in some cases. This wasn’t very intuitive for me so I think I usually let the time run out.
Need some reading material for your next trip? Consider checking out eBooks from the library!