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The lending office of the library is located on the 1st floor of the SKS main building (Hallituskatu 1). You can check out material either at the lending office or by using the self-service machine on the ground floor of the library.

Items from the closed stacks must be ordered in advance through Helka Database.

Library card

A Helka card is required for loans. It can be obtained free of charge from any of the Helka libraries upon presenting a piece of official identification, a Finnish social security number and a permanent address in Finland. Foreign nationals resident in Finland can obtain an identity number from the district registry (maistraatti). UniCard, a combined student identification and smart card (or staff card) of the University of Helsinki, can also be used as a library card. The library card is for personal use only, and the cardholder is responsible for all material borrowed with it. A lost card and any change in address, phone number or name should be reported to the library immediately. A charge will be made for the replacement of a lost library card (see price list).

Loan period

The loan period is 28 days. Certain categories of material are not available for home loan. These include the latest issues of periodicals, publications printed before 1900, reference works and books from the special collections.

Returns and renewals

Loans must be returned or renewed on or before the due date. Material on loan from other libraries cannot be returned to the Library of the Finnish Literature Society. Loans can be renewed if the material has not been reserved by someone else. Renewals can be made at the Lending Office, by telephone (Lending Office +358-(0)201 131 272), or via the self-service system in Helka database.

Overdue loans

Overdue loans are recalled by email or by post and an overdue fine is charged (see price list). If the overdue material is not returned within 2 weeks, or if there is unpaid fines of over 15 €, a temporary borrowing ban will be imposed on the patron. The ban will apply to all Helka libraries, and it will be removed when the fines are paid and the overdue items returned or compensated.


Requests for material that is currently on loan may be placed through the HELKA online catalog or at the library service desk. A valid Helka Card is required to make a reservation. Requests for materials are free of charge, but there is penalty fee (see price list) if requested items are not picked up or cancelled by the last pick-up day.


Helka Database
Helka Instructions

Price List