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How much is your library card worth?


What is the Public Library worth to you?


How much would you pay out-of-pocket for your library services?

  • Enter in the left hand column the number of times per month you or your family use each service.
  • Estimated retail value of each service (if purchased) will be calculated on the right.
  • Total value of your library use is shown at the bottom of the worksheet.
  • Tip: Tab between entries and do not use commas.
Input Your
Library Materials & Services Value of
Your Use

Adult Books Borrowed
Young Adult Books Borrowed
Children Books Borrowed
Movies Borrowed
Audiobooks Borrowed or Downloaded
Music CDs Borrowed
Songs Downloaded
eBooks Downloaded
Magazines Borrowed or Downloaded
Newspapers Read
Interlibrary Loan Requests

Adult Programs Attended
Young Adult Programs Attended
Children's Programs Attended
Museum Passes Borrowed
Meeting Room Use (per hour)
Hours of Computer Use (e.g., Internet and MS Office)
Database Searches
Reference Assistance

Total Value (per month):

This calculator has been adapted from the one originally provided by the Massachusetts Library Association.


Library Use Value Calculator Explanations of Values


The cost figures for library services were derived by the Massachusetts Library Association based on the table below:

Library Service Value of Service Based On
 Adult Books Borrowed  $17.00  Amazon.com average price
 Young Adult Books
 $12.00  Amazon.com average price
 Children Books
 $17.00  Amazon.com average price
 Movies Borrowed  $4.00  Estimated Netflix average
 $9.95  Audible.com download average
 Music CDs Borrowed  $9.95  iTunes download album average
 Songs Downloaded  $1.00  Estimated Value
 eBooks Downloaded  $15.00  Estimated B&N/Amazon average


 $5.00  Estimated purchase price average
 Newspapers Read  $9.50  New York Times subscription (outside city)
 Interlibrary Loan
 $25.00  Amazon.com average price plus shipping
 Adult Programs
 $15.00  Entertainment/program admission fee -
 estimated average per adult
 Young Adult Programs
 $12.00  Entertainment/program admission fee -
 estimated average per youth
 Children's Programs
 $7.00  Entertainment/program admission fee -
 estimated average per child
 Museum Passes
 $30.00  Museum admission fee - estimated average for a
 family of four
 Meeting Room Use
 (per hour)
 $25.00  Estimated value
 Computer Use
 (per hour)
 $18.00  FedEx/Kinkos price
 Database Searches  $19.95  Average cost for online article search
 Reference Assistance  $7.00  Average library cost